• Come join us as we welcome Horticulture Lighting Group to the Autoflower Network!

    We have an official representative from HLG that will be active on the forum to answer your questions, several units that are coming for our official product testing (grow and show's,) and we'll be working together to provide better information on lighting in general!

    Come say hello!
Status
Not open for further replies.

Groff

Geekazoid
Joined
Aug 4, 2012
Messages
1,985
Reputation
0
Reaction score
1,768
Points
0
LEDs direct from china - This thread was started and created by copying over posts from the blackstar thread due to them causing confusion.

This thread is for any members who have purchased there LEDS direct from china.we know that buying direct is quite alot cheaper,but iv read good and bad stories from people buying from china.so if youve either purchased through an online store,or by going straight to a manufacturer we'd like to hear your opinions on the product quality,in dealing with the companies you used,the spectrum you chose,and of course we'd like to see pics of them in action.this will possibly help any members who are thinking of buying from china decide which companies to use,or to avoid.
**************************************************************************


Guys, I'm having lots of issues with my plants using my Chinese produced lights... anyone care to jump into my thread and throw some ideas around?

https://www.autoflower.net/forums/f34/real-conundrum-led-lights-killing-my-plants-why-14183.html

BTW, what is your light spectrum raio? J TaNg told me a friend of his had lots of issue because he had more 630 than 660, and that it should be the other way around?

mine is

8 ROYAL BLUE 460nm LED'S
64 RED LED'S 630nm
4 DEEP RED 660NM LED'S
2 WHITE 12000K
1 IR 730nm
1 UV 380nm

Another question... I only recently noticed that when the lights are off, the LED's still emit a very very very low glow, only noticeable if you pop your head inside the tent and have no other light. Is this normal? I dont have an on/off switch, its a digital timer that controls it, how on earth is current coming through?!

 
Last edited by a moderator:

Groff

Geekazoid
Joined
Aug 4, 2012
Messages
1,985
Reputation
0
Reaction score
1,768
Points
0
EDIT: J TaNg, I just read your post on my other thread, thanks for commenting!)

They're not knock-offs... I did an extensive search and there is not 1 blackstar that is NOT produced in China (and 95% of all other LED, except rare exceptions like California Lightworks)

Now, the difference is that companies like gotham etc is that they choose OEM, slap their logo's, choose the specs and may require an increased quality control process.
You definitely can buy direct from the OEM (original equipment manufacturer) in China. In fact, I distinctly remember finding a thread on another forum with pics of the internals of a
Hydrogrow Blackstar, and I opened mine up and they were exactly the same.

I could have asked for any spectrum, but this is what they advertised as being optimal for flowering. I did research and it seemed pretty good... guess it isn't...





Yep, that other pic was taken in the dark. I tried with a mechanical timer and its the same deal... weird hum? But that is not the LED's fault, how could it be lool...

Ok, so you guys think that my light having too much 630nm is causing these issues? I mean, it not that far off from 660, and its still chlorophyl b peak spectrum.

Anyone know where I can buy Cree or Bridgelux LED chips so I can swap them? lool
 
Last edited:

Groff

Geekazoid
Joined
Aug 4, 2012
Messages
1,985
Reputation
0
Reaction score
1,768
Points
0
All right people!! I come bearing excellent news!

I've found the solution for the LEDs not turning off.

Its not the LED's fault, its not the timer's fault, it is a very simple known earthing issue that often affects all LED and CFL (flickering)

But before I get on with it, a little background for general info. I bought my blackstar off ebay direct from China, after a couple of months of intense research into this whole thing. From the LEDGirl/Hydrogrow conspiracy against the competition, right down to getting in touch with dozens of factories and even LED manufacturers. Not an easy ordeal when you have no cash to put where your mouth is looool....

Anyways, I bought the light for 150€ direct to my door. I was f*cking happy it even got there!! I had a huge smile as I fired it up only to find that it was a dud. Only half the LEDs were working.



