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Old 11-14-2003, 07:32 PM   #46
heaven2
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Thanks Wasserpest for your recommendation. I will seriously consider the 2*96 watt PC kit from AHS. Maybe for Christmas?

Hmmm. I might try recycling my old reflector, ballasts and bulbs into a new enclosure for use over a 65 gallon growout tank. Hate to waste good stuff!

edit: just remeasured the canopy and I goofed, its only 34.5 inches so I guess the 96 watt PCs are out. Maybe the 65 watt PCs instead.
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Old 11-19-2003, 08:38 AM   #47
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I am looking for a place to buy the Helios T5 High performance fluorescent light. Thanks
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Originally Posted by Wasserpest
I just saw, fell in love with, and bought a "Helios T5 High Performance Fluorescent Light Fixture Lamp" at my LFS for $24. I was shopping around for replacement bulbs for my T8, the current ones I have (5000K) are too yellow/green for me and I was looking for 6500K to get a whiter appearance.

This bulb includes the ballast, fixture and cables... it is 38W, and 10000K. The price almost seems to be too good to be true... but we'll see how it compares to my current T8's.

I have never heard it mentioned here... so I expect it to be crappola and return it... but first I will connect it and turn it on! Interestingly, on the package it states "The unique feature is that the whole fixture is made to throw away. When exhausted, just purchase a new one..." with the reason given that ballast deteriorate over time and it is better to get a "fresh" one.

Anyone... any experience with this product?
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Old 11-19-2003, 02:57 PM   #48
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Not sure if this will help, but it looks to me like the Helios T5 is a Sylvania product. See here: http://www.sylvania.com/catalog/pdfs/42-43PHO-DIM.pdf
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Old 11-19-2003, 03:08 PM   #49
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try this http://www.aquatic-creations-online.com/t5.htm
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Old 11-28-2003, 08:33 PM   #50
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someone recently asked about helios t5 bulbs on my regular forum (cichlid-forum.com) and this forum was referred to so i decided to drop by and add my 2 cents to this thread.

i have 2 60" 80 t5 bulbs wired up to a fulham workhorse 7 ballast over my tank and have done quite a bit of reading on them. i would post pics but my imagestation account just ran out and i need to find another place to post them. now, back to lighting.

1. helios has a horrible track record with their pc lighting. do a search on reefcentral.com. i don't buy from companies with bad records period. no matter how great or cheap the deal.

2. although a 48" t5ho 54W bulb puts out a little more light than a 55W pc bulb (grossly ~5000 lumens vs ~4800 lumens respectively) the key difference is their ability to be reflected. what makes t5 so great is it's small bulb diameter. that unit does not have a good reflector and in fact is not suitable to even mount one. the reflector to use for t5 and some proof of it's efficiency relative to others is outlined here:
http://www.sunlightsupply.com/aquari...tcomparo.shtml
we are talking about multiples of increased light output which is unheard or with other flourescent bulbs. although done by the manufacturer their claims have been verified by others on reefcentral. what it means is that with the proper relflector you can effectively quadruple your light output. without the reflector t5's only advantages are saving space and longer bulb life but with the disadvantage of initial cost (around 20 for each individual reflector and bulbs between 20 to 40 bucks depending on length and make) and few bulbs to choose from (these will improve with time but may not ever approach that of t-8's and t-12's).

although "t5" compact bulbs give off nearly the same initial lumens because they are lined up next to one another they suffer from re-strike, a wide bulb which is difficult to efficiently reflect, and increased heat which decreases light output and bulb life. those who have switched from compact floro's to t5 on reefcentral have been blown away and atleast one member has used a lux meter which is reading off the chart (he has 8 t5 bulbs over a 180)

once again please refer to this link
http://www.sunlightsupply.com/aquari...tcomparo.shtml
for what makes t5's so special because without a nice reflector compact flourescents and t8's work just as well.

