Washed out lighting... help. - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-21-2006, 05:29 AM Thread Starter
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Washed out lighting... help.

Hey all,

I recently bought a power compact lighting kit for my 46 bowfront with square pins. The specs on the kit are 2, 96 watt bulbs and the strip is 36 inches long. I am just using the bulbs that came with it, the 96 watt ACTINIC ( I know looks pretty unrealistic for a planted tank) and a 96 watt 12,000K daylight bulb. I am keeping just the daylight bulb on right now, cause i dont really like how the blue makes my driftwood look fake... but the color of this bulb is so BLAH by itself. My question is what type of bulbs can i replace the current two, that will give optimal plant growth, and look really clear in order to bring out the colors of the fish, plants, and driftwood successfully? In one of my smaller tank i have just an AQUAGLOW flourescent light, the kind you find at petsmart, and i LOVE the way it brings out the color of my fish and the decor in the tank. Help me out with this perdicament please cause i am a little discouraged with these lights...

P.S. Where to find the lights suggested would also be appreciated!

as always... THANKS FOR THE INPUT
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-21-2006, 06:14 AM
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i would suggest using a combination of 6,700 and 10,000k if you don't want the actinic. 2 96 watt bulbs are a lot for a 46 bow front IMO. that's 4 wpg and a hell of a lot of headache a long with it. i have a 38 gallon with 116 watts on it and it produces out a lot. you're going to have a lot of dosing and up keep with that much light. make way for the algae. if i were you, i would keep an actinic (for coloring because IMO, actinics bring out great colors in neons, discus, etc.) and put a 10,000k bulb in the other. that way you will have 96 watts instead as the actinic does no good for the plants.

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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-21-2006, 06:24 AM Thread Starter
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Do you know if the combo of the actinic and the 10,000 will be a little less blue and a make a nicer color than the actinic and the 12,000? Thanks for the help, i appreciate it
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-21-2006, 06:51 AM
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actually, yes. i didn't think of that. you could do a 10,000k/actinic 03 + 10,000k/6,700k.

Power Compact Bulbs - Marine Depot - Marine and Reef Aquarium Super Store

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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-21-2006, 09:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danepatrick View Post
i would suggest using a combination of 6,700 and 10,000k if you don't want the actinic. 2 96 watt bulbs are a lot for a 46 bow front IMO. that's 4 wpg and a hell of a lot of headache a long with it. i have a 38 gallon with 116 watts on it and it produces out a lot. you're going to have a lot of dosing and up keep with that much light. make way for the algae. if i were you, i would keep an actinic (for coloring because IMO, actinics bring out great colors in neons, discus, etc.) and put a 10,000k bulb in the other. that way you will have 96 watts instead as the actinic does no good for the plants.

4 wpg is fine as long as you do pressurized co2 (2 watts for pressurized is pretty low). If you are not doing pressurized 4 wpg is going to be too much. Also guessing by the bulbs that came with the light, the light is a jebo odyssea branded light. This light does not have the best reflectors. I would go with a 6700k and a 10000k bulb and if you find it is too much light stagger it. Have one bulb on for 8-10 hours and turn the other one on mid day for about 4 hours.
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-21-2006, 12:54 PM
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I have 4.8 wpg in a 40 gallon, and you definitely have to stay on top of things with the high light. Pressurized co2 is a MUST. You could get one of those corallife colormax bulbs, or just stagger the lighting. My lighting starts off with 1 96 watt 6700/10000k bulb on for 3 hours, then both bulbs for 3 hours, then a 6700k bulb for 3 hours. I like to have the high peak during the midday period since I have some high light plants.

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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-21-2006, 08:12 PM Thread Starter
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what about this option: Get a 96 watt 50/50 actinic/10,000k bulb and pair it with either a 10,000 or a 6700k bulb? That would only give me about 3W per gallon, correct? Would that be also a nice combo of the lights to bring out the colors in the fish, plants,and the driftwood?


Part two: swtiching of both bulbs will be done in the future (funding problems), but for now i will be able to switch out atleast one of the bulbs. I figure if i switch out the 12,000 with a 10,000 that will give me a more crisp light, correct? And i can keep the 96 watt actinic bulb with the 10,000 bulb on together and i will have 2W per gallon, that way my DIY co2 producer will not have to be upgraded to a pressurized system (also funding problems). Will this be a good option for now that should give me the right amount of light with the right amount of Co2, while still looking better than the 12,000k bulb?
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-21-2006, 10:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DC.UNC View Post
what about this option: Get a 96 watt 50/50 actinic/10,000k bulb and pair it with either a 10,000 or a 6700k bulb? That would only give me about 3W per gallon, correct? Would that be also a nice combo of the lights to bring out the colors in the fish, plants,and the driftwood?
i believe that's the idea i gave you to begin with.

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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-22-2006, 12:33 AM
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If you don't like the actinic now, you won't later. I got some, and I really disliked how they looked on a freshwater aquarium.

Everyone here is saying how awful a high light tank is, but there are a lot of benefits to it... like being able to grow any plant and having your plants grow like weeds to make a new source of income, not to mention a sense of satisfaction. You already have the fixture, I would suggest 2 x 96W 10 000K or 12 000K bulbs (like you already have). The white/blue is nice, and the yellow/white of 6700K(although it's the proper kelvin rating for plants) is overrated.

Especially since you said you liked the Aqua-glo...they are 12 000K I believe.

Adam

EDIT: Just realized you had funding problems. A high light plant is not the way to go...for now.
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-22-2006, 12:45 AM
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My vote goes to 8800K bulbs. Not quite as blue-white as the typical 10000K bulb. I use a pair of them (96w 8800K bulbs) over my 40g tank.

Champion Lighting is the only place I can find them in suqare-pin 96w form.

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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-22-2006, 01:03 AM
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Especially since you said you liked the Aqua-glo...they are 12 000K I believe.
aqua-glos are said to be 18,000k.

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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 12-22-2006, 04:06 AM Thread Starter
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First I wanted to thank everyone who has responded to my thread. It seems as if I made a mistake buying the double compact fluorescent fixture. I was just thinking about increasing the lighting in the long run... so it would be a better idea to just buy the double so i dont have to upgrade later. I have about 9 fish in my tank along with the driftwood. I am planning on putting some quick growing plants in there tomorrow. One last question: The range of light spectrums for the fluorescent get more blue-ish white as they increase? Is this correct, that a 6700k light will be a lot more yellow than a 10,000k light (which will be more blue?)

If anyone was curious the fish in the tank to start are 5 penguin tetras, 1 red-blue columbian tetra (going to get more)
and 3 praecox rainbows.

I am making sure that the water and fish in there will be healthy and stable enough before i add my 2 peppermint plecos.

What are some families of plants that do well at 2-3 watts per gallon of lighting, and a DIY co2 reactor, 3 liter bottle, with bubble ladder? (planning to upgrade in the future)

I will be testing my kh and ph soon and see where my level of dissolved co2 in the tank is, but i was curious some of the families of plants that i should start off my tank by planting?

Thank ya!
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