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Ultimate LED guide

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I need a help. I was building an led fixture for one of my buddys, the XTE royal blues glow haphazardly in a series. I have got 12 XTE royal blues in that, first 5 and last 2 are glowing but not the 5 in the middle. All leds are tested Ok individually. The driver power is also adequate , using meanwell HLG-60H-36B dimmable module. So I have two parallel set of leds having 12 in each series. I checked the voltage drop across all leds, is over 3 v for the ones glowing , the current is passing through the leds not glowing and I dont read anything useful across them as voltage drop. What might be the problem ?. Is it due to uneven solder joint resistance on the star bases(round). Leds are absolutrly okay, I can make them glow with two AAA battery. :/

Considering that the XT-E get over 3.25v each as you get over 1.2A, and the driver you're using gives 36v 1.7A maximum, you're starving the LEDs of voltage. Get rid of an LED or two.

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Hello,

 

I have a question. I have been thinking of starting a small 60-70 liter reef aquarium and to save on energy costs I was hoping to use LEDs. I am very comfortable with electrical things such as the powersupplies etc, but which type of LEDs and how many I should use remains a bit vague. A lot of the information online is rather old at the moment, an example is the opening post; I can imagine that in the last 4-5 years there have been a lot of new developments.Ofcourse I do not mean to offend our LED overlord, but the mix of old and new information is rather confusing. I was thinking to copy this design http://www.rapidled.com/aurora-puck/but with neutral whites instead of cool whites but I have no idea wether this will be overpowered or underpowered for a small tank.

 

So to keep things short, my reef will most likely hold mainly soft corals and a few easy to keep SPS/LPS corals. the size will be around 60-70 liters. Recommendations for europe based webshops are welcome because import taxes would ruin my day.

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Hey guys, question time!

 

I have a 27 gallon cube (20"L x 20"W x 18"H). Currently I am using a Current Marine LED, keeping mostly LPS with some softies, and everything seems to be well. I was doing softies but have switched over and want to get these guys the lighting they need.

 

My question: Will a single Kessil work over my aquarium? If so, which one should I go for?

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Just because the idiot smacks the bulbs on the tank should be a reason on not to buy crap from him or that company alone....idiots!

 

 

Umm. why do you insist on trying to sell those over rated highly expensive tubes that won't last long. $200 a bulb, and I would need what, 5? HECK NO. I'll stick my HP LED setup thank you very much.

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Hello currently have a jbj 30 with reef breeder led , use to running t5/metal halide on my older tanks. i currently have lights 12" from surface at 35% blue and 10% white. sps are doing fine with that amount . is that enough percentage for 30 gal or should i slowly ramp up and stop at what percentage. thanks.

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So if a LED says forward voltage of 34v your driver has to say output : 34v or higher?

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Im planning a DIY unit for my 37G. The tank is 24x20 and 18" deep. My initial plan was:

  • CREE XTE 450nm x20 @1000mA
  • Epistar Neutral White x10 @700mA
  • Epistar Cold White x10 @700mA
  • Epistar Blue 465nm x10 @700mA
  • Epistar Purple 420nm x10 @700mA
  • 60 degree Lens for all

As I was calculating the drivers, it turned out that this setup would require a total power of about 550W, which is a HUGE overkill and a pretty bad power bill. I then turned it all down to the following:

  • CREE XTE 450nm x10 @700ma
  • Epistar Neutral White X10 @150mA
  • Epistar Cold White x10 @150mA
  • Epistar Blue 450nm x10 @150mA
  • Epistar purple 420nm x5 @150mA

This setup seems a lot more reasonable with a total power requirement of about 150W.

  • Will it be sufficient to grow low to moderate light requirement corals?
  • Secondly, is driving 3W LEDs at 150mA good, or would it be too inefficient?
  • Is the color combination good?
  • Instead of having 20 white LEDs and 5 Purple, would 10 White and 10 purple be better for the corals?

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On 7/25/2017 at 2:06 AM, ashwin1224 said:

Im planning a DIY unit for my 37G. The tank is 24x20 and 18" deep. My initial plan was:

  • CREE XTE 450nm x20 @1000mA
  • Epistar Neutral White x10 @700mA
  • Epistar Cold White x10 @700mA
  • Epistar Blue 465nm x10 @700mA
  • Epistar Purple 420nm x10 @700mA
  • 60 degree Lens for all

As I was calculating the drivers, it turned out that this setup would require a total power of about 550W, which is a HUGE overkill and a pretty bad power bill. I then turned it all down to the following:

  • CREE XTE 450nm x10 @700ma
  • Epistar Neutral White X10 @150mA
  • Epistar Cold White x10 @150mA
  • Epistar Blue 450nm x10 @150mA
  • Epistar purple 420nm x5 @150mA

This setup seems a lot more reasonable with a total power requirement of about 150W.

  • Will it be sufficient to grow low to moderate light requirement corals?
  • Secondly, is driving 3W LEDs at 150mA good, or would it be too inefficient?
  • Is the color combination good?
  • Instead of having 20 white LEDs and 5 Purple, would 10 White and 10 purple be better for the corals?

