View Full Version : best ballast for radiums and helios 20 k ?

03-14-2009, 10:27 PM
hello all i am wanting to buy some lumenarcs and i want radiums or helios . which is the best ballast to use with those bulbs, and do i need to overdrive them with a hqi ballast. suggestions?

03-15-2009, 08:50 AM
Magnetics will give you the best light output (PAR) but the poorest color rendition. Electronics will give you the best color rendition and longest lamp life (IE lumnen maintanance.) Pure Digital ballasts are electronic but offer better control over the line current and lamp current therefore your lamp maintain it's output longer.

You will find that some love Magnetic because they over-drive the lamp, and can be repaired by the user. Others love Electronic and/or digital because of their color rendition and longer lamp life.

I personally think electronic or digital are the way to go but that is because I don't have the money to replace lamps every 8 months and pay extra on my utility bill for a little extra PAR. My opinion on the matter is if you are thinking about going with 250W HQI magnetic ballasts then just put down the coin for 400W with digital ballasts. Same thing goes for 400s' if that extra light is that important don't over drive the lamp just jump up to 1000W lamps and call it good.

Lumnatek, and Galaxy are good digital ballasts. Icecap is a good electronic. I used to reccomend Coralvue but after a couple club members got several bad ballasts from them I wouldn't touch them. Finally, If you need to have a HQI ballast Blue wave, Aquamedic reflex (made in the USA), and PFO ballasts are good. Get them while you can it will be illegal (not to sell) to make magnetic ballasts after 1.1.10.

03-15-2009, 09:27 AM
I have both mag and digital ballasts driving the same brand bulb. The digi gives a much whiter, flickering color than the mag. I use a PFO dual mag ballast and a Lumentek digi in 400 watt flavor with Reeflux 12K.