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Revolution DEva – New and Badass!

There was a time when the only consideration in choosing a HPS (High Pressure Sodium) Light was the price. There was little to choose between different lamps, ballasts or even the reflectors. Since that time, 10 or 20 years or so ago, a lot has happened. For example,  LED grow lights have “come of age” and some can now bear comparison with an equivalent wattage HID grow light. It seemed that the world of HPS-based grow lights had ground to a halt, with pretty much the only innovation in the last few years being the introduction of Digital Ballasts.

Revolution take HPS technology one step further

Then 400 Volt systems emerged onto the market from the likes of Gavita and Dimlux, and along with Double Ended lamps, they pushed the envelope of what could be achieved using the traditional, proven HPS technology. After that, things in the HPS world flatted-off again somewhat. However, a new grow light has recently hit the UK, and we at One Stop are highly impressed with it. Let’s give it a review:

Side Angle of Revolution DEva 1000W

Called the Revolution DEva, this 1000 Watt 400 Volt DE system provides a perfect solution for those growers who need the ultimate in yield per watt and reliability. The unit contains the Ushio lamp, German Miro reflector and ballast. The case includes a control/connection panel at the rear:

Revolution DEva Panel

As a standalone unit, this panel allows the user to set the wattage to 600W, 750W, 1000W  and 1150W. The panel also includes a com link connection which allows up to 512 units to be connected together and have them all controlled by a Revolution RLC-1 controller (more on this later):

Controller for up to 512 Revolution DEvas

The Revolution DEva is designed from the ground up to be  the ultimate 1000 Watt grow light. It features avionics grade capacitors which are rated for 36 years of use. Avionics components are the most reliable that can be obtained and are used in applications where failure could be tragic, or reliability is key. At 30’000 feet, there is no room for failure, end everything needs to work, all the time. The components inside are also epoxy-coated to make them be humidity resistant. The reliability of the Revolution DEva is probably at the pinnacle of what can be achieved with an HPS grow light.

The ballast in the unit is surge protected, and produces a low-frequency square wave to drive the very highly respected Double-Ended (DE) Ushio 1000 watt lamp. The low-frequency square wave virtually eliminates any chance of the unit producing radio frequency (RF) interference or having acoustic resonance (noise) issues. The ballast starts the lamp with a computer-controlled ultra low start-up surge. The unit is also surprisingly low weight for an integrated grow light fixture with such a great build quality.

Ushio lamps are up there with the best, kicking out a great spectrum and intensity. The DEva drives it maintaining a steady arc tube temperature which gives excellent colour rendering and improves lamp longevity. Here are Spectrum Graphs from the Ushio Pro Plus 400V 1000W DE HPS lamp being driven at the 4 different Wattages. Please note that the grey lines in the graphs below represent the “McCree Curve”, which gives a relative indication of how efficiently a plant uses the different colours in the light spectrum to photosynthesise with:

Revolution2 DEva Ushio Spectrum Output at 600W
Revolution2 DEva Ushio Spectrum Output at 600 Watts
Revolution2 DEva Ushio Spectrum Output at 750 Watts
Revolution2 DEva Ushio Spectrum Output at 750 Watts
Revolution2 DEva Ushio Spectrum Output at 1000 Watts
Revolution2 DEva Ushio Spectrum Output at 1000 Watts
Revolution2 DEva Ushio Spectrum Output at 1150 Watts
Revolution2 DEva Ushio Spectrum Output at 1150 Watts

The reflector in the Revolution DEva puts all that light to good use, concentrating it down into a good footprint. In fact, the light is so intense and so well concentrated that we recommend about 800mm (3 feet) is kept between the tops of the plants and the bottom of the lamp.

How the Revolution DEva Tests

We tested the light intensity of the Revolution DEva at various heights in order to find the most suitable height to hang it at. The distance was measured from the bottom of the actual lamp down to the top of the quantum sensor of our Li-Cor Quantum PAR meter. We chose a 1.5 x 1.5 metre size space for finding the best height. Light intensity was checked directly underneath it, and also recorded out to the side, front and corner of the 1.5m square space. The results were as follows:

Revolution DEva 1000 watt light height intensity test

As you can see, to achieve a nice brightness of around 800 to 1000μmols, a height of around 800mm to 900mm is about right. Also at these heights the DEva was achieving some of its best results at the sides, front and in the corners. Eventually, we settled on a height of 830mm where we got as close to 1000μmols as we could – and that’s probably as bright as you want it to be without getting into the realms of risking plant damage, particularly to plants in less than the peak of health.

This distance is quite large, even for a 1000 Watt HPS fixture. It could be tricky to get the best out of it when used in a standard (2.0m tall) grow tent unless the plants are kept short. However, in the hands of a good grower, it could probably be used in a 2.2m tall tent, which would allow the grower that little extra space between the bottom of the fixture and the tops of the plants. The Revolution DEva is also the perfect choice for full room grows, and also for supplementary lighting in a greenhouse.

So, back to the testing. At a height of 830mm, we recorded the footprint beneath it. Here is the data that we collected:

Revolution DEva 1000 watt lighting footprint at a height of 830mm

With the data entered into a spreadsheet, we created a 3D surface graph to display these results pictorially:

Lighting Footprint 1.5m square area for Revolution DEva 1000 watt at a height of 830mm
Revolution DEva 1000W Light Footprint 830mm Height Surface Diagram

The footprint is quite even, and even in the corners the DEva is achieving a completely growable 180 – 190μmols.  Most growers will use a grow tent with internal reflective surfaces, or have a grow room with several units where there is overlap of the footprints. In both scenarios, there will be extra light coming in from the sides which will boost the amount of light around the edges.

The controller….

Revolution DEva turned on with display showing

The Revolution RLC-1 controller can control two zones of up to 256 DEvas each. It comes with two plug-in temperature probes (one for each zone). Each zone is controlled separately. Comms connections are provided for each zone which can link all the DEvas in a zone allowing the RLC-1 to control all the lighting in a particular zone.

Initial setup involves setting the date & time, and if you want to use degrees C (Centigrade) or degrees F (Fahrenheit). After that, the wattage you want the lights to run at in each zone can be set, and then you can set the on-time and off-time for the lights in each zone. Each zone then can be set to automatically dim the lights if the temperature (sensed by the probe for that zone) exceeds a user-set value. The RLC-1 can also be set to gradually dim the lights before lights-off time (sunset setting), and also gradually increase the brightness of the lights at switch-on time (sunrise setting).

The RLC-1 is a comprehensive controller. It can control the output power of the lights between 600W and 1150W in 1% increments. It can initiate an emergency shutdown of all lights in a zone if a user-set over-temperature is reached. It can also be programmed to wait for a user-set time before re-striking the lights in the event of a short power failure. This is a particularly useful feature as hot re-strikes can damage equipment and lamps. On top of that, the RLC-1 has 3 low-voltage (not mains voltage) switches per zone which can be used to switch on equipment such as extra fans, humidifiers, dehumidifiers etc. There is one switch for lights-on mode, another for lights-off mode and another for when the controller goes into dimming mode to reduce temperatures.

A Complete Solution for a State-of-the-Art Grow Setup

When used together, the Revolution DEva and the RLC-1 controller form an advanced grow-light setup for maximum yields, reliability and highly versatile grow-room management. If you are thinking about getting a top-end grow-light system (with or without a controller), make sure Revolution is on your short-list!