Garden & Greenhouse


Garden & Greenhouse Cover Story – Sunmaster Full Nova and Super HO

Posted September 29th, 2017 by Garden & Greenhouse in ,

When gardening indoors, no piece of equipment is more important than the light source. The lighting system, or more specifically the bulb used in the lighting system, is the driving force behind plant growth. In an indoor garden, a plant’s ability to photosynthesize is completely dependent on the artificial light source. Therefore, the quality of the light source has a considerable impact on the quality and yield of the entire garden. It is true that there are many contributing factors that make up a successful indoor garden, but of all these contributing factors none are as singularly influential as the source of light energy.

When indoor horticulture first began, many gardeners were growing plants under shop lights or re-purposed street lamps. Although these lighting systems grew plants sufficiently, they were far from efficient and were certainly not designed for that purpose. In fact, most of the early horticultural lighting systems were commercial lighting systems that were actually designed for illuminating workspaces or outdoor environments. In other words, the spectral outputs of these lamps were designed to meet specifications based on the way the human eye perceives light. As our knowledge of plant physiology has increased, we have come to realize that plants perceive light much differently than the human eye. One lighting company in particular set out to meet the demand for high quality, horticultural-specific lamps. That company was Venture Lighting International.

Company Overview

Venture Lighting International (VLi) saw a need for lamps that were specifically designed for growing plants and so they developed Sunmaster grow-lamps. VLi is the global leader in metal halide (MH) technology; having developed more than 80% of the metal halide lamp types in use today. VLi’s sister company, APL, is the world’s leading supplier of metal halide salts and HPS amalgams. In other words, Sunmaster is a vertically integrated company that has access to the very best components available for artificial lighting. The unique dosing of metal halide salts and HPS amalgams enable Sunmaster lamps to convey a spectrum with more usable light energy for plant growth.

The combined expertise of Venture Lighting International and APL found in every Sunmaster lamp is the magic that makes these lamps produce more photosynthetically active radiation (PAR). At Sunmaster, most of the products are engineered and manufactured in-house. It is the unmatched experience and access to the highest quality materials that make their lamps the most reliable and effective horticultural lamps on the market. It is also Sunmaster’s reliability and effectiveness that have made it the most recognized brand in the horticultural lamp industry throughout Europe. Though proud of their brand, the folks at Sunmaster aren’t only concerned with brand recognition. They want to produce the very best of the best when it comes to horticultural lighting. To further assure this, they quantify the performance of their own lamps by conducting side by side grow chamber tests with competitive brands as well as working with independent research botanists to confirm lamp performance in field

Amidst Sunmaster’s arsenal of horticultural lamps, there are two product lines that are sure to grab the attention of indoor horticulturists: the Full Nova and the Super HO.

Sunmaster Full Nova 315 Watt

The Sunmaster Full Nova 315 watt is a ceramic metal halide designed to replicate the balanced spectrum of sunlight. The entire Full Nova product line has a very full, nutritional spectrum which contrasts the partial, or non-balanced, spectrum provided by light sources such as HPS or LEDs. The Sunmaster Full Nova 315 watt ceramic metal halide boasts a 96 color rendition index (CRI) rating, which is the highest rating in the industry for this particular technology. The CRI rating of a light source essentially measures how closely the light source mimics natural sunlight. Sunlight has a CRI rating of 100, which means a rating of 96 is extremely impressive for an artificial light source. The full spectrum light emitted by the Sunmaster Full Nova 315 watt encourages thick vegetative growth along with robust and prolific fruit and flowers.

Sunmaster Full Nova 1000 Watt

The Sunmaster Full Nova 1000 watt metal halide lamp, like the ceramic 315 watt version, was specifically designed to deliver a full spectrum that is as close to natural sunlight as possible. Plants have evolved over millions of years. As they have adapted to their particular environments, they have perfected the process of photosynthesis. This optimization of photosynthesis has been dictated by the precise spectrum delivered by natural sunlight. Put another way, plants have evolved to make the most efficient use out of the light spectrums provided by sunlight. Artificial light sources that replicate the sun’s spectrum most precisely will be able to provide plants with what they need to most effectively photosynthesize. The Sunmaster Full Nova 1000 watt also provides the particular spectrums found to be the most conducive to chlorophyll A, chlorophyll B and carotenoids.

Sunmaster Super HO HPS

If any HID lamp was created for maximizing efficiency, it is the Sunmaster Super HO product line. Sunmaster Super HO lamps are designed to maximize the amount of light energy (micro-moles per second) per watt (energy consumed). In other words, these lamps are designed to convert the highest ratio of electricity into usable light of any other HPS lamp on the market. Third party and university testing have shown that Sunmaster Super HO enhanced lamps deliver the highest amount of PAR per watt of any high intensity discharge light source. These lamps have been quantified and compared to the industry’s top brands and have proven themselves to be the best in their class. The test results show the Sunmaster Super HO product line has 10-20% more usable PAR output. In growth chamber testing, the Sunmaster Super HO product line produced 20% more flowers after the first four weeks in the flowering stage. This is a testament to the enhanced orange/red spectrum found in these lamps. That’s right, in addition to super efficiency, the Sunmaster Super HO product line has been enhanced with the core orange/red region of the spectrum to promote prolific flowering.

Finding the right tool for the job is imperative to efficiently accomplish a task. If growing plants indoors is the task you set out to accomplish, Sunmaster lamps are the right tool for the job. Years of expertise and the highest quality components available are found in every Sunmaster lamp. If the experience and components found in each lamp weren’t enough, third party testing shows Sunmaster lamps to be superior to other lamps on the market. It is Sunmaster’s willingness to go above and beyond to prove the effectiveness and to quantify the efficiency of each product that makes it the most trusted name in horticultural lighting. Of all the pieces of equipment within an indoor garden, the lamp used in the lighting system is the most important because it will dictate the amount of usable light energy received by the plants.

A Sunmaster Full Nova lamp provides the spectrum closest to that of natural sunlight of any other high intensity discharge lamp, making it the perfect tool for encouraging thick vegetative growth and promoting dense essential oil production. The Sunmaster Super HO product line provides indoor gardens with 10-20% more usable light energy (PAR) and has been shown to increase the amount of early flower production. Indoor horticulturists, who want the right tool for the job, need to look no further than Sunmaster lamps. Although the name speaks for itself, it is the results that have kept, and will continue to keep, indoor horticulturists loyal to the Sunmaster brand.

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