digital vs magnetic

Discussion in 'Growing Marijuana Indoors' started by venom21, Sep 10, 2009.

  1. is there a big difference between the two? is it worth gettin the digi over the magnetic?
  2. digitals are quieter and more efficient, i think magnetic might be more reliable and cause less interference with electronics. you can't run ceramic metal halides with digital ballasts. either one will get the trick done. if you don't plan on running a cmh bulb i'd probably go with a digital.
  3. If I were growing tomato's, I'd experiment with a digi, but reliability means more to me than a minute increase in efficiency. Just like LED's for me ... later perhaps.

  4. Digital is great!!! ... if you have them on a superb surge protector. They seem to be more prone to frying with surges, happened to my friend when lightning hit over a mile from his place. Everything was fine except his digital ballast, all his magnetic ones were fine except the bulbs.

    Drop the $100-$200 and get a monster power conditioning surge protector. It will be the best money you spend! Keep your bulbs longer and you ballasts FOREVER!

  5. sry to resurrect this thread, but i figured it was better then making a new one.
    How big of a difference in efficiency does the digital ballast make?
  6. I think most people advertise a 20% increase in efficiency. Also, any decent quality digital will have built in surge protection as well as RF shielding to prevent interference. Lumatek does anyhow, that is what I run.
  7. 20%! that doesn't sound as minute as slackerbee makes it out to be, that's pretty substantial.
    i read some where you get a higher lumen output from digi, that just phony marketing shit?
  8. I have never run magnetic so I couldn't say for sure. The heat, noise, and cost of running magnetics over digital were enough to keep me away.

    My lumatek has a "super lumens" switch which makes it obviously brighter but I am not sure if it is a scam. When it is off is it underpowered? Or when it is on is it overclocked so to speak and will it burn out the bulb quicker? Not sure but I keep it on. If I don't spend my extra cash on my op I have to spend it on lame shit, like bills and food. HA!
  9. haha, well i would be curious to see if it runs the light brighter. have you burnt out any bulbs with the overdrive switch on yet?
    thanks for the info!
  10. Nope, but I just ordered a light meter and will be keeping track of hours, just to see if it wears them out quicker.
  11. #11 killermiller, Nov 6, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 6, 2009

    It is 20% of the overhead. If a magnetic uses 100w to power a 1000w bulb, that is 1100w.

    A digital would use 1080w.

    I'm not sure if people understand this, a 1000w bulb uses 1000w while the ballast uses additional energy not counted in the 1000w rating.

    Even 20w at $0.12 a kw, it really isn't much of a savings. Digitals are overrated and overpriced. If your magnetic fails, chances are it isn't the transformer, it's probably the starter or the cap. $30 to replace the starter or cap vs a replacement digital ballast.
  12. we have digitals years old, no problems, less heat, more efficient, only those stuck with mags would try to defend them.
  13. I'm not stuck with a mag. I am using a digital right now along side my magnetic. The less heat somes from the less power being used... 20% of the overhead. With the #'s I posted above twice the price aren't worth the energy and heat "savings".
  14. You are trying to tell me that a digital is hardly cooler than a mag? You must have a super magnetic ballast because the ones my friend uses could heat a room in december. My digital 400 is cool enough that I would put it in my naked lap. My friend's magnetc 400's from hydrofarm would burn my skin without a doubt.

    Could you refer me to the information you speak of? the 20% of the overhead? I have never heard this until now.
  15. #15 amoril, Nov 6, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 6, 2009
    my 400w magnetic ballast (harvest pro elite from SunSystem) is spectacular. 100% silent, mildly warm (I can hold it indefinately bare-handed, set it on my lap, leave it on carpet, whatever).

    if you buy a crappy magnetic ballast....yeah, they suck. But if you compare a quality magnetic ballast to a digi, there's not nearly the discrepancy that many would have you think.

    there are advantages to magnetic, over digi. Price (for the same money as a digi, you can get a stellar coil&core...probably less ). Bulb options...because, Im not misleading you when I say that I feel that CMH is only going to become more popular with time. Factor in that there have been some RF shielding failures on some models, causing problems and drawing attention from others that i definately wouldnt want to be a part of.

    durability should be another concern. Magnetic ballasts are a tried, and tested true form of powering the illumination. They withstand the elements, severe weather, etc, and continue to re-strike the lamp.
  16. #16 killermiller, Nov 6, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 6, 2009
    My #'s were just examples. However a 1000w bulb uses 1000w.

    The additional energy used comes from transforming your input voltage to the output voltage.

    I am using a 1k mag and 400w digi so I can't do a direct comparison. Sure my 1k is hot as a mofo, but the 400 digi isn't cool by any means. A digi is more efficient in converting the voltage which does mean less heat, I'm just saying it isn't worth x2-x3 the cost.
  17. does the 250w lumatek ballast work with the 19" cool tube?

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