An In-depth Into What Ceramic Metal Halide Is All About

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Last Updated on March 6, 2022

One excellent type of high intensity discharge (HID) grow light that can do great works on your indoor plant is ceramic metal halide. Ceramic metal halide is also regarded as light emitting ceramic (LEC) and they are one type of HID lightening that is new in the market.

As the indoor growing industry keeps evolving, there have been different competition among growers. Now, staying updated when it comes to the latest lighting technology is a good way to maintain a good edge over your garden endeavor. Ceramic metal halide can offer great benefits to your garden with only a few downsides to using them.

In this article, we will be bringing light to the things you need to know about ceramic metal halide. So, if you’re keen on getting to know more about ceramic metal halide, you’ve come to the right place. Now, let’s delve in for some good information on this.

What Exactly Is Ceramic Metal Halide Grow Lights?

Ceramic metal halide is typically a variation and a better version of metal halide (MH). The major difference between MH and CMH is the ‘C’ ceramic in the CMH. A ceramic arch tube that is similar to those used in HPS lamps is used in the CMH brand compared to the quartz used in traditional MH lamps.

So, the arc tube material in CMH is composed of ceramic material and this material is similar to what is used for HPS lamps. The material is more stable compared to the quartz glass used in MH lamps.

Additionally, the material is able to tolerate higher temperatures more and it gives more resistance to the aggressive salts. Because a higher temperature is used inside the arc tube, the color stability, efficiency, as well as overall light maintenance are adequately improved.

This ceramic arc tube operates at higher pressure compared to quartz glass tubes. Now, this allows manufacturers to generate a more accurate variation on the spectrum compared to previous technologies.

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Benefits Of Using Ceramic Metal Halide

Below is the advantage you stand to gain using ceramic metal halide grow light for your indoor plants:

·         Durability

When you use ceramic metal halide, you enjoy long lasting use. This is because CMH arc tubes tend to be more resistant to wear and tear or breakdown. Hence, they tend to last longer compared to HPS and MH lamps.

Ceramic metal halide lamps can last up to 24,000 hours or more and they can still maintain at least 80% of their original intensity at the 20,000-hour mark. Therefore, this beats the regular 10,000-hour replacement rule for metal halide and high pressure sodium bulbs.

·         Offers A Balanced Spectrum

Ceramic metal can offer you a more balanced spectrum. CM is also preferable when it comes to turning your electricity into usable light.

Offers A Balanced Spectrum

So, when we compare CM to MH and HSP lights, MH and HSP tend to waste a lot of energy just so they can generate light at positions or ranges that may not even be used efficiently by your plants. Ceramic metal halide corrects this by offering more efficiency in PAR compared to HSP or MH bulbs. Therefore, this makes them a more preferable single light solution.

·         Offers More Color Rendering Index

Ceramic metal halide also offers a more natural color rendering index (CRI). The color rendering index of a grow light signifies how an object appears to the eyes of humans and how well subtle variations in color shades are shown. So, when CRI is high, it tends to make things look more realistic.

The rating of the color rendering index is around 80 to 96 CR. When we compare this to the sun’s CRI, the sun tends to be rated 100 CRI.

So, this generally implies that the color rendering index allows you to see the real color of your plants without making your grow room look purple, yellow, or blue.

·         Ultra Violet Radiation

Ultraviolet rays are good for plants in a safe dose. UV rays at appropriate ranges and intensities are beneficial for plant’s growth and development.

CMH lights offer UV rays to our plants in a safe dose. Ceramic metal halides provide our plants with UV-A, UV-B, and UV-C light. However, UV-C lights are not safe to the human eye. Hence, most commercial growers make use of glass filters to block the UV-C output while leaving UV-A and UV-B untouched.

ALPHAPAR 315W CMH CDM Ceramic Metal Halide Grow Light Kit

Drawback Of Using CMH

Even though CMH offers great benefits to our growing plants, there are still some downsides to them. They are:

  1. Thermal Output

The heat generated by CMH is usually high in the infrared portion of the spectrum. This is over 700 nm and this makes CMH generate a lot of heat. Notwithstanding, this is still less compared to 400 watts of other types of HID bulbs.

  1. Offers Weaker Flowering Light Stage Compared To HPS

HPS lights are still one of the best when it comes to providing lights for your flowering plants. The reason being that HPS bulbs generate more light in the red spectrum compared to CMH.

  1. Initial Investment

The initial cost is another drawback to using CMH grow lights. For instance, purchasing a high-quality 400 watt HPS or MH grow light kit that includes a ballast, reflector, and bulb can cost about 200 dollars. On the other hand, when you initially invest in a complete kit of 31 watt CMH grow light, it can cost around 500 dollars. But when you look at it from the angle of saving energy, CMH lights will still save you more energy.

Ceramic Metal Halide Spectrum

CMH offers a more complete PAR spectrum in a single grow light compared to other HID bulbs such as MH and HSP lights.

Ceramic Metal Halide Spectrum

However, you can still pair them up with HPS for an extra boost on the red spectrum and this will benefit your flowering crops in a great way.

Final Say

As we can see, ceramic metal halides are great to be used for our indoor growing needs. If you end up going for CMH for your plants, you can be rest assured of supplying good light for your plant’s needs.


Which ceramic metal halide for veg cycle?

Ceramic metal halide for veg is a type of light that is great to be used for the vegetative stage of a plant.

Ceramic metal halide which color for growing?

Ceramic metal halide offers a different color spectrum for growing plants.

What is ceramic metal halide?

Ceramic halide is a type of HID light that has only a slight variation to MH and is a better version of metal halide.

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