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Cultivated Reef

42 LEDs fluval edge replacment


Lucasmaximas

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Hi,

I am currently running a 6 gallon fluval edge with the mr11 LEDs. In my set up I have a couple I hermits, turbos and a peppermint shrimp. GSP colony and 2 zoa polyp frags. I'm thinking of replacing my current lights with either the new 21 led fixture or the 42 led fixture designed for the larger 12g edge. Both the new fixtures have 3 blue LEDs built in they can be run in daylight mode white and blue or moonlight mode just blue.

 

I was wondering if anyone has converted to the new system?

Will the 3 blue LEDs be enough to bring out the zoas fluorescent colours in daylight mode?

Would 42 LEDs be to bright or the corals in the smaller tank?

 

What are people's thoughts?

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Milad LEDGroupBuy.com
Hi,

I am currently running a 6 gallon fluval edge with the mr11 LEDs. In my set up I have a couple I hermits, turbos and a peppermint shrimp. GSP colony and 2 zoa polyp frags. I'm thinking of replacing my current lights with either the new 21 led fixture or the 42 led fixture designed for the larger 12g edge. Both the new fixtures have 3 blue LEDs built in they can be run in daylight mode white and blue or moonlight mode just blue.

 

I was wondering if anyone has converted to the new system?

Will the 3 blue LEDs be enough to bring out the zoas fluorescent colours in daylight mode?

Would 42 LEDs be to bright or the corals in the smaller tank?

 

What are people's thoughts?

 

Which LEDs are you going to use? That makes a huge difference in your question.

 

Right now you are basically asking something similar in term of: "Do you think I can kick a soccer ball better than John". Who the heck is john and what does he do?

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4030362[/url]']

 

I'm thinking of replacing my current lights with either the new 21 led fixture or the 42 led fixture designed for the larger 12g edge.

 

http://www.nano-reef.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=290450

 

It is 42 LEDs, which include 39 whites and 3 blues, and the total wattage for all of them is ~6watt (0.15 watts each).

IMO just DIY it. A dim4 with a 5A 12v power supply can flat out run (at 500 mA anyway) a dozen 3w cree LEDs and give you a lot of control over brightness and on/off timing. And 12 three watt Crees is super overkill for a fluval edge. Just blows that replacement fluval light out of the water.

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http://www.nano-reef.com/forums/index.php?showtopic=290450

 

It is 42 LEDs, which include 39 whites and 3 blues, and the total wattage for all of them is ~6watt (0.15 watts each).

IMO just DIY it. A dim4 with a 5A 12v power supply can flat out run (at 500 mA anyway) a dozen 3w cree LEDs and give you a lot of control over brightness and on/off timing. And 12 three watt Crees is super overkill for a fluval edge. Just blows that replacement fluval light out of the water.

That sounds great but to be honest I'm a little confussed, lighting isn't my string point. What are 3 watt Cree LEDs and where would I get them? How would I go about setting it up?

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DIY isn't for everybody--if you don't already know how to solder (at least a little bit) it'll be somewhat of a challenge. I'm not saying "give up" by any means, if you have never done this before--I hadn't either, a year ago, and now I'm building lights for my tank that would make Radions blush.

 

Anyway, 3W LEDs are pretty much the standard these days for high-powered LED reef lighting. Some companies use smaller LEDs (which are a lot cheaper and generate a lot less heat), but for the most part (with a few exceptions! Don't flame me to death!) these turn out to be underpowered. Most of the do-it-yourself stuff is geared toward three watt LEDs.

 

There are two major "high end" brands of 3 watt LEDs, which are Cree and Luxeon Rebels. Crees run at slightly lower amperage (700mA vs. 1000mA for the rebels) and are more popular and much easier to buy (most of the big LED stores, including the sponsors on this forum LEDgroupbuy (which is Milad's company; he posted above) and RapidLED, sell Crees. Many places also sell the not-quite-as-awesome but cheaper Bridgelux LEDs. The difference per LED is like $4 each for Crees vs. $2 each for Bridgelux. Honestly if you're only buying twelve, it's not going to break the bank either way, so I'd go for the good ones.