one awesome source for info on t5's is reefcentral.com which is where i learned most of what i have about them.
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Old 11-28-2003, 09:26 PM   #51
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I love the way that T5 10k looks. A divine white tone indeed.
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Old 11-28-2003, 10:00 PM   #52
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05dr,
Thanks for all the info. I wasn't familiar with the Helios brand, and just took the opportunity to try out t5's in a convenient way. Going forward, I will look for the bare bulbs and wire them to whatever good ballast I can find, if I really have to throw out the helios ballast/fixture as they suggest.
So far I am very happy with the light output, appearance of the tank, and effects on plant growth. The tips of my rotala and ambulia have turned into a nice salmon color, and the internodes are much shorter now. No detrimental effects on any plants.
I couldn't agree more that a good reflector is what makes lighting efficient. In my opinion, a quality reflector is more important than the wattage of the bulbs. Thanks for posting the link, even though I was convinced of this already.
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Old 12-01-2003, 01:39 PM   #53
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NOLACLS
http://www.sunlightsupply.com/aquarium/products/t5reflectcomparo.shtml

Look at this test done with the reflectors
Yeah thats the same comparo I posted with the reflectors.

I agree 100% on good reflector make a big difference. But for the cost of these cheep t5s and the ease of setup...I think if someone does not feel like shelling out a ton of $$ and they have a smallish shallow tank they want to just light up...these are great option.
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Old 12-02-2003, 02:10 AM   #54
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Quote:
But for the cost of these cheep t5s and the ease of setup...I think if someone does not feel like shelling out a ton of $$ and they have a smallish shallow tank they want to just light up...these are great option.
Quote:
helios has a horrible track record with their pc lighting. do a search on reefcentral.com. i don't buy from companies with bad records period. no matter how great or cheap the deal.
i find products with questionable reliability end up just being an additional cost to add to whatever i end up having to replace them with. just ask the folks who have owned rio's and thought they had a great deal only to loose their entire tank and find an oil slick on top of their tank. i have never owned a helios fixture but i have never heard anything good about them other than the price. with the lack of bulb choices for t5 i think an ahsupply with the GE bulbs from that cheap online place would be the best "cheap" deal. more light, great price, and a well established track record. if someone has the dough than the output of a t5 bulb with an indiv reflector is hard to beat without going to an efficiently reflected double ended metal halide setup.

although the cost of t5 equipment is pretty similar at most places reefgeek.com has a little better prices, a little better selection, and great customer service. there are also some good deals on ebay. good luck!
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Old 12-03-2003, 01:21 AM   #55
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a good current thread on reefcentral regarding helios lighting:
http://reefcentral.com/forums/showth...hreadid=274388
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Old 12-03-2003, 04:28 AM   #56
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The bottom line, stay away from Helios
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Old 12-03-2003, 05:15 AM   #57
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05dr, thanks again for the link. Now I understand why they suggest to throw away the entire fixture... and I am holding my breath to see how long they will actually last. Hope those ballasts that come with the 38W bulbs (must be tiny!). If not, I will just take it as another experience. So far I love them...
Searching on the web, there don't seem to be any sources of T5's with good color temps (>5000K) around here...
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Old 12-03-2003, 12:43 PM   #58
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Quote:
Searching on the web, there don't seem to be any sources of T5's with good color temps (>5000K) around here...
- www.reefgeek.com --awesome place to order from and have the most and newest versions of bulbs (still not too much to choose from)
- http://www.happyreefing.com/
- www.customaquatic.com
-Dr Fosters and Smith
- http://www.aqualuxlighting.com/

i have a link with the commercial bulbs available but am currently at work so i will post it when i get home. that way you might be able to find cheaper bulbs at your typical lighting supply places.
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Old 12-03-2003, 01:07 PM   #59
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Wow I didnt know they were that bad...I have a lfs that has sold these and have not had any problems at all on the t5's (dont know about the other stuff) They have had some 4 footers on there tanks for a few months now. Thanks for the info
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Old 12-03-2003, 03:14 PM   #60
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Heh, I should have been more specific... any reasonably priced T5's... The ones for sale were all in the warm-white range.
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