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I have a question for a DIY LED

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I'm starting a DIY LED for a 29 tank its not bio-cube.  I have all the drivers and LEDs but i have a few questions.


I have 24 LEDs 3w Cree, Is that enough for a 29 gallon reef? or would i need more, I am stocking the tank with few SPS and LPS no softs (maybe just mushrooms).  The other question I have is the colors I have 6 Royal blues, 6 Blues, 2 Reds, 2 greens, 2 UV, 6 Cool-whites Is that a good ratio to start ? or what would you guys suggest ? The look on the display I'm going for are more of a blue/purple/clear color.  

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Don't use UV, use violet. Cree does not make a violet. Use neutral white rather than cool white, or your color won't be as nice as it could be, as cool whites have poor color rendition of the warmer colors. Red is ok, you may find them overpowering in such high amounts, they may need dimming. Green is pointless, but Cyan will work well, and fills some "gaps" in the output of the whites. Six royal blues isn't enough, you would need twelve, maybe fourteen or so. The regular blues are good, may not need that many, but you can always dim them.


For LPS/softies, a good starting point would be two clusters, each consisting of-


6-8 royal blue

2-3 regular blue

1-2 violet (SemiLEDs U70 violet, 415~420nm)

3-4 neutral white 4000k (higher CRI is better, you want at the very least an 80CRI white for good color)

1 cyan


Do not do them in a "grid" or "rows", as you will get poor color mixing. Cluster them as tight as you can. This should get you a nice 18-20k sort of look and will allow room for adjustment to get a very nice look, and will give plenty of light in the correct ranges for good growth.


If you need to buy more emitters, I like Steve's LEDs. They carry the much more efficient Luxeon series of LEDs (more efficient, and better consistency than Cree!) and they are quite affordable as well.


This would be a good setup for such a tall tank with your intended livestock, and if you stray to the higher emitter count would work well for some less demanding SPS in the upper half of the tank.


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2 years ago I built a LED light with luxon 3W for my IM Lagoon 24G.

8 royal blue

2 cold blue

3 hyper viola

2 lime

3 normal white

4 warm white


I added a bluefish mini controller to drive them. 

Is the red would be better choice opposite of the lime? I checked many bulb spectrum and light setup but they didn’t recommend the red. I might use the red in the night section only. I have purchased 2 red and additional hyper viola to upgrade the actual setup. I could merge the whites or the blues to make a spare channel on the controller.

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You're good on the red with the warm and neutral white already. I wouldn't swap the lime out for them, but if you wanted to add them to the fixture for sunrise/sunset or nighttime viewing I don't see an issue. I like lime enough to not want to run without them when I can help it.

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I would suggest (if you would not buy more led)

channel 1 actinic: 5 royal blue, 3 blue, 1 uv

channel 2 full spectrum white: 2 cool white, 2 green, 3 blue, 1 royal blue, 1 uv

Channel 3 dawn/dusk: 4 cool white, 2 red

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