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Old 12-04-2011, 01:41 AM   #16
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You will be lucky if you don't reach medium light! With that much light it is very hard to avoid algae problems, you need CO2 for sure, and the plants you can grow isn't much different if at all different from when you use low medium light. Around 40 micromols of PAR is a great lighting level to use - you get most of the advantages of higher light, and most of the advantages of low light, except that using CO2 is a very good idea with that much light.
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Old 12-04-2011, 02:00 AM   #17
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You will be lucky if you don't reach medium light! With that much light it is very hard to avoid algae problems, you need CO2 for sure, and the plants you can grow isn't much different if at all different from when you use low medium light. Around 40 micromols of PAR is a great lighting level to use - you get most of the advantages of higher light, and most of the advantages of low light, except that using CO2 is a very good idea with that much light.
Hoppy, (not to thread jack, but) I'm actually trying to figure out this same issue for the same tank (36 gallon bow) right now.... Reading this, I'm wondering what light fixture would NOT take me to medium light and would not put me in the range of needing C02... I don't have the room for C02 at the moment, and really don't want go with anything but low light plants... I'm really trying to figure this out, but I'm nervous that I won't get it right and will end up with too much light and a ton of algae, etc. Any help would be appreciated.
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Old 12-04-2011, 03:31 PM   #18
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Hoppy, (not to thread jack, but) I'm actually trying to figure out this same issue for the same tank (36 gallon bow) right now.... Reading this, I'm wondering what light fixture would NOT take me to medium light and would not put me in the range of needing C02... I don't have the room for C02 at the moment, and really don't want go with anything but low light plants... I'm really trying to figure this out, but I'm nervous that I won't get it right and will end up with too much light and a ton of algae, etc. Any help would be appreciated.
Thats my boat I have 0 interest in doing C02. Hard to find fixtures to work for us.
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Old 12-04-2011, 03:35 PM   #19
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I guess after reading over this thread again I should get the FishNeedIt fixture. According to your estimates Hoppy it should be about 30 micromols of par and I should be able to avoid algae and C02. I can tell you that the reflectors on the Nova Extreme are one giant reflector bent into like a W so it kind of gives each bulb a reflector.....if that even makes sense.
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Old 12-04-2011, 07:20 PM   #20
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I guess after reading over this thread again I should get the FishNeedIt fixture. According to your estimates Hoppy it should be about 30 micromols of par and I should be able to avoid algae and C02. I can tell you that the reflectors on the Nova Extreme are one giant reflector bent into like a W so it kind of gives each bulb a reflector.....if that even makes sense.
Hopefully that's right! I was following this thread and thinking that too, but then Hoppy's next post made me nervous! Argh! So much to think about... I just want this perfect low light, low tech, but gorgeous planted tank And I feel like this lighting thing is the hardest part to pull the trigger on.
Titan, are you going to be doing Excel or no?
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Old 12-04-2011, 07:33 PM   #21
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Also, what options are you choosing bulb-wise? There are the blue/white options and then the color temp options for the white bulbs? So confused
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Old 12-04-2011, 08:36 PM   #22
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Hopefully that's right! I was following this thread and thinking that too, but then Hoppy's next post made me nervous! Argh! So much to think about... I just want this perfect low light, low tech, but gorgeous planted tank And I feel like this lighting thing is the hardest part to pull the trigger on.
Titan, are you going to be doing Excel or no?
I still think what I posted is a good choice:

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A 2 x 24 watt FishNeedIt, T5HO light would give you about 30 micromols at that distance, so that is probably the cheap way to go.
Since it is for a planted tank, the planted tank version should be used - usually 6700K plus a pinkish color bulb, but 2 6700K or 2 10000K bulbs will also work.
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Old 12-04-2011, 10:09 PM   #23
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I still think what I posted is a good choice:


Since it is for a planted tank, the planted tank version should be used - usually 6700K plus a pinkish color bulb, but 2 6700K or 2 10000K bulbs will also work.
I didn't see one with a pinkish color? Is that an option somewhere? I saw blue and white only....
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Old 12-05-2011, 12:57 PM   #24
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Hopefully that's right! I was following this thread and thinking that too, but then Hoppy's next post made me nervous! Argh! So much to think about... I just want this perfect low light, low tech, but gorgeous planted tank And I feel like this lighting thing is the hardest part to pull the trigger on.
Titan, are you going to be doing Excel or no?
Yeah I plan on doing Excel. I bought a bottle not to long ago kind of as an experiment just to see if I would notice a difference. I can say I have seen faster growth after I started using it.
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Old 12-05-2011, 12:59 PM   #25
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I didn't see one with a pinkish color? Is that an option somewhere? I saw blue and white only....
Unfortunately the 30 in FishNeedIt fixture only offers white bulbs starting at 10000k and actinics. So I would get the 10000k only fixture and swap out one of the bulbs for a 6700k and then use the other 10000k as a backup when the other goes bad.
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Old 12-05-2011, 04:56 PM   #26
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Several people have said that a combination of 10,000K and 6700K looks very good. Usually a light sold as a planted tank light will have a pinkish bulb plus a 6700K bulb, but that apparently isn't true for FishNeedIt lights.
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Old 12-05-2011, 05:04 PM   #27
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Several people have said that a combination of 10,000K and 6700K looks very good. Usually a light sold as a planted tank light will have a pinkish bulb plus a 6700K bulb, but that apparently isn't true for FishNeedIt lights.
Last night Simon from Fishneedit wrote me back saying that they did have that as an option, so I might try that. Thanks so much for all your help!

Jenny
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Old 12-06-2011, 12:45 PM   #28
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Hoppy, one more question for you regarding this....
If I were to get the 4 bulb Fishneedit fixture (just using two lights at present), would I have enough with the 4 bulbs if I ever wanted to add C02? Or would I still need to supplement?
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Old 12-06-2011, 03:37 PM   #29
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CO2 helps plants grow better and faster whatever the light intensity is. When you add CO2 to a low light tank, the plants just do better, and some plants that wouldn't grow at all, will then grow, but slowly. A FishNeedIt light with 4 bulbs should give you about twice as much light as with 2 bulbs, which would be medium light. Then you would need CO2 to keep the plants growing and healthy, or algae would certainly take over the tank. I think you would enjoy the tank a lot more, once the excitement of seeing fast plant growth goes away, if you used low light.
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Old 12-06-2011, 06:13 PM   #30
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CO2 helps plants grow better and faster whatever the light intensity is. When you add CO2 to a low light tank, the plants just do better, and some plants that wouldn't grow at all, will then grow, but slowly. A FishNeedIt light with 4 bulbs should give you about twice as much light as with 2 bulbs, which would be medium light. Then you would need CO2 to keep the plants growing and healthy, or algae would certainly take over the tank. I think you would enjoy the tank a lot more, once the excitement of seeing fast plant growth goes away, if you used low light.
I guess what I'm worried about it that at my LFS they told me that I would really not be able to grow carpet plants without C02. I really do want to be able to do carpet plants, they make a tank for me. I am going to possibly do a separate thread about this, but I want to know what my options are, if there are any, to grow a carpeting without C02. Would Excel help? Or do I need C02, but low lights would be ok, or does it have to be C02 and med/high light?
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