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Apache Tech LED Grow... 8x12...1900w

Discussion in 'LED and other Lighting' started by tags420, Mar 5, 2013.


    tags420 Well-Known Member

    What's up guys

    This has been my project in planning for a while now but kept getting delayed for one reason or another. I am finally ready to get this grow on the road. I am using Apache Tech AT120's. I have a few different spectrum units, but mostly the 3:2WR. The plan is to veg 28 BBS (Black cherry soda(tga) x Blackberry Kush) clones to about 24" then flip. I have a 8x12 flowering room that will have 12 Apache's in it. My goal is to replace my previous setup of (6) 600w HPS's with no sacrifice in yield plus the added bonus of running only about 50-60% of the electricity.

    They will be in the veg room for at least 3-4 weeks. Plenty of time for me to finish the last touches on the flower room...actually mostly getting rid/altering of venting and ducts from the old hps. Just new hook arrangements for the LED's.

    They are vegging in 1gals with FF ocean forest. Then into 5gals with super soil for the last week of veg and all flower.

    I am going to be updating with both pics and quick videos. The process will be thoroughly documented and the final flowers will be analyzed for potency.

    Here is the first update to show where it's at. Just veg for a while but stay around and keep checking in.

    Chronikool likes this.

    Chronikool Well-Known Member

    WOW...!!!! (no other words...) (except those...) (and those....) (and those....etc) :)
    Rancho Cucamonga

    Rancho Cucamonga Active Member

    I can be honest and say I am not a fan of LED. But I love science and I love testing and I love facts so I will see how far this grow test goes.

    I do not believe for a second that LED lights achieve more THC % than HPS or any other type of light. Potency is a genetic factor. Theoretically one could lose potency of a specific genetic by having a negative environment or other factors, but the different light type or spectrum does not effect potency in any way.

    12 Apache AT120w's? So close to $12,000 in lights. Hmmmmm. I understand the idea of saving money on electricity, but I do not believe one, that you will yield more then your 6-600 watt setup. And two, the start up cost in lights alone(12k compared to 1,200 maybe with only about 350 a year after the first year in bulb replacement cost) is a great setback short-term. But if one could actually get the same yields as with hps lighting and the equipment actually has some longevity and doesn't lose it's effectiveness or have maintenance issues, then maybe. But only then. I admit I don't look at many LED threads because I've seen LED production up close and personal and I'm just not impressed.

    But I will sub this thread and watch the results because I care about facts and not myths. Good Luck!

    Scotch089 Well-Known Member

    Subbed up, the RW Apache panel is the way to go. Great size room!

    puffenuff Well-Known Member

    Oh hell yeah, this is going to be an awesome run. I'm subbed up, got my front row seat and popcorn ready. Good luck tags

    PSUAGRO. Well-Known Member

    Subbed, that's allot of Apache's and will be fun to watch..........good luck grower

    mamakush Active Member

    I have to disagree. There has been A LOT of research put into what types of light best feed photosynthesis... there's a lot more going on under the surface of growing plants than we ever knew.... accessory pigments, hormone response, immune response, and much more. As we figure out how plants respond to specific wavelengths of light, we can tailor spectrums to specifically meet those requirements. I, personally, think a tailored spectrum based on extensive research is going to far and away outperform an outdated spectrum based on a limited understanding of photosynthesis.

    At OP, nice video. Subbed.

    djwimbo Active Member

    I'm with mamakush on this one. Regardless of all other factors, LED's have proven their potential as a growing light. All those other factors are hopefully under control of the grower, but those aren't all created equal.

    Subbed to see results, I really like those panels, but they neither suit my need nor my budget.

    tags420 Well-Known Member

    Yes they have higher potency in the final flowers, and this is cause with the right wavelengths the plant increases resin/trichome production to basically make it's own sunscreen. This happens with HPS and the sun too, but while under the led's they don't suffer the negative effects like heat thus retaining the potency from the extra protection. You may say that is an environment, but that environment was produce by your lights. It could be looked at as LED's don't increase potency...more like HPS destroys some thc.
    Listen to Mamakush, she knows what's up.

    I was lucky enough to run into the right people while playing golf one day and they got me setup with original two. I bought them full retail. First grow was with 2 AT120's in a 4x4...did literally just over 1lb...same thing on the next run...then I became a believer. But after my first run I have been in contact and built a relationship with apache and they gave me a price break for my bigger order.
    It cost about 1600 to set it up for hps and thats with friends discounts at monsterG.
    Here is the cost run down...
    HPS 4000w on 12/12 @ $0.30/KwH= $432.00/month...5,184/year
    LED 1884w on 12/12 @ $0.30/KwH= $203.47/month...2,441.64/year

    That's $2,742.36 in savings a year. LED's last for up to 50,000hours...thats over 10 years of 12/12. Assuming that it last for 5yrs @ 12/12 that's $13,711.80 over the life time in electricity compared to running hps for 5yrs. With a perceptual system, HPS don't last as long, and bulbs get changed more often than average users. New hps ballast every 2 years isn't unrealistic.

