Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  brett2013 on Fri Mar 21, 2014 3:34 am

Dreamcast wrote:The Apache Tech AT120W on the other hand uses 2 fans witch where very load, so i replaced them with ultra silent Noctua fans, now one have to be very close to even hear them. Smile

Well, there is also the debate whether IR is needed or not, because the sun has it.  Anyway, let them debate.  The manufacture of the light  I got played it safe I guess and included IR in the spectrum.

You are very hands-on !  Now you give me the idea to change the fan too  thumbs up.  I just found out where to get Noctua here in my area.

Yes, indeed, the Sanlight look like amplifiers with heat sinks.  I would get them one day, they will match the look of my non-valve amplifiers.  In the meantime, I try this one I have first.  I have not mounted it yet, I am still figuring out the best way.  I'll let you know.  I'll also try to take a picture.  It's a small piece.

As for reliability, only way to know is to use it.  Company claims they've been around since 2007, so they should have learned something.


P.S. I just asked them about the fan 1 hour ago and got this. Now, am off to find, if there is such a thing, a silent fast rotate fan Smile

"Yes, you can try to use other fans to replace these fans. The specification for the fan as below.

dimension:80mmx80mmx25mm
rotate speed:3100RPM
rating voltage:DC12V

The rotate speed of the fan is high, so the fan is enough for cooling the light. Hope you can kindly understand."

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  Dreamcast on Fri Mar 21, 2014 2:08 pm

Brett, if they been around since 2007 they should indeed have learned a lot over the years, so hopefully your new light is a good one. Smile do you have a link to the product page?

Wow! 3100RPM is very high compared to a 80mm Noctua fan, 1800RPM - 800RPM depending on witch cables you use for it but then again Noctua fans do push a lot of air for those low RPM's, to get a better idea if you can change the fans without compromising the lights heat management you should ask the company how many m³/h of air there fans push.

I know a guy that has a Chinese LED panel and have modded it with Noctua fans and some other small fixes to make it cool the LED's better, if you send me pictures of your light from all sides as well as the interior i can ask him and see if the things he done could also work on yours.

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  brett2013 on Fri Mar 21, 2014 4:10 pm

This is the one I got :

http://www.ebay.com/itm/300W-LED-Grow-Light-Full-Spectrum-IR-For-Indoor-Grow-Greenhouse-Hydroponic-Plant-/291003115391?pt=US_Hydroponics&hash=item43c123277f

I think they are OEM for some companies and sell direct without revealing their real name.  4492 feedback and few negatives, all answered, not bad-> great tool to check for eBay negatives ->  http://toolhaus.org/cgi-bin/negs?User=%09+ledgrowlightmanufacturer&Dirn=Received+by&ref=home

Thanks, Dreamcast, you are a great help.  I'll try to take pictures when I get the time to install it ....

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  Dreamcast on Fri Mar 21, 2014 9:47 pm

Brett, I did send the product page to my friend that also has a Chinese LED, he said if the light has a proper finned heatsink then changing to Noctua fans should not be a problem, but if the light only has a simple aluminum plate for a heatsink then changing to fans with lower RPM is not a good idea at all, but changing to better quality fans with the same RPM is still a good idea, the ones in your light now may not be of the best quality and if one suddenly fails the whole light could get overheated, so getting fans that are known for long life expectancy is a good thing no matter what heatsink design the light has.
Also the glass in front of LED's can be removed, this way you will gain something like 10-15% more light i think he said.

He also pointed out that its quite important that you hang the light somewhere around 60cm or more from the treetops, if closer the light from the different LED's will not mix good before hitting the leaves, witch can result in plant deficiency and strange growth.

IMO even if the light now has a finned heatsink and you decide to change fans i think you should first talk to the company again, show them the 80mm Noctua fans specs to see if they think its fine, also ask if it would effect the warranty if you change fans or remove the glass.

Anyways to me it looks like a solid built LED and hopefully it will serve your trees well for many years, also a 3 year warranty is nice Smile

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  brett2013 on Sat Mar 22, 2014 3:33 am

Thank you very much, Dreamcast. Yes, I will check with them regarding the fan.

Yes, it is recommended by them to have it 2 - 3 ft above the treetops, so that's about 60-90cm.

The light is not so purple, maybe because of the white lights. I can still recognize green. Anyway, we shall see, this is just the first light.

