Chip On Board, or COB, grow lights are the newest technology in LED grow lights for 2018. Cannabis growers are always on the look out for the best and brightest when it comes to grow lights, and COB lights blow traditional hydroponic bulbs out of the water.
Chip On Board lights consist of multiple tiny LED chips that are mounted directly on to a copper or ceramic board (hence the name). These diodes form one single module and when turned on, appear to be one light. COB lights look more like a panel or square of solid light than traditional LEDs.
Unlike regular LEDs they emit a full spectrum of white light. This means that your grow room will no longer glow in red or purple. COB lights are surprisingly affordable, both in up front costs and electricity.
Regular LEDs use about half of the wattage as HID lighting, and Chip On Board LEDs use only about half of the wattage of regular LEDs. In this article I have found the top five COB lights on the market today. This is still an emerging technology with new products being introduced at a rapid rate, so check back here to see the most up to date products and reviews.
1. Morsen MAX Series COB LED Grow Lights
The Morsen MAX series of COB grow lights is designed for large scale and professional grow ops. These lights come in wattages that you normally do not see in LED, up to 3600W! Each COB chip is 300W and has super high light efficiency and heat dissipation. These lights are full spectrum and can be used during all stages of growth. The efficiency of COB lights means that these lights consume very little power – For example the 1800W fixture only consumes 280W of power. This is much less than normal LEDs, which usually use about half the amount of power from HID, which in this case would be about 900W. Each Morsen light has a built in heatsink and there is no breakable glass anywhere on the unit, making them incredibly strong and long lasting. Quiet cooling fans are also included, so you never have to worry about overheating your grow tent or grow room. Morsen lights come with a three year warranty plus a 30 day satisfaction guarantee. Each package includes your light, plus hanging and power cords.
Sizes Available: 1200W, 1500W, 1800W, 2700W (dimmable), 3600W (dimmable)
Price: $139 to $399 depending on size, with free shipping
- Comes in very large sizes for commercial grow ops
- Very low power consumption
- Not expensive
- 3 year warranty
- Extremely bright – Wear sunglasses!
- Come customers had driver issues
- Some reviewers fond the hanging clamp to be too small
2. Lightimetunnel COB LED Grow Lights
For smaller home grow operations, a more modestly sized COB light will suffice. This light from Lightimetunnel comes in both 400W and 800W sizes. These lights have a full spectrum output that is more similar to natural sunlight than the red, blue and purple LEDs that you usually see in grow rooms. They can be used for all stages of plant growth, and have an extremely long life span. The power supply on this light is isolated in order to prevent flickering caused by changes in voltage. These lights have a 90 degree reflective cup to improve their light intensity and canopy penetration even more. They also have a very efficient cooling system to prevent overheating or burning your plants. You can use these lights one at a time, or daisy chain them together to easily expand your light coverage. Each package includes hanging clips, and these lights have a 2 year warranty.
Sizes Available: 400W, 800W,
Price: $89.99 to $179.99 depending on size, with free shipping
- Can be daisy chained
- 2 year warranty
- Only two sizes available
- Some customers had bulbs burn out
- Some customers had issues with the power cord
3. KingLED X4 Series COB LED Grow Lights
King X4 lights are designed for growers of all experience levels. These lights have a unique blue casing that holds between three and six 300W COB chips for a total wattage of either 900W, 1200W, 1500W or 1800W. They have a full spectrum of 410-730nm and can optimize your grow during both veg and bloom. These lights consume very little power and put out hardly any heat at all. They have two fans, and large heat sinks to absorb any radiant heat so that it does not affect your plants. No glass anywhere means these lights are extra durable and will last a long time, with an estimated lifespan of 50,000 hours. Each light also comes with a 3 year warranty and quality customer service that responds within 24 hours.
Sizes Available: 900W, 1200W, 1500W, 1800W,
Price: $165 to $235 depending on size, with free shipping
- 3 year warranty
- Many sizes available
- Full spectrum
- 50,000 hour lifespan
- Relatively expensive
- Some customers did not get a fast response form customer service
- Only high wattage sizes available
4. KingLED X4 Series Dimmable COB LED Grow Lights
This series from KingLED has the same quality and features as their regular X4 lights, with the added bonus of a dimmable switch. You can dim these lights from 1% to 100% intensity. This series comes in 900W or 1200W sizes. The advantages of dimmable LEDs are that you can optimize your light coverage, avoid hot spots, and use these as supplemental lights as well. These lights, like other KingLED COB grow lights, have a 50,000 hour life span and offer a full spectrum of lighting for all stages of plant growth. They come with a 3 year warranty and 30 day money back guarantee.
Sizes Available: 900W, 1200W
Price: $179 to $259 with free shipping
- 3 year warranty and 30 day money back guarantee
- 50,000 hour lifespan
- Only 2 sizes available
- No daisy chain feature
- More expensive
5. Roleadro COB LED Grow Lights
Roleadro COB grow lights are the most flexible option on this list. They come in three sizes – 200W with one COB chip, 400W with two chips or 800W with four chips. If you have a very small garden or are doing germination or cloning, the smaller sizes are ideal. Their 200W light is so compact that it could fit in the smallest grow box without any need to worry about overheating or burning your plants. The smaller sizes also work as excellent supplemental lighting, because they are able to fit in narrow corners that may otherwise have been dark spots in your grow op. These COB lights feature a 90 degree reflective cup for more light coverage and heat dissipation. This gives them a higher PAR output than most grow lights. They are extremely bright so you may need to bring sunglasses in to your grow room Each light comes with a 2 year warranty as well.
Sizes Available: 400W
- 2 year warranty
- Small sizes available for smaller grows or supplemental lights
- Reflector cup provides greater PAR value and canopy penetration
- Not dimmable
- Some reviewers thought the COB chips were lower quality than others
- Some customers had overheating issues