Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Maryland, United States
Lighting Question -New to Forum
I recently joined this forum in search of some tips on a 33 long I'm setting up as a low-tech planted tank.
I've been keeping planted tanks for about 15 years and aquariums for as long as I can remember. I worked in stores and hatcheries throughout college and grad-school to help support my hobby and pay for books.
I have 4 "display" tanks currently - 3 nano tanks, all with lots of plants and a 55 gallon with just a few that marbled headstanders won't eat. There are an additional 9 tanks on a rack in the fish/utility room, along with rubbermaid tubs for quarantine and a stock tank outside for the summer. I have breeding groups of blue pearl shrimp, white cloud mountain minnows, and an unspecified species of Guianacara, along with occasional spawns from other fish and some snowball shrimp that I'm working with. I also help to maintain my husband's 150 gallon planted aquarium.
I don't do CO2 and refuse to get into it "because." I sometimes use liquid ferts when I can remember, but I tend to forget.
My nano tanks all run with LED fixtures that came with them. The 55 gallon is on a twin-tube T5 NO fixture, and the 150 is on a beamswork LED. I have an assortment of T8 bulbs over the holding tanks in the fish room.
Of all the lights I've tried, my favorite combination, visually, has always been a twin tube T8 fitted with an Aquaglo (18000 K) and a Floraglo (2800K) bulb. This is obviously a little outdated. It has always grown plants well for me, too.
So, here's the conundrum - this 33L is (I swear, I swear) my LAST tank. I want to set it up as a show tank with plants and a few of my favorite types of fish. I want the color effect that I got with the old t8 combo, but I'd like to go with something more modern (especially since finding a 48" twin tube t8 lamp is not as easy as it used to be!). It's only 12" deep, so I don't need HO lighting to grow a good variety of plants. I probably don't even need a twin tube fixture.
Does anyone have recommendations on achieving the look of the Aqua/Floraglo blend with some of the newer options out there and without turning this into a high-tech tank?
Last edited by BeccaG; 08-12-2014 at 04:49 PM.
Reason: clarify topic