Top 4 Best Digital Ballast Reviews For Grow Lights

There are various things that you need to consider in order to find and purchase the best digital ballast for your budget. To make your search easier, you can look through online digital ballast reviews that will point you towards the right direction. However, you should only use these reviews as guides in making your decision.

To ensure that you will be investing on the right piece of equipment for your garden, you have to get a clear understanding of what a ballast is, what is does, and why you need it.

Once you begin the search for a ballast for indoor garden, you will come across its two main types: magnetic ballasts and digital ballasts. If you want to make the most out of your investment, you are better off with going for the digital kind.

Why? Because digital ballasts utilize and require a very down toned mechanism that uses minimal frequency inductors and switches. Using and maintaining this kind of ballast is a simple process. Some gardeners would even go to say that it requires almost no upkeep whatsoever.

Investing on a digital ballast will also help you make your whole indoor garden more energy efficient. Because this kind of ballast is designed using an intelligent operating system, it utilizes and powers your grow bulbs in a smarter way. For example, the best rated ballast will make the necessary adjustments depending on whether you are using MH lamps or HPS lamps. The system will automatically adjust depending on the requirements of your grow light set-up.

The digital ballast models that are for sale on the market will also boost the output of the lamps that you will install. As a matter of fact, they are fitted with mechanisms that will increase the output of your lights once they begin to wane.

Top Four Digital Ballast Reviews On The Market

Let’s look at the top digital ballast options that you will come across in the market. Here are the best models that you can invest on, to maximize the lighting capacity of your indoor garden.

Digital Ballast ModelPriceOur Rating
Apollo Horticulture Purple Reign 400W 600W 1000W Watt Digital Dimmable HPS MH for Plant Growing$$$5
Apollo Horticulture APL1000 Hydroponic 1000 Watt HPS MH Digital Dimmable Electronic Ballast$$$5
VIVOSUN Hydroponic 600 Watt HPS MH Grow Light Air Cooled Reflector Kit, Easy to set up, High Stability & Compatibility$$$5
iPower GLBLST600D Digital Dimmable Ballast for Grow Light, 600 Watt$$4.5

1. Apollo Horticulture Purple Reign 400W 600W 1000W Watt Digital Dimmable HPS MH Grow Light Ballast for Plant Growing

Apollo Digital Dimmable HPS MH Grow Light Ballast

Via Amazon.com

This digital ballast from Apollo is compatible with 400W, 600W, and 1000W bulbs, thereby giving you more options when it comes to deciding and buying lamps for your indoor garden. After all, it can be pretty stressful to look for certain kinds of lamps that will work well with the ballast that you will install.

With this model from Apollo, you are given the free rein in choosing your lamps and deciding which lighting specification you will use for your greenhouse. This is considered to be one of the frontrunners among the dimmable digital ballasts in the market, mainly due to its impressive wattage capabilities.

Any Apollo ballast review will also praise this model for its impressive and efficient noise cancelling system. Despite its great powering capacity and energy saving options, this unit barely creates any noise when it is powered.

Another great thing about this model is the professional ease in which it can be used by even novice gardeners. It is fittest with a digital display that allows users to access information and notched dials that make way for simple changes and adjustments.

On your way to finding the right ballast for your garden, you have to find the right option that will allow you to make the most out of the value of your grow lights. This model ranks pretty high in that aspect.

This Apollo model goes for just the right price, despite the efficiency that it offers. For just the right price tag, it offers an impressive user experience and above average growing capacity. This is why it is considered to be one of the strongest contenders in the market.

Pros

  • Flexibility because it offers up to 1a dozen different settings
  • Ease of use because it has a digital display
  • Offers great value for investment

Cons

  • Requires adequate ventilation because the model can get hot after extended use
  • Big and bulky as compared to other units

2. Apollo Horticulture APL1000 Hydroponic 1000 – Watt HPS MH Digital Dimmable Electronic Ballast

Apollo Horticulture APL1000 Hydroponic Digital Dimmable Electronic Ballast

Via Amazon.com

This unit from Apollo is a 1000-watt ballast that can be used and adjusted to produce 100%, 75%, or 50% efficiency for your lamps. It also makes way for up to 30% better efficiency, as compared to older magnetic ballast models. It is also compatible for both HPS and MH lamps, therefore giving you more options in choosing your bulbs.

In addition to being highly adaptable to other equipment, it is also works for both 120V and 240V power sources. If you are looking for a model that will not wreak havoc on your power consumption, then you should consider investing on this model because it presents an astounding 99% power factor that leads to higher output with very minimal power loss.

Safety is also not an issue, because the Apollo Horticulture APL1000 is fitted with a power protection feature that automatically shuts the system off in case of a short circuit problem. Even better, is produces a stable light output that ensure flicker-free lighting and more efficient lamp ignition.

As compared to the other models, this option utilizes a more advanced cooling system that helps the model stay cool despite long-tern use. This is on top a three-year warranty that entitles buyers to parts or unit replacement.

The APL1000 is perhaps one of the most dependable ballast models that you will find in the market. Once you have made the necessary adjustments to ensure proper temperature and climate inside your garden, the unit will yield consistent power for optimal lamp glow and plant growth.

