Best Double Ended (DE) Grow Lights – Everything You Need To Know

What is a double ended (DE) grow light? Double ended grow lights, sometimes referred to as grow lamps, are High Intensity Discharge (HID) grow ligvhts that operate at ultra high frequencies. Thus, the temperature and operating current are well balanced and much more constant.

These lights utilize High Pressure Sodium (HPS), Metal Halide (MH), or Ceramic Metal Halide (CMH). While quite effective, these grow lights are no longer the most efficient on the market.

You can purchase a LED grow light that uses a fraction of the energy of HPS, MH, or CMH double ended grow lights. The only downside is LED grow lights are a little more pricey. You can start reading about them here.

Despite double ended (DE) grow lights being less efficient, they still hold a piece of the grow light market, and so I’ve researched the best models for you in this article.

Double Ended vs. Single Ended (Normal) Grow Lights – What’s The Difference?

  • Double Ended bulbs boast two connection points, one at either end, whereas a Single Ended bulb or lamp, only has one connection point.
  • Double Ended lights get much hotter, producing far more light and heat than a Normal or S.E. one, which in turn, gives maximum yield and greater profits if selling your bud.
  • Double ended grow lights require a much bigger financial layout than Single Ended to begin with, but, are more cost effective in the long run.
  • Double Ended are also less likely to be available second hand.

Double ended (DE) grow lights have the positive and neutral sockets at each end of the fixture, as opposed to the one socket on a Single Ended (SE) bulb. The extra socket equates to extra brightness, and therefore efficacy.


Best Double Ended Grow Lights List:

On that note, you will find below a small selection of the recommended grow kits on which includes a large choice with a variety of specs, depending on your requirements and needs:

Yield Lab Pro Series 1000w HPS+MH XXL Hood Double Ended Grow Light Kit

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Designed for those seeking high luminescence indoors, this grow kit has been manufactured with higher power and to be user-friendly, with a simple ergonomic design.

It also boasts improved safety statures on an air cool reflector hood with glass panel for easy bulb replacement, D.E. lights and a ballast that can be dimmed.

The reflector comprises of six inch air duct holes on either side, to give the best cooling possible. It has many more good features, just too much to mention. Comes with a H.P.S. and a metal halide (M.H.) bulb.

Whilst coverage may be slightly limited compared to other reflectors, that which it does offer is exceptional and is focused downwards on your grow, as opposed to jetting in various directions like fireworks on New Years Eve.

Pros & Cons:
Pros
  • Complete Kit
  • Dimmable ballast
  • High Power at 1000W
  • Design is User Friendly
  • Ideal for someone starting out
  • Comes with 1 Year Warranty on all parts, except ballast which has a 3 year guarantee
  • Comes with a middle of the road price tag, but, a bit on the expensive side
Cons
  • Better Indoors than Outside
  • Limited light coverage

Click Here to see Reviews and Prices for the Yield Lab 1000w Double Ended HPS Grow Light Kit on Amazon.com


Yield Lab 1000W Double Ended Wing Reflector Complete Grow Light Kit- HPS+MH

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This Yield Lab double ended wing reflector is similar to it’s predecessor, but with the added benefit of an open winged reflector for more heat dissipation. This allows your plants to stay cooler and prevents burn spots.

The Double Ended H.P.S. Bulb from Yield Lab is a powerful 1000 watt bulb and is highly efficient.

The digital and dimmable ballast (also 1000 watts) comes with North American and European safety certifications from of U.L.,  C.E. and RoHS. That means it was extensively tested against: Open circuits, short circuits, ignition failure and overheating.

The Yield Lab Pro Series 1000W H.P.S. Open Winged Double Ended Reflector is compact and all in one. The open wings allows the reflection of many points of light onto the plants.

This 2 part open design also helps reduce any excessive heat to your bud, as it permits dissipation of same via the reflector’s open gaps.

