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Old 06/19/2017, 12:56 PM   #251
Thornbreaker
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Originally Posted by Ron Reefman View Post
If you do corals that need a bit less light, zoas, softies, mushrooms, and can hang them a bit higher off the water (12" to 18"), 2 of the 16" fixtures will be fine.

If you are considering sps corals or an anemone or a clam that like more light, then 3 is the answer and you can mount them at any height off the water.

If you look around you may find a 4' fixture (Reef Breeders Photon and Aquasanrise, EverGrow and maybe others) 1 fixture will do. I have a 5'x2'x20" tank and I use a 50" Reef Breeder Photon V2. They aren't cheap, but for all the features you get (assuming you'd want them) it's a good deal. Other brands with the same features cost considerably more.

Also several brands offer 24" fixtures and you'd only need 2 of those.

ReeFi-Lab offers a pendant with an adjustable glass lens and each one can cover from a 2'x2' to a 3'x3' square. So 2 of them would work as well. And like the high end fixtures, they are fully controllable and like the Reef Breeders, reasonably priced. I have one over my frag tank for a couple of months now and it seems to be better than the Ocean Revive I had there before... but it could just be better water parameters...
Hey Ron, follow up questions. It looks like Mars Aqua has a 300 Watt that does a 3'x2' spread. Think 1 of those and 1, 165 Watt would handle a 5' tank? Getting one of each saves about 50 to 60 bucks compared to 3, 165 Watt.

I'll be hanging these from a 10' ceiling, do you or anyone else have any recommendations on what hanging kit to use? (Since I'll need about 3.5' to 4' of length, I imagine this is longer than Mars Aqua's hanging kit provides).


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Old 06/19/2017, 06:07 PM   #252
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Hey Ron, follow up questions. It looks like Mars Aqua has a 300 Watt that does a 3'x2' spread. Think 1 of those and 1, 165 Watt would handle a 5' tank? Getting one of each saves about 50 to 60 bucks compared to 3, 165 Watt.

I'll be hanging these from a 10' ceiling, do you or anyone else have any recommendations on what hanging kit to use? (Since I'll need about 3.5' to 4' of length, I imagine this is longer than Mars Aqua's hanging kit provides).
Yes the 165 and a 300 should work good and give you light for anything. Always good to save money. My old 180g was 6' and I had 2 like the MA 300 and they covered just fine.

You can use the hanging kit they provide and modify it by changing out their short wire for a longer wire you can buy at Lowes, HD or Ace. It's just stainless wire.

Have fun. If you ever have questions, feel free to ask. I can't begin to tell you how many questions I asked during my first 3 or 4 years!

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Old 06/19/2017, 08:28 PM   #253
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Leds do have some issues, like shadowing under overhangs and ledges and even under dense branching coral like a pocillopora or birdsnest. They can also have red or green shadow edges or disco effect in the shimmer. MH have far less shadowing and no disco effect at all.

However, leds offer instant color control, the ability to ramp up and down for sunrise & sunset, the ability to do moonlights, the heavy blue lighting that make fluorescing corals glow, they run cooler and they use less electricity. Some of the newer led fixtures are even getting better looking than MH or t5 fixtures.

Leds used to be a lot more expensive than t5 or MH, but that's not true anymore. There are good, basic led fixtures out there for under $100.

Personally, I don't ever see myself switching back to MH. The new t5 that can be dimmed is interesting, but it's as expensive as anled fixture that can do 6 channel color control with a remote rather than buying and changing bulbs. Until something new AND better comes along, I think leds will just gain more and more popularity.


I agree. I've had my Hydra 52s for about 4years now and just had to buy a hydra 26 HD because of some random board problem that AI was having. I didn't meet the warranty, but they upgraded to the 26 because of this.
I won't go back either but I may add t5s somewhere down the line to even out the color


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Old 06/20/2017, 06:41 AM   #254
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I agree. I've had my Hydra 52s for about 4years now and just had to buy a hydra 26 HD because of some random board problem that AI was having. I didn't meet the warranty, but they upgraded to the 26 because of this.
I won't go back either but I may add t5s somewhere down the line to even out the color
I tried adding a t5 to the front of my tank and I didn't care for the look at all. It reduced the shimmer and was too warm a white and over powered the cool white and blue of the leds.

