Summary: ViparSpectra Reflector 300w, 450w, 600w & 900w
Each ViparSpectra Reflector-Series light is rated for a lifespan of 100,000 hours. This is a great lifespan for an affordable LED grow light and it should pay for itself over that time.
In addition, ViparSpectra includes a 3-year warranty and a 30-day satisfaction or return guarantee. Although, you’ll have to contact ViparSpectra directly for more details or to put in a request for return.
We recommend you buy the ViparSpectra 300w, if you are looking to nurture a couple of early stage plants in a smaller grow tent area of approx. 2×2. Even though the 300w is the best choice for vegging, it does not mean that it is impossible to grow a full plant.
The 300w is just not well designed for plants in the flowering stage, if you are looking to grow a plant with a single LED grow light, then the ViparSpectra 450w, 600w or 900w is a better choice due to the switch function.
A glance at the reviews on any online selling suggests that ViparSpectra Reflector Series are among the most popular grow lights out there. That is why we picked this specific model to perform a detailed examination instead of any other top led grow lights
When growing plants with LED grow lights, one major consideration is the larger up-front cost of LEDs. However, there are several more affordable options available, one of those being the ViparSpectra Reflector-Series LED Grow lights.
Although the ViparSpectra Reflector-Series are some of the more cheap LED grow lights available, they are still fully capable of putting out a high-quality spectrum of light to help you grow big healthy plants with good yields. In this review, we will cover the five different models available of the ViparSpectra Reflector-Series.
What comes in the box?
- ViparSpectra LED unit
- Power Cord
- Instruction manual
Construction & Design
ViparSpectra 300w, 450w, 600w, & 900w Review
The ViparSpectra Reflector-Series are composed of aluminum, with a matte black finish. We love aluminum grow lights for several reasons.
Aluminum is lightweight which makes the lights much easier to move around and to hang securely above your plants. Although light, the aluminum has a higher strength to weight ratio than stainless steel. In addition, aluminum’s superior thermal conductivity dissipates any heat produced from the LEDs very efficiently.
The design is actually reminiscent of PlatinumLEDs grow lights. Our guess is that the actual housings fixtures for the LEDs are produced by the same manufacturer – although PlatinumLED is assembled in the USA and ViparSpectra seems to be a Chinese company.
The ViparSpectra lights do have fewer fans mounted in the bodies than those of PlatinumLED. For example, the VS 300W has a single 4.72 fan mounted in the fixture, as compared to PlatinumLEDs two fans in its 300W model.
The VS Reflector 900W has three fans, while the PlatinumLED 900W has five. Keeping in mind that PlatinumLED is some of the best lights you can get and cost more, growing with the ViparSpectra will produce more heat.
Energy Usage and Efficiency
As with most LED grow lights, The ViparSpectra Reflector-Series are much more energy efficient than HID lights. The LEDs runs on AC100-240V input voltage (standard outlets). A
lthough the Reflector-Series have models rated from 300W-900W, that is its maximum wattage. The true wattage and energy consumption of the light will be much less, almost half the consumption of a HID grow light producing a comparable amount of light. In the table below we’ve outlined the various wattages of the VS Reflector-Series for you.
There is an output on each light allowing for daisy chaining multiple fixtures together, however, we would always recommend to avoid daisy chaining and ensure each fixture has its own direct power supply.
The ViparSpectra Reflector-Series produce a decently well-rounded light spectrum. However, it is slightly heavier on the blue end of the spectrum. This is not really a huge issue, as blue light is crucial for growing bushy, healthy plants and blue LEDs are very energy efficient.
Related: How red & blue affects plants
However, we would prefer to see a little more red light in the spectrum. Red light is the main photosynthesis driver, so your plants have to work a little bit harder to convert the higher energy blue light down into usable energy first.
If you do notice that your plants are not growing tall enough and are investing too much into axillary growth (outwards/bushiness) then you could always just cover up a few of the blue LEDs to increase the red ratio for a while.
