Top 10+ Best Grow Light Ballasts of 2020: Reviews, Buyer’s Guide & FAQs

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Your grow light ballast is a crucial thing for a proper light setup. These ballasts ensures proper electric flow and settings for desired watt operation, which is quite essential for various stages of growth of your plants. And, now, with improved technology, these ballasts are powerful, efficient, and a lot more useful. If you still have your old electric ballasts for your grow light, then it’s probably high time that you bring home the advanced ones.

And, well, if you are new to these little terrific electronic components, then you must know that these electric ballasts are a staple when your grow setup is equipped with any HID grow light. HID bulbs need external electrical components to help with power draw and functioning without damage by correcting electric flow and also watt operation. Your HPS light, MH light, or CHM bulbs, or any HID bulb, need this cute little friend and specifically the advanced ones we have down below.

We have compiled a list of best grow light ballast for you to get your hands on the best and not to look for them here and there. These ballasts are picked carefully, keeping everything in mind from use to efficiency, along with an emphasis to bring them in the budget for you. So, without further delay, let’s get to the products and into their details.

The Best Grow Light Ballasts of 2020 – Review

1. Hydrofarm SGO100C Convertible Ballast, 1000W

  • Type:- Convertible Ballast
  • Watts operation:- 1000 Watts
  • Weight:- 32 Pounds
  • Warranty:- Manufacturer’s warranty

Hydrofarm SGO100C ballast is a convertible ballast for the single-ended bulb grow system. 

The ballast is a convertible one with a patented design, which assures its efficiency. The patented design of the ballast allows electrical contact only when a seal in achieved in connection, which ensures safety.

The design of the ballast is also water-resistant, which keeps it safe from spray, mist, and humidity of your grow setup. The best part is the high-build quality of the ballast, which features a steel enclosure, which is vented for circulation and powder coated to stand against the environment of the grow setup. It also has a practical design, which allows it to hang and even to place it on surfaces.

The ballast is equipped with steel handles, which are removable for convenience. It also has a cord retainer for easy and safe storing of the cord. The ballast weighs 32 pounds approximately and is CSA certified, and users can also claim manufacturer’s warranty through customer support. Also, the ballast runs on 120/240V dual receptacles and comes with a 120V cord.

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Pros
  • Efficient patented design
  • Waterproof design with ventilation and powder coating
  • CSA certified and high-quality build

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Cons
  • Only for single-ended bulbs

2. Quantum 1000W Digital Ballast, 120/240V Dimmable Ballast

  • Type:- Dimmable Ballast
  • Watts operation:- 1000 Watts
  • Weight:- 7.7 Pounds
  • Warranty:- Manufacturer’s warranty

Another from HydroFarm, Quantum digital ballast is a dimmable ballast available in 400 watts, 600 watts, and 1000 watts variants. We are reviewing here the 1000 watt variant for your increasing need in your grow setup. Dimmable ballast makes it ideal for the user to dim the settings to achieve the desired output without going for a lower wattage ballast. It can be set at 50%, 75%, and 100% settings for different output requirements. 

The ballast also accepts both 120V and 240V, which avoids the fuss of connection, which the majority of owners face. Other features of the ballast include high lumen output and resin sealed circuit board, which keeps the board safe from humidity. It is also low noise-making, has cooler operation than other ballasts, and also operates on a generator. The ballast is sleek in shape and offers an easy setting with a turnable knob. It weighs only a little over 7 pounds and comes with a manufacturer’s warranty.

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Pros
  • Digital dimmable ballast with three dimmable settings
  • Available in various wattage variants
  • Resin sealed circuit board
  • Works with both MH and HPS bulbs
  • Low noise making and has a cooler operation

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Cons
  • Lacks quality control

3. HYDROFARM Xtrasun 1000W Digital Ballast, 120-240V Dimmable

  • Type:- Digital dimmable ballast
  • Watts operation:- 1000 Watts
  • Weight:- 7.8 Pounds
  • Warranty:- Manufacturer’s warranty

The third ballast on the list from the Hydrofarm is the unique looking Xtrasun 1000W digital ballast. The chic-looking blue ballast has a vented case design for effective cool operation along with dual fans to add to it. The build is sleek to fit your clumsy grow spaces and for easy mounting. The ballast is dimmable with four settings and thoughtfully includes ignition delay of a few seconds to avoid power spikes and circuit overloads.