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  brett2013 on Sun Mar 23, 2014 1:46 pm

Dreamcast, here are pictures of the internal of the LED light, top part only.  It has small heatsinks.

For the fans, I guess I need case fans.

I am linking the pictures as I can't seem to upload the larger size, can't see much with small size

Internal

Fans

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  Dreamcast on Sun Mar 23, 2014 2:27 pm

Looks like its better quality build than the Chinese light i tested some years ago when most things where glued together with silicone, that light failed after round a month.

I will send the pictures to my friend and see what he says Smile

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  davtree on Sun Mar 23, 2014 4:58 pm

It is a good light that is made with Epistar LEDs, which are high quality. Their 5 watt LED lamps are the best they have at this time. I think they will soon be coming out with a lamp containing 10 watt LEDs. I have one of the bigger 5 watt LED lamps and it works like a champ.

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  Dreamcast on Mon Mar 24, 2014 1:18 am

Brett, got a reply from my friend and he says your light is very similar to his, the one big difference is his has a full heatsink so he cant really say for sure if the smaller heatsinks on yours will be enough to cool the light with lower RPM fans, but as long as the company says its OK to change to Noctua fans then go for it!

Davtree, Nice to have one more LED user on the forum, care to show your setup?


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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  brett2013 on Mon Mar 24, 2014 6:44 am

Dreamcast, I think with 3 fans, it should be fine.  After checking on the shop selling Noctua, looks like it is no longer represented here.  I may go for CoolerMaster or Silenx.

Anyway, I have to go for it, I can't use the current one, other people in the house like the kids will just complain so I better do it before installing.

Then the fun begins, can't wait to install it Smile

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  Dreamcast on Mon Mar 24, 2014 12:44 pm

Brett, i fully understand your situation, the only reason i recommended Noctua is cause of the long warranty and proven long life of those fans, but off course any other silent fans will do just fine.

If you have the time please document the procedure of replacing the fans in text and pictures here in the thread, would be nice so others can do the same if they go for Chinese LED lights. Smile

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  davtree on Mon Mar 24, 2014 2:20 pm

I have that company's newer lamp. The fans are very quiet and tge lamp runs at near room temperature.

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  brett2013 on Wed Mar 26, 2014 7:00 am

Dreamcast, as I was so eager to set it up, I did not document the process.

But it is very easy, if I can do it, others can ...

It is not difficult, as long as the replacement fan has the same size of 80x80x25.  In my case, all the stores here don't have the size !  They only have 80x80x15.  Not a problem, it's just slimmer.  This meant I had to go find shorter screws to screw them on to the casing.  With the proper 80x80x25, no need to go looking for screws, just use the original after unscrewing the old fans.

The original fans have 2 wires, black and red.  There are 3 fans, so 3 red wires and 3 black wires.  If one follows these 3 Red wires, one sees that they are all combined together and soldered to a single red wire going into a power supply.  Same with the 3 Black wires, soldered to a single black wire going into the same power supply.  Just cut off at the connection.

Screw in the new fans ...

My new fans have 3 wires - black, red, yellow.  Yellow is for a computer motherboard and not needed, so I just cut it off leaving 1 inch (of course, one can cut it all away).  I then stripped the red and black wires at the tip, did the same for all new fans.

I did not bother to solder them to the single red and black wires mentioned previously, I just combined all the cables by twisting and covering with electrical tape.  

I tested it, so happy, silent new fans which were 2000rpm and 20db noise level, one has to go very near to hear the very soft purr of the fans.  Were they spinning ?  Yes.

Went on to install them over some small bonsais.  For temporary use, I used some photographic equipment I had, a light stand and a reflector holder.  Works well, so pleased that I finally got it up and running  Very Happy.  Light is great, not garish purple seen in the pictures, it's a very acceptable warm yellowish light, the green on leaves still show a lot of green.

Now to see whether they are really good.  Just the right time,  a maple trident and a Premna are currently very active growing many shoots everywhere.  I just trimmed the long ones out.  Will observe if the LED lights will do better, where growth will continue and especially find out if it is better in getting shorter internodes.

A quick picture here of the installation. - still need to straighten it up a bit ... of course, it is a lot brighter in actual, cameras just can't handle such dynamics. I hope that when I add more lights for the other bonsais, I won't need sunglasses


Last edited by brett2013 on Thu Mar 27, 2014 3:16 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  Dreamcast on Wed Mar 26, 2014 10:09 pm

Very clean looking temporary setup you got going there, Brett!