Pros

  • Highly efficient because uses less power for its commendable performance
  • Affordable because it provides above average performance for just the right price tag
  • Produces great results that include consistent growth and harvest

Cons

  • Big and bulky which makes it hard to incorporate to small gardens

3. VIVOSUN Hydroponic 600 Watt HPS MH Grow Light Bulb Digital Dimmable Ballast Air Cooled Hood Reflector Kit

VIVOSUN Digital Dimmable Ballast Air Cooled Hood Reflector Kit

Via Amazon.com

This model from VIVOSUN is a 600W dimmable ballast that can operate using a 120V or 240V power supply. It also offers various dimmable levels that range from 250W to 600W, thereby offering control for users. The best thing about this option is its 110% super lumens capacity, which makes it a great gear to use for especially dreary climates.

While it does work for various kinds of lights, it operated best with 600W MH lamps and 600W HPS lamps. However, it is fitted with reflectors that are made out of a combination of highly reflective galvanized steel and German aluminum. This feature enables the machine to increase your bulbs’ performance without causing any kind of power increase.

What users like best about this model is its 7-day dual outlet digital time, which makes it possible to control light outputs and ventilation systems at the same time. This is a feature that is lacking in galaxy ballast review that is written about other models. If you install this in your garden, you will no longer need to invest on a separate piece of equipment to ensure the quality of air circulation in your indoor greenhouse. This makes for a great deal of savings and investment.

In addition to these great features, this digital ballast from VIVOSUN also offers a ton of useful features: ignition failure protection that prevents circuit damage; short circuit protection that offers automatic shut down in case of problems; overheating protection that controls model temperatures; and end-of-bulb-life protection which prevents damage from deteriorating lamps.

Pros

  • Three-year warranty for parts and model replacement
  • Wide range of in-gear and built-in protection features that protect from faulty machinery
  • Satisfactory customer service and assistance offered by manufacturer
  • 8-foot cord for easy and efficient set-up and installation
  • Slow light starting process which prevents causes of lamp failure

Cons

  • Significantly pricier than other digital ballast models

4. iPower GLBLST600D Digital Dimmable Ballast for Grow Light

iPower GLBLST600D Digital Dimmable Ballast

Via Amazon.com

This model from iPower is one of the manufacturer’s best sellers, understandably so for it has a ton if useful features for novice and experienced indoor gardeners.

It offers different customization features that allows used to manipulate ballast settings and output. These features include adjustable wattage output that allows users to dim their lamps to maximize their plants’ growing potential. It is also fitted with the capacity to convert between HPS and MH lamps, making it easy to incorporate this model to any kind of greenhouse set-up.

The best iPower ballast review praises the GLBST1000D for its silent operation system. Unlike other models, this particular machine lends continuous and steady power to lamps without emitting annoying noise. It also has a lightweight design that makes maximum lumen output possible, making it a powerful device for its size.

This digital ballast uses a powerful microprocessor that automatically detest HPS and MH lamps. This eliminates the need for a switch or the need to install an additional ballast to accommodate various bulb types and lumens. Its ergonomic design also gives users the prerogative to install it in hanging, horizontal, or vertical orientation.

It can be powered using 120V or 240V power supply and can be adjusted to 100%, 75%, or 50% lumens. In addition to this, it offers short circuit protection, efficient lamp ignition, stable bulb output, and overheating protection. All in all, it has almost all the features that you would need for your grow lamps, plus a little extra.

Pros

  • Easy to install, easy to use, and great for first-timers and novice users and gardeners
  • Thinner design for easier incorporation to existing greenhouse set-up
  • Combination of features makes for safer model temperature despite continuous use
  • Durable parts that require minimal upkeep

Cons

  • Shorter life span if note ventilated properly
  • Requires the installation of a separate surge protector

Frequently Asked Questions about Using Digital Ballasts

1. Are cheap ballasts good investments?

how to choose digital Grow Light Ballast

Via Amazon.com

While it may be tempting to save a couple of bucks, the right ballast will require a certain amount of investment. Worry not, for the variety of features that come with the more pricier and more high-end models are more than worth it.

2. Are there visual and dimensional differences between magnetic and digital ballasts?

There is a glaring difference between the size and weight of magnetic ballasts and digital ballasts. Magnetic ballasts tend to be bigger, bulkier, and heavier. Digital ballasts, on the other hand, are more streamlined in design, making them smaller, lighter, and easier to incorporate toe existing set-ups.

3. How can I expect a digital ballast to affect my greenhouse performance?

Finding the right ballast will help you improve the overall performance of your greenhouse or indoor garden. For one, installing this kind of machine will help you ensure consistently high functionalities for your grow lights. This means that it will be easier to control the circumstances in your indoor garden, thereby giving you the power to ensure that your plants are exposed to the right conditions all the time.

Digital ballasts also improve the greenhouse’s power consumption and energy usage. This kind of device is designed to maximize your lamps’ performance without requiring a boost in the power supply. In addition to this, most ballast models also make the necessary adjustments that make glow bulbs perform in their absolute best.

4. What the difference between the frequency requirements of magnetic and digital ballasts?

Magnetic ballasts usually require 50Hz frequency from your main electric supply. This means that this kind of machine powers on and powers of for up to 50 times for every second that you use it.

Digital ballasts, on the other hand, requires very low frequency for normal processing. This makes way for longer bulb lifespans and better lumens output.

Conclusion

The best digital ballast is a worthy investment, and this is the main reason why you should lend a great deal of thought prior to buying a ballast for your garden. The right model for you depends on the kinds of need that you have and the amount that you are willing to invest. Once you have assessed the kind of ballast you need for your greenhouse, you can then go ahead to purchasing the best model that will allow you to increase your garden efficiency and output.

Jonathan E. Bass
 

Graduated from Middle Tennessee State University. I am currently a gardener. I have a small garden behind my house. I love it.

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