T5 vs LED - Page 3 - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #31 of 116 (permalink) Old 10-26-2019, 11:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Deanna View Post
In the meantime, although I am leaning toward the above two LEDís, I would be interested in your offer, @Greggz (and other T5 users), to PM me about your recommendations for T5 bulbs, reflectors and bulb arrangements.

Keep this thread going!
Here's the thing. T5HO bulbs come in a variety of colors, and a variety of PAR intensities.

So the tricky part is finding the combination that provides you the PAR and color you are looking for. As to PAR, a four bulb set up could provide anywhere from medium to VERY high light, depending on the bulbs and distance from the substrate.

With a typical 4 bulb set up, a good combination might be a good red and blue bulb (Powerveg 420,633,660), combined with a daylight and flora bulb. In general, most heavily colored bulbs are lower PAR, so you can mix in some high PAR bulbs like Giesemann Super Flora or Tropic to get the PAR up.

But really, it's a matter of personal taste, and what looks the best to your eye.

A little while back I tested and posted pics of a variety of combinations (link below). As you will see, the bulb combination can make the same tank look quite different, not to mention the effect on PAR.

FWIW, my current mix is the following, which creates about 135 PAR at the substrate. I can change the PAR quite a bit by just changing out one or two bulbs, and raising or lowering the fixture just a bit.

Giesemann Super Flora
Giesemann Tropic
Giesemann Super Purple
Powerveg 660
Truelumen Flora
Truelumen Flora


https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/1...l#post11220149


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post #32 of 116 (permalink) Old 10-27-2019, 02:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Deanna View Post
Although pretty pictures donít help me (they are usually the peak of a brief moment when everything is perfect), I do like the friendly comparisons that are being offered and would be interested in other angles that anyone has to offer. In the meantime, although I am leaning toward the above two LEDís, I would be interested in your offer, @Greggz (and other T5 users), to PM me about your recommendations for T5 bulbs, reflectors and bulb arrangements.

Keep this thread going!
Here are lots of bulb combos from Greggz and myself. I should really see if @burr740 and @slipfinger or anyone else would care to post their favorite bulb combo in this thread. 50/50 midday and flora type bulb is a good mix thats not wild.
https://r.tapatalk.com/shareLink/top...ink_source=app
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post #33 of 116 (permalink) Old 10-27-2019, 03:31 AM
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4 Bulb combo I like

3000K - nice warm tone and plants love it
Powerveg 633/660 - Intense red bulb
ATI purple or similar - strong blue - or 420 Actinic for stronger blue
Pink Flora type - Giesemann super flora, TruLumen flora, Zoomed Flora sun, etc


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post #34 of 116 (permalink) Old 10-27-2019, 03:38 AM
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3000K - nice warm tone and plants love it
What 3000K bulb do you like........I'm always looking to add to my collection.


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post #35 of 116 (permalink) Old 10-27-2019, 08:42 AM
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What 3000K bulb do you like........I'm always looking to add to my collection.
Plantmax, a few came with one of the T5 units. They're extremely bright on the par meter and hold up well even after a couple years. They're not always easy to find individually. Other hydroponic brands are probably similar.
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post #36 of 116 (permalink) Old 10-27-2019, 01:36 PM
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Plantmax, a few came with one of the T5 units. They're extremely bright on the par meter and hold up well even after a couple years. They're not always easy to find individually. Other hydroponic brands are probably similar.
Ah yes the Plantmax. I have a few of them, and they illustrate a point.

I took readings a while back of a bunch of different bulbs. About 2" below the water surface and 1' from the fixture.

Both the Plantmax and Powerveg 660 will add red color, but the PAR from the Plantmax was 87 vs. 55 from the Powerveg. And then you take a bulb like the Giesemannn Super Flora which measured at 133 PAR and begin to see how the bulb mix can produce lots of different PAR levels.
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post #37 of 116 (permalink) Old 10-28-2019, 03:35 PM
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Thanks to all regarding the T5 detail. Will be considering them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Greggz View Post
Here's the thing. T5HO bulbs come in a variety of colors, and a variety of PAR intensities.

So the tricky part is finding the combination that provides you the PAR and color you are looking for. As to PAR, a four bulb set up could provide anywhere from medium to VERY high light, depending on the bulbs and distance from the substrate.
This goes to the heart of the matter. Before entering the LED world, I did have a two-bulb arrangement. Trying to find the right color and performance to suit my tastes was the difficult part, so all of the above guides and @Hendy8888s' link will help in reducing that risk. I found that LED's did make it easier to achieve that balance.

Do any of you have an opinion/observation about availability and cost of the T5's? specifically, if it is a shrinking market (as some are reporting), are you finding it more and more difficult to find them and are costs rising?
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post #38 of 116 (permalink) Old 10-28-2019, 04:46 PM
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I really like LED's and think they have improved greatly in the past little while. They need to go a little farther for large tanks though. Nature scape with all green plants LED would be my top choice I think.

Pros
Love the shimmer
Tuning spectrum
Integrated timers
DIMMING!!
Low heat

Cons
Hot spots on 4ft + tanks due to fixture size
Needing multiple fixtures on 4ft + tanks
Spectrum has only been figured out by a small percentage of companies.
Cost (I'm cheap)
Sorry to say but alot of fixtures are just ugly.
Mounting options are limited, no I don't want a fixture sitting right on top of a large rimless tank with legs.
Spread is horrible.

