Are you looking for LED grow lights to use for your grow space? Not sure which one to pick and what the pros and cons are for each one?
I’ve got a full review of both Mars Hydro and Spider Farmer grow lights, where I’ll discuss the pros and cons of each one and compare them head to head.In the end, I’ll also give a final verdict on which LED grow light is better for you and what factors you should consider when choosing any LED grow light.
Mars Hydro Vs. Spider Farmer Lights: Side-By-Side Comparison
Let’s check the Spider Farmer vs. Mars Hydro lights in terms of light efficiency, the light spectrum they produce, their price and warranty, and how customers feel about them.
When comparing the Spider Farmer vs. Mars Hydro LED grow lights, the Spider Farmer grow light efficiency is much better.
Spider Farmer produces LED grow lights that don’t produce much heat and therefore don’t need cooling fans. Having a fan-less design also makes them very energy efficient.
The use of Samsung LED diodes in Spider Farmer LED grow lights also helps produce higher luminous efficacy, meaning you don’t need to crank up the power as much to get higher light intensity.
Winner: Spider Farmer LED Grow Lights
The next category when comparing Spider Farmer vs. Mars Hydro LED grow lights is if they support full spectrum lighting.
A full spectrum grow light is important because different light wavelengths can stimulate plant growth.
While both grow light brands offer similar LED grow lights with full spectrum lighting, not all Mars Hydro grow lights have them.
Some of the lower wattage-rated budget options from the TS line of Mars Hydro grow lights only have white light, not full spectrum.
Meanwhile, all Spider Farmer LED grow light lines offer full spectrum lighting. The slight edge in this category goes to Spider Farmer.
Winner: Spider Farmer LED Grow Lights
Price and Warranty
This is where Mars Hydro grow lights get their popularity. After all, getting an affordable option is an important factor in indoor gardening.
The cheapest models provide around the same light intensity as similar led grow lights from Spider Farmer but at half the price.
The cheapest Spider Farmer vs. Mars Hydro grow light has a large price gap. The former’s cheapest is $160, while the latter’s cheapest LED grow light is $80.
While the cheaper Mars Hydro LED grow light options may not have the best uniform light coverage or full light spectrum, they are still a great addition to budget grow tents.
Winner: Mars Hydro LED Grow Lights
Mars Hydro and Spider Farmer lights have 4.5/5 star ratings on average on Amazon, with hundreds of reviews verifying those ratings.
Part of the reason for these high ratings is that both companies offer extensive 3-year warranties so if you have any issues, they’ll replace the broken ones with newer versions.
This also contributes to their longer lifespan and can save you a lot of money compared to other grow light companies that offer 1-year warranties.
Mars Hydro Grow Lights: An Overview
Mars Hydro grow lights have been in production since 2009 and currently offer four series of LED grow lights. These are the SP, FC, FC-E, and Mars Hydro TS series.
The different lights have specific and unique features for different situations.
For example, the TS series is known for being a great budget option, while the SP series is the top-of-the-line series with all the advanced features.
The TS line also has a daisy chain feature so that you can use multiple lights in unison for larger setups.
Mars Hydro grow lights are best known for the value for money that they provide compared to other grow lights. They offer 90-95 percent of the functionality for half the cost.These lights can also come as part of the Mars Hydro grow tent kit, which has all the tools you need to set up your first grow tent.
- Great value for money, especially in the TS series of LED grow lights
- 3-year manufacturer’s warranty
- High efficiency ratings
- Highly rated by many customers
- Don’t use brand-name LEDs for the grow lights
- Doesn’t have full-spectrum lighting
Spider Farmer Grow Lights: An Overview
Spider Farmer grow lights are another great option if you’re looking for LED lights for growing plants. Spider Farmer produces three series of grow lights.
These =are the Spider Farmer SF series, the Spider Farmer SE series, and the Veg Light series. Each has a different price point and offers varying features.
For example, the SF series is priced a bit lower but is a good grow light line, but the SE series has all the features and is more energy efficient while being a bit more expensive.
All lines from Spider Farmer have the ability to daisy chain their lights together for use in larger home-growing setups.
Spider Farmer lights are well known for their uniform light coverage and full spectrum lighting that helps plants grow properly.Similar to Mars Hydro, Spider Farmer also has grow tents and tent kits where the light is included for easy setup, especially if you’re just a beginner.
- Supports multiple color temperatures and full spectrum light
- Uses high output and energy-efficient LED grow lights
- Uses high-quality Samsung diodes in their LED grow lights
- Allows for maximum yields in indoor growing
- On the expensive side of LED grow lights
Factors to Consider When Choosing Grow Lights
There are a few factors to consider when you choose grow lights for your indoor growing grow tent.
These include the price, warranty, customer support, efficiency, uniform coverage area, and cooling fans.
While you do get what you pay for, there is such a thing as overkill. Getting a grow light that’s too big for your indoor growing grow tents can overexpose the indoor plants.
For example, when growing cannabis plants, exposing them to too much light intensity can cause the cannabis plant to have leaf burn and other health risks.
You should choose your grow light based on the tent size you have and how many plants you’re growing in it.
