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T5 Grow Lights vs T8 Shop Lights

Hackerman

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I am using 2 - 4 foot shop lights in my clone closet. Standard, cheapo fixture with regular T8 fluorescent bulbs. Been using them for a couple decades.

I clone in this closet and I pop seeds here. Nothing stays in here past 6" or so.

Just for the purpose of upgrading, I was thinking about a T5 fixture.

There is no real ventilation in this closet unless the door is open so if the heat put off from a T5 is greater than the heat from the shop lights, I am done and decided.

However, if heat is not an issue, I could see upgrading.

Would a 4 bulb 4 foot T5 be too much for cloning and seed popping?

Would a 2 bulb 4 foot be enough (at least equal to the 2 shop lights)?

I have done some reading and the T5's are definitely brighter but do I really need brighter for what I am doing?

And, if I go with a 2 bulb setup, I don't get the coverage like I do with the 2 shop lights.

Just tossing this out for comments. Mostly, I would love to hear about the heat that a T5 fixture puts off.

Thanks
 

kaotik

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yes T5's get warmer than regular shop light flouro's.
not like going to hid, but they do kick some heat.

4' 4 bulb t5 i think is definitely overkill for you.
i mean it is always nice to plan for future upgrades.. but i think that's too much for an unventilated closet that's just for babies.

you'd likely get nicer looking/stronger babies under T5's.. but i honestly don't really know if it's a necessity for what you describe you're doing.
not to mention causing possible heat problems.


i went from shop lights to t5's (just 2 bulb 4') and i love them.. but i have open room, and need to veg in there for a bit.
i did fine early vegging on shop lights for years, but T5's are definitely a nice upgrade.
but if you don't have the space, setup, or need.. just might not be worth it for now.
 

Hackerman

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I did use this closet for early vegging for years but now that I have the tent, this closet is just for cloning and popping seeds.

And, I added a cupboard on the lower level for curing and storing.

Funny, I can remember the days when my entire grow was with shop lights and regular incandescent bulbs. I had the entire closet, walls and ceiling, lined with lights. LMAO Looked like an auto body shop paint booth. LOL

Maybe I can add some ventilation to the closet. What might be nice is a 4 bulb setup with a switch to use 2 or 4 bulbs.

We'll see. I just need to buy something now and then. After all, it is a hobby. :)
 

St_Nick

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I grow with old style T-12's, cfl's and T-5's. To be honest, I haven't seen a difference with the T-5 lights, at least not over the T-12 in shop light fixtures. I am pretty impressed with the new high wattage cfl grow lights though.
 

Hippie420

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I've still got a double bulb set of T-12s I use for popping seeds or fresh cuttings. I heard where they were going to phase out the big bulbs, so I bought a mess of T-8s on sale. They work great for clones and vegging up to a couple of feet tall, and then they get sold off or chucked in the flower room under HPS lights. I keep my mothers under two double bulb T-8s, and they stay healthy and happy.

You can throw tons of money away growing weed, or you can save a bunch and get the same results. The stuff I grow lays my ears back, and the few I've shared with were impressed, so why would an Old School fart change?
 
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I personally see a big difference between T8s and 12s and the T5. They simply put out more light. It gets back to the lumen per watt thing. A 4' 4bulb T5 puts out a lot more lumens and a lot more lumens per watt than either the T8 or T12. However, for the purposes you are talking, I see no reason to upgrade. Clones need very litle light and if you are not getting stretch from the seedlings, it is enough light.
 

Hackerman

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OK, let's take it a step deeper....

I'll keep my shop lights. They are my old friends, anyway. LOL

Now, what about the "grow" bulbs they offer in this size. I have not looked into it so I am not sure if the "grow" bulbs put off more light or if they are just a different spectrum.

I will have to check on that. If the lumens are the same and the spectrum is more in the blue, that might be a good thing, yes?
 

Hippie420

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The grow tubes lean toward the red spectrum. More for flowering than anything else. The cheap blue ones work fine for veg/seed popping.

Thought about doing a little experiment on the next batch of clones and running every other bulb a grow bulb. Not sure why, just curious.

Like grandma used to say, "There's more than one way to skin a cat, and as long as you get the fur off, who cares?" For me and my personal, private grow, T8s work just fine. If you look at the specs for normal output (cheap) four foot tubes, the numbers stack up like this:

T12 = 2650 initial lumens (they drop off the quickest of all) for 40 watts.
T8 = 2800 initial lumens, (they hold their lumens much longer than T12s) for 34 watts.
T5 = 2900 initial lumens, (they hold longer than T5s) for 28 watts.

Now, if you want to go into high output bulbs, the T5s run away with the show at 5000 lumens, but at the cost of 54 watts per tube. If I were to veg for a long time, that would be the route I'd go if I wanted to get away from MH.

I grow SCROG and mainly sativa heavy crosses, so I veg until they're 12 to 14 inches tall, shove 'em under the screen, run the HPS for 18 hours for a week, then straight into 12 hours for a DLS schedual.
Sativas, or at least the ones I grow, seem to really stretch when you stick 'em in flower mode. Six plants can fill up a 4 X 4 foot screen really quickly. If I goof off for a few days, the little beggars can get a bit out of control, which makes for a few really mule choking buds, but not as many as you get with a well tended SCROG.