Love the colour spectrum of ADA, Twinstar, ONF. On small tanks the ONF and Twinstar look really good with legs and look okay so close to the top. On a 4ft tank I don't think they sell a product that fits even with multiples.

ADA is the cats meow for spectrum and looks great with 2 on a 4 ft. No way I could ever justify the price though. Even with all the good they still have weak spread with hot spots solely because their pendants.

AI, EcoTech, and GHL all look great with their mounting systems, still suffer from spread issues and I'm not sold that their spectrum is pleasing to me yet. I feel the freshwater versions are not the focus and just miss the mark. They are quite capable to be hung well above the tank which I like.

I really like the aesthetic's of the Giesemann futura s freshwater. Full width fixture to match the size of the tank, looks more like a traditional T5 fixture. No idea about anything else with it but that's what a 4ft tank LED fixture should look like to me.

Unfortunately, I still would choose a $200 used t5ho (dimmable preferred) that some reef guy is offloading because he's forking out big money to go LED.

With all that said I really am not well versed in LED's and would like any advice from the more experienced. What would you recommend given my pro/cons, don't worry about price because the used T5 is still cheaper.

Tank is 4ft x 2ft, high light, has to be sexy.
I used to have 2 x Twinstar 60cm on my 120G and they are not good enough for spreading. it should be 2 more of them to cover the whole tank. In the end i swaped them out for ATI dimmable 6 T5 bulbs 48" and i get plenty of light to play with.
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post #39 of 116 (permalink) Old 10-28-2019, 06:14 PM
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I used to have 2 x Twinstar 60cm on my 120G and they are not good enough for spreading. it should be 2 more of them to cover the whole tank. In the end i swaped them out for ATI dimmable 6 T5 bulbs 48" and i get plenty of light to play with.
Quote:
Twinstar - LED Light - 600ES 66W total 4600 lumens

Yea replacing 66W of lighting w/ 324W of light usually gives you room to spare..

Even 4 Twinstars can't quite compete w/ that amount of power..

"A man with a watch knows what time it is. A man with two watches is never sure."

Last edited by jeffkrol; 10-28-2019 at 06:26 PM. Reason: edit
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post #40 of 116 (permalink) Old 10-28-2019, 07:39 PM
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what do you think about LED lens degree choices and recommendations?


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post #41 of 116 (permalink) Old 10-28-2019, 08:04 PM
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jeffkrol
what do you think about LED lens degree choices and recommendations?
mostly depends on mounting height and tank depth..

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post #42 of 116 (permalink) Old 10-28-2019, 08:38 PM
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I used to have 2 x Twinstar 60cm on my 120G and they are not good enough for spreading. it should be 2 more of them to cover the whole tank. In the end i swaped them out for ATI dimmable 6 T5 bulbs 48" and i get plenty of light to play with.
With 6 bulbs you have lots of options.

My set up is not dimmable, but I have control over three banks of light (front x 2, middle x 2, back x 2).

Right now I am running them all full blast for 8 hours. But if I wanted to, I could turn on each bank separately and create a ramp up/ramp down effect. For instance, at one time I was running one bank for 1 hour, then 2 banks for another hour, all three banks for four hours, then ramp it back down the same way. Having a smart strip makes it pretty easy.
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post #43 of 116 (permalink) Old 10-28-2019, 09:04 PM
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jeffkrol
what do you think about LED lens degree choices and recommendations?
Bit more.. Him and I generally see eye to eye on most things..


see "spread"..

https://www.advancedplantedtank.com/light-3pillars.html
Unfortunately (sort of) most common lights are the close to water surface type...........

Ideally and especially w/ "blended" arrays narrow angle lenses and lights hung high enough to just put all the light into the tank as opposed to spilling all over..
This is somewhat easier to control than say w/ t5's due to the fact most LED's START at 120 degrees as opposed to 360 and reflector..
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post #44 of 116 (permalink) Old 10-28-2019, 09:26 PM
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With 6 bulbs you have lots of options.

My set up is not dimmable, but I have control over three banks of light (front x 2, middle x 2, back x 2).

Right now I am running them all full blast for 8 hours. But if I wanted to, I could turn on each bank separately and create a ramp up/ramp down effect. For instance, at one time I was running one bank for 1 hour, then 2 banks for another hour, all three banks for four hours, then ramp it back down the same way. Having a smart strip makes it pretty easy.
ATI can be programmed with similar effects like yours. After this tank i set up a 30G and was considered UNS LED fixture, 24" but i finally got another ATI 24'' dimmable x 4 bulbs and i am happy with it.

Bump:
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffkrol View Post
Yea replacing 66W of lighting w/ 324W of light usually gives you room to spare..

Even 4 Twinstars can't quite compete w/ that amount of power..
I forgot the model but they were the latest one on the market now of Twinstar.
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post #45 of 116 (permalink) Old 10-28-2019, 11:51 PM
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Is there a freshwater replacement for a Current USA 2025?

Style: Organic soil, sand, gravel, plants, moss, algae, snails, shrimp, small fish
Tech: Fluval Plant 3.0 Nano, Top Fin MF10, Tunze 3161, Neptune Apex EL
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