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Coral Vue Hydros

Looking for advice on ballast for diy Metal halide


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I've read all the threads on the how tos on the 70 watt and 250 watt items. I'd just like a suggestion on what is best. I also have a list of items that if anyone could answer would be great.


I'm currently running 1x 13watt compact fluorescent 50/50 on my 3 gallon eclipse 3 nano. I'm looking to upgrade to 70 watt metal halide or even 175watt. I noticed that the 70 watt ballast has went up in price alot on ebay, so please advise me on the best option.


I saw an Magnatek M-57 Ballast on ebay. What can i power with that? according to the one page on nano reefs forums, it claims it is a probe start, so can i pretty much power any 175 watt mh bulb with this? given i have the correct connectors?


I frequently see 400 watt metal halide Grow light bulb fixtures on sale on ebay for cheap. They use single ended MH bulbs. Could I say purchase this and replace it with a 10k 175 watt Ushio bulb? (this would be for my not yet setup 55 gallon tank, not the 3 gallon nano)


or a 250watt M58 Metal Halide Ballast, made by advance. Is this what everyone talks about running the iwasaki bulbs on ?


and lastly, the M98 70 watt ballast. Is this ballast usable with with the 70 watt catalinas and 70 watt ushios? (double ended that is)


Thanks for any help you can give this newbie.

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just spend the money on a blueline or icecap electronic ballast. for info, a good retailer is championlighting.com...go to their ballasts pager under lighting. Electronic will run anything at higher efficiency and result in longer life with truer colors.

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Originally posted by toefu

and lastly, the M98 70 watt ballast. Is this ballast usable with with the 70 watt catalinas and 70 watt ushios? (double ended that is)


I have the aromat 3-euf ballast ( ANSI m98 ) and run a ushio 10k bulb. Runs fine for me.

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Originally posted by jojopus

...aromat 3-euf ballast ( ANSI m98 )...

Actually the Aromat ballast is rated as ANSI M139, M143, M98 not just M98 so I'm not sure a straight M98 ballast will light a double ended bulb. Double ended 70W MH bulbs sold for aquariums by Ushio and Aqua Medic are ANSI M85. No one is certain what the ANSI rating for the Catalina 70W MH DE is.


I agree with wetworx101 and think that if possible spend the little bit of extra money and get the icecap or blueline ballast if you're going to do a 150W, 175W or 250W MH.


If you're wanting to do a 70W MH DE setup then your options are more limited.


First off I would shy away from getting the Catalina 70W MH DE bulb too many people have had bad experiences with it (though some have had okay results so far which has only been about a month).


For a ballast you can go with Core and Coil M85 ballast from somewhere like hellolights.

Or you can try to do electronic but the only two that are sort of available are either the Aromat NAiS 3-EUF or the WPI ballast both of which are available on eBay as of today.


I think the jury is still out on these eballasts since people on this board including myself haven't been running any of them more than a month or so. I saw someone on post to this thread that their WPI has already went out after a short while.

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i am confused once again. is the 70W bulb m85 or m98?


also, i was looking in hellolights and the double-ended type is only available in 70 and 150 watts. so inorder to fire these DE bulbs, what type of ballast do i need?


i assume there is no one-size-fits-all solution. the icecaps and blueline are rather expensive. is there any cheaper but adequate alternatives?

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thanks for the quick responses. For the time being, I'll probably be looking for a 70 watt mh for my 3 gallon nano.


Just trying to keep an eye out for lighting for my 55 gallon in the future too.

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Originally posted by blk_g20is the 70W bulb m85 or m98?
You'll find mostly that bulbs used for aquariums are

M98 with single ended 70W MH bulbs and

M85 with double ended 70W MH bulbs.

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