There are a variety of lighting sources that can be used as a grow light for hydroponic production and gardening. These can range from a simple fluorescent tube up to microprocessor controlled LED lights and high output and high par double ended (DE) HPS and Metal Halide lights, which is a relatively new form of hydroponic grow lights.
What lighting choice you decide to go with will depend on a number of factors that can include the plant size and available area you are trying to fill with light, what level of heat can your hydroponic grow handle, and of course your budget!
There is also practicality of the light for its purpose. If you are propagating cuttings/clones it would not be beneficial to run a 1000W HPS when you could use fluro to achieve the required light.
If you are trying to provide lighting to a 3x3m room, there would be no point in trying to use a 2ft 18w fluorescent unit – at the end of the day each light variety carries its own pros and cons.
Recently there has been significant improvements in the technology that goes into developing hydroponic and indoor grow lights, with the influx of LED units which are some of the most efficient fixtures on the market, as well as digitally driven, high frequency 1150w HPS all-in-one units featuring a double ended (DE) lamp configuration such as the world famous Gavita or the new Revolution DEVA fixtures, which at the moment are among the highest output of indoor grow lights available, which produce more lumens per watt than the standard E40 single ended HPS light fixture/unit. Even the Metal Halide units have had an upgrade from the old oval/balloon shaped lamp which is traditionally powered by a magnetic ballast, to digitally driven high performance tubular slim-line ceramic metal halide lamp which are currently available in 315w and 630w configurations.
Whatever your indoor grow light needs are, your sure to be able to find the right grow light kit to suit your desired application at Hydroworld.
All prices are in AUD