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HLG Scorpion Diablo Review and Comparison (Diablo vs Diablo X)

HLG Scorpion Diablo Review and Comparison (Diablo vs Diablo X)

Scorpion Diablo Review

Let's take a deep-dive into the HLG Scorpion Diablo LED grow light, released late-2022! I will also compare the fixture to the previous generation of the Scorpion Diablo and the Scorpion Diablo X. Find out which one is right for you, and also how these new fixtures deliver 10% more light to the canopy with nearly the same total light output than the previous model.

Build

This fixture uses 6 patented QB648 Quantum Boards (QBs). At the proper mounting height, the QBs will provide excellent uniformity and intensity over the intended footprint. The QBs are surrounded by reflectors.

The boards are attached to an anodized aluminum heatsink which is a bit thinner and lighter than the previous model. The top of the fixture houses a 700W high-quality driver.

It appears that HLG is using an Inventronics driver on this fixture at this time. Coming off of the driver is the AC power cord (a 120V plug and 240V plug both arrive in the box), a daisy chain cord for daisy-chaining up to 6 lights on 220V (or 3 lights on 120V on a 20A breaker), and an RJ control box. Instead of having to choose between an RJ box and a dimmer box, now you have both options in a single variant. The dimmer dims down to 20% intensity. You get lower and finer dimming control with the RJ box when using a controller.

There is a third control option apart from the manual dimmer and RJ control the GrowFlux controller. This option needs to be selected at the time of purchase since it removes the RJ dimming box and replaces it with a wireless GrowFlux controller. To fully operate the GrowFlux controller you need the Access Point, which at this time costs $139. The Access Point will control up to 200 lights at up to a 500ft range. 

Specs

The total light output was independently measured at 2121 PPF with a very high efficacy of 2.97 umol/J. This light output and efficacy are slightly lower than the previous version, and the light draws more power from the wall, so you might be wondering why this fixture is an upgrade over the previous version.

Well, it comes down to these new reflectors. Previously, the light was beaming off of the Quantum Boards at a 120 degree angle and spilling off into aisles, tent walls, and grow room walls. Now, some of this lost light is being reflected down onto the plants.

HLG is claiming a 10% increase in light that is reaching the canopy. So the small amount of electrical efficiency that is lost in the fixture, compared to the previous model, is definately made up in the 10% extra light that is hitting the canopy.

The Scorpion Diablo will flower up to a 4'x4' to 5’x5’ area at around 18-24”. Based on the light intensity, the ideal coverage area is around 4.5’x4.5’. 

The fixture draws 715W, according to HLG. When I measured this grow light’s wattage draw at the wall at 116.8V, I received a reading of 712 watts and an amperage of 6.09. The wattage was pretty much on point with what HLG claims.

The fixture is rated for up to 277V applications.

Expect a heat output of 2438 BTU/Hour from this fixture.

This fixture is assembled in Tennessee USA, where HLG is located, and it comes with a 5-year manufacturer’s warranty. 

Diodes and Spectrum

HLG is using the same full-spectrum on this new diablo compared to the previous version. HLG is calling this a “plant-centric, white spectrum with deep red”.

The Diablo boards contain Samsung LM301B and LM301H EVO diodes and Osram V5 deep reds with a Red:Green:Blue ratio of 37:42:21 (see chart below). In total, you will find nearly 4,000 diodes on this fixture; 3,888 to be exact. 

In late-2021, HLG upgraded their Diablo boards with a new diode in the LM301H series, adding more blue to the spectrum, making the fixture more efficient and boosting the light output. 

You won't find UV and Far Red diodes in this fixture, but are some far red wavelengths present from in the white light spectrum. UV can always be added with the HLG UV bar. I recommend the 3’ version over the 2’ version for the Scorpion Diablo due to the fixture’s larger size.

If you are looking for a fixture with Far Red, check out the HLG Scorpion Rspec FR or the HLG 700 RSpec FR

I often hear growers say that they like bar lights instead of Quantum Boards since they don't want hotspots, but Quantum Boards, if placed at the right distance offer excellent uniformity. You just can’t get too close with them. Otherwise, if you are not too height limited I would recommend Quantum Boards over bar lights. 

Comparing Diablos

So how does the new Diablo compare to the older version? And how does it compare to the new Diablo X? I created this chart to compare the lights:

HLG Scorpion Diablo Comparison

In the left column you will find the wattage, light output, efficacy, etc. And in the top row is the previous version of the Diablo, the new Diablo, and the new Diablo X. I also calculated the percentage changes between the old and new Diablo and the Diablo and Diablo X. I am not going to cover every number here but want to focus on the percentage changes and the spectrum.

The main differences between the old and new Diablo is that it pulls about 10% more power, has about a 7% lower efficacy, and costs about 10% more. But keep in mind the fixture is delivering about 10% more light to the canopy due to the reflector design.

Also, note that the spectrum under the old Diablo is the old Diablo spectrum that was used before the boards were upgraded in August 2021, while the specs represent the change after the upgrade.

The specification differences between the new Diablo and Diablo X are quite small—about 3% or less and not significant. The main difference is the spectrum. The Diablo X uses HLGs new QB548 boards which remove some of the white diodes and replace them with red didoes. There is a large bump in red in the Diablo X spectrum. Because of this, I would recommend the regular Diablo for full cycle and/or flowering and the Diablo X for flowering only, in most cases, for the average grower.

PAR

Below are the PAR readings as measured by Light Laboratory, a 3rd party testing lab. The readings were taken in an open 5'x5' area at 18", 24" and 30".

18"

24"

30"

Summary

HLG delivers another amazing light! The components are top quality, the new reflector design is stunning, and the efficacy and light output are at, or near the top, compared to other lights on the market. At $1299 it is a fair price for the performance a US made product, and an honest warranty. 

If this fixture is out of your price range, checkout the Scorpion Rspec FR or other HLG lights with reflectors like the the HLG 750R Diablo and HLG 700 Rspec FR

Use code HLG10 for 10% off HLG lights only at LED Grow Lights Depot.

Thanks for reading!

-Erik

 

Scorpion Diablo

Scorpion Diablo X

All HLG lights

PPFD report

Electrical report

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