Are Bar Lights Better than Quantum Boards?

In the dynamic world of indoor gardening, the perfect lighting can be the difference between thriving plants and a disappointing harvest.

Among the myriad of choices, two contenders stand out for their popularity and effectiveness: Bar Lights and Quantum Boards. While bar lights have been lauded for their uniform light distribution and flexibility, quantum boards are celebrated for their energy efficiency and intense light output.

We are here to delve into the heart of a question that perplexes many gardeners – which lighting solutions truly reign supreme for your plants?

Table of Contents

Quantum Board Grow Lights

Quantum board grow lights are rectangular panels made with LEDs. They come in various sizes and work best for smaller indoor setups or growing single plants in tents. Panel LED lights can be flexibly used on vertical shelves and shelves for growth.

They are also designed for a more concentrated light distribution in the center, making them an ideal choice for single or smaller growing setups.

Examples of popular bar light models on the market:



ECO Farm


LED Bar Grow Lights

Bar-style LED grow lights are typically long, narrow fixtures, characterized by multiple LED chip strips arranged in a linear pattern. These strips can be configured in various arrangements, providing optimal light coverage for specific shapes and sizes of growing spaces.

LED bar grow lights can be flexibly applied to smaller cultivation setups for individual plants or large-scale commercial cultivation as they can provide more even and precise light distribution.



Spider Farmer


Quantum Board vs Bar Light. What Are the Differences?

While both utilize LED technology to provide the necessary spectrum for plant growth, there are notable differences between the two.


Quantum boards consist of multiple LEDs mounted on a flat panel. This design utilizes a large, flat circuit board with LED chip grids arranged in a specific pattern. The board grow lights are also designed for a more concentrated light distribution in the center, making them best suited for smaller indoor setups or growing single plants in tents. 

Bar lights consist of several LED strips mounted on long, narrow bars. The multi-bar design is another increasingly popular variation of bar-shaped LEDs, featuring multiple LED chip strips arranged in a linear pattern. The single bar light can also be configured in various arrangements, providing optimal light coverage for specific shapes and sizes of growing spaces.

Light Distribution

Bar lights typically generate less heat than quantum board grow lights due to differences in design and construction.

Bar lights are renowned for their even light distribution. Due to the spacing between each bar, you can achieve a more consistent light spread.

They can be positioned to ensure each plant receives the required amount of light for optimal growth and yield. Bar lights can cover a wider area compared to quantum boards.

On the other hand, board plant lights have a more concentrated light distribution, resulting in higher central light intensity.

This helps achieve uniform growth throughout the canopy, providing focused light penetration. However, light distribution is less precise than bar-style LED lights.

Heat Emission

Bar lights typically generate less heat compared to quantum board grow lights, due to their design and construction.

In bar LED grow lights, the LED chips are linearly arranged along the length of the bar, with some distance between each bar.

This design allows for better heat dissipation, as the heat generated by the LED chips is distributed over a larger surface area. Furthermore, bar lights typically have larger heat sinks to dissipate heat from LED chips.

One potential downside of quantum boards is that they can generate a significant amount of heat, due to the LEDs being packed so closely together.

They use a flat PCB construction, which is smaller and more compact. This can lead to reduced heat dissipation efficiency, resulting in higher operating temperatures.


Quantum boards are lighter than bar lights, making them ideal for beginners setting up grow tents as they are easier to hang.

However, the linear design of bar lights makes them easy to install in specific arrangements, allowing users to DIY their desired lighting layout.


Quantum board grow lights are typically less expensive than bar-style lights due to differences in design and manufacturing.

LED grow light panels are constructed using printed circuit boards (PCBs), which are flat panels with electronic components mounted on them. The PCB design allows for the efficient production of many LED chips in a small area, reducing manufacturing costs.

The design of it is simpler, with fewer components and connection points compared to LED grow light bars. This explains why they are more affordable in the market.

Which One is the Best for You?

It’s challenging to claim that bar lights are better than quantum boards because both have advantages.

If the power output and PPF of both lights are similar in a given space, it entirely depends on what you’re aiming to achieve with the lights in that specific space.

There’s no definitive answer about what’s better because it relies entirely on the grower’s specific needs.

If you already have a grow light, you are essentially constructing a space that suits it. Available PPF throughout the entire space is more crucial than the brand type or which specific plant light is the best.

For home grow, quantum boards are sufficient to meet your needs for indoor growing of lettuce and tomatoes. They can be effectively applied in grow tents, plant racks, and small corners.

Both bar lights and quantum boards are suitable for individual growing tents. However, if high output is a priority, bar grow lights are usually a better choice as they possess excellent heat dissipation capabilities.

For larger indoor growing setups, multi-bar LED grow lights are often more suitable as they cover a larger area. Higher energy efficiency leads to better product yields. On the other hand, the quantum boards are another option and should be sufficient to cover canopies, given their more concentrated focus.

In greenhouses, both are suitable due to their narrow design, allowing minimal shading from natural sunlight. This ensures that plants receive the necessary light for optimal growth and development.

For vertical cannabis cultivation, multi-bar style LED lights are the optimal choice.

If budget is the primary consideration, quantum boards should be sufficient to meet your needs.

If you prioritize better heat dissipation, bar lights perform well. If your growing tent space is limited, bar-shaped plant grow lights can manage heat more effectively, eliminating the need to add fans inside the growing tent.

More importantly, it would help if you were clear about what your goals are, research further, and choose the best light source for you. After all, you can’t grow cannabis with a 100W quantum board grow light, it’s beyond the power. Nor can you grow lettuce with an 800W strip light, it’s simply too big for the job.

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