    HPS for 5 years
    $1,600(startup) + $25,920(5yrs Electricity) + $1,800(bulb replace 2/year) + $1,000(new ballast over 5yrs) = $30,320
    Apache LED's for 5 years
    $10,000(startup) + $12,208.20(5yrs Electricity) = $22,208.20

    I have been giving apache some feed back and recently convinced them to change the housing on the AT120 from high grade aluminum to a cheaper steal. This will bring the price down to about $600 retail! For the same light. It was originally designed for NASA and need to be extremely durable; and it did survive 8 foot falls, but some growers would rather pay less and just not let it fall. That will be coming out this year. That 12,000 investment just became $7,200 full retail. They will still offer the aluminum versions but honestly I think that should fade out or special order only maybe for practicality.

    The initial investment and skepticism is what keep most away from LED's. After this project, people will be able to see the results for what they are, and can choose for themselves if if is worth it. A lot of people will be like, "Wow, I had no idea LED's could be so good!" and that's what I am here to show. And then there will always be haters. But this is my grow and my cash so everyone keep watching and we will see what happens.

    Scotch089 Well-Known Member

    Jesus h... after the ballast you'll be close to paying dollar to watt every month on a 400w....

    $0.30/kW would put me outdoors real fast.

    Great breakdown though, very nice to see the efficiency of our new tech.

    Alex281 Well-Known Member

    this looks like its going to be a really dope thread! subbed!:bigjoint:

    tags420 Well-Known Member

    Welcome to California. It is actually $0.33.

    I started to make an update today and my camera died right away. I will get one up this weekend.

    hyroot Well-Known Member

    ^^^^ can't wait for summer rates again. $0.19

    flaxseedoil1000 Well-Known Member

    Tier 5 - $.35 kWh on my last bill here in SoCal

    tags420 Well-Known Member

    All the high energy prices are what will really push for LED's. I know hawaii is like $.45+. If led's can cut the energy in half and live up to the same yield, there's not too many that wouldn't jump on that train. I believe that Apache has the tech that can do it so I will give these led's their best shot to prove their point.

    I mentioned in Puffs thread about the new light being ready for the max yield show...well not anymore, they are lagging. And now not even going to the show. Since I was the one actually going to run the booth, I'm bummed and now have an open weekend at home. I will more than likely get to test the new big light once the proto is done, so can't complain too much.
    Rancho Cucamonga

    Rancho Cucamonga Active Member

    Ya I pay .06 kWh. You people in these high tax states just get screwed. No wonder you run to LEDs. Don't any of you have solar?

    As for everything replied tags420, appreciate all the info and I will reserve most comments until grow is all said and done. But proof is in the pudding as they say and until you, or more so the industry, can give me actual results and not pseudoscience I will not be jumping on the LED bandwagon anytime soon. I have seen many youtube videos, read many articles, all of that on top of all the basic research one should do, and there just isn't any proof that LED tech has made it to that plateau yet, most evidence is actually against. As for what mamakush said, that's all fairly general info. Grow light companies have been doing plenty of research on wavelengths, spectrums and the plants responses, much of that research is not specific to LEDs. Forget about the cost, we all know none of the current tech is sufficient enough to compete in the yield category with HID, especially in hydro. And I don't believe that potency claim whatsoever, UV and other factors concerning potency have been debated for decades, just no clear info. This is why I'm FOR LED research, but I just wish we could avoid the claims made with all the insufficient info we currently have to date.

    I'm subbed. I want to believe. Not there yet. :peace:

    blowincherrypie Well-Known Member

    Area 51, BlackDog, Apache, California Lightworks and I know I'm missing a couple others that can actually back their claims up also. There are times and places where your better off spending the upfront investment for LEDs. There are other times where it would just be foolish. Some companies will say anything to make a sale but some do have the lights to back it up.

    jubiare Active Member

    Be careful with those articles, there's plenty of marketing against what is everything different from the traditional money empire hps bottle nutes and all

    chazbolin Well-Known Member

    The empire realizes that their traditional approaches to selling lamps to growers at retail and relamping at 25% of lamp life is not going to last forever. Especially since there are technologies out there that can squish the HID option on both a g/w, improved quality, lower thermal contribution, longer life and stable spectrums in real world side by side trials.

    The initial investment will be more expensive but when you apply all of the factors the ROI should be less than 1/2 cycle of the first crop. After that the only ones that won't be happy about your decision will be the hydro shop where you used to buy all your lamps/ducting and the shareholders of your utility.

    tags420 Well-Known Member

    It took me a while...update time
    natro.hydro and puffenuff like this.

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