I've since added an 12K white and 445nm blue led strip to the front of my tank and an all 445nm blue strip to the back of my tank. I like the look MUCH better. You can see photos in my build thread. BTW, the photos don't do the new look justice as the camera doesn't do the blue very well. It akin to trying to get good photos of corals fluorescing under all blue leds, the photos just don't hold a candle to seeing it in person. The tank looks much deeper front to back now and it's way better in person.


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Old 06/20/2017, 06:44 AM   #255
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That's what the 26HD did for my Tank. It's like more 3D now. Little different leds than previous.


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Old 06/24/2017, 09:13 AM   #256
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I have a JBJ nano cube 28 gallon with a CF quad light in it. I have had this tank set up since October. I have gotten little or no growth out of the tank, and I am wanting to do a DIY light kit from Rapid LED. I have small children so I want to leave the top on the tank so they are not tempted to go fishing. I am looking at this kit, but I am unsure on the color mix I should get? Should I get the full spectrum or should I get a half blue and half white? Thanks.

http://www.rapidled.com/jbj-nanocube...-retrofit-kit/


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Old 06/24/2017, 01:53 PM   #257
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I have a JBJ nano cube 28 gallon with a CF quad light in it. I have had this tank set up since October. I have gotten little or no growth out of the tank, and I am wanting to do a DIY light kit from Rapid LED. I have small children so I want to leave the top on the tank so they are not tempted to go fishing. I am looking at this kit, but I am unsure on the color mix I should get? Should I get the full spectrum or should I get a half blue and half white? Thanks.

http://www.rapidled.com/jbj-nanocube...-retrofit-kit/
I don't know the specifics of either one of those kits, but my best guess is that either one will work. The half blue & half white actually gets full spectrum from the white leds. White light is a mix of red, green and blue. The 'full spectrum' kit probably adds some red and green leds to the display. Do you need them? Probably not. Will they help your corals grow? Maybe just a tiny bit... but probably not.

I've run a mixed reef tank that is mostly sps and zoas with a couple softies and a couple of lps corals for 6+ years. The last 4+ years has been with all leds and I do not use the red or green leds. In my old fixture I covered them with black electrical tape, in my new fixture I can just turn them off.

Why do I do that? Because with my fixture the red and green leds are far apart and they create red and green shadow edges under rocks and coral. They also create red and green lines in the shimmer which many call the 'disco' effect. Over a nano tank with a fixture that keeps all the leds close together, you may not have the issues I have.

In short, flip a coin!


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Old 06/24/2017, 02:46 PM   #258
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I'm not that familiar with AI fixtures. Does yours have fans? Do the run... ever? If you have fans, and they run, you shouldn't have heat issues. Have you ever vacuumed or blown out the inside of the fixture through the vent holes? It's unlikely, but it could be clogged with dust?



IMHO, if you are having a heat issue with your leds, you need to have a conversation with AI... or is it Eco Tech now? I'd give their customer service a call ASAP.


Yes the AI LEDs all have fans. I think it's a problem that a lot of owners are having. Unfortunately it's all out of warranty.


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Old 06/24/2017, 04:08 PM   #259
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Yes the AI LEDs all have fans. I think it's a problem that a lot of owners are having. Unfortunately it's all out of warranty.
Too bad. I have what many consider the high end of the cheap led fixtures, Reef Breeders Photon V2 and it has fans that are thermally controlled. I run at about 75% power overall and not only do my fans not come on, the fixture is hardly more than room temp.

Now I recently bought two led strips from 21ledusa and they have no fans and claim they aren't needed. But they almost get to hot to pick up in my hands!


