DIY LED for 90cm/36 inch 48 gallon tank -FINISHED! Pics/PAR levels on page 2 - Page 3
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Old 02-20-2011, 11:57 PM   #31
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My parents took the camera with them so I'll have to borrow my gf's camera to take more pics.

Yes, that's the tank w/ current readings but using an old light.

I was aiming for 65-70 umols at the substrate (which is on the threshold of med/high light
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Old 02-21-2011, 12:22 AM   #32
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Are the measurements taken where the aquascape elements can shade some areas? If the scape looks like in the picture that would be the case. And, you might have the amount of light you wanted. It will always be reduced by shading.
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Old 02-21-2011, 12:39 AM   #33
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I was getting 40-50umols in areas that had no shading whatsoever. What do you think? 6 more?
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Old 02-21-2011, 01:49 AM   #34
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Hmm... Maybe I don't need to add more LEDs afterall

Here is the readings for 2x39watt t5ho suspended 22 inches above the substrate (how I had it before)


and here it is with all 3 bulbs on. definitely overkill


I was originally aiming for 60-75umols at the substrate but I remember that running all 3 of my bulbs really caused a lot of algae issues
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Old 02-21-2011, 02:25 AM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IWANNAGOFAST View Post
I was getting 40-50umols in areas that had no shading whatsoever. What do you think? 6 more?
I think 40-50 mms of PAR at the substrate is a very good light level, because with CO2 you can grow almost any plant, just grow it slower, and algae will be no problem because it will grow slow enough that you can easily remove any that pops up before it becomes a problem. I just visited Tom Barr today to borrow the club PAR meter, and once again saw his big tank with all of the Cardinals in it. That one has light comparable to yours, except I don't think it is as high at the top of the tank. It is a beautiful, fully Staurogyne carpeted tank, and it still grows fast enough to be sheared off every few weeks to provide lots of cuttings for sale.
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Old 02-21-2011, 02:30 AM   #36
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Thanks hoppy. I will keep the 24 for now then.

I did swap the fans around so that they exhaust air instead of intake. I was finding that it was cooling the water too much. The temp of my water dropped to a level that my heater couldn't maintain it at my set 82 (planning on discus).
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Old 02-21-2011, 05:22 AM   #37
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When are you going to do the test for the led's?
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Old 02-21-2011, 05:27 AM   #38
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When are you going to do the test for the led's?
I tested them already actually. The results are on page 2.
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Old 02-21-2011, 05:53 AM   #39
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It's not there. says you got the pic with the old t5's maybe you got em confused?
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Old 02-21-2011, 06:01 AM   #40
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No. The picture is of the tank with the t5 lights, true. But the par levels on that picture are of the LEDs. I don't have a camera for a bit but wanted to post my findings so i just used an old picture.
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Old 02-21-2011, 06:50 AM   #41
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Your gonna need atleast 36 or more LEDs on that thing if you wanna reach 60 or higher without lens.

I used 36 Cree XP-Gs without lens and im barely getting 50s-60s at the bottom of the tank (although I am running it at 1A instead of the 1.5a).

Depending on the lens degree you might have a problem with coverage ( That why I chose to use 36 on my 48g)

If you want to risk it you can try to crank up the current output by turning the SVR2 knob inside your driver to kinda overdrive the LEDs a bit as long as your keeping it cool.
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Old 02-21-2011, 06:04 PM   #42
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Your gonna need atleast 36 or more LEDs on that thing if you wanna reach 60 or higher without lens.

I used 36 Cree XP-Gs without lens and im barely getting 50s-60s at the bottom of the tank (although I am running it at 1A instead of the 1.5a).

Depending on the lens degree you might have a problem with coverage ( That why I chose to use 36 on my 48g)

If you want to risk it you can try to crank up the current output by turning the SVR2 knob inside your driver to kinda overdrive the LEDs a bit as long as your keeping it cool.
Yeah I think so too, but I'm happy with what I got now. I thought it was too low, but after measuring my t5ho, it seems like 24 LEDs matches (and slightly improves on) the PAR levels of a 2 bulb set up (which is what I was using).

If anything, I may add some more but not yet, we'll see how it goes
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Old 02-21-2011, 09:11 PM   #43
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Get on the band wagon for low light! Eventually the whole world will switch to that, and CO2 will be the "high tech" aspect of planted tanks.
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Old 02-22-2011, 09:42 PM   #44
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haha I'll be preaching the low light mantra from now on. Even the archaea fixtures give off a low light rating and I'm assuming the ADA fixtures do too. I don't see Amano or the guys at Aqua forest having any trouble growing any plant.
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Old 02-22-2011, 10:59 PM   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoppy View Post
I think 40-50 mms of PAR at the substrate is a very good light level, because with CO2 you can grow almost any plant, just grow it slower, and algae will be no problem because it will grow slow enough that you can easily remove any that pops up before it becomes a problem. I just visited Tom Barr today to borrow the club PAR meter, and once again saw his big tank with all of the Cardinals in it. That one has light comparable to yours, except I don't think it is as high at the top of the tank. It is a beautiful, fully Staurogyne carpeted tank, and it still grows fast enough to be sheared off every few weeks to provide lots of cuttings for sale.
THIS. I was running 40-50 in my tank, plants grew just fine.
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