I ordered 6 Solstrips and a 320H driver on New Years Day and got my shipping/tracking notice today! Im excited.
Mini review so far - Id give Solstrips.com and Baudelaire a solid 4.9/5 stars so far. The deduction is for some very minor hickups in the checkout process (there are still some issues he is working on with the new website) and a minor misunderstanding about the sale he had going. Baudelaire answered my emails quickly, answered all my questions and concerns, and resolved all my issues in a prompt and very professional manner. In the end, he made sure I was a happy customer. He promised to ship within 1 to 2 days and thats what he did.
My rating so far = highly recommended!
Hopefuly, they will get here this weekend and I can get started assembling the fixture.
I ordered 6ea 3500k strips and a 320H-24 CVCC driver. My DIY grow tent is roughly 27"x38"x60" tall. Im going to build a frame along the lines of this drawing. The strips will be 2ea to a row in 3 rows. Im going to use some scrap aluminum I have on hand for the frame. The strips will be mounted (with thermal paste) to some 3" wide x 1.5" x 1/4" thick C channel. The three channels will be bolted to some 3/4x3/4 L material along the ends.
The frame will be mounted directly below a 20" box fan I have mounted near the ceiling of the tent, so there will be active cooling. I understand there is some concern about how well my U channel will work as a heatsink, but I plan to test that before installing them permanently.
Based on the graph for volts vrs current from the chip spec sheet, and the numbers for the 320H, I am anticipating the following min and max power levels. All strips will be wired in parallel.
With 6 panels, my max amp draw is going to be 13.34 / 6 = 2.2 amps per board. With 12 parallel sets of led's thats .185 amps/led. Looking at the graph again, that works out to roughly 2.98 volts or .55 watts per led x 98 led's = 52.9 watts max per board x 6 boards = 317 watts total. Thats great because that driver is max 320 watts.
My minimum however is zero watts. If I turn down the voltage on the 320H down to 12 volts, thats below the minimum voltage for the led's if they are in an 8S string, so they wont light up at all.
If I go with the minimum amps in CC mode at 6.67amps / 6 boards = 1.11 amps per board or 1.11 / 12 = 93 ma per led. Looking at the graph again, when drawing 93 ma, they will be at roughly 2.83 volts, so my minimum 'operating' power will be roughly .93 x 2.83 x 98 = 25 watts per panel x 6 panels = 150 watts total.
So for my roughly 7 sq ft tent, I will have an adjustment range from 21 watts/sq ft up to 45 watts/sq ft
Of course, all that assumes I am understanding how these drivers work. I have not actually used one yet
To monitor the volts/amps/watts Im going to be using an in-line Wattmeter I have from my RC flying hobby. I fly electric powered sailplanes and other electric models. It has better than 1% precision, and can handle up to 100 v @ 100 amps = 10,000 watts, so close enough for this. The Wattmeter will be between the driver and the panel, so it will be measuring the actual volts and amps the panels are operating at rather than the power out of the wall.
Some of you may recognize those connectors as Anderson Powerpoles. I'll be using those (45 amp rated) for the connections between the driver and the frame. Im going to run 14 ga flexible wire to the frame, then 18ga solid to the individual strips.
Im about 1 month into my first ever grow. Im using CFL's now and hoping these new strips will get my babies growing even better