Just my opinions, merely for conversation. Everybody's got their own method, and as long as you're happy with what you grow, that's what it's all about.
 
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HO T5's will run circles around the other floros all day long . That being said, cloning under them would be straight up retarded since too much light inhibits root growth in clones. I would stay with what you have if all you are using them for is cloning and a tiny bit of vegging. I clone under a single 26 watt cfl.
My HO T5's are used for vegging right up to the flip.
 

Hackerman

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OK, now you have me thinking again.... LOL

How would a 4 bulb, 4 foot T5 compare to my 400w HID MH in terms of lighting and lumens and par and whatever?

I only ask because I believe a 4' fixture would give much better coverage in my 3x5 tent than my current HID and hood. I only get (what I consider) good coverage in the center of my tent.

Just thinking about it.
 

St_Nick

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Hackerman, I wish (oh how I wish ) I could post pics but I can't so you can believe or not as you wish. I have a 29" by 29" by 80" grow closet. I have a total of 400 watts of T-12 floro's lighting it. 4 2 tube 4ft fixtures, one in each corner and 2 double tube 2ft fixtures in the top. Each double fixture has one 7800k bulb and one 2800k bulb. After the second week of flower I switch out half of the 7800's for 2800s to finish out the grow. I usually grow 2 plants in this setup and it yields anywhere from 2 to 4 oz. per plant.
 

St_Nick

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They do flower slower under floros though. Im' currently about 6 weeks into flower on my one remaining plant (the other went male) and she has 7 colas? about the size of a bic and a ton more coming on. I started feeding a home brew I made this spring and she is starting to put on weight.
 

Hackerman

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Hey, I believe you. I grew for years with nothing but fluorescent lights. I don't believe I got my first HID light until almost 1980 or so.
 
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Just as a side note Hippy, T5 bulbs are not nearly $54--they run about 5-7 bucks apiece from HTG supplu where I generally get mine.

Hackerman, in terms of lumens per watt, the MH and the T5s run about the same. Your 400W MH probably puts out about 36,000 lumens or 90 lumens per watt. A 4' 4 tube T5 uses 54W tubes, uses 216W and produces 20,000 lumens, or 92 lumens per watt. The MH will penetrate better, but it does produce more heat than the T5s. I did replace a 400W MH with a 4 tube 4' T5 in a 2 x 4 closet. I personally have just as good veggy growth with the T5 as I had with the MH. I believe this is because the T5 can be kept within inches of the canopy and that it spreads the light better over the area I had. I still have my old 400W MH hanging around somewhere, but never use it anymore. With a 3 x 5 tent, you would want to go with more tubes than 4. You would probably want to step up to the 8 tube. That would use a bit more wattage than the 400W MH, but in return you also get more lumens--464W for 40,000 lumens. I'm not sure that I know anyone who started with MH, went to T5s and then went back to MH.
 

Hippie420

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Ah, that was 54 WATTS, not dollars! Those tubes would have to mow the lawn and make breakfast for that kind of money!

I had to go back and re read my post to see which one of us was high!:)
 

Hackerman

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Thanks HG. I'm not sure I should change just for the sake of change but I like to experiment. LOL

I am going to check out the T5 units at the local grow shop and see what I can get.

Thanks again, everyone.
 
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Ah, that was 54 WATTS, not dollars! Those tubes would have to mow the lawn and make breakfast for that kind of money!

I had to go back and re read my post to see which one of us was high!:)
LOL--yup, when you said "cost", my mind went to dollars, not watts. However, it all really gets down to watts per lumen. While the T5s run 54W, they put out 5000 lumens (92.59 lumens per watt). Compare that with the T12 that runs 40W and puts out 2650 lumens (66.25 lumens per watt). It takes 75W of T12s to equal the lighting power of 54W of T5 light. So, while it may look like you save money initially, you are spending almost twice a month every single month on electricity using T12 instead of T5s.

Hackerman, I am saving money and have an easier time keeping my closet cool. First of all, I am running 184 less watts each and every hour of the day. The light spread is way better than MH, and because of the lower wattage and the spreading of the light, it is easier to keep everything cool.
 

Hackerman

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She is swinging me over for sure.

Although, I must admit, after being married for 30+ years, I am used to doing what I am told to do by a woman. So, I'll probably, subconsciously, run out and buy one today. LOL

The coverage is really what I really like. I am very unhappy with the hood designs I have seen that are available for HID. I considered 2 x 400's but heat, cost and all that really doesn't justify it. With the 4' long design of the T5 fixtures I am cheaper, cooler and I get the coverage.

OK, now I need to decide on 4 tube or 8 tube. LOL

Speak woman and I shall obey....... LOL
 

WeedHopper

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I had the 4ft 8 tube,,it put out 40000 lumens. I grew from start to finish with them and got some real nice Bud. Yes i would have gotten better Buds Flowering with HPS,,but the T5s is all I had at the time,,but I would never Vegg under anything but T5s ever again because they were awesome for vegging.
This was with t5s.

http://www.marijuanapassion.com/forum/showpost.php?p=819918&postcount=19
 

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