PFO bulb specific ballasts - double check the model numbers! - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 07-08-2005, 12:03 PM Thread Starter
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Exclamation PFO bulb specific ballasts - double check the model numbers!

I realize that this may only apply to .01 of you, but I thought I would post my experience anyway.

I run a 250W Metal Halide pendant. It's a CustomSeaLife model. I ordered it right before they closed shop. It came with a CustomSeaLife ballast.

After researching a bit online, I deceided on the 250W 6.5K Iwasaki bulb for it.

Recently, I became aware that PFO manufacturs a ballast specifically for this bulb, as well as several others:

MH-Standard US ballast which operate most types of single ended lamps
HQI-Ballasts designed to operate most European and double ended lamps optimally
PS-Similar to standard US ballast, but it has an ignitor. The ignitor aids in starting AB lamps
EYE-Mercury ballast designed to operate the Iwasaki lamps optimally
EL-Electronic ballast
IC-Ice Cap Ballast
I placed an order for the Iwasaki 250W ballast from Innovative Lighting Solutions:

I received it, and found that the electrical socket on the ballast didn't match my CustomSeaLife connector. So, I had to order a PFO male plug, cut off the CustomSeaLife connector on my pendant, and splice in the PFO connector.

After nearly a month, I happened to notice that the label on the ballast has different model numbers, and the one that is checked is "AQI-250MH-120V". I had originally assumed this was the correct ballast, but I later learned that Iwasaki's logo is "EYE". So, the model number that should be checked is "AQI-250EYE-120V". I received the wrong ballast! It's the standard model, not the Iwasaki specific model.

I recently became aware of this as well:

Champion Lighting is calling these "1x150 Iwasaki Only PFO Ballast Assembly." PFO does not make 150W Iwasaki ballasts!

My ballast was drop shipped from PFO.

If you order PFO ballasts, make certain you double check the model number when you receive it to make sure you received what you intended to order!

In the meantime, I have sent e-mails to Champion Lighting, Innovative Lighting, and PFO Lighting to see what they have to say about this. I have not asked for an exchange, but we'll see if they offer.
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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 09-12-2005, 03:02 AM
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Glad that you posted on this subject. I am considering bidding on a MH ballast and I will check on what type of bulb it will accept. Better before than after!


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