More on CMH, LEC & CDM Grow Lights
Okay, if you haven’t heard of Ceramic Metal Halide or CMH grow lighting you’re not the only one. CMH lighting seems to be the best kept secret in gardening circles.
So, what are they?
CMH or light ceramic grow lights are the contemporary and far superior HID lighting on the market today. Utilizing modern technology CMH lighting is more efficient and more effective for indoor gardening than conventional HID light systems.
The biggest confusion regarding ceramic metal halide lighting is what in the world are they called, in the first place?
Ceramic metal halide lights are referred to as light emitting ceramic (LEC) or also ceramic discharge metal halide (CDM.) Confused, yet? Don’t worry, regardless of what individual distributers or blogs call them, they all fall under the classification of CMH grow lighting.
CMH is what we will be calling this class of light from here on in.
The advantages of CMH lighting
What benefits are there to CMH lighting over conventional HID systems?
- Balanced spectrum
- Color rendering index
- Ultraviolet light production
No matter how you look at it these are some pretty big advantages over the old-fashioned HID grow lighting. Now, combine that with the fact that CMH grow lights are also 10% more efficient than grandpa’s HID lighting those are some big benefits.
10% may not seem like an awful lot right now but it sure will after you see the electric bill over the course of a few months.
Let’s break this down a little further by explaining the big three.
What this improvement equates to for your garden or cannabis is more usable light. Other HID lighting systems waste a lot of energy, most of it producing heat. The new CMH lighting produces more light that is used by the plants.
This is going to lead to higher yields through more productive and healthy plants.
Color rendering index
Put simply color rendering index or CRI is the color of the light produced that helps us interrupt how we see the world around us. The closer the index to that of the sun the more realistically we’re able to perceive visually.
CMH is measured at between 80 and 90 CRI which is relatively close to the sun’s own 100 CRI. Why is this important?
Fair enough question.
“Seeing is believing,” they always say.
The better we can see our plants as they naturally are the better we are going to be able to spot health issues that we may not due to artificial lighting. A slightly yellowed leaf, for example, will appear green to us with lower CRI lighting.
The higher index helps us see the plants more as we would in their natural environment. This enables us to spot and treat any diseased plants before we have a full-blown major outbreak on our hands.
Ultraviolet light production
We all understand ultraviolet light production as it’s the backbone to a plant’s photosynthesis process. In nutshell, CMH lighting produces more usable ultraviolet rays. The UV is filtered as to not negatively affect our vision but at the same time benefiting the plants by producing more usable UV light.