Needless to say, my smile got flipped round to vociferous cursing. So I got in contact with China, not even betting 1€ I could get it solved... They asked me to open it, it could be a faulty power supply, and that they would be more than happy to send me one free of charge to substitute. So I troubleshooted and it was not the PU.



So they told me they would send a substitution light and arrange to have UPS or DHL (TNT actually I think) or whatever come pick up my faulty light... So here is a lesson to be told about stereotyping. And so they sent me a sunstitution (plus I bought a extra one too). There was a f*ck up with DHL or UPS or whatever, and no one ever came. I obviously did my vry best to help the factory get their light back to investigate what was wrong with it, but truth be told, European transport companies are more corrupt than LED manufacturers in China (not all, but these guys absolutely). They claimed they had come and no one was home (NOT TRUE) and so the "return credit/warranty to China" was used, and that either me or the factory would have to pay 200+€ to ship it back. Bastards!

So they told me to just keep it. :booya:

So now I am in the process of fixing the light and converting it to a Veg light. So I got the help of a specialized tech to service it. Here are some pics for reference in case anyone finds it interesting...





The "underbelly"







As you can see, it is a very very VERY low quality job and really looks like it was done in a hurry. Poor Chinese workers get payed by the unit, not by the hour...

So back to the issue at hand... The "problem" with the lights not turning off has to do with an issue of earthing not discharging completely, so it charges the PU juuuuust that little that the LEDs glow. IT is fixed quite simply by reversing the plug !!





Here is another timer, without the triple extension... In this scenario one is mislead to plug it upside down because you insert it in the natural position without tension...



In this scenario, you have to force the plug for it to make contact...



And here is confirmation of the "right position but upside down" phenomena fix



So that is it for now, I hope it helps. I would be wonderful if someone with an "original" blackstar would pop the top off just to see if the internals are the same. No need to dismantle, just pop out the top shell (4 or 6 screws) and take a few snaps so we can have a clear idea if its that much different or not. By the way, my faulty light was caused by a short circuit in the PU, and it fried 1/2 the LEDs out.

Hope this helps!
 
Last edited:

Groff

Geekazoid
Joined
Aug 4, 2012
Messages
1,985
Reputation
0
Reaction score
1,768
Points
0
Sorry for your troubles Groffuwiwi but I wish you would stop calling your unit a BlackStar. It could get confusing and also send the wrong message about BlackStar LED's. I love the info you're providing though, especially the inside pics of the unit. I think there are some pics floating around somewhere on the site of the innards of a BS. I'll take a look. :smokebuds:
I'm just trying to give as much info as I can so anyone out there can make the right decision. I understand that it must be really annoying to pay 500 bucks for a light and have someone come here and claim they have the same light for 150. That is exactly why I posted the pics. I am NOT claiming I have the holy grail of lights, quite on the contrary. But what I AM saying is that there is NO such thing as an "original" Blackstar.

I sincerely think that is more misleading than what I posted.

For example, take Apple.... they sell computers with components from a dozen different manufacturers. They actually have some stuff custom built, but others, like RAM or HD, are special deals with OEM companies... they get only grade A++ quality control out of the factory line. But the OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) keeps on producing, for example RAM, and label it with 2 or 3 different "brand names", and sell it at different prices, according to quality. Its the exact same scenario here.

Sorry, I dont want to be a d*ck about this, but there is no such thing as an "original" Blackstar. What you have is a huge country called China, which in fact has no "LED grow factories". It does have huge quantities of assembly lines. You have a massive country that produces all sorts of LEDs, power supplies, enclosures, cables that get shipped in huge quantities to the assembly lines (a.k.a factories). These behave like typical OEM manufacturers. They seeks out wholesalers, draft a deal, a produce for them. In this case, the Guangdong province has a special economical status (hence the open business to the outside world, ebay etc...) and Shenzhen city is the major port that services the province, where all things LED come from.

