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-   -   DIY Cree LED build (http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/showthread.php?t=164633)

Chiefston 02-09-2012 04:56 AM

DIY Cree LED build
 
Hello all!
Long time lurker, first time poster. I recently bought a Fluval Edge 1st gen 6gal. So far, all I have setup is my hardscape (Iwagumi style) and hooked up CO2 (paintball with Aquatek reg into filter per http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/di...ob-filter.html)
I am planning on building a LED light using CREE XP-G or XM-L lights, using this as my guide: http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/ta...build-4-a.html
I PM'd Jeff.:P:. and he had his heatsink custom cut. I however have no way of getting aluminum custom cut. So....
I am planning on using 1"x1" bar stock from Grainger (http://www.grainger.com/Grainger/Squ...ZV9?Pid=search) cut into the triangles, angled towards the corners.
That being said, here come the questions....

1) Whats the consensus on using the XP-G or XM-L Crees?
2) I was planning on using the Mean Well ELN-60-27D, however it seems this particular driver is sold out or not in stock pretty much anywhere... Any alternatives?
3) Is there any way to use the same power supply for the Crees and also for moonlighting?

TIA!

tentacles 02-09-2012 12:43 PM

RE: ELN60-27 - http://www.powergatellc.com/mean-wel...er-supply.html click on the model you are interested in, their prices are quite good.

With the ELN series, if you leave power to the driver but unplug the 10v supply, the main LEDs will likely be of sufficient dimness for your nighttime illumination needs. YMMV

I would definitely use between 2 and 4 XPGs on a 6gal. You will not be driving them remotely hard.

Also I would suggest spending a bit more on a driver and getting an "LPF" series - they can be dimmed without an extra power supply, just a potentiometer. The only drawback to these is that there is no seperate control for maximum current. ( http://www.powergatellc.com/mean-wel...er-supply.html )

silvawispa 02-09-2012 05:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Chiefston (Post 1716444)

1) Whats the consensus on using the XP-G or XM-L Crees?

X-ML's work for me :)

Chiefston 02-10-2012 02:12 AM

Thank you! I will look into the LFP series. I would prefer to not have an extra control circuit hanging under the tank.

WingoAgency 02-10-2012 09:00 PM

I think you should stay with XPG and XPE because the XML will be too concentrated in term of heat generation.

When you choose ELN series of mean well I assume you want the dimming ability, so if you design is 3 LEDs in a string, I have a PWM dimmable driver at 700ma, pm me for details

If you are talking about setting the ELN to run about another strings of LED for moonlight than you will need to do resistive circuit which will increase you heat generation a lot-not advisable.

Get a regulated 12V ac/dc and drive both the moonlight 12V LED module and the dimmable driver I mentioned will allow you to have moonlight and dimmer on one power supply. To achieve automatic moonlight and main light on/off separately, just get one more 12V ac/dc and a timer and power the two sets of LED separately.


Please do update, I want to see your angled designed and as I have tempted so many times to put it in the Edge Saviors myself.

Chiefston 02-10-2012 11:46 PM

I will definitely be making a build log of the light. A buddy of mine is a math prof. at ASU, and is doing some angle type calculations for me. Stay tuned!

Milad LEDGroupBuy.com 02-11-2012 07:30 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Chiefston (Post 1716444)
1) Whats the consensus on using the XP-G or XM-L Crees?
2) I was planning on using the Mean Well ELN-60-27D, however it seems this particular driver is sold out or not in stock pretty much anywhere... Any alternatives?
3) Is there any way to use the same power supply for the Crees and also for moonlighting?

TIA!


1) XML for planted tanks works great. You have the option of switching out the driver long term if you want to produce more light
XP-G is a cheaper alternative but still produce amazing light

2) Meanwell arent "sold out" they are going the way of the doodo bird (sp?) They are old technolgoy and really arent designed for the LEDs you see out by CREE. You should look at Inventroincs http://www.ledgroupbuy.com/constant-current-drivers/ Extremly high quality, dust proof, water proff (IP66 and IP67)
With the meanwells you mentioned, you have to actually open them up, tweak the internal settings so you dont blow the LEDs when you first plug it in. Sometime they come at 1.7A which will mess up any XP or XT LED and even XPG

3) Not really. Best way to do moonlighting is to get a separate moon lighting LEDs/power supply or get a controller like the DIM4 that can control your display lights and run moonlights without any extra power supply/drivers

Chiefston 02-11-2012 09:32 PM

Voltages question
 
Thanks Milad. I will look into the Inventronics as well.