Additionally, you should first choose based on what your plants need, which is the appropriate amount of light.
Whether you need the extra features that more expensive lights offer depends on you. It can be worth the extra money especially if your cannabis plant grows much healthier.
The next consideration you’ll want to make is the warranty of the grow lights. Some companies offer no warranty, while others, like Mars Hydro, offer 3-year warranties.
Find a good balance between a company that sells the product up front for cheaper and one that has an extensive warranty policy.
What you don’t want to happen is a light malfunctioning during the flowering stage and ruining the whole process.
DOUBLE CHECK: If you bought your grow light as a part of grow kits, you should double-check if the warranty on the box applies to the light itself.
Part of the warranty experience is how fast customer support responds and how helpful they are. Thankfully, both Mars Hydro and Spider Farmer have great customer support.
Mars Hydro has a slight advantage over Spider Farmer because they have a 30-day money-back guarantee and replacement if your Mars Hydro lights don’t live up to your expectations.
Energy Efficiency Rating
Energy efficiency is one of the factors becoming more important in indoor growing. If your grow light produces a lot of heat, it may hurt the development of your cannabis plant.
Older grow lights fall short compared to newer versions that have a fan-less design. The newer LED grow lights can have no fans because they only generate minimal heat during operation.
Another area where old grow lights fall short is how much it will pump up your electricity bill. Newer LED versions produce the same light while using less electricity.
Part of energy efficiency is getting the correct size and wattage of lights for the size of your tent and the plants you’re growing. A 4×4 tent is a perfect size for growing cannabis plants.
Uniform Light Coverage Area
Having uniform light coverage in your grow tent is important to make sure all the plants have the same excellent yield. You want to avoid only one plant having better yields.
Too much light on one of the plants in an uneven flowering coverage will also cause them to have leaf burn and dry up, harming the plant’s health.
You’ll want uniform light distribution for full flowering coverage across all the plants. While part of this includes having a reflective inner lining, the grow light is important too.
Having advanced diodes like ultraviolet diodes, Osram diodes, Bridgelux diodes, and Samsung diodes also helps to distribute light evenly through software control.
PRO TIP: When setting up a grow tent for cannabis plants, you should choose one that focuses on distributing light evenly for the best results.
Old-school grow lights generate a lot of heat when operational. This means you’ll need an air conditioning unit or multiple fans to keep your plants at the right temperatures.
Meanwhile, LED grow lights only give off minimal heat that don’t need cooling fans to stay at acceptable temperatures.
However, this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have intake, circulation, and exhaust fans in your tent. These are still important – fans are just no longer necessary on the lights themselves.
I fully recommend going for LED Spider Farmer lights or Mars Hydro lights, as they don’t give off too much heat for the light spectrum and energy they emit.
Final Verdict: Which Brand is Better?
Now we come to the final verdict to decide which brand is better for your next grow light: Mars Hydro lights or Spider Farmer lights.
Choose Mars Hydro If…
- You’re looking for an affordable option
- You don’t care about having name-brand diodes and LEDs
- Your grow tent is smaller and doesn’t need larger lights
- A wide light spectrum isn’t crucial to the plants in your grow space
Choose Spider Farmer If…
- You’re willing to spend a bit more to get better quality
- Having advanced Samsung diodes is appealing
- The plants you grow need wide-spectrum light
- Maximum efficiency is your priority
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
After reading the head-to-head comparison between the Mars Hydro vs. Spider Farmer lights, you may still have some questions related to them.
I’ve answered the most commonly asked questions below.
Is Spider Farmer Superior to Mars Hydro?
In general, the comparable Spider Farmer product will be better when it comes to light spectrum and efficiency compared to Mars Hydro lights.
This is because they use more advanced diodes, Well drivers, and some models use the Inventronics driver, which is more power efficient.
However, the Mars Hydro grow lights have performance that is a bit lower compared to the Spider Farmer products while being much cheaper.
Therefore, you should ask yourself whether the name-brand drivers and diodes are worth the extra cost.
Where are Spider Farmer Lights Manufactured?
While they’re headquartered in Alhambra, California, the company is actually from China. Spider Farmer produces their lights in China, too.
However, the sourcing for the diodes and drivers comes from where the name brands manufacture their parts.
For example, on models that use Samsung diodes, some of the parts might be made in South Korea. However, the final assembly still happens in China.
Overall build and quality control isn’t something you should be worried about because they all go through quality checks in the USA headquarters before being sold.
Is ViparSpectra Better Than Spider Farmer?
ViparSpectra is another brand that sells LED lights. They offer both budget-oriented and pro-level grow light options, just like Spider Farmer.
They also offer similar LED grow lights when it comes to using Samsung diodes for their lights. They’re slightly cheaper, but not by much.
They’re a great option if you can get them at a discount when Spider Farmer doesn’t offer a discount because they use similar diodes and drivers.
The general rule for choosing between the Mars Hydro and Spider Farmer grow lights is budget and how much extra features are worth to you.
If you want the best bang for your buck and don’t need name-brand diodes, go for Mars Hydro.
If you want the best light spectrum coverage area and energy efficiency, go for Spider Farmer.