So what you have then is wholesalers that strike a deal for (X) number of units per year, and ask/require custom builds. Be it specific spectrum ratio's, better/worse lasting PU, better/worse LED optics and angles, custom design on the faceplate, better/worse screws etc etc etc.

You get what you pay for!

There is no question about that at all. I have no doubt my lights will last 3 years and that other's will last 10 years. But there is no patent for the design or build or specifications of a Blackstar unit. There is a misconception about this and people will get ripped off by the likes of Cammie McKenzie a.k.a LEDGirl and her company Hydrogrowled (who even called the police on a complaining customer).

Every single "Blackstar" comes from an assembly line in China. There is no "Blackstar" factory, there are dozens and dozens of them, hundreds!!
People who sell "Blackstar LED" in Europe/USA (just to name a few) just bulk-buy-to-specification from China and re-sell with a margin. Perfectly legit business, and you get
a guarantee that someone is taking the time to sell you a quality unit.

http://www.blackstarled.com/ (notice the star on the faceplate)
http://www.lighthousehydro.com/ (exact same star as above)
http://www.gothamhydroponics.com/
http://www.growledhydro.com/ (They call it "spectra")
http://sonlight.biz/led.html
https://growershouse.com/
http://www.oregongardener.com/ (same star faceplace... coincidence?)

etc etc etc... all of the above sell branded "Blackstars" ... which of them is the "true" Blackstar?

Its as easy as having 5000 bucks to start a website and buy a few units a puke out some fancy pancy color spectrum graphs.
Just head to www.alibaba.com, the major website where wholesalers can seek out so-called chinese "OEM" to strike deals... and type in "Blackstar", and keep on scrolling and scrolling and scrolling to have a sense of what is really happening.

Please correct me if I am wrong, I'm just trying to share the info I have collected from my own experience to aid anyone out there in making a right decision.

Buy from a quality provider and you will have a good quality product. Which is exactly why I would buy an Apple computer nowadays, but when I was 16 I had the time and patience to custom build my own PC's to my own specs at 1/3 of the price. Nowadays I just head down to the shop and buy a premium product at a premium price, and my mind is clear of troubles.

Please take no offense at this. I sincerely hope most people DON'T do what I did, it was a calculated risk, and I am paying the price to fix my "cutting-corners". And if someone actually has, that not everything is lost.

The most important this is that, in the end, weed be grown. :smokeit:
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Groff

Geekazoid
Joined
Aug 4, 2012
Messages
1,985
Reputation
0
Reaction score
1,768
Points
0
All right, let the thread begin!!

First of all, my sincere apologies to the Mods and the forum for "polluting" the other threads. It was never my intention to distract from the main discussion points at hand.

Thank you Red eye c for creating this thread, so than everyone has his/her own place where the most relevant info is sorted out.

For reference, the jury is not in on if my light are duds or if they can actually grow something decent! We will only know in about a months time when I start a new grow.

Anyway, I'll take it from here on and invite everyone who had experience with buying direct from China to chime in. Either with their grow diaries, vendors, problems, solution, ideas, questions etc etc!!

:thumbs:
 

happily

Auto Warrior
Joined
Dec 13, 2012
Messages
327
Reputation
0
Reaction score
16
Points
0
I recently purchased a 135w ufo from ledgrowlightmanufacturer on ebay. Great 2 day arrival to alaska from china. ran 24/7 for a week and new leaves went yellow. Looks like starving for nutes. I've flushed and found my dirt ph runoff is below 5 so I'm working that back up. They're growing and flowering fine(just yellow leaves) I had light very close and 24/7 so I've back that off to give them a chance to heal. I'll update when I know more. still waiting for an answer on 630-660 ratio. I am curious to know what others have experienced with lights and from where purchased
 

Rouxdy

Auto Warrior
Joined
Dec 4, 2012
Messages
54
Reputation
0
Reaction score
57
Points
0
Currently Smoking
Lowryder 2
Good idea for a thread. There's no question in my mind that all these china made units can be found being sold from a source in China. I'm also sure there are a ton of them marketed as being "the one" and they aren't.

