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Time to upgrade... 600w VS 1000w hps

Discussion in 'Grow Room Design & Setup' started by formfactor, Jan 23, 2012.


    formfactor Member

    Okay so the electricity bill is too high, and it's time for me to upgrade with a focus on efficiency and quality.

    Right now I'm running 3 1000w hps lights and 2 400 watt halides. Pretty much all magnetic ballasts. Fucking expensive.

    So I'm going to replace the magnetic ballasts with electric, but I'm seriously considering going with 2 electric 600w for every 1000w.

    So I'm thinking I could get more lumens out of 2 600w than out of a single 1000w while using about the same electricity.

    Has anyone else experimented with this? Are my estimates sound? Im thinking I could also get a larger grow space with the extra lighting.

    Thanks in advance!

    Tldr: I want to replace 3 1000w magnetic ballasts with 6 600w electronic ballasts. Am I an idiot?

    FootClan Well-Known Member

    no your not an idiot in the sense that 2 600watts will give you more lumens than 1 1000w and you will have more points of light souce which will give you better coverage..... H

    However even though the math would suggest that the 600watters would be better theres still the fact that plants grown under 1000watter just seem to come out super dense and chunky.......

    Also you say you want to switch because your power bill is too high but what your proposing would actually increase your power bill......

    If your running 3 1k lights thats about 28.5 amps(9.5amps per 1k light) and if you switch to 6 600watters that would be 33amps(5.5amps per 600watt) so what your saying would actually cost you MORE power BUT you would have more lumens.......... Me personally i perfer 1000watters i dont care what the math says my buds always come out bigger and densor under the 1k lights....

    also its sound like you are OVER estimating the effiency of a digital ballast...It seems someone has told you that a digital ballast will save you tons of money on power and well really thats not true i run digi ballasts and see no real difference in my bill from when i was running 1000w digi's vs 1000w magnetic ballats..... So you might wanna take that into consideration before you get rid of all your shit for what you think is better shit....... sometimes you just cant listen to all the hype

    formfactor Member

    Great advice foodcat. Exactly what I wanted to know. I did some googling on the digi vs magnetic thing and ran into info that suggested digi was 15-20% more efficient.... Which doesn't necessarily mean less electricity evidemtly but that's what I assumed.

    Thanks for your input! Exactly what I needed. I think I might just upgrade 2 of the 1000s to digi, replace 1 with with 2 600s and. Get rid of the 400s. Tough decision, I'll have to experiment with the coverage on the 600s...

    DOOZY Active Member

    i have ran 4- 600wdigi before i switched to 4 1000 digi.. love them both i do notice 1000w make better nuggs imo..

    FootClan Well-Known Member

    yep i use 1000watters and not because i cant use 600watter its because i PREFER the 1000w..... Hey you welcome bro glad to help keep us updated

    FootClan Well-Known Member

    oh and my name is FOOTCLAN not footcat....LOLOL

    CaptainCAVEMAN Well-Known Member

    You should consider a light mover.
    FootClan likes this.

    FootClan Well-Known Member

    ya a light mover would come in handy with that many lights you trying to use........+rep good advice

    mrmadcow Well-Known Member

    besides the 1000 watts the bulb draws, the ballast also will draw 100-150 watts for a magnetic ballast or 40-50 watts for a digital.
    a 600 watt bulb puts out 90k lumens** and a 1000 watt bulb puts out 140k lumens so you could replace 2 1k lights(280k) w/ 3 600 watt lights (270k). almost the same lumens and you drop a few watts.
    2 thumbs up for the light mover -that will probably help as much as swapping to 2 600s per 1k.

    ** guesstimate -actual milage may very

    sarita99 Member

    I totally agree with Footclan. I switched from 600s to 1000s and kick myself for wasting my time with the 600s for so long. If you switch to 600s, expect your yield and bud size to drop significantly There is a lot of disagreement about how much electricity digital ballasts really save you, and now I've heard people who know what they are doing say that they found their yields are smaller with digital ballasts and they are switching back to magnetic. Something to think about. You have to just accept your electricity costs as your overhead.

    formfactor Member

    Oh man footclan I apologize for the butchering of your name there, I think I was baked and my cat was meowing for food or something lol...

    Yea a light mover I never even considered, I will definitely check into 1! Great suggestions all around :)

    NewGrower2011 Well-Known Member

    If efficiency is the name of the game, can these new dimmable digital ballasts run even more efficiently when not at full tilt/100%?

    I.E. if you bought 1000w ballasts and ran 600w bulbs in the dimmed mode... is it able to run that 600w more efficiently than a 600w ballast
    would run the same bulb since the 600w would be giving it "its all she's got captain" where the 1000w ballast wouldn't be breaking a sweat...

    A little steep in the up-front cost there but if electricity bill efficiency is a big factor... would there be any net gains in that approach?

    NewGrower2011 Well-Known Member

    Also - when running that many lights... isn't this where the whole "flip flop" thing comes in?

    Save money on all those new ballasts and buy half as many - just have to buy/build your flip flop box...

    FootClan Well-Known Member

    I see no drop in my Pg&e from switching to digital ballast from mag. so far for me thats not a factor...... the reason i like digi's is that they are light weight and im able to mount them on the ceiling upside down..... also i like that i can dimm the lights for early veg and late flower.... Other then those two factors i think mag. ballast are just as good and see no power advantage for me

    Thedillestpickle Well-Known Member

    Good discussion here
    Since were comparing magnetic vs. Digital...
    I just bought a 1000w magnetic ballast about 12 hours ago. Ive already got a 400w and 600 magnetic and they buzz just slightly but it never bothered me at all... anyways I plug this brand new ballast in and fire it up and it fucking BUZZES! like holy shit I can hear the thing from the other end of the basement just buzzing like crazy... the 600 is maybe 1/10th as loud. Is this normal? Is there anything I can do about it?
    Guess thats one verifiable perk to the digital ballasts, you can ponder all day about which one is better but one certain fact is that they arent buzzy and loud like the magnetics

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