Pros
  • Full Spectrum Grow Kit
  • Perfect for indoor growers including hydroponics
  • Easy to set up
  • Reasonably priced
  • Comes with Free DVD & Timer
Cons
  • Ballast cannot be rotated from horizontal to vertical for use in a grow tent

Click here to see reviews and prices for the Yield Lab 1000W HPS Professional Series with Open Winged Double Ended Reflector on Amazon


Phantom Commercial DE Enclosed Lighting System 1000W Dimmable with USB Interface

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This Phantom Enclosed DE Lighting System with U.S.B. consists of progressive double ended technology that evenly delivers an optimal PPFD value over a large footprint.

This system affords you the distinctive capability to separate the ballast and the reflector, so the former can be operated from a distance, or placed in another room, to try assist in the reduction of heat load.

At the heart of this system is the Phantom Commercial DE Ballast. It’s designed with a high precision microprocessor that makes it super efficient and an exceptionally dependable piece of equipment.

Since it’s completely silent and lightweight, you won’t be disturbed as this ballast is entirely noise free and can easily be moved.

It can operate at multiple voltages, can be used with a generator, is compliant with the Federal Communications Commission (F.C.C.) and comes with 2 cables (RJ12 to RJ12 and RJ12 to U.S.B.) , an RJ12 splitter, an 8 foot long power cable and a set of instructions.

The Phantom Enclosed DE Lighting System can be connected to the Lighting Controller model PX1 which is digital and made by Autopilot (APDPX1) via its U.S.B. interface. This affords you the luxury of having dual zoned, centralized and digital control of your Double Ended lamps.

This model offers a lot more flexibility than the Hydrofarm variety. Up to two hundred and fifty six in each of 2 independent zones for a total capacity of five hundred and twelve watts.

It also comes with a high precision microprocessor, 4 way dimming, is exceedingly reliable, has a status indicator with L.E.D. light and many more features.

Package Dimensions are: 19.8in x 10.8in x 12in. Warranty consists of  1 year for the Reflector, 3 years for the Ballast, and 1 year for the Lamp.

Pros
  • Perfect for a commercial or large scale setup
  • USB Interface
  • Latest Technology provides optimum P.A.R. with the highest uniformity
  • Ballast is completely silent, lightweight and slim
  • Ballast can be removed from reflector and used remotely
  • Can be used with multiple voltages
Cons
  • Not designed for small time producers

Click here to see reviews and prices for the Phantom Enclosed Double Ended System on Amazon.com


SunStream 1000w Double Ended HPS Grow Light

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This SunStream 1000 watt DE grow light is not one to be sneezed at or ignored. It comes at a reasonable price considering everything included in the package.

Included is a high parabolic aluminized reflector, and a double ended (DE) bulb with a mean lifetime of 30,000 hours. The high frequency dimmable ballast can be adjusted to your preference.

The German made aluminum reflector is perfect to deal with the intense heat given off by a double ended lamp. This means that it is resistant to decomposition whether caused by heat or pressure.

If purchased from Amazon you can choose between a 120v or 240v cord. This all includes a three year warranty from Sunstream.

Pros
  • Reflector is a generous size
  • Ballast is high frequency and dimmable
  • High P.A.R. Double Ended 1000W Bulb Included
  • Both reflector and ballast come with a lengthy 3 year guarantee, bulb with 1 year
  • Alumina reflector, made in Germany, gives extra reflection
  • Reasonably priced
Cons
  • Cannot be connected to a controller

Click here to see reviews and prices for the SunStream Double Ended Grow Fixture System on Amazon.com


Good Or Bad – Why Buy Or Use Double Ended Grow Lights?

There are a few benefits to double ended grow lights compared to single ended grow lights.

The light coverage and power consumption of DE grow lights is more efficient than single ended grow lights. Double ended grow lights also provide a substantially higher light intensity than conventional Single Ended or SE lights.

