Question on lighting - The Planted Tank Forum

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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-03-2013, 03:30 AM Thread Starter
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Question on lighting

I read that higher the K rating on a bulb will be beneficial for plant growth and better photo-synthesis. So, I bought 2 ATI Blue Plus and put that along with the other 2 bulbs which are in the 6500k range. ATI Blue Plus claims to have a rating of 20000k. The reason I went for this to get red plants back to red since they have turned green from red like the Lugwigia and Glandulosa.

Am I overdoing this to get better plant growth or asking trouble for algae?

I have 4 T5s now at 54w each including the new bulbs. I do EI dosing for a 75g heavily planted tank with lighting about 7 hrs a day with pressurized CO2.

Appreciate your thoughts on this.
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-03-2013, 03:42 AM
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12,000k and higher are meant for saltwater reef tanks, for planted tanks you want to stay between 5000k & 10,000k bulbs because 6500k is the closest to middle of the day sunlight. Here's a kelvin lighting scale so you can see why you should stay between 5000k & 10,000k bulbs.

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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-03-2013, 03:45 AM
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Kelvin ratings mean nothing to the light intensity, its simply the color it produces. 6000k to 7000k in the color spectrum best represents mid day sun so that is what is best for plant growth, if you're wanting more intense lighting you need to be looking at wattage, or if you can find the PAR rating for your light fixture that is a better way to tell your light intensity at set distances in your tank


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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-03-2013, 04:24 AM Thread Starter
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Re

Thanks for showing the right info here.

So, if there is more blue, it doesnt help photosynthesis, is it? Looks like I got to read the wrong information on plants doing better photosynthesis with more blue.

I am kind of struggling to keep the red plants red. So, trying different combinations to make it work. Now, it looks all green but very healthy plants with proper EI dosing routine and water changes. Any inputs will be well taken! :-
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-03-2013, 10:20 AM
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4 t5ho is a good amount of light and you're right that plants do use some blue to photosynthesize but also adding more blue will make the reds less noticeable to our human eyes. You could try a rosette bulb or two to help with your perception of the plant, and also I believe higher iron and phosphate levels will help with the plant producing the red pigments.

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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-03-2013, 03:11 PM
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So far as red perception goes, I've read good reviews of the Finnex Monster Ray (once you get a little red back)... Finnex Monster Ray LED
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-03-2013, 04:28 PM
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The monster ray would really make the colors pop, but it has really low par values so it won't help your plant growth and with you already having two t5 fixtures on your tank I don't know how much space you have left on top. With my ray 2 and coralife dual t5ho fixtures on my 75g the only place I have left to put something is on the glass that flips up

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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-03-2013, 07:49 PM Thread Starter
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Good information from all you, folks! Really appreciate it!

Last night I put 2 ATI Blue Plus and my neons were looking very bright and a bit of the red plants starting to look a BIT red. Today, instead of 2, I just put one in the middle with all other 6500 T5s in the mix totaling it to 4.

The part of the monster ray makes sense, but am not sure how much it will aid plant growth, the factor which I dont want to mess too much with at this point.

Need to see how this will mix. UDGags had a similar combination although he was doing 8 on a 125g tank.
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-03-2013, 07:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fishlover108 View Post
Thanks for showing the right info here.

So, if there is more blue, it doesn't help photosynthesis, is it? Looks like I got to read the wrong information on plants doing better photosynthesis with more blue.

I am kind of struggling to keep the red plants red. So, trying different combinations to make it work. Now, it looks all green but very healthy plants with proper EI dosing routine and water changes. Any inputs will be well taken! :-
Err.. not quite.. and yes stay away a bit from "color" temp" as it is almost meaningless to plants.. as it is an average color output of multiple wavelengths (some important some not)...


Blue and red mixed would produce "ideal" spectrum for "ideal plants" but of course things are not that simple.. as you can see from the above chart..
Technically plants do "better" w/ a lot of red in the correct wavelength and less blue at the correct wavelength..
I believe it is a 3:1 ratio.. BUT it makes your tank not "natural" looking. which is why we "compromise" in spectrum..and to keep your plants from looking "washed out"
W/ just actinic blue/10000K white your plants will look white till you take them out of that light and see them in "daylight".... because absorption far exceeds reflection (esp. the green "reflection"..since little is present)

Oh w/ that much blue be very careful your plants aren't green from algae (personal experience)

Think pink is the new "white".. (sorry just a mild inside joke.. it used to be pumpkin orange, long story.. read my past posts if you really want an answer..)

As to red red.. well a lot will depend on visual perception based on color temp of your light.. and to be honest, I'm not quite sure it is just intensity or certain wavelengths that would add the pigment red (which you still will not "see" if your light has no red to reflect back..) Most theory is red is a supplement pigment used to absorb high intensity light to avoid damage to chlorophyll, but this is still not the whole answer probably... and is species dependent.



A bit on red pigment production:
Quote:
Environmental factors affecting anthocyanin production include light (intensity and wavelength, with blue and UV being most effective), temperature, water and carbohydrate levels, and the concentrations of the elements nitrogen, phosphorous and boron in the growth medium. Anthocyanin production can be induced by light, blue being the most effective color. Low light levels also induce the formation of different flavonoid pigments, which is another interesting adaptive response on the part of plants.
http://www.carnivorousplants.org/cpn...nthocyanin.htm
Quote:
More than five enzymes are thus required to synthesize these pigments, each working in concert. Any even minor disruption in any of the mechanism of these enzymes by either genetic or environmental factors would halt anthocyanin production.
sorry I'm an annoying fact collector............
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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-03-2013, 09:56 PM Thread Starter
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My tank - FWIW

This is my tank, by the way.... all green! No reds :-( Anything I put red, turns green.... Magical!!!!!
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-03-2013, 10:10 PM
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Your tank looks really nice. Man if you get a blood shot red in there it will be something else

hmm, I guess you will have a big difference when you switch the blues to 6500k.

My Most Unimaginative Tank on Plantedtank > http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...082&highlight=

My Hens and Chicks Plants > http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...722&highlight=

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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-04-2013, 12:34 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Jeff for all that detailed analysis. And Samee, totally agree with you.

Will height of the light make any difference? I kept it around 9" from the top of the tank and keep it ON for 7 hours straight? Any idea if this is OK or I need to change any of these parameters? :-) Btw, with the EI dosing, I started adding a bit more FE into the water couple times a week with excel in the same ratio of couple times a week alternate to FE days and during water changes.
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-04-2013, 01:35 PM
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Best redding so far but I tweak my light "color" all the time. I can dim each of the 2 channels.. actinic/10000K and the 660nm red..
for reference "Sunset Platys".. foxtail is getting it"s "orangy" stems back..Fine leaved thingy in back is really a subtle pink in upper areas..
I'm assuming that broad leaf is Ludwigia repens, goes in and out of red/green and at one time was practically white..Had to knock down my Water wysteria again since it was breaching the surface.. A couple of days I do an overall to add to my LED build gallery..
One change from my orig design.. I swapped drivers on the "blue" line and this current one seems to underpower it, and the dimming is not "fine".. well fine but in a narrow range of the pot... I've ordered a replacement..


Last edited by jeffkrol; 07-04-2013 at 02:29 PM. Reason: incorrect wavelength
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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-04-2013, 08:29 PM Thread Starter
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Cool tank, Jeff! I like the reds showing up.
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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 07-04-2013, 08:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fishlover108 View Post
This is my tank, by the way.... all green! No reds :-( Anything I put red, turns green.... Magical!!!!!

PLEASE post a journal of your tank. I love it SOOOOOOOO much. It's just beautiful.


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