Best Par Light Meter & Why You Should Have One

A PAR meter can be the best purchase you make for your indoor garden. Many who grow without a PAR meter for their led lights think that simply blasting their plants with tons of light will be beneficial. Focusing on light intensity alone will not give you the results that could be possible. You must also use a PAR light meter to track the color of light.

best PAR light meterPlants, including cannabis, flowers, and vegetables all require a specific spectrum of colored light. The only way to know if your plants are getting the right color is by using a PAR light meter. PAR refers to colored wavelengths of light between 400nm and 700nm on the light spectrum.

What a PAR meter does is calculates the proper PAR value from led grow lights so you can adjust the light specifically to its growth stage. In short, a light meter for plants.

Because plants thrive on light and light spectrum, a PAR light meter can tell you exactly what light to give your plant at what time. Thus, having a PAR meter can enhance your plants growing indoors by maximizing beneficial lights that your plants receive.

Not sure what Photosynthetically Active Radiation (PAR) light meter for LED grow lights to use? Below are reviews of the best PAR light meters. Finding the best PAR meter will help your plants thrive under perfect conditions for growing indoors.

Hydrofarm LGBQM Quantum PAR Meter

The Hydrofarm Quantum PAR Meter has features like its quantum sensor allowing for accurate LED light meter readings. This PAR meter can measure PAR up to 10,000umol/s which is more than enough in testing for proper PAR.

At its price point, it is a “best light meter” in its class. Known for accurate readings as well as some extra bells and whistles. It offers data logging to keep track of light color, a standard USB cable and uses a constant linear curve to achieve high-accuracy results compared to a traditional Gaussian curve.

Extremely easy to calibrate, this light meter also has a low-battery indicator and is priced to sell. Functionality with this lower-priced model is right where it needs to be. It will give you the functionality you need to grow big buds.

It is lightweight and functional at 7.7 ounces and comes with an LR44 battery that keeps it charged for hours on end and backed with a limited 1-year manufacturer warranty.

Last update on 2019-11-10 at 08:18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Apogee MQ 500 Light Meter With Telescopic Wand

This is the PAR light meter for those that want perfection. Perfection does come with a price tag, but if money is not an issue and you want to grow the biggest buds, then check it out.

The MQ-500 by Apogee comes with a handheld meter for spot metering the colored PAR light spectrum in tight areas around your grow room. Easy to adjust and move around your plants from the canopy to the trunks, so you can tell what colors dissipate and where the strongest PAR is.

The sensor uses a blue enhanced photodiode made from silicon along with optical filters. In other words, it is well engineered for the job it is intended to do. Highly accurate results are what happens when using this light meter. The spectrum range is between 389 to 692 nm with a 180-degree view to pull in more PAR lighting.  The sensor is also waterproof which can be beneficial after feeding your plants as to not break due to moisture.

This PAR light meter is so good that it is backed by a 4-year warranty and is made in the USA. It works very well and is one of the best PAR meters available for LED lights.

Last update on 2019-11-10 at 08:18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Sun System PAR Meter w/ Remote Sensor

The Sun System PAR light meter is a mid-range contender for the best PAR meter. Still fairly pricey it delivers fairly accurate results and works great with LED light measurements.

Super simple to use when measuring photosynthetically active radiation. Made by an LED grow light manufacturer is reassuring as it is designed to work with Sun System LED grow lights or another LED light on the market.

PAR light meterThe PAR light comes with 1 lithium-ion battery and weighs roughly 7 ounces. Lightweight and easy to understand dashboard gives this meter a glowing review. The sensor, however, is not waterproof so be careful when feeding your plants as you might need to check the light color before or sometime after you water.

The sensor is good for spot-checking color temps in your grow tent as it is nimble enough and portable to move it to where you want it. Easy to measure amounts of PAR.

The biggest issues with this light seem to be the customer service, but if you do have an issue you can use Amazon for returns most of the time. We had no trouble with this light.

We got what we were supposed to and it worked great for measuring light. This is a good PAR meter for the measure of standard light sources.

Last update on 2019-11-10 at 08:18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Apogee MQ-200 PAR Quantum Separate Sensor with Handheld Meter

Designed specifically for measuring the light of hydroponic gardens, this PAR meter does exactly that: Measures the PAR accurately and fast. It does a great job with light measurements of both colored and white LED grow lights as well as pressure sodium and incandescent lights. No matter your light sources, it is also the most affordable meter for light on our list.

A professional light meter at a beginner’s price tag. The Apogee MQ-200 is aptly used with greenhouses, hydroponics or DWC systems and perfect for hobbyists who enjoy growing plants indoors. It has a high upper range of up to 410 to 655nm so it can even measure metal halide high pressure lights, led lights or direct sunlight for example.

Auditing your light levels is very easy with this exposure meter.  It comes with a 4-year warranty, an LCD display that is easy to read and a 180-degree field of view so it gives great results. PAR light meters tend to be more expensive, but are worth every penny for the results you get with plants. Finding the sweet spots for when perfect spectrum is showing makes all the difference and the MQ-200 delivers.

Last update on 2019-11-10 at 08:18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Final Word About The Best PAR Light Meters

You may be tempted when searching for PAR meters to purchase a cheap model. If you are searching on Amazon, for example, don’t be fooled by cheaper models that look like PAR meters but do anything but measure PAR. It’s all in the details.

No matter your light sources, if you are an indoor gardener looking for the best results, a PAR light meter might be the thing that gets you there. Data is what drives a successful indoor garden and by adding a PAR meter to the mix you are enhancing your garden by knowing exactly what color light is hitting your plant and thus growing them into large and beautiful specimens. Hopefully, you can see the importance of color temperature as it relates to plants.

Optimizing environmental light levels can only enhance your growing process for plants. A good color meter is a must!

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