 

 

That's a ton of emitters, and if you are buying so many just to dim them all down, you are just wasting money.

 

Where are you buying your LED's? Locally? From the US? If you can source them go with Luxeon LEDs, more efficient, saves money. For a tank like that an "evil cluster" of Bridgelux BXRC arrays or Vero boards, surrounded by a set of Royal Blue Luxeon M would be a good choice. If ordering from the US give the arrays from Blue Acro a try, very simple and high quality option, but I'm not sure how customs and shipping would effect your bottom line...

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6 hours ago, Lingwendil said:

 

 

That's a ton of emitters, and if you are buying so many just to dim them all down, you are just wasting money.

 

Where are you buying your LED's? Locally? From the US? If you can source them go with Luxeon LEDs, more efficient, saves money. For a tank like that an "evil cluster" of Bridgelux BXRC arrays or Vero boards, surrounded by a set of Royal Blue Luxeon M would be a good choice. If ordering from the US give the arrays from Blue Acro a try, very simple and high quality option, but I'm not sure how customs and shipping would effect your bottom line...

I am sourcing it from Aliexpress, and I am not in the USA as well.

I changed my setup a bit more, and its this now:

 

  • I am planning for two channels of 7A each.
  • Channel one will have 10x Cree RB at 700mA each.
  • Channel two will have 5 each of Blue, UV, 6500k and 10000k, running at 350mA each.
  • I'll use two SMPS with 12v 10A power, and a DIY arduino dimmer to get it down to 7A, or if need comes drive them with a bit more current.

Is this combination good? Ive got a lot of LEDs so I can go really big too, I am using basically just half of what Im ordering. But I want to keep the power bills low, and I think if the color combination is right then 14A of LED lights is good enough to grow most of the things I can get my hands on.

What do you say?

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Eh...

 

epistar LEDs just plain suck in many ways for most uses... In my experience. color shift and loss of brightness in particular.

 

Lose the 10,000k whites. Terrible for growth and will wash out color. replace them and the 6500k with a neutral white of around 4000-5000k. Depending on the look you want, you should use a 3-1 ratio of royal blue to white for a 14k look, with a 4-1 ratio for a closer to 18-20k look. I would probably be inclined to use two clusters over the tank, starting with (per side) 10 royal blue, to 4 neutral white as a baseline, and then add your other colors from there. maybe do 3 regular ("cool") blues each side on top of that. Preferably you should run Cree or Luxeon on all of these. Add a cyan or two per side to help cut down the pinkish hue that the light can get at higher white levels, or better yet, a luxeon "lime" per cluster.

 

UV is dangerous. You want a violet emitter here, Luxeon and SemiLEDs are the only ones making any suitable for aquarium lighting.  410-430nm is the range you want, as anything under 400 is detrimental and can "burn" corals. Unfortunately you will not find these easily without ordering from a US based vendor unless you intend to reflow your own emitters to a PCB. "True violet" or "hyper violet" are the usual names in the aquarium LED trade. The epistar violet LEDs usually brown out their lens in a couple months, so I wouldn't use them. I would probably start with 3-4 true violets on each side, from SemiLED.

 

Why 12 volt power supplies? it would be a lot less work to run longer series strings, and a higher voltage (24 or so) supply.

 

What drivers do you plan to use? I recommend the meanwell LDD series, especially if you choose to go with Arduino for a controller. They will dim to zero, and are natively set up to run off of 5 volts PWM, and will work with a PWM as low as 2.5 volts, so even work with the Arduino nano types.

 

 

I highly recommend you look at ordering from a US based supplier if at all possible, as stevesLEDs, LEDgroupbuy, or even (shudder) RapidLED will get you much better selection and quality than a fly-by-night fourth-shift supplier in china. My personal recommendation would be either a set of arrays from BlueAcro, or a set of 3-up tristars from StevesLEDs. You will be much happier in the long run, and will need to buy less LEDs to get the results you need and want.

 

 

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I highly recommend you look at ordering from a US based supplier if at all possible, at stevesLEDs....

I agree. I've had nothing except exceptional service from those guys.  Plus they'll do custom stuff as well.  I bought a couple of their "Parmax Extreme" boards, which are 14-up LEDs and don't require soldering or anything.  Saves tons of time and they don't outsource anything.  pme.thumb.jpg.ac76052067f1182fe5ce239aa7fdf261.jpg

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Hi,

 

Stumbled on here while searching for information about my DIY LED lighting project for my freshwater mbuna tank. I was amazed by the sheer amount of information and its quality that's available in the threads here, with a special mention to mr evilc66 for putting together the guides. Extremely useful and much appreciated effort. :) 

 

So, as I've said, I have a Juwel 180l mbuna tank (40" long, 17" wide, 20" deep) that's currently running the original T5 lighting (~100W) that came with it. My plan is to upgrade it to LED through a DIY project that will hopefully transform into something more. The aim is to create a unit that's upgrade-able and usable on a salt-water reef tank without a complete redesign. 