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Old 07/04/2017, 04:08 AM   #260
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Advice needed. I have an Aquaone reef 120 running with T5's. I'm upgrading to an aquaone 300 with fixed LED lights. How can I acclimate my corals or do you recommend changing my lights to adjustable leds. I have LPS, SPS and softies doing really well with clowns, a bangaii and a yellow tang. Thanks


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Old 07/04/2017, 05:36 AM   #261
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Advice needed. I have an Aquaone reef 120 running with T5's. I'm upgrading to an aquaone 300 with fixed LED lights. How can I acclimate my corals or do you recommend changing my lights to adjustable leds. I have LPS, SPS and softies doing really well with clowns, a bangaii and a yellow tang. Thanks
I assume the new 300L can come with either the t5's or the leds?

Either will work. Both are able to grow colorful, healthy corals of all types. The t5's give a nice even light that covers the tank and gets into shadows under rocks and corals better than the more focused light of leds can. But leds offer shimmer, overall intensity dimming, easy color control (without buying and changing bulbs) and the end of buying new bulbs every year.

I have a 125g (500L) mixed reef tank that is more sps, quite a few zoas and a few softies and lps corals. I use only led because I like the control, being in SW Florida I like the lack of heat the fixture produces (although t5's aren't too hot either) and I love my sunrise and sunset when so many of my corals fluoresce like a 60's hippi poster under a black light!

If you can't find a PAR meter you can borrow or rent (fellow club members, an LFS or online) then consider this; the 'canary in a coalmine' solution. Get a small frag of a red cap monti or any other inexpensive plating coral, and set it in your tank as high or higher than all the other corals. Start your acclimatization at a low number (but 2 to 3 times more blue than white) and raise it every week. You can raise it a bit faster early on, but get much more careful as you get up to higher power levels. When you raise the light intensity too high, the red cap will start to bleach before any other corals. At that point, dial the power back a bit (5% to 10%) and you should be good to go. Just as an example I run my fixture at 40% white and 90% blue. Just remember every led fixture is different. I have a new fixture that has 5 times as many blue leds as white (a 50:50 split is much more common) and I run it at 70% blue and 60% white.


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Old 07/04/2017, 05:15 PM   #262
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Thanks for your advice! Unfortunately the settings on the new LED unit are fixed and don't allow to dial down settings. They have 2 switches - actinic only or actinic and white (or both off). Should I acclimatise by leaving the actinic only on for longer then gradually increase the actinic / white setting? Or should I bite the bullet and replace the unit which allows me more control? Sorry for all the questions - would hate to lose my corals!!


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Old 07/05/2017, 05:36 AM   #263
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Don't sweat the questions, I'm going to ask you a bunch soon.

Since your led fixture doesn't have dimmers, I'd assume they are lower watt leds. I know, don't assume. So, do you know if they are 3 watt or something more like 0.5 or 0.3 watt leds? What brand and model is the fixture? How many blue leds? How many white leds? What is the length and width of the fixture?

Your corals don't 'see' the blue or white light. Doing a blue 'sunrise/sunset' is way more for us (and maybe a little bit for fish and other critters with eyes) than for the coral. Your coral uses the blue more than the white. The zooxanthellae (algae) that is inside the coral uses the blue to do photosynthesis that helps feed the coral.

I wouldn't advise jumping to spend more money on a new fixture until we know that this one is inadequate. Do you have many corals in the tank? In big rough terms, what kind of mix between zoas, softies, lps or sps? Example: my tank is about 60% sps, 20% zoas, 10% lps and 10% softies.

I doubt you led fixture is going to be too powerful given it doesn't have dimmers. But you can dim the intensity some by raising the fixture higher, or make it more intense by lowering it closer to the water. It's VERY uncommon that any led fixtures these days wouldn't have dimmers. They became the norm about 6 years ago. The very early led fixtures didn't have them and raising or lowering the fixture was the only solution. Very old school.

Hang in there we'll get this sorted out. If you do need/want to buy a new led fixture, do you have a budget in mind? And have you seen this post?
http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/sh...&postcount=233

Consider what features, if any, you want in a new fixture. But remember, the more features, the more it costs and most features have very little to do with coral health. Most features are for us, not the coral!