The cool operation and efficient build of the ballast lowers your electricity bill against the high power consuming old ballasts. The Xtrasun accepts 120 and 240V and comes with user safety diagnostics codes. It has a size dimension of 9.65 x 4.9 x 2.3 and weighs only 2.9 lbs. It also comes with a manufacturer’s warranty.

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Pros
  • Digital dimmable ballast for custom lighting
  • Vented case design with dual fan for cool operation
  • Ignition delay to avoid power spikes and circuit overloads

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Cons
  • None

4. 1000W B-Lite Electronic Dimmable Ballast MH/HPS (120/240V) Grow Light Ballast

  • Type:- Electronic Dimmable Ballast
  • Watts operation:- 1000 Watts
  • Weight:- Unavailable
  • Warranty:- Manufacturer’s warranty

Another dimmable electronic ballast on the list is from B-Lite. It is dimmable up to three settings and lights bulbs of 400 watts, 600 watts, and 1000 watts. The best part is that it efficiently runs both MH and HPS bulbs, which gives users the liberty to use either of them with the ballast.

The ballast features two functions for safety and precaution. The safety features are soft start technology and smart ignition. The smart ignition protects the lamp from circuit overload or power spikes. The soft-start features start the bulb slowly and softly for safety and longer life of the bulb. The body of the ballast is ventilated and has four-way heat dissipation.

The ballast is also equipped with cooling fans, standard socket and accepts 120/240V. The operation is trust-worthy with a 99% power factor.

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Pros
  • Sleek ventilated body with the cooling fan
  • Safety features like smart ignition and soft-start
  • Power factor at 99%

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Cons
  • None

5. TOPHORT 1000W Digital Dimmable Electronic Ballast for HPS MH Grow Light Bulb Lamp Blue

  • Type:- Dimmable electronic ballast
  • Watts operation:-1000 Watts
  • Weight:- 7.5 Pounds
  • Warranty:- 3 years manufacturer’s warranty

Tophort 1000 watts digital dimmable electronic ballast is a feature-rich offering from Tophort. The ballast is sleek yet powerful with 1000 watts of operation, microprocessor controlled with driver’s efficiency of more than 97%, and power factor of 99%. The ballast uses less power and provides higher performance with bright output. It has four dimmable settings with 50% output, 75% output, 100% output, and also super lumen.

The features of the ballast include low-noise and cool operation, which keeps your grow environment quiet and pleasant for your plants. The safety features of the ballast are numerous. The ballast is tuned for minimal total harmonic distortion (THD%). It also has replaceable outset fuse by input terminal for short circuit protection and even automatic power shut off for the same and lamp protection.

The best part is the compatibility of the ballast with both HPS and MH bulbs. It comes with an eight feet long 120V cable along with 3-years of manufacturer’s warranty.

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Pros
  • Safe and convenient
  • Low noise and cool operation
  • Equipped with short circuit, power surge, ignition failure, and overheat protection

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Cons
  • Expensive

6. Phantom PHB2010 II 1000W Digital Ballast, Black

  • Type:- Dimmable digital ballast
  • Watts operation:- 1000 Watts
  • Weight:- 12.04 Pounds
  • Warranty:- Manufacturer’s warranty

Phantom PHB2010 II is a 1000 W digital dimmable ballast for single-ended grow bulbs. The dimmable ballast has four settings at 60%, 75%, 100%, and super boost mode. The new feature of the ballast, which is not seen in its peers, is the LED indicator lights, which tells you on which setting, the ballast is running. 

The Phantom ballast is equipped with an integrated microprocessor for smooth operation. It is also programmed with hot-restrike programming, which protects your bulbs in events of unexpected turning off of the ballast. The ballast is energy efficient, silent in operation, and ideal for grow room setup. However, it is heavy, which is a downside. The body is well ventilated and ideal for installation. It accepts 120-240V and has standard input.