 

After spending countless hours reading as much as I could, I decided to get one of those cheap eBay LED lights, gut it and use it as housing. Second step is deciding which LEDs to run and how to arrange them. As I don't have a planted tank, PAR is not really an objective right now, my main focus being emphasizing the colors of the fish (yellow, orange, blue and purple), while being able to create something similar to a full day-cycle, simple weather effects and also have that blue dimmed light on during the night. With all that in mind, I was thinking of a fixture with 2 rows, 15 LEDs per row.

- 15 x Neutral Whites (>90 CRI, 5700K)

- 5 x Warm Whites (low CCT for dusk and dawn effects)

- 5 x Royal Blues (for night lighting and the ability to make a cooler white)

- 5 x Blue

 

Any suggestions please? :) Barring in mind what I said about wanting to upgrade to saltwater/reef in the future.

 

Thanks!

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Well, hate to point you off site, but your question may be better answered over at The Planted Tank's Lighting forum. Some of us are over there and there is some very useful discussion regarding getting high CRI for accurate color rendition as well as plant growth. Also, your project is different enough to really deserve a thread of its own.

 

Couple good reads-

 

http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/10-lighting/1213362-diy-led-build-125-gallon.html

 

http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/10-lighting/1215362-high-cri-diy-build.html

 

 

You'll see jeffkrol and I over there having plenty of brainstorming throughout different threads to tweak some nice setups.

 

 

Personally, I would be looking at the Bridgelux Vero 10 5600k 90CRI as your base white, and a handful of 90CRI 2700-3000k whites for supplement, and a few cool blue and cyan LEDs instead of the royal blue, as the 5600k whites will cover the royal range well on their own.

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6 hours ago, Lingwendil said:

Well, hate to point you off site, but your question may be better answered over at The Planted Tank's Lighting forum. Some of us are over there and there is some very useful discussion regarding getting high CRI for accurate color rendition as well as plant growth. Also, your project is different enough to really deserve a thread of its own.

Headed over there and posted a thread as well, cheers for the suggestion :)

 

6 hours ago, Lingwendil said:

Personally, I would be looking at the Bridgelux Vero 10 5600k 90CRI as your base white, and a handful of 90CRI 2700-3000k whites for supplement, and a few cool blue and cyan LEDs instead of the royal blue, as the 5600k whites will cover the royal range well on their own.

 

I've tended towards the CREEs simply because they were widely available from LED Tech (I'm based in Europe), whereas Bridgelux weren't. Trying to wrap my head around everything, any particular reason for choosing the Bridgelux over the Cree? The only one I can see is that it's more powerful, so it's probably offering more lm/$, am I missing something here?

 

Thanks!

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Color rendition, price, simplicity. The Vero have fantastic color compared to many offerings. The extra power doesn't hurt either. You could also do fine with high CRI Cree emitters as well, but if you can source the Veros it's worth it. Otherwise the Cree stuff will do fine, just will take more of them.

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I just installed my new Nanobox Retro plus M. I had a pro led supply 60 watt 30 white 30 royal blue I'm so confused was the easiest install I blinked up great turned the lights on and they were bright put splash cover on rerouted all my cords back and plugged the nanobox on and it was so much different real purple and the whites/lime I could hardly see any white when I turned down the royals the white/lime is very soft not bright Its my first day and I think I have to explore more with the settings I tried to get it a whiter color Someone that knows this light do you have a real purple tone because I put the whites at 40% and the blues 60% And that's what I saw on one of the forums that you don't want to shock the tank I'm exhausted tomorrow's another day to play with it     

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Its been a few years since I last visited this site, but I'm so glad to have found this thread! It's a very long read, but worth it! I'm planning a diy build for a few tanks 3 of which will be 20gals and under. I have a few questions that I am sure have been answered somewhere in the thread but it may take me a few days to find them. I'm hoping someone wouldn't mind answering here or giving me an indication of which page of the 125 page thread the answers to my questions are 😅

 

1) how do you determine the amount of LEDs needed to cover the tank? 

 

2) I am a complete novice at working with LEDs, what is the best resource for buying some parts to practice with? Doesnt have to be the best quality for practice but I may use them at some point on other tanks.

 

3) is there a major difference in cost between building (diy) And buying? I saw it mentioned that one fixture cost about 600 for the builder, which is about what I would expect a purchased unit to run as well. Is there a cost savings in diy or is it just for the ability to customize? 

 

Thanks in advance to anyone with insight or answers 

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The year 1961 brought the world the very first light emitting diode – what we now commonly call the LED.  While a LED outputs light, it is not a traditional “light bulb”, but rather an electronic component which generates when voltage passes through.

In the 50+ years since that first LED, technology has brought these tiny little “lightbulbs” a long way, to the point of breaking into the stage lighting industry in the last 10 years.

Today, this trendy light source has everyone talking.  Some people love LED’s.  Other people despise them, and nearly everybody is confused about the differences between different types of LED’s and LED fixtures.

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