Comparing ME-DTC F54T5/HO Fluorescent to Metal Halide lamps

ME-DTC Advanced Lighting Technology Products -Since 1974

ME’s F54T5/HO linear fluorescent tube lights & Metal Halide lamps


The PROS & CONS of ME’s F54T5/HO Fluorescent tube lights to 400w & 250w Metal Halide lamps for Commercial & Industrial indoor lighting


F54T5/HO Fluorescent Versus Metal Halide Lamps

For the last few years, the market for high-ceiling (15-25 feet) lighting has had a new lamp option, the F54T5/HO. The F54T5/HO fixtures have their good attributes, but Metal Halides also have their own good qualities as well.




XTRABRITE® lamp available

•Crisp white light

•Stable Color

•Higher CRI (85, vs. 65-70 for MH)

•90% lumen maintenance (vs. 60% for MH)

•Instant on (vs. 3-7 minutes warm-up or re-strike time for MH)

•Can be used on motion sensors (MH can’t)

•Energy Savings (20-23% minimum savings, compared to MH)

•Rectangular beam pattern great for aisle lighting


•More expensive fixture (larger size, more ballasts, more lamps)

•Rectangular beam pattern requires different positioning than highbay MH wide circular beam pattern

•3-ballast set-up (more ballasts to change later on)

•6-lamps (when do you replace? And how many go out before replacement?)

•Requires a ladder or lift to change lamps (no pole changer option)

•Most are open bottom (check local health codes for restrictions in food handling areas—they may require lensed fixtures)

400 watt Metal Halide


•Lower fixture cost (generally 25%-40% less expensive)

•Wide range of lamp options, for different applications

•MH highbay beam patterns are better for general area lighting (wide circular pattern)

•More fixtures available (different beam spreads, indoor, outdoor, closed-bottom, open-bottom, etc)

•Only 1-lamp and 1-ballast per fixture to change (less to keep track of)

•Can be enclosed, for food handling areas

•Open-bottom fixtures can be changed with a pole lamp changer (no ladder or lift required)

•-20°F starting temperature


•3-5 minute warm-up time, 3-7 minute re-strike time

•Lower CRI (65-70)

•60% lumen maintenance

This chart shows how T5/HO fixtures measure up against the MH lamp they typically replace. You will see they are about even in initial light output, but the T5/HO has better average lumens, and uses less energy.

Create a Brighter Future for You and Your Environment

Since 1974 we have been designing, developing, and marketing Premium Quality replacement lighting products for Commercial and Industrial use.  Environmentally conscious, we have always led the industry in Long-life, high-output & green (Earth-Safe®), Advanced Lighting Technology Products That Save You Time, Energy and Money