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Old 07/06/2017, 04:37 PM   #264
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Hey thanks for your response! I'm struggling to find out the exact details of the light settings/ dimensions....I'm getting my tank next week. The lights are installed inside the tank hood so not sure how I'll be able to raise / lower the unit. The brochure says it is 80 watts. Have seen a review on you tube for the 40 watt - that one has 30 whites and 10 blues. I'm going into my lfs this weekend to check out their display model. As for my corals I have predominantly LPS, 2 SPS, 2 Zoas and a green nepthia. All doing well under my basic aquaone T5 system. At least I have plenty of time to figure out how the new lights look etc when the tank arrives next week as I'll be cycling for several weeks (next to my current tank - yep I'm moving out one of my couches for a while - can hear family complaining already lol). Also give me chance to save for a better system if needed! Have been told the rig is a "beginner light" - but I guess I am a beginner!!! Still, would like to start off on the right foot....Would appreciate your thoughts


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Old 07/06/2017, 04:48 PM   #265
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By the way my tank dimensions are 39 x 20 x 28 (depth - I know pretty deep for a reef tank but will have a higher scape).


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Old 07/06/2017, 06:39 PM   #266
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Well the system you saw on you tube has 40 leds and is 40 watts... that's not a good omen for a 28" deep tank. It's better than Current Orbit and Marineland that use 0.5 watt leds. But It's not 3 watt leds driven at 2.2 watts either. It will be interesting to hear how many leds your system will have with it being 80 watts. A typical Chinese black box led for a 39" tank would be a 32" fixture with 100 leds and run 220 watts.

So this tank is 39" x 20" and it has a cover with the leds built in? Is the cover thin, like a lid of 2" or 4"? Or is it more like a canopy that is 10" or 14"? Does this look at all like the system you are getting?
http://www.aquarist-classifieds.co.u...l59_372669.php

If your system has 80 leds and runs 80 watts... It's OK for starters. But I'd either be shopping (not buying in any hurry) or looking at used fixtures for the right light and deal to replace what comes with the system. 80 watts will keep most corals alive. I'd tend to try and keep the sps up high on the rockscape.

Ron


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Old 07/07/2017, 07:00 PM   #267
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Yes that's pretty much the set up but I see they have changed the lights...thanks Ron, I'll be looking around for alternative lighting. As I say I have time on my side to save. Will keep you posted!


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Old 07/08/2017, 05:12 AM   #268
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Yes that's pretty much the set up but I see they have changed the lights...thanks Ron, I'll be looking around for alternative lighting. As I say I have time on my side to save. Will keep you posted!
Anytime. If you want to PM me when you get to 10 posts, we can discuss it before you buy.


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Old 07/09/2017, 11:16 PM   #269
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Thanks Ron!


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Old 08/08/2017, 09:49 PM   #270
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Ron, I just want to thank you. I've read quite a bit of the responses and I think I'm going to go with a Reef Breeders light in the near future to replace my bulbs.


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Old 08/09/2017, 07:36 AM   #271
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Ron, I just want to thank you. I've read quite a bit of the responses and I think I'm going to go with a Reef Breeders light in the near future to replace my bulbs.
Just because I like the Reef Breeders Photon fixture in no way implies that I think it's the best! I like it and I'm willing to pay for the features that it offers.

If you don't see a need for sunrise/sunset capability (and there is NO need for it), or you don't need 6 channel color control (2 channels work quite well), or you don't have any issues with the look of the standard black box fixture, then save some money and get something less expensive.

My perspective on it is that I want these features (not that my fish or corals give a rats a$$ about them). And that for these features, as well as 3w and 5w Cree and OSRAM leds and a good remote control, this is by far the best value. And I have owned fixtures made by EverGrow (the Photon is made for Reef Breeders by EverGrow) before and they are quite well made. You can spend a lot more on led fixtures, but IMHO, you don't get much for that extra money. But the opposite is also true. You can spend a lot less for an led fixture without the extra features and get light that your coral will be just as happy with.


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Old 08/09/2017, 10:18 AM   #272
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Just because I like the Reef Breeders Photon fixture in no way implies that I think it's the best! I like it and I'm willing to pay for the features that it offers.