Glad to hear you finally got the light silent, i agree with you its not very hard to change the fans yet you still wrote a very good explanation for those that may find it a little challenging.

I would be very surprised if the light dose not work well, even if you do see some stunned growth or strange plant behavior at first don't worry since it can take some time for the plants to adjust to the new light spectrum.

Please keep updating on your experience with the new light. Smile

must add i really like the big tree on the right in the photo, would you mind showing a more clear photo of it?



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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  brett2013 on Thu Mar 27, 2014 2:42 am

That's a good old Ficus Tiger Bark tree, Dreamcast.  I'll try to get a picture later.  Right now, it needs a haircut, but it creates shoots too fast, you can see a lot of the light-green new leaves.

Well, one thing I like about a powerful LED light is that one can move it further away from the trees, and one can see it still give great penetration.  Will observe and give some feedback over time ...

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  brett2013 on Thu Apr 03, 2014 9:32 am

Captain's Log, Stardate Apr 3, a week after installation.  What can I say, I want more LEDs Smile.  I guess I'll just keep my CFLs as backups.

The plants under the new LED did not seem to go through any adjustment period, they just grew as usual, and faster.  So many new shoots/growth from all plants under them (except the pine of course), even those in the farthest perimeters of the light.

I had pruned this Premna before the LED installation, and here it is today, lots of new shoots to prune. I'll just let them go wild for now, and let them thicken up ...


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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  Dreamcast on Thu Apr 03, 2014 7:47 pm

Brett, that's some serious growth in a week!

I will never go back to traditional lights for my trees, from what i can remember i did not see this good growth even under MH lights and absolutely not under CFL's, and both those where consuming way more electricity.

This was one of my Ficus.M a month ago after partial defoliation.

This the same tree today, i was forced to cut it back a week ago so it would not grow in to the lights.


I cant wait to get my real LED setups going, should have been done months ago but its nearly done now, and it is gonna be gorgeous! Very Happy

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  Dreamcast on Mon Jun 09, 2014 8:33 am

Some updates, testing LED's in smaller areas to see how much growth can be achieved using as little power as possible. For this test 4 HOMEbox Q30 growtents are being used, SANlight M30's in 3 of the tents and one older version M30 in the forth. These growtents have a highly reflective inner surface, so light should bounce around in there and enhance growth a lot.
http://www.homebox.net//en/product/evolution/q-30#woa-view-product-selector

Some photos, notice the difference spectrum of the older version M30, the tents are completely lightproof when closed.






To be more "scientific" i will soon try 4 different 30Watt light setups on similar plant material in all 4 growtents to compare growth.
Cfl 2700k 30Watt
Cfl 6400K 30Watt
Cfl 2700K&6400K 15Watt+15Watt
M30 LED 30Watt

Plants in the plastic greenhouse under 3 M30's are growing like crazy!


Testing with the Apachetech LED's will start as soon as i have a setup able to handle the weight (7 kilos each), had to scratch the IKEA cabinet idea since it ended up taking to long to get finished and i am quite busy these days.

Hope to have the Apache lights up and running for next update.

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  Pippi on Tue Jul 01, 2014 11:37 pm

So happy to have found this thread!! We had LEDs on our saltwater aquarium to grow corals very successfully, the lighting set-up was also from Austria, "Vertex".

I am now looking into using LEDs grow lights for Bonsai. Thanks so much for the links!!   Very Happy  LOVE the growth both you and Brett are achieving.

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  Ryan on Thu Jul 03, 2014 3:52 am

I'm now looking into some LEDs for my trees. There's just so much conflicting information out there, it's difficult to know what's what.

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  brett2013 on Thu Jul 03, 2014 4:55 am

Pippi wrote:So happy to have found this thread!! We had LEDs on our saltwater aquarium to grow corals very successfully, the lighting set-up was also from Austria, "Vertex".

I am now looking into using LEDs grow lights for Bonsai. Thanks so much for the links!!   Very Happy  LOVE the growth both you and Brett are achieving.


Well, nothing beats real sunlight, but LEDs are a great alternative so far. After measurements using my meter outside, my 400w LED light is more like half the power of the morning sun, overall around the growing area. It is full power and even more if I put the meter right under the light, but that would mean only 1 plant, which is not practical. Anyway, all doing well, the plants get 12 hours of light so I guess that compensates. The bonsais are all healthy and growing fast. Will be adding another 400w or 600w soon to get a bigger growing area.