You get a better spread of light and higher lumen output providing up to 50% more usable light while using the same amount of power! And if that’s not impressive enough, even after 10,000 hours of burning, the intensity of double ended bulbs stays at a whopping 90%.

In contrast, double ended grow lights are more expensive. This applies not only to the bulbs but to all parts of the setup. Although the DE lamps do provide a lot of benefits and are more economical in the long run, the cost will be a factor to consider.

As long as you have a method to control heat, which most growers do, then double ended grow lights can still be an attractive growing option.

Difference between HPS and LED grow lights:

There are three main differences between HPS or Double Ended grow lights, and LED grow lights.

The first difference is cost. HPS grow lights cost a fraction of good quality LED grow lights, and that’s what keeps them attractive even as LED grow lights have really gained popularity.

The downside to HPS grow lights is they produce much more heat than LED grow lights, and so they aren’t good for small grow tents, or even small areas with no ventilation.

Growing cannabis, fruits or vegetables indoors requires a specific temperature and humidity. HPS light users can definitely face a challenge in maintaining a proper growing environment.

The third difference is the ability to control and produce more favorable light spectrum with LEDs compared to double ended grow lights like HPS or MH grow lights.

It’s Not Just About Lights – What About Reflectors, Connectors, Ballasts & Bulbs?

Complete kits like the ones highlighted above are the best option so you can be sure it’ll all work together.

If however you decide to buy individual pieces, make sure you double check all the specifications. Otherwise you could end up with a ballast that cannot be controlled by any connector or a double ended bulb and a single ended reflector!

Final Thoughts:

The grow light market is ever expanding and the products are ever evolving to meet demands and expectations of customers. The internet has given the customer a mammoth selection of double ended grow light options to meet their individual requirements.

LED grow lights have just about replaced DE grow lights at this point, but HID grow lights can still be used.

If you have a flexible budget, you may want to buy a DE Grow Light setup – it should pay off in the long term though with increased yield.

Best Product From The Reviews: The best double ended grow light really depends on individual requirements and funds available. For a commercial setup, the Yield Lab Grow Kit is one of the best choices, but ultimately it’s up to you!

FAQ:

Are HPS or LED grow lights better?

LED grow light technology has surpassed HPS grow lights in terms of light spectrum and power consumption. LEDs can also provide more uniform light coverage.

Are double ended grow lights still worthwhile compared to LED grow lights?

Double ended grow lights will still grow plants well, as long as your grow environment can handle the heat they emit.

What’s the difference between Double Ended (DE) and Single Ended Grow Lights?

Double Ended grow lights have an extra light socket, produce more intense light, and emit more heat. Double Ended grow lights are typically priced higher than single ended grow lights.

What’s the best type of DE grow light to purchase?

It’s best to purchase a double ended grow light kit to ensure all the parts are compatible with each other.

References:

1. Chandra, Suman, Hemant Lata, Ikhlas Khan, and Mahmoud Elsohly. “Photosynthetic response of Cannabis sativa L. to variations in photosynthetic photon flux densities, temperature and CO2 conditions.” Physiology and Molecular Biology of Plants 14.4 (2009): 299-306.

2. Backer Rachel, Schwinghamer Timothy, Rosenbaum Phillip, McCarty Vincent, Eichhorn Bilodeau Samuel, Lyu Dongmei, Ahmed Md Bulbul, Robinson George, Lefsrud Mark, Wilkins Olivia, Smith Donald L. (2019). “Plant Growth-Promoting Rhizobacteria for Cannabis Production: Yield, Cannabinoid Profile and Disease Resistance.” Frontiers in Plant Science 10. 10.3389/fpls.2019.00495

Other References:

Yield Lab, SunStream, Phantom Ballast

Nick
 

My name is Nick, and I'm a home grower who spends time writing about indoor growing tools and setups. My goal is for 420ExpertGuide to be a one stop shop for indoor growers to find the information they need.