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Innovative Marine Aquariums

Is this light sufficient?


Skill Thiz

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Not a very strong light. It will keep softs and zoas but they will loose the color pop with a 2 bulb might go for a 4-6 bulb fixture.

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eddiecorrea

Get a kessil and call it good. They can be found for less than $200 used and are a top of the line LED fixture for anything with about an 18x18 footprint.

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People probably get tired of hearing this, but here it goes. Try a basic DIY led build.

 

If you don't want to spend more than 200 on a 4 bulb, you will not be happy when you need to replace those 4 bulbs in 10-12 months. It'll be between half the price or equal to the fixtures resale value at that time.

 

That being said, I used a 2 bulb fixture (nova extreme t5ho) and had very good coloring in my softies and Lps, however that was over a 10 gallon. Much smaller than yours. I even kept a birdsnest in there.

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How much would a DIY LED setup cost?

 

Cause I'm inbetween using two PAR38's, or just buying two of the Current USA 2 bulb fixture for $75+shipping each.

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How much would a DIY LED setup cost?

 

Cause I'm inbetween using two PAR38's, or just buying two of the Current USA 2 bulb fixture for $75+shipping each.

 

 

I would imagine 2 par38's would be way better then a 2 bulb t5 fixture - I've seen some pretty nice tanks kept under par38's

 

As for bulbs for the fixture - you would need to do some research, most often the bulbs that come with the fixtures standard aren't the best and would probably be OK for little while but the better bulbs would make a huge difference.

 

I was looking at one of the LED set up from Japan with the bridgelux led's like this one:

 

http://www.aliexpress.com/store/product/Fr..._578815592.html

 

There is a huge thread on another board about these and all the review are really positive that I've seen. I haven't pulled the trigger on one myself.... I have other priorities right now but I'm really tempted to try it out.

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Par 38's would be a good choice. Basically just very convenient, plug and play LEDs. It's fun to figure out an attractive way to mount them also. (IMO atleast)

 

A 24 led DIY from aquastyle cost me 132.00 shipped from china to ny. That included heatsink, plaster, LEDs, drivers, wiring, hanging kit, and a fan and tester. Pretty good deal. Some people don't like the color of whites on these fixtures though. Best bet if you want to DIY is talk to one of the sponsors here, or better yet, an unbiased advocate for LEDs like jedimasterben. I'm not too good with the technical stuff, but Ben is full of information on it.

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I don't think it makes sense to recommend a DIY LED build to someone that's new in the hobby. Unless you have experience, equipment to solder, etc, it isn't going to end up looking good or being what you want. Your best bet is to spend $100 on a cheap 4x24W fixture. Its a good basic light that will allow you to keep a lot of corals. Then you can have $100 left over to start saving up for the $300+ light that you will end up wanting anyway.

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See, I'm having an issue.

 

If I go with 2 24IN T5 dual bulbs, so 4 bulbs total it's $200, and bulbs need replacing/changing.

 

If I get these: http://www.drsfostersmith.com/Product/prod...fm?pcatid=16770 I would need two people are telling me.

 

PAR38's are seeming like the way to go. Cause I'm not a DIY kind of person, I'm not too handy..

 

I guess I'll buy some used PAR38's off someone? I'll have to buy two, everyone is telling me one won't work.

 

So I'll buy two, and buy two fixtures for them I guess?

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I don't think it makes sense to recommend a DIY LED build to someone that's new in the hobby. Unless you have experience, equipment to solder, etc, it isn't going to end up looking good or being what you want. Your best bet is to spend $100 on a cheap 4x24W fixture. Its a good basic light that will allow you to keep a lot of corals. Then you can have $100 left over to start saving up for the $300+ light that you will end up wanting anyway.

:huh: ??? There are people in this hobby for 30+ years who have soldered nothing in ther life, and people who have no idea that reef tanks even exist that are quite skilled with solder. I think I'm failing to see how a piece together led set up with written instructions and pictures is a bad idea for someone new to reef keeping.

 

See, I'm having an issue.

 

If I go with 2 24IN T5 dual bulbs, so 4 bulbs total it's $200, and bulbs need replacing/changing.

 

If I get these: http://www.drsfostersmith.com/Product/prod...fm?pcatid=16770 I would need two people are telling me.

 

PAR38's are seeming like the way to go. Cause I'm not a DIY kind of person, I'm not too handy..

 

I guess I'll buy some used PAR38's off someone? I'll have to buy two, everyone is telling me one won't work.

 

So I'll buy two, and buy two fixtures for them I guess?

If you aren't handy, I think two of those bulbs would be best suited for you. Good luck with your decision.

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Im sure that two 18w par38s would be plenty for anything you plan on keeping, now or later and without the need to upgrade later.

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TeflonTomDosh

You could probably buy individual reflectors, geisman/ati bulbs for that thing and come out under 200 bucks. and anything you put in your tank would POP.

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for an affordable t5 look at oddysea 96w 4xt5ho, they aren't bad for the price, but you will want to upgrade bulbs.. that is what I have.. but honestly I should have done a little more waiting/reading.. I would have gone with an LED setup of some sort (PARs, Kessil, AI, etc..).

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:huh: ??? There are people in this hobby for 30+ years who have soldered nothing in ther life, and people who have no idea that reef tanks even exist that are quite skilled with solder. I think I'm failing to see how a piece together led set up with written instructions and pictures is a bad idea for someone new to reef keeping.

 

 

If you aren't handy, I think two of those bulbs would be best suited for you. Good luck with your decision.

 

If he is new to the hobby, he has no idea what color he wants, how much spread he is looking for, and what qualities he is looking for in LEDs. He also won't come up with any DIY fixture that looks good. Honestly, most of the DIY fixtures look like crap (i.e., $200 will get you a raw looking heatsink with some hanging wires on plant hangers that would be better off on a backyard fence). Of course there are exceptions and they are usually from guys that have been in the hobby long enough to know exactly what they want in a light's capabilities and aesthetics.

 

I know LEDs are cool, but they aren't the answer for everyone and this is a perfect example of when they wouldn't be ideal, IMO. On a tank this size, he won't be able to have good coverage using PAR30s/PAR38s without blowing his budget.

 

I still think he should spend $100 on a 4x24W T5 fixture from somewhere like aquatraders or fishneedit.

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Oooohh... I thought you meant the fixture itself would come out bad :D. I see wht you are saying now, and it is true. I still think if a new person to the hobby spoke to the right people, they could easily point them in the right direction.

 

My major dilemma starting out was the noob mindset of "I just want enough lighting for a few softies. " Everyone know a month later, that that won't hold true :). I ended up paying about the same amount of money on my cheap 2 bulb t5 as I did on my LEDs when I needed to upgrade to support my clam. The heatsink is better than others I've seen, blues are fine, hanging kit could be a bit longer but it's doable. The only thin I wish I did different was get a third driver to run more of a full spectrum, but I guess that's what stunner strips are for.

 

Not that it matters to this thread anymore, I believe op purchased some 38's already.

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I know where you are coming from pat, but after having used a 1:1 RB/CW mix on one LED setup I ran, and a 4 NW/CW/RB/B mix on the last LED setup I ran, plus seeing a lot of LEDs in person (online pics are never accurate) I'm much more comfortable dropping coin on LEDs now than when they first came out. At least with T5's you can get away with spending only an additional $25 to tweak your color.

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