 

There's some debate about Crees vs. Rebels. I will say that I prefer Rebels myself, but they do need to be driven with a little more amperage, making them a poor choice for use with a Dim4 (which was my other recommendation above), which runs everything at 500mA.

 

The Dim4 is from Milad's company and is $85 or so. It is a small board that can control AND DRIVE up to four strings of three 3W LEDs. They have to be in strings of 3, but you can use fewer strings if you want fewer LEDs (like, 3, 6, 9, or 12 total LEDs). I've got one running the lights on my pico (as of this morning; literally got the thing in the mail yesterday and hooked it up in under an hour last night. I'll take some pictures soon, if my camera stops being stupid). Anyway, although you can get a driver to drive 12 LEDs for a lot cheaper than $85, it will just be on/off or on/dim/off. The Dim4 lets you individually control each string of three LEDs, and has built in timers so you can automate dimming them through the course of the day (for sunrise/sunset effects, etc).

 

There are two schools of thought on what colors of LEDs to use--many recommend a 2:1 ratio of royal blue to neutral white LEDs, and this is sort of the 'classic 14k metal halide' look. A second school of thought is to take that and add a few more colors to it, in order to enhance the photosynthetically-active light available to corals, and in order to bring out their colors a bit more. The typical colors that are added are true violet (~400-420nm wavelength), deep red (660nm), and cyan (495nm). A few people will add some "cool blue" LEDs along with the red and cyan ones (because red + blue + green, in the world of light, makes white--so your eye gets tricked into not seeing the red and green individually).

 

The high-powered 3 watt LEDs need to be attached to a heatsink because they get kinda hot, reducing their operational lifetime. It should be possible to find a heatsink that will fit neatly inside the Fluval Edge's hood, thus allowing you to preserve the really nice, finished appearance of the unique tank while still getting lights that are fairly worthwhile (this is a lot of the problem, in my opinion, with commercial solutions--the ones that work well aren't made to fit your tank in particular, and may make it look like crap).

 

Anyway, wiring to a Dim4 is ridiculously easy. In theory if you used all four channels (twelve LEDs total), you would have to solder something like 16 points (8 wires from + to -) in total.

 

For completness' sake, I will also note that most of the time (when not using a Dim4), you use a 'driver' that plugs in on one side, and has a couple of wires (+ and -) on the other side that connect to your LED array. Sometimes there are a few other wires that are used for dimming as well, if you have a dimmable driver.

 

Anyway, like I said, not for everybody. If this stuff makes your head spin, well, there are a lot of people that it does that to, and they can almost always find commercially-available solutions that work very well for them! But for me, with an admittedly pretty-limited do-it-yourself ability (I sure as hell can't build my own fishtank, and I've never drilled one myself either!), this stuff is still not too bad...and in many cases gets you a way better light and a much cleaner install than you can find elsewhere.

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Wow, thanks for all the information that really makes the whole thing sound alot more simple!

I'm in the uk and alot of the single LEDs like the Cree ones you were talki g about are alot harder/more expensive to come by.

Before i read your reply I had asked for a quote from

An eBay company for:

6x20 cm strips of bright white 5050 LEDs

Each strip contains 12 LEDs at 6500k and the strip has a total wattage of 2.88 watts

6x20 cm strips of blue LEDs again 12 LEDs per strip and at 465-475nm

 

This would give a total of 17.28 of white light and similar I not the same for the blue. The white and blue will be on separate dimmer switchs so that I can play around and balance out the colour.

 

I would use this to supplement/replace the 2 mr11 LEDs rated at 1.8w each and 10000k

 

Does this sound adequate to replace the mr11s?

Would it be better to leave the mr11s in place and simply add the strips?

Do the colours, spectrum sound ok?

Would you look at diffrent colours/ratios of colours

 

Many thanks

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