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LED Grow Lights have boomed in popularity over the last couple of years. Grower’s are finding that although the initial investment is more expensive than HPS, LED grow lights are more efficient, have a fuller spectrum, emit a similar amount of light, provide better uniformity, last longer, save on electricity costs, emit around 40% less heat, and most importantly - provide better quality, comparable yields.
What makes a good LED grow light? There are 6 things you want to look for when buying an LED grow light:
These things were taken into consideration when creating this ‘Best LED grow lights 2021’ list.
I lumped the lights into several categories, including:
Notes: The lights listed below cover a 4x4 or 5x5 area. Smaller, less powerful lights are not mentioned here.
Furthermore, not every single LED grow light on the market has been examined. This list is not exhaustive since there are WAY too may on the lights to consider. The lights below are popular sellers, have good specifications, and have been proven to grow and flower with excellent results.
And without further ado, here are the Best LED Grow Lights of 2021!
The ROI-E720 debuted late July 2020. Expect a total light output of 1,870 umol/s or up to 2,080 umol/s with the BOOST mode on the optional Grower’s Choice controller. The fixture draws around 740 watts at the wall and has a PAR efficacy of 2.6 umol/J. The fixture has a built-in dimming mode that allows you to dim the light down to 75%, 50% and 25% intensity or you can get full scheduling and dimming control with the controller.
Grower’s Choice uses their own house-brand white 4000K diodes and Osram 660nm deep reds in the ROI-E720 to create their GC-3K full spectrum.
This light has been a top-seller since 2020. The price of the ROI-E720 is currently set at $949.
We featured the Ceres 780W in last years' Best LED Grow Lights 2020 review. This year, the fixture has been slightly changed with those changes going into effect June 2021. Those changes include a more rugged structure, an increased diode count and the addition of 6500K white LEDs (along with the original 3500K and 660nm deep red diodes).
At a 780 watt power draw, expect 1900 umol/s of light output and a PAR efficacy at around 2.5 umo/J.
The Enlite dimming controller (sold separately) allows you to control 1, or up to 100 lights via two separate channels.
In 2021, this light is still one of the best, well-priced LED grow lights given its high light output and fair price point of $950.
The Gavita Pro 1700e Gen2 was released in August 2019.
The 1700e Gen2 draws 670 watts, has a total light output of 1700 umol/s, and a 2.6 umol/J PAR efficacy. There are a whopping 3,336 diodes on this fixture - more than most other similar powered LED grow lights.
The spectrum is made up of 4000K white light diodes and Osram 660nm deep red diodes, powered by Philips Advance LED drivers.
The Gavita LED can integrate with the Gavita EL1 or EL2 controller which allows scheduling, dimmability, and a sunrise/sunset effect.
This price of the 1700e was recently dropped down to $1199, making this fixture even more competitive with other lights on the market.
The ThinkGrow Model H found its way into the LED grow light market in 2019 and has been updated since then.
This 630 watt fixture emits 1700 umol/s of light at 2.7 umol/J.
ThinkGrow is pretty quiet about which diodes they use in their lights. Though, looking at the light output and efficacy, I can confidently say that they are high-quality.
The bread and butter of ThinkGrow fixtures is their controllability. All ThinkGrow models integrate easily with Trolmaster controllers for dimming and scheduling control. You can connect up to 256 lights on a single controller channel. The Model H has an adjustable full spectrum via the deep red channel for veg and flower spectrum control. The other models, the Model V and Model W, have adjustable Far Red channels.
The price of the Model H is a little steeper than most other lights out there, coming in at $1350.
The Grow 300 was released late 2019 and updated in November 2020. You will need two lights to cover a 4x4 to 5x5 area, but this is a great fixture and worth mentioning.
Two lights will give you 1,768 umol/s of light, at an efficacy of 2.75 umol/J, and a 642 watt power draw.
Grow Light Science uses top-bin Samsung white diodes and the latest Osram Oslon Square Hyper Red Gen3 LEDs. The spectrum is heavy in red making this fixture ideal for lush vegetative growth and large yields.
There is an built-in dimming control knob on the Grow 300, dimmable to 10%. At this time, these fixtures do not hook up to a controller.
At only $838 for two units ($419 for one unit), these quality fixtures pack a huge punch.
The Grower’s Choice ROI-E680 was released June 2019.
This light draws around 680 watts, has a PAR efficacy of 2.6 umol/J and light output of 1,770 umol/s.
This bar style fixture uses a full-spectrum composed of Grower’s Choice house-brand 4000K white light diodes and Osram 660nm deep reds.
The optional Grower’s Choice controller allows dimming, scheduling, and a sunrise/sunset effect. However, you do not need the controller to dim the light. The fixture has an onboard dimmer to bring the intensity down to 80%, 60%, or 40%.
Compared to some other well known multi-level fixtures, the ROI-E680 is very affordable without losing light output or efficiency. The fixture retails at only $799.
The HLG 600 Rspec was released in August 2020. This light was an upgrade to the popular HLG 550 Rspec. Essentially it is the same light, but with a more powerful driver.
You can expect a light output of 1529 umol/s at an efficacy of 2.6 umol/J and a wattage draw of 600 watts, dimmable to 60W via the included dimmer.
The fixture utilizes Top-Bin Samsung LM301H white diodes and LH351 660nm Deep Red diodes across 4 custom-designed Quantum Boards. The diode mixture creates a nice full spectrum for seed to harvest growth.
At this time, HLG does not have their own controller. However, you can hook up this light, or other HLG lights that have a 0-10v dimming protocol, to a TrolMaster controller for central dimming control.
The HLG 600 Rspec retails at $749. This fixture is well priced given the good light output and quality components.