If you don't see a need for sunrise/sunset capability (and there is NO need for it), or you don't need 6 channel color control (2 channels work quite well), or you don't have any issues with the look of the standard black box fixture, then save some money and get something less expensive.

My perspective on it is that I want these features (not that my fish or corals give a rats a$$ about them). And that for these features, as well as 3w and 5w Cree and OSRAM leds and a good remote control, this is by far the best value. And I have owned fixtures made by EverGrow (the Photon is made for Reef Breeders by EverGrow) before and they are quite well made. You can spend a lot more on led fixtures, but IMHO, you don't get much for that extra money. But the opposite is also true. You can spend a lot less for an led fixture without the extra features and get light that your coral will be just as happy with.
I do like the sunrise and sunset features. I'd also would enjoy some night time features as well. The programming abilities is what I really like. My current bulb light is on a timer that's just simply able to be turned off and on is all.

I would like to get rid of the giant black box as well. The aquarium sits in a corner and the light makes it quite difficult to clean it well without having to take it off. But then I can't really see what I'm cleaning either.

However, I'm sure it has been answered already, but what exactly would be the difference between the 6 or 2 channel color controls? I have an idea. That it allows you to fine tune the light even further. Which I think I'd enjoy tinkering with as I gain experience in the hobby.


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Old 08/10/2017, 07:05 AM   #273
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I do like the sunrise and sunset features. I'd also would enjoy some night time features as well. The programming abilities is what I really like. My current bulb light is on a timer that's just simply able to be turned off and on is all.

I would like to get rid of the giant black box as well. The aquarium sits in a corner and the light makes it quite difficult to clean it well without having to take it off. But then I can't really see what I'm cleaning either.

However, I'm sure it has been answered already, but what exactly would be the difference between the 6 or 2 channel color controls? I have an idea. That it allows you to fine tune the light even further. Which I think I'd enjoy tinkering with as I gain experience in the hobby.
The Photon V2 is about as good looking a fixture as I have ever seen, slimline and classy.

The 6 channel system gives you the ability to tune 6 different colors of leds, violet, 2 blues, red, green and white. You get to set the power level for each channel for each hour of the day.

My tank has lots of corals and anemones that fluoresce under blue leds. So I do the first 2 hours of my 4 hour sunrise as all blue and violet. And the last 2 hours of my 5 hour sunset as well. Under blue leds my tank looks like Pandora at night (from the movie Avatar). I also run a 4 hour midday.

Logan, the owner of RB has told us that an updated program is coming (and will be backward compatible) that will take the hourly setting and break them down into 10 segments (6 minutes each) and smoothly transition the light rather than the hourly jump of intensity we have now. Not that I mind. If I happen to see the light change I just know it's the top of the hour, kind of like the chime of a grandfather clock!


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Old 08/13/2017, 07:16 PM   #274
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The Photon V2 is about as good looking a fixture as I have ever seen, slimline and classy.

The 6 channel system gives you the ability to tune 6 different colors of leds, violet, 2 blues, red, green and white. You get to set the power level for each channel for each hour of the day.

My tank has lots of corals and anemones that fluoresce under blue leds. So I do the first 2 hours of my 4 hour sunrise as all blue and violet. And the last 2 hours of my 5 hour sunset as well. Under blue leds my tank looks like Pandora at night (from the movie Avatar). I also run a 4 hour midday.

Logan, the owner of RB has told us that an updated program is coming (and will be backward compatible) that will take the hourly setting and break them down into 10 segments (6 minutes each) and smoothly transition the light rather than the hourly jump of intensity we have now. Not that I mind. If I happen to see the light change I just know it's the top of the hour, kind of like the chime of a grandfather clock!
Ah, that sounds great to be honest! I think that's what I'll end up going with.

Thanks again!


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Old 09/03/2017, 11:02 PM   #275
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LED for 30" Deep 50 gal

Looking for advice on a suitable led setup for a 30" Deep 50 gal tall. Can be up to 20"long. I'm thinking of some lps and palys and possible an anemone once the tank matures. What would provide enough light throughout the entire column? Thanks in advance!


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