One thing we are uncertain of is the actual PAR value provided by ViparSpectra. As you can see in the figure below, a PAR value of 300 umol/m2/s was measured in the area directly below the light for the 300W model.
However, PAR is a measurement of the amount of light produced, defined by the units umol, while PPFD is a measurement of how much light is reaching the plants of a specified area, defined by units umol/m2/s.
Based on the information provided, we can assume that the values provided are actually PPFD, and the mislabelling of PAR is simply either a language barrier/unintended simplification.
Related: PAR & PPFD
Back to the 300W Reflector-Series: A PPFD of 300 umol/m2/s in the center, which decreases further from the center is a realistic number, and considering the lights small size, wattage usage, and from a height of 24”? is a decent amount of light hitting your plants.
The VS Reflector-Series house 5W LEDs with 90 degree focusing lenses (blog post) which provide a light spread that is a perfect happy medium somewhere between optimal focus and ideal spread.
Below we have outlined more specifications about each light regarding to the PAR and Light output of each model for you to compare.
|Model Name||PAR-RATING||AVERAGE [FT.] AT 24''||DIMENSIONS [INCH]||Price|
|ViparSpectra Reflector 300w||300 umol||3 x 3||12.6 x 7.9 x 3||Check Price|
|ViparSpectra Reflector 450w||420 umol||3.5 x 3.5||15.8 x 8.4 x 2.4||Check Price|
|ViparSpectra Reflector 600w||570 umol||4 x 4||15.3 x 12.8 x 3||Check Price|
|ViparSpectra Reflector 900w||690 umol||5 x 4||16.5 x 16.5 x 3||Check Price|
Drawbacks of ViparSpectra Reflector Series
One feature that we also aren’t crazy about with the ViparSpectra Reflector-Series is the inclusion of Infrared Radiation (IR) diodes alongside the normal LEDs.
As you can see in the spectrum analysis, there is radiation wavelengths being produced by the fixture at 700nm-780nm. Although ViparSpectra and other IR proponents claim that IR is important to promote cell division, and to aid germination, leaf building and flowering, we actually disagree.
This type of radiation/light is not usable by plants and is basically just a form of heat. So, the two IR diodes mounted in the fixture are essentially just emitting heat onto your plants.
This can also definitely be viewed as a great benefit – especially if you need to add some heat to your growing space. However, if you are worried about excess heat, we would definitely recommend that you either take apart the light and disconnect the IR diodes (if you are comfortable with that) or just cover them up with some thick tape.
Of course they only produce a very little amount of heat, but they still can contribute to the temperature of your grow space and are just wasting energy, especially for instance the 900W Square model which has 8 IR diodes. However, if you are hanging the lights from at least 18”?, you shouldn’t have any major issues with heat.
Heat & Cooling
As we mentioned above, the IR diodes will contribute to the heat of your growing space. However, there are several other features of the ViparSpectra Reflector 300W that will reduce the heat being produced by the LEDs.
The aluminum design provides an extremely conductive environment, which acts to dissipate any heat produced. Each grow light is also vented on all sides to keep the light cool, and a varying number of fans are also housed within each fixture.
Each ViparSpectra Reflector-Series light is rated for a lifespan of 100,000 hours. This is a great lifespan for an affordable LED grow light and it should pay for itself over that time. In addition, ViparSpectra includes a 3-year warranty and a 30-day satisfaction or return guarantee. Although, you’ll have to contact ViparSpectra directly for more details or to put in a request for return.
Recommendation of ViparSpectra Reflector Series
ViperSpectra is a renowned brand of LED lights, the quality of this LED light is very high. The reflector models provide a full light spectrum, consisting of 12 band light, making the grow light models an excellent source of light for both stages, vegetative and flowering.
It is important to highlight that the switch models produces more red light, making it slightly more beneficial for the flowering stage but still adaptable to any part of the plant’s life. It has upgraded fans that help heat dissipation as well as big sinks so it will not overheat.