Added some wonderful Phalaenopsis orchids mounted and hanging around and above the bonsais too to make use of the excess light, and all doing well. Unfortunately, the orchid bug is really strong, with so many great species and hybrids, so the numerous ones that are coming in soon will have to be hung out arrayed in a wall in the balcony in morning sunlight (they have the advantage of not needing pots).

Learned from experience, at least in my setup, that fertilization of indoor plants under lights have to be weak, it's not the same as those outside. Adapting the orchid growers' practice of "weakly weekly" is a good one.

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  Pippi on Thu Jul 03, 2014 10:07 am

Brett, I'm curious why, in a country with so much humidity and sunshine, would you grow plants under lights, indoors? Here in Canada, our summers are relatively short and tropical species would not survive our winters.   Wink

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  brett2013 on Thu Jul 03, 2014 10:50 am

Pippi wrote:Brett, I'm curious why, in a country with so much humidity and sunshine, would you grow plants under lights, indoors? Here in Canada, our summers are relatively short and tropical species would not survive our winters.   Wink

I am in Singapore, where, like Japan or even Hongkong, land is scarce and expensive.  Most of us live in high-rise apartments or condominiums.  If I were in Philippines, Malaysia, Vietnam, etc. it will be different, lots of land and space.

I was just speaking with an orchid hobbyist who I bought some great orchids from yesterday. He started indoors and in his balcony too, but his collection rose to thousands of orchids that he eventually had to go rent some farm plot with another hobbyist to accommodate the plants, that's about USD 300 per month rent.  They rent it from another farm, and it's lower-priced as the farm is really "far".

I haven't got to that stage yet Smile.  My balcony is too small, with about 5 bonsais only, and more are indoors, mostly shohin.  It's not too bad, I don't need many, just a few to keep me occupied and to look at.

Indoor growing here is different as there is natural humidity, even when the airconditioner is turned on for the brief time we are in the room where the plants are.  I still have a humidifier on just in case during aircon time. Anyway, a humidifier is good in an airconditioned room as it's good for the skin and nose not to get dried out.

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  Dreamcast on Sat Jul 05, 2014 11:57 am

Pippi wrote:So happy to have found this thread!! We had LEDs on our saltwater aquarium to grow corals very successfully, the lighting set-up was also from Austria, "Vertex".

I am now looking into using LEDs grow lights for Bonsai. Thanks so much for the links!!   Very Happy  LOVE the growth both you and Brett are achieving.

That Vertex fixture looks really high quality!
I am very happy with the quality and performance with the SANlight LEDs, good things coming out from Austria.  Cool 

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

Post  Dreamcast on Sat Jul 05, 2014 2:00 pm

Ryan wrote:I'm now looking into some LEDs for my trees. There's just so much conflicting information out there, it's difficult to know what's what.

Ryan, i used to feel the same since its a LED jungle out there, from own experience here are a few things i look for to evaluate if a company's LEDs may be good or not.

If the company share LED brands, Nanometers and BINs then its easy to look up the performance and efficiency, CREE, Philips, OSRAM, Bridgelux and Nichia are the best LED brands i can think of.

The difference between a low and high quality LED chip can easily be the double!
So a light using quality LEDs of the best BINs drawing 100Watts will outperform a LED light drawing the double and more if its using inferior LED chips.
Quality LED drivers are also a must for a efficient light that will last, Mean well and RECOM are good brands (there are more).
 
Another thing to look for is good heat management, large heatsinks means better performance and longer lifespan for the LEDs.
Long warranty (company showing confident in there product) say a lot since LEDs has a lifespan of ~50.000h and often much more.
If a company shows Spectrum chart and PAR readings then its a BIG +!

Many good reviews are always a good sign to.

I personally ignore ALL re branded Chinese panels, i am sure there are those that are good and even very good, but finding one in the jungle of re brands is a huge gamble IMO.
So i personally stick with EU and US made lights from company's that can supply me with all the info i may possible ask for.

When looking for the right light/lights for ones setup, design, size, spectrum, lenses, power draw and much more are also important to consider before pulling the trigger.

One must do a lot of homework when it comes to buying the right LEDs for the right applications, IMO if you do take your time to get it right, then LEDs are a real dream come true, also very kind on the electric bill.  Wink

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Re: Indoor Bonsai under LED lights.

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