What is REALLY your opinion of CFL lights

@dbrn32. This is the light I built. It has 2- 125w 21k bulbs, 2- 125w 65k bulbs, ( using one for seedlings now), 10-23w daylight, and 10- 23w soft white. Trying to get “full color spectrum”


WOW! I don’t know about CFLs alot but I’m sure you will find guys on here to help you I’m new and trying to figure this lighting thing out myself good luck my friend. I’m kinda thinking of building something kinda like that for the sides of my grow box.

@smokesalot… Supplemental lighting


That’s pretty damn cool!

Have you considered doing anything with led instead? The only reason I ask is because you could provide all those color tenps, more intensity, and drastically reduce your power consumption. It should definitely be within your skill level based on the fixture you built, and I could help you spec the parts.


@dbrn32… That would be AWESOME. I’ve never had anyone to ask questions to, and been trying to figure things out. I have learned a good bit from my mistakes ( many ). I’m so glad I found this forum. I VERY MUCH appreciate everyone’s help


You should check out the bridgelux eb strips or Samsung h series strips. They are white mid power diodes already mounted on hard printed circuit boards. They’re efficient enough that you can mount them directly to some aluminum bar stock, and not need heatsinks for cooling. Plus they come with solder free terminals, and are available in 280mm, 560mm, and 1120mm lengths. I think the bridgelux are available in 3000k-5700k, and the Samsung 2700k-6500k. So it’s very easy to get a good blend colors in whatever size fixture you want.

I just did an 80 watt light using 5 of the 560mm eb strips, it was a piece of cake and cost less than $100. Tc temp was 32 C, and they are binned 159 lumens per watt at 50 C. So it should easily be there or better. Just to give you an idea of output.

@dbrn32… I am TOTALLY confused about LED. How is 80w enough

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Props to you dude. 36hrs after swapping out the 2700k bulbs for 6500k cfls - my babies are lovin it. All the leaves are lifting/reaching/spreading noticably more now. THANKS!

@peachfuzz @Sirsmokes @Grandaddy013
My first run ladies’ buds were definitely “fluffy” as they were started/veg’d under cfl (where they stretched) and moved into new tent for flowering under led (too late).

So many choices for lighting - my limited experience has me going with:
Cfl - great for seedlings and aux lighting
LED - primary lighting

Understand the advantages of MH and HPS bulbs - but they also have their drawbacks as well.



Has anyone had experience with BESTVA led grow lights? Thinking of switching to led. @dbrn32

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It really depends on what you’re trying to do with the light. Those eb strips are probably putting out 2x the amount of light per watt that a cfl does. Another thing to consider is that fluorescent lamps put their light out 360 degree beam. So 25-33% of their light goes toward your canopy, and the rest is lost or has to be reflected. These, like most leds, put 100% if the light they produce directly toward your canopy.

The particular light I built was designed to veg 3 or 4 plants for about a month in a perpetual grow. The fixture all said and done is about 24"x16", and was built to light an area that’s about 32"x 20". The light nor the area aren’t really ideal for vegging plants out over a couple months. Nor would it be a great light to flower under. But it doesn’t require a ton of light to veg a plant well. If you keep the red wavelengths away and the light close enough, they stay short and will bush out with a little help.

In your case, you would probably want the longer 1120mm strips to replace that fluorescent fixture. They’re almost 4’ long. They are about 44 volts each, and running them at 700ma would give you about 30 watts a strip. To get a good spectral mix, I would probably alternate 3000k and 5700k strips. You just decide how many watts you want to run, and that determines how many strips and what drivers to buy. Or, you get all 4000k strips and size the same way. You definitely wouldn’t need to replace those cfl’s watt for watt. If you wanted, you could even do 2 smaller fixtures and put one on each side. That’s the joy of diy lighting, you build what you need.

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I don’t have any experience with them, sorry.

@dbrn32… you seem to be very knowledgeable on the led lights. I must admit, I’m as confused as a sterile rabbit. While looking at the different led lights, I become more confused. For example, it says it’s a 1500w, yet has actual power usage of 270w. Any guidance would be appreciated.


Definitely don’t go by what they advertise as model number or what it’s equivalent to. The actual power consumption isn’t great, but it’s much better to follow that.

When choosing an led, you want to consider your needs from the led. If you want a light to grow from seed to harvest with, veg only, or flower only, will all shift what the ideal light for you is. Then you’ll want to consider the size of your grow room and style of growing.

Are you looking to completely switch your lights to led, or getting led to supplement hid lights?

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Been shopping around for LED set up, that really sums up a few questions I had. thank you D :smile:

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What are you looking to do with the led, and which lights are you considering @greenthumbfun?

I haven’t decided yet, this will be my first indoor grow. so right this moment I’m doing some research and putting together a supply’s list but I was thinking

King Plus 1000w LED Grow Light Double Chips Full Spectrum with UV and IR for Greenhouse Indoor Plant Veg and Flower
by KingLED
your thoughts…

There seems to be quite a few members that use them, and they all seem fairly happy. The spectrum seems to be fairly balanced for full cycle growth as well.

The one thing I would point out is that it only seems to draw about 185 watts, which is much less than the 1000w seems to imply. So depending on how big your room is, it may take multiple of them to do the job. I wouldn’t expect that light thrive in any larger than say a 2’x2’ ish area.

As long as you weren’t looking for a light dedicated to run just a veg area, I’d say it seems reasonable for the cost.

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good to know thankx @dbrn32. Iv settled on a space that can accommodate 5 ladies comfortably. about 100sq ft. if I can do 5 in less sq ft. please let me know and if there is a better light for something on that scale please school my butt… :smile: :peace_symbol:

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Are we talking a 10’x10’ or more of a long narrow space? @greenthumbfun

You’re expectations and projected growing style will change a lot if things here. If you plan on putting 5 plants in the middle of the room and having space to walk all the way around them, or running 5 plants along one of the walls and having the rest of the room open, 2-3 of those lights would be sufficient. If you plan on running a scrog or having that whole room full of plants, it’s not even close.

How long do you plan on vegging for, and what kind of yield are you targeting from the 5 plants?

I was planning on doing 5 in a row on an inside corner and tenting them off and keeping it contained to allow for better climate control. the yield I’m looking for is the 1lb/1 plant ratio but will take what I can lol. interested in maybe Goldie Leaf, train wreck, or IDK??? they all look soo good…
I also plan on maybe in the future expanding out in the room to have multiple grows at different stages

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