There have been a lot of misconceptions over the last few years as to which option is the better choice. You will find benefits on both sides of the spectrum. 

The truth is that technology has changed dramatically in the past several years.

Growing lights have improved significantly, even within the last five years. So what was true in the past may not be the case today. Both HPS and LED lights have their advantages and drawbacks.

HPS Grow Lights

HPS, or High-Pressure Sodium lights are capable of producing a huge quantity of light. In fact, a lot of growers preferred HPS lights for years because of this. Light is crucial during the flowering stage and has been known to increase yield at harvest. The high intensity of HPS grow lights can create an ideal environment for cannabis flowering. HPS lights are also comparatively cheap to set up. However, on the flipside, the high-intensity output of High-Pressure Sodium lights generates a lot of heat. In many cases, using HPS grow lights requires additional ventilation for sufficient airflow or additional cooling. This can increase costs significantly. In addition, the high-intensity light consumes a huge amount of energy, driving up costs while also causing more environmental damage. Despite these drawbacks, they do have a few benefits.

Advantages of HPS Grow Lights

  • HPS grow lights are capable of producing an intense amount of light, which can increase cannabis flowering
  • There are a wide variety of HPS grow lights available, so options have become more standardized
  • The initial setup costs are lower with HPS grow lights than LED lights

Drawbacks of HPS Grow Lights

  • HPS grow lights require more power and are less energy efficient than LED lights
  • HPS grow lights have a shorter shelf life in comparison to LED lights
  • The intense lighting of HPS makes adequate airflow and ventilation with cooling essential
  • Setting the optimal temperature can be challenging, particularly in confined spaces
  • HPS grow lights increase costs substantially in the long-term

LED Grow Lights

LED, or Light-Emitting Diode grow lights have increased in popularity over the years. Advancements in technology have changed the growing game. In the past, HPS lights were essentially the only option. But today you will find LED lights at some of the largest commercial cannabis grows. In comparison to HPS lights, LED grow lights are incredibly energy efficient. High quality LED grow lights can produce equivalent yields to HPS grow lights using significantly less energy. Therefore, many cannabis growers consider LED lights to be an environmentally friendlier option for indoor cultivation. They also happen to be cost-efficient. Although LED grow lights tend to have higher upfront costs than HPS lights, they offer long-term savings. The extended life span of LED lights means you will not be constantly spending your money into replacements, plus the running costs are significantly lower, especially when you factor in the less heating load required to maintain the climate conditions. 

Advantages of LED Grow Lights

  • LED grow lights are more energy efficient. They produce the same amount of light as HPS lights but consume substantially less energy
  • LED grow lights do not produce as much heat as HPS lights, avoiding the need for additional ventilation or airflow systems
  • LED grow lights are smaller than HPS lights, maximizing grow space
  • LED grow lights feature an impressive shelf life

Drawbacks of LED Grow Lights

  • LED grow lights require a higher upfront investment. However, they can reduce costs in the long run due to their extensive shelf life
  • LED grow lights may not produce enough heat as HPS lights for colder climates
  • LED lights lack standardization, which makes comparing options more challenging. However, we’ve compiled a list of the top quality and best priced LED grow lights for you!

Which Option is for you?

Should you be using HPS or LED grow lights? Both options have their merits. However, unless you are growing in the colder temperature regions, you’re better off using LED lights. There are simply more advantages. LED lights offer long-term savings, energy efficiency, and do not require extra equipment. While the upfront cost of LED lights does tend to be higher than HPS lights – you may be shocked by just how affordable high-quality options have become. IOGRU has been looking into this market and we now have several LED manufacturing partners that have solutions for growers.

The market has expanded enough that you’ll find a wide variety of options available. With the long-term savings, investing in a quality LED lighting system is the way to go. Whether you need LED lights for a large or small-scale grow operation, we can help you find something to fit your needs!