Pros
  • Dimmable ballast with four settings and LED indicator
  • Hot-restrike programmed for lamp protection
  • Energy-efficient and silent in operation

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Cons
  • Designed to operate only on single-ended bulbs

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7. GreenHouser UL Listed 1000w Premium Dimmable Digital Ballast

  • Type:- Dimmable digital ballast
  • Watts operation:- 1000 watts
  • Weight:- Unavail
  • Warranty:- 14 pounds

From grow equipment experts, GreenHouser, we have 1000 watts premium dimmable digital ballast for indoor hydroponic setup. The ballast is dimmable with four settings for custom lighting in your grow area. The dimmable settings can be set up at 600 watts, 750 watts, 1000 watts, and also at 1150 watts.

The use of the ballast is ideal with HPS and MH grow bulbs, which is an advantage. The ballast is also equipped with several safety features to keep your grow environment, grow equipment, and grow bulbs protected. It has short and open circuit protection, ignition failure protection, and thermal protection.

The build of the ballast is heavy with 14 pounds of weight but has heatsinks on three sides to keep the operating temperature in check. The ballast accepts 120-240V and comes with a 120V power cord.

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Pros
  • Dimmable ballast with four settings
  • Multiple safety features
  • The heatsink on three sides for controlled operating temperature

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Cons
  • Heavy

8. VIVOSUN 1000 watt Dimmable Digital Ballast for HPS MH Grow Light

  • Type:- Digital dimmable ballast
  • Watts:- 1000 Watts
  • Weight:- 8 Pounds
  • Warranty:- 3-year manufacturer’s warranty

Vivosun is a feature-full ballast with 1000 watts of operation. The ballast is compatible with HPS, and MH bulbs for various grow requirements. The ballast is dimmable with four levels that are 650 watts, 750 watts, 1000 watts, and also super lumen with 110% output. The build of the ballast is sleek with heatsinks on three sides, and it is friendly to install.

The ballast has multiple safety features to keep operations safe and lamps protected. It has open and short circuit protection under input terminal/internal heat and radiofrequency. It also has a soft-start to keep your lights working for really long. This way, you get protection against overheating, short circuit, ignition failure, and extended lamp protection. The ballast also comes with eight feet long power cord of 120V and also accepts 240V and also comes with four rubber feet for ground installation.

Also, the unparalleled performance of this ballast is accompanied by a 3-year manufacturer’s warranty along with customer support.

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Pros
  • Extended warranty and customer support
  • Efficient dimmable ballast with HPS and MH bulb compatibility
  • System of the ballast includes security against short circuit, overheating, ignition failure, and a lot more
  • Dimmable with four levels

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Cons
  • Heavy
  • Expensive

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) regarding the best grow light Ballasts of 2020

1. What does a grow light ballast do?

A ballast controls the current that flows into a bulb. It acts as a mediator between high voltage current and bulb, which is prone to surge damage. The ballast also allows the bulbs to work on precise watts to control the output.

2. Do LED tubes need a ballast?

No, LED tubes need no ballast, and likewise, LED grow light also doesn’t require a ballast.

3. Can you run a 1000 watt bulb in a 600-watt ballast?

A 1000 watt bulb will be able to run with a 600 watts ballasts as the starting voltage requirement remains the same. However, the 600-watt ballast will not be able to power 1000 watts bulb to its capacity and will result in underperformance and also loss of color and temperature for the growth of your plants.

4. What is the best ballast for growing?

There are several ballasts available in the market for your growing requirements. And you can discover the best amongst them in our article above with detailed reviews of the same.

5. Can I put two lights on one ballast?

You can run lights by the capacity of the ballast. E.g., you can run one 1000 watts bulb on a 1000 watts ballast and cannot add more. You can opt for two ballast in one for multiple operations or buy separate ones for the length of your grow area. There are various ways listed to use single ballast for various bulbs with different wattage bulbs for using a splitter and more, but according to us, all these methods are ineffective, and you do not want to lose the health of your plants.

6. Can you run hid without a ballast?

You can certainly run an HID bulb without a ballast; however, it won’t be advised if you are growing with those HIDs. Without the use of ballast the current flowing through the bulb will be uneven and the output, which will affect the growth of your plants. Also, you won’t have controls in your hands for various growing stages of your plants.

The Cumulation:-

So, this was the list of best modern ballast for the best lighting condition in your grow area. The list comprises of the best picks, and you will find one best suited for your needs. The list is varied and has ballast ideal for various requirements with the best performance and higher output. So, get one or more for your needs and sit back and relax as they will take care of your growth with optimum light settings.