In my experience with other electronics, the direct pricing would typically be no more than 20 to 25% less than the typical price in the US. And that would fit right in line with the unit happily got...

The real proof would have to come via dis-assembly, though. Not sure many are going to invest in that kind of research...
 

Red eyed c

Auto Warrior
Joined
Apr 16, 2011
Messages
3,194
Reputation
0
Reaction score
250
Points
0
I recently purchased a 135w ufo from ledgrowlightmanufacturer on ebay. Great 2 day arrival to alaska from china. ran 24/7 for a week and new leaves went yellow. Looks like starving for nutes. I've flushed and found my dirt ph runoff is below 5 so I'm working that back up. They're growing and flowering fine(just yellow leaves) I had light very close and 24/7 so I've back that off to give them a chance to heal. I'll update when I know more. still waiting for an answer on 630-660 ratio. I am curious to know what others have experienced with lights and from where purchased
Hey nice to have your input in this thread mate,and hope they heal well and look forward to hearing how they do :group:
 

Groff

Geekazoid
Joined
Aug 4, 2012
Messages
1,985
Reputation
0
Reaction score
1,768
Points
0
I got mine off ebay too. seller "loongsea.co.ltd" and took a week to arrive (Suthern Europe)

They guy handling sales goes by the name of "Jack" and is super super super fantastic and cool to deal with. He's even sending me replacement LED's, just waiting for him to quote me on prices.

I've been doing ALOT of research on spectrum and possibly why some plants seem to burn. The more I read, the more I am convinced its not the lights fault, 630nm vs 660nm. In theory, it would be the opposite, 660nm has more "burn" potential, but also more chlorophyl potential. 630 is no way near a "dangerous overdose radiation" - but let me collect some more info.

Also, 630nm LED are quite cheaper to produce than 660nm, I have no clue why. But listing upon listing, brand to brand, its a horizontal phenomena. That is why when buying direct form China they almost always have their custom ratio with a predominance of 630. But if you buy and ask for a specific ratio, they will not charge you extra. I suspect if everyone starts doing exactly that, they will wise up on that.

From another forum I found very relevant info that some strains do not play well with LEDs, reason unknown. Others just seem to take everything they can. Guess it goes in the same lines as how much EC you can feed a plant. I recon the ruderalis genetics makes LED and AF a match made in ganja heaven.

Please post as much info as you can, be it final yield, pictures, strain grown etc - would be cool to paint a map of whats going on.

I recently purchased a 135w ufo from ledgrowlightmanufacturer on ebay. Great 2 day arrival to alaska from china. ran 24/7 for a week and new leaves went yellow. Looks like starving for nutes. I've flushed and found my dirt ph runoff is below 5 so I'm working that back up. They're growing and flowering fine(just yellow leaves) I had light very close and 24/7 so I've back that off to give them a chance to heal. I'll update when I know more. still waiting for an answer on 630-660 ratio. I am curious to know what others have experienced with lights and from where purchased

Post some pics! What medium? What nute line? What EC etc?


The real proof would have to come via dis-assembly, though. Not sure many are going to invest in that kind of research...
Naaa... no need to disassemble! I did it because half the panel was fried so I had to get to the internal guts to assess the damage. IT will be 4 to 6 screws to take the top casing out, and just a couple of close up pictures of the fittings, fans and drivers, the way the cable are set etc... will give very good idea to the level of quality of the unit. Give it a shit! Only takes 5 minutes start to finish.

Most newer model even have that as a sales pitch, the quick and easiness of disassembly. There will be no warranty breach.
 
Last edited:

happily

Auto Warrior
Joined
Dec 13, 2012
Messages
327
Reputation
0
Reaction score
16
Points
0
pics are in infirmary......"Help yellowing in veins". The yellow came from the stalk out and followed the veins. jumping from cfls to leds 24/7 and low ph (5 or less at runoff)
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top