California Lightworks SolarSystem 550 vs Horticulture Lighting Group HLG 550 V2 B Spec LED Comparison

California Lightworks SolarSystem 550 LED Grow Light vs Horticulture Lighting Group HLG550 V2 B spec

Seeking out the best and baddest grow lights for your indoor crops can be confusing —especially with how many options are available and the number of variables to consider. With many states cracking down on the types of lights that can be used for indoor grows, it’s important to maximize your grow light purchase for legality as well as for cost-efficiency and efficacy.

GrowersHouse is reviewing and comparing different grow lights one by one in our ongoing series of testing the products we sell. This comparison pits two of the most talked-about LED grow light fixtures to hit the market recently—SolarSystem 550 LED vs. Horticulture Light Group HLG 550 V2 B Spec. Keep on reading as we break down everything you need to know about the differences between these grow lights.

Grow Light Comparison Chart - Specs

LED Specifications SolarSystem 550 LED HLG 550 V2 B Spec
Wattage (Input Power) 400w 240-480w
Voltage Options 90-277v 90-277v
Efficiency umol/J [380-780nm] 2.3 μmol/J 2.55 μmol/J
Total PPF intensity [380-780nm] 888 1175
Amps 3.3 @ 120V | 1.65 @ 240V 100-277 VAC 50-60Hz
Mounting Height 24” - Flower, 30” - Veg, 36” - Seedling 24-32” above canopy
Coverage Footprint Veg 6’ x 8’ 6' x 6' at 36”
Coverage Footprint Flower 3’ x 4’ N/A
Length 18” 26”
Width 8.5” 20”
Height 4” 3”
Weight 13 lb 20 lb
Warranty 5-year 3-year
Controllable Yes, with optional fully programmable central controller No
DLC Listed for energy rebates? No No
IP Rating IP65 N/A
UV and/or IR spectra? UV and IR capable No
Dimming Yes, 3 channel 0-100% Yes, manual or 0-10V option
Cooling Active heat management Passive


Discussion: The number one thing to consider when comparing the SolarSystem 550 specs vs. HLG 550 V2 B Spec is their growing-stage capabilities. That’s because the HLG 550 V2 B Spec is specific for vegetation only. The SolarSystem 550 is equipped for both veg and flowering stages. In a setup where veg and flower occur in the same space, the SolarSystem 550 would be most ideal. It’s especially helpful for avoiding having to change light systems between the two phases. For dual-stage grow light options, we’d say SolarSystem’s lightweight, highly effective 550 model will quickly become a favorite among growers.

For growers who keep separate spaces, however, upgrading your veg space with the specialized power of HLG 550 V2 B Spec could help maximize growth and overall yields from the start. The HLG 550 V2 B Spec has similar canopy coverage for veg plants as the SolarSystem 550, but with amplified energy for this stage. HLG’s model has a higher PPF intensity at 1175 vs. 888, higher wattage capabilities, and increased efficiency at 2.55 μmol/J vs 2.23 μmol/J. When deciding, you’ll have to consider if these benefits outweigh the cost for your specific setup or operation.

Spectrum Differences & Comparison

Next, let’s look at the spectrum differences of the SolarSystem 550 vs. HLG 550 V2 B Spec


Discussion: The chart shows that since the SolarSystem 550 is highly customizable, its individual spectrum is much greater than that of the HLG 550 V2 B Spec. Through the SolarSystem’s advanced controller, growers can customize red/deep red, natural white, and blue/deep blue channels. On the flip side, the HLG 550 V2 B Spec offers your veg plants full-spectrum high-efficiency white light with its innovative quantum boards: Samsung LM301B and Blue 470nm.

Product Reviews

SolarSystem 550 and HLG 550 reviews are somewhat scarce because both lights are relatively new, but the early word on the street is that both models are worth their initial investment costs. While the lights cost more to purchase than some others, their efficiency maximizes cost-effectiveness, especially when it comes to usage. In addition, since both also maximize yields, you’re getting an increased ROI each harvest.

From our website:

"I did a side-by-side grow next to grow into different tents and my California 550 luminaire blew the black dog off the map" Ronnie D.

Cost Comparison

  SolarSystem 550 HLG 550 V2 B Spec
Fixture Cost $849 $849
Adapter for Controller N/A N/A
Controller $189 N/A
Cost to run per month @ $0.13 per kWh (U.S. average)(12-16 hr DLI) $18.72/monthly at 12 hours per day @ 400W
$24.96/monthly at 16 hours per day @ 400W
$11.23/monthly at 12 hours per day @240 W
$14.98/monthly at 16 hours per day @240 W
$22.46/monthly at 12 hours per day @480 W
$29.95/monthly at 16 hours per day @480 W


Discussion: For the advanced technology and upgraded materials in both the SolarSystem 550 and HLG 550 V2 B Spec, the cost is more than fair. Both lights use state-of-the-art materials, including 3-D printed controllers, weather-resistant materials, and the highest-grade Samsung LEDs available, so for many growers feel the increased initial investment of $849 for either model is worth it. For usage, not only are these advanced systems priced effectively, but they also work efficiently. As you can see, both the SolarSystem 550 and HLG 550 V2 B Spec cost less than $30 per month to run.

How to save money on these LEDs?

By now, you’re probably wondering: Are there any SolarSystem 550 deals? No matter the cost or product, everyone loves a good discount, especially when looking at big-ticket items like LED grow light fixtures. That’s why it pays to be a part of a supplier community that regularly offers deals and the fairest prices industry-wide. At GrowersHouse our email subscribers are first to hear about the most exclusive sales and discounts as soon as they’re active. Sign up for our email updates to get notified of all of our LED discounts as they are introduced.


If you need a controllable system with a variety of controls, the SolarSystem 550 is the way to go. The HLG 550 V2 B Spec is adjustable only to a few varied settings via the knob on the system. While the SolarSystem 550 controller does come at an additional cost, its ability to customize time, spectrums, and zones is welcome and a game-changer for commercial growers. The SolarSystem 550 also has the ability to daisy chain multiple lights to one single controller without specialized cords. The system uses a simple phone cord to connect lights and has wireless or hard-wired options.

More LED Test Results & Comparisons

Rest assured, if you’re in the growing game, GrowersHouse has your back for insider knowledge on buying grow lights. We’ll continue to test, review, and compare the latest and greatest products, so you can make smarter and more cost-effective purchases. Check out some of our other comparisons below.


After reviewing each individual product, we anticipated which questions would arise from growers. Below is a quick summary of those FAQ’s, and the answers we found.

Can the HLG 550 V2 B spec be used for bloom/flower? No, the HLG 550 V2 B Spec and its unique light composition is designed for vegatative plants, only.

Which is better for yields - the SolarSystem 550 LED or HLG 550 V2 B Spec? That’s hard to say, considering HLG 550 V2 B Spec is for veg plants, and only contributes to that stage of growth. Overall, you can expect to produce 1-1.5 grams/watt with LED lights.