The Crecer Lighting PanthrX II was released late April 2020. The unit draws 640 watts and emits 1600 umol/s of light at a PAR efficacy of 2.51 umol/J.
Crecer uses Samsung LM561H white light diodes and custom 660nm deep red diodes in the PanthrX II.
This fixture is similar to the HLG 600 Rspec in that it is not a bar-style fixture, so expect less uniformity than a larger, wider fixture.
Crecer now includes a dimmer on the PanthrX II.
The PanthrX II is only $749.99 which is a great deal considering its high light output.
The Kush 2.0 should have made the best bar light list, but we deservingly gave it its own category.
The light was released in November 2020. It draws up to 650 watts, has a total light output of 1631 umol/s, and a PAR efficacy of 2.51.
The Kush 2.0 offers full power spectrum tuning and is fully dimmable via four different spectrum channels (cool white, warm white, deep red, and far red). The dimming and spectrum tuning, along with the scheduling, is controlled through Scynce’s THEIA wireless control app.
Another top feature of Scynce’s products are their unique patented lenses which distribute the light evenly over the entire grow area.
The Raging Kush retails at $1,495 and is an excellent buy, if you are looking for a fully controllable fixture with wireless control.
The Growcraft X6 600W DIY light came out in early March 2020.
Once assembled, the light draws 600 watts, produces a light output of 1,647 umol/s, and an efficacy up to 2.81 umol/J.
ChilLED was pretty secretive about the brand of diodes they use, but have recently stated that they use Samsung and Osram diodes.
The drivers on the Growcraft series are remote mounted, which help reduce the heat in the grow area. The driver on the 600 watt kit can be dimmed down to about 30W, or 5% of the original intensity.
There is a 1 year warranty on the 600W kit, as well as the other ChilLED Growcraft DIY kits.
The price of the Growcraft X6 600W is $999. At this price point, expect a high quality DIY kit that looks nearly identical to the pre-assembled version.
The XT 1000W CO2 Pro LED grow light was released early March 2021.
It draws 1000 watts at the wall, has a SUPER high efficacy of 2.9, and an insane light output of 2,925 umol/s. This amount of light is enough to cover a 6x6 area for flowering, or a strong 5x5 area with the use of supplemental CO2. It is almost double the light output of other lights that cover a 4x4 area. This is one of the most powerful, widely-available LED grow light on the market.
PhotonTek uses high quality white Lumileds and red Osram diodes in this fixture. There is a lot of red in the spectrum, making it perfect for pulling large yields.
The XT 1000W is dimmable to 75%, 50%, and 25%, or you can use the PhotonTek controller to automatically adjust the timing, dimming, and more, for up to 100 fixtures per controller.
This light will blow you away, and at a price point of only $1525 you can’t beat the cost per micromol of light.
The NextLight Mega Pro is one of the newest lights on the market. It was released early May 2020 and is part of the new NextLight Pro Series.
Boasting a light output of 1650 umol/s, the Mega Pro draws 650 watts and has an efficacy of 2.6 umol/J. I like that this fixture has a design different than your typical bar style fixture or panel fixture.
It features on-board dimming down to 75%, 50% and 25%. For even more controllability, it integrates with the NextLight Control Pro (control up to 500 fixtures) and most other controllers on the market.
NextLight uses a full spectrum and chooses not to use additional red diodes in their spectrum, while focusing more on the blue part of the spectrum since red is arguably less photosynthetically efficient in bright white light conditions.
NextLight has some of the best customer service in the industry. This light is a steal at only $899. Plus. you are getting a 5-year warranty and excellent support.
The Scorpion Diablo was released early October 2020 and is HLG's most powerful fixture.
The dimmable fixture only draws 650 watts, while boasting a light output of 2,132 umol/s and a very high efficacy of 3.2 umol/J, making this one of the most efficient LED grow lights on the market.
The fixture has a total of 3,996 Samsung LM301H diodes and LM351H 660nm deep red diodes across 6 Diablo Quantum Boards, providing even coverage over your plants.
As of August 2021, HLG does not have their own controller, but this light can integrate with TrolMaster controllers for central dimming control.
The Scorpion Diablo retails at $1299 and is well worth it given the high-quality components, super high efficiency and outstanding light output.
There are an additional three LED Grow Light companies that make a good product that should not go unmentioned:
These are all good brands all with significantly different LED grow lights. I recommend their lights depending on what you are looking for in an LED grow light. Check them out.
Thanks for reading! Hopefully, this has helped you learn more about LEDs and narrow down your choices. Feel free to contact us with any questions.
Links to lights mentioned in this review:
Grower’s Choice ROI-E720: https://bit.ly/3ux0y3j
Enlite Ceres 780W: https://bit.ly/30RWJIH
Gavita Pro 1700e Gen2: https://bit.ly/39yPGs5
ThinkGrow Model H: https://bit.ly/2Q2krk1
Grow Light Science Grow 300: https://bit.ly/3nXaCAo
Grower’s Choice ROI-E680: http://bit.ly/2JOnp6X
Horticulture Lighting Group HLG 600 Rspec: https://bit.ly/33pWGFp
Crecer PanthrX II: https://bit.ly/2DdS7UO
Scynce LED Raging Kush 2.0: https://bit.ly/3etxuEj
ChilLED Tech Growcraft X6 600W DIY: https://bit.ly/3txowKs
PhotonTek XT 1000W CO2 Pro LED: https://bit.ly/33oXbQi
NextLight Mega Pro: https://bit.ly/3evUwKP
Horticulture Lighting Group Scorpion Diablo: https://bit.ly/3exeSne
--- Honorable Mentions ---
The Green Sunshine Company: https://bit.ly/3051S0D
Timber Grow Lights: https://bit.ly/2DgHhxi
California Lightworks: https://bit.ly/2P0GPWX