It looks as though 4 LEDS with 40 degree lenses, one shining into each corner, will have enough overlap that I won't need a 5th LED pointing straight down (although I might anyways... I'm really afraid of having TOO much light and starting an algae farm. Thus my want/need of a dimmable driver).

With only 4 LEDS, there don't seem to be any power supplies capable of pushing the 1-1.5A max current at such low voltages. For instance, the Inventronics 1100mA 50W LED driver bottoms out at 16V. With 4 XP-G LEDS @ 1100mA, they would drop roughly 3.3-3.4V which would only need ~13V potential... Thus it seems I am stuck using the 700mA driver, and powering the LEDS at only half capacity.

Am I looking at this wrong?

Jeff.:P:. 02-12-2012 12:23 AM

1 Attachment(s)
Hey Chiefston, I was going to wait until later to start a new thread, but I feel you should hear it first, my design was slightly flawed. I couldn't stand that there was zero room for maintenance and access. There was plenty of lightly but the restrictions were too much. Also the angled heat sinks don't do too much as all light once hits the water pretty much goes down, does hit help? Maybe.. Was it worth the extra effort to get them made? Not really. I removed the top half of the glass which was fairly easy and hung the led unit high above the tank. I absolutely love it now. It now has a canister filter ehiem 2211 and co2. The fluval edge is a bastard of tank to work with. :)

Jeff.:P:. 02-12-2012 12:26 AM

I hope that helps with your design. I think 4-6 crees is plenty of light as long as the fixture can displace the light to cover your plants.

tentacles 02-12-2012 02:26 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Milad LEDGroupBuy.com (Post 1720284)
2) Meanwell arent "sold out" they are going the way of the doodo bird (sp?) They are old technolgoy and really arent designed for the LEDs you see out by CREE. You should look at Inventroincs http://www.ledgroupbuy.com/constant-current-drivers/ Extremly high quality, dust proof, water proff (IP66 and IP67)
With the meanwells you mentioned, you have to actually open them up, tweak the internal settings so you dont blow the LEDs when you first plug it in. Sometime they come at 1.7A which will mess up any XP or XT LED and even XPG

Don't want to rain on your pitch too hard, but I'm not really seeing what makes the inventronics so special, other than you sell them and no-one else seems to? Meanwell makes IP66/67 rated stuff as well as the typical IP65 of the ELN series. You can hose down IP65 rated stuff, although I expect your real concern if you did so would be your power strip!

Not being able to adjust the current max separately from the dimming control is a minus in my opinion - unless you plan on running your emitters at the sometimes odd current setting of the inventronics drivers, you have to kludge something.

Inventronics drivers also don't seem to be anything special on the efficiency or power factor fronts either, and they don't really win on price to kick it all off.

I see your drivers do have a built-in 10v supply for the dimming circuit, that is certainly a nice bonus.. but it's honestly a pretty stiff price difference.

Not trying to be a dick, but what makes the inventronics so magically delicious?

WingoAgency 02-12-2012 09:51 AM

I happen to repair couple systems with Inventornics drivers and of course ones with the Meanwell drivers as well.

My first impression is that the Inventronics is built very American-that's rugged but ugly-but, who cares if they are all hidden. The next feeling is that it is very easy to work with BECAUSE YOU HAVE NO CHOICES-you can only hook it up one way, no adjustment of any kind. So for beginners who have no idea in LED or ANY electronics, this driver is for them. If you have some electronic experience the Meanwells give you versatility. The Meanwells are sturdy enough too to sustain a fall but if you want to throw them at someone you wanna to kill, looks like Inventronics is better at that being heavier and a more rigid case. Unfortunately, the easy feeling to work with does not last very long when my local hobbyists bought dimmer kits of some sought and they cannot control the Inventronics down to 0%. At about 30%, the phantom voltage issue kicks in. Of course, you can get better dimmers than the ones the client bought in(I did not recall what brand-I kind of remember it's some DIY aquarium LED company.) The phantom voltage issue also happens with the Meanwells once a while but not as apparent. I think all thru four year of using and servicing system with Meanwells I have seen this happens only once or twice besides users error.

As for durability, I don't have enough run time experience to tell whether the Inventronics is durable or not. As far as Meanwells go, I would say acceptable.

tentacles 02-13-2012 02:44 AM

Thanks, wingo! I've seen several people push the inventronics over the meanwells but from where I have been standing, the only real difference was that the inventronics are potted (encapsulated in epoxy or silicone). It seemed to me that, both companies being taiwanese, would likely have similar quality products, unless it turned out one of them was using higher quality capacitors or something. It seems to me if reliability is a big concern, it would be wise to size one's drivers about 20% bigger than what you need.


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