Both lights can be equally effective if used correctly, but figuring out how to use them correctly can be a challenge.
LED (Light Emitting Diode) lights are extremely energy efficient and cost effective lights, but have only recently begun gaining popularity among home and commercial growers.
Compared with HPS lighting, LED lighting requires a different form of environmental control. Plants under LED need higher temperatures and higher humidity to produce the same as they would under traditional HPS lighting.
However due to their unique design, LEDs are highly efficient and cost-effective lights that can produce some great results.
LED lights pull less watts-per-square-foot and cover less square feet per fixture which means you'll need more lights for less plants when comparing to HPS. Building an LED grow can also be exponentially more costly upfront due to the technology behind it and the manufacturing costs that set a high price tag on LEDs.
HPS (High pressure Sodium) lights are the go-to choice for most growers today. HPS lights produce a high wattage and light spectrum that is ideal for flowering plants.
They cover a larger area per square foot compared to LEDs as well, which makes them more cost effective when it comes to using less lights and getting the most coverage possible.
HPS lights can also be up to 1/5 the cost of LED lights when compared in a similar room set up even with more expensive brands. If you're looking for the best light on cost alone, HPS lights are hard to beat.
The main thing to think about when choosing your light is your end goal. Are you trying to have a lower power draw long-term and a higher initial investment or are you trying to see an ROI faster with less initial investment?
Both LED and HPS lights are great, but it is time to start thinking of them as the same and see them for what they really are. LEDs are great lights that are going to cost a more up front but last a long time. HPS lights are cheap and effective, but not as long lasting.