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🍃 AMA with Brian Gandy of SAGE Lighting Thursday, August 15th at 11 AM PST

What are some inefficiencies that you have identified in LED lighting available on the market today that you might like to correct?

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I’m on IG so I will be watching for them. I recently just got into this hobby(horticulture lighting) at the first of this year so I’m still cutting my teeth. The only thing I have really dabbled in is just experimenting with the deep reds

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Honestly, the chip technology has just gotten to the point of TRUE efficiency. We knew LED would grow plants years ago, but legacy tech was just more efficient. This made for one of the main LED black eyes which is mismarketing claims of performance i.e. 100 watts to replace 1000

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Thats a Dope build! It looks like you are running warm whites too? 3000K? 660nm hits the photosynthetic receptor right on the head and is extremely efficient from the wall to turn into PAR.

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Yes sir they are 3k and the strips are 660. Thank you! Your good haha

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Those false marketing claims severely damaged the reputation of all LED manufacturers IMHO. I think it slowed sales across the board. Do you think LED manufacturers will be able to repair their reputations and get some hardcore HID holdovers to make the switch to the LED light side? If so, how?

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@Growernick The main shortcoming of many of the fixtures on the market today are misleading marketing and performance spec still. @imSICKkid is on the right track with builds and companies light Pacific Light Concepts. Those guys are purists and put out performance parts with honest numbers.

So many companies are claiming “patented” spectrums and other claims that cannot be validated. Some shameless stuff still going on.

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We see it all the time in the industry: people bringing a cheap product to market in order to make a fast buck. There’s clearly still work to be done!

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Are there any other companies out there that are doing it right that you endorse?

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I stopped the evangelical approach a few years ago. I always said that when I believe it, I can sell it. I was working for a company in Boulder a few years ago called Grow-Ray. The metrics we put out in 2016-17 were beyond doubt in my mind.

It is not a linear adoption to LED from HID. There are tweaks and techniques to manage. A lot of older school growers just aren’t good under LED.

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Very true! After 15 years of HID growing; I found it tricky to adopt at first too. There was a learning curve, but now I couldn’t go back to HID! How do you get old school growers set in our ways to try out LED?

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I hate to be on the bandwagon but Fluence is putting out the gold standard fixtures. I respect both of the OG’s down in Austin: Fluence and Illumitex

Illumitex had the first real performer with the NeoSOL series back in the day. There are some growers who are still running these stand alone and in checkerboard setups with HPS that crush it.

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Do you have any opinion as far as under lighting and lighting around the sides of plants?

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Side lighting and under lighting definitely bump numbers. Thrive agritech has some cool fixtures for that. My old crew at Grow Ray in Boulder was selling single ~80-100 watt bars that definitely crush.

It all comes down to PPFD. You can saturate the top of the canopy but there is still room along the walls as long as you have the canopy to process into carbs.

Underlighting is tricky imo, you have to have a lot of infrastructure to do it in a commercial setting like wires and fixtures. More PAR = More Yield so long as you don’t have any other limiting factors like CO2 or nutes

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@Growernick I am really interested in what GrowFlux has going on too. SAGE’s focus is on commercial and industrial grade. Since we help finance fixtures, I tend to only spec what will be under warranty for longer than our finance term. Proven performance is key for our model, but I keep an eye on a lot of new tech that is emerging. The Gavita series LED will be a workhorse especially for hobby/home adoption of tech. You can get them through any hydro shop. They have some limitations on dimming protocol and install for commercial

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I have a set up that uses a metal rack. I was using the rack as the light fixture to hang the led light strips. They all wired together to a driver. They hung by clips. I was told by a lighting guy on another forum this wouldn’t work. And would b insufficient.

Do u think hanging the strips would work?

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The best way to convert for die hards is to do a 50 percent replacement. Checkerboard is really popular and a safer bet. I don’t want to set anyone up to fail. You need to get used humidity management and running higher temps. There is a lack of UV that many grower’s swear by and I don’t have a clean argument for that other than I know growers pulling stanky 24-25 percent off of old strains like pre 98 Bubba that usually tops out at 20 or less.

It’s all about genetics and technique. When your power rates rise or you start taking into account your Mercury and Carbon footprints is really where my mind is absolute on LED

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I can tell you after almost two years of running their fixtures, I could never go back to HID. The commercial lights are very tunable and responsive and, as a bonus, they are waterproof. Their software platform is extremely functional too

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What is your total wattage? What is the quantity and type of chips on the strips? It all comes down to total output (PPF) per watt (joule). Start with your target light levels and build back from there. Shoot a picture or a sketch of the setup and which stage of growth you are after and I can give you a pretty good idea of yes or no

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I’m curious about vertical growing. My plan is similar to this picture. Except it’ll be ran down opposite walls to make best use of light. The plan is lights over head and HID bulbs hanging to cover the lower plant’s all on a light mover. Got any advice or resources to look at?

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