Twinstar LED E-Series Thoughts/Reviews/Experiences - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-05-2020, 05:14 PM Thread Starter
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Cool Twinstar LED E-Series Thoughts/Reviews/Experiences

Hey guys,
I am pretty new to planted tanks. I have always had reefs tanks but decided I want to try out this side of the hobby.
I am curious what people are saying about the Twinstar lights. I am looking at a 600EC specifically for my ADA 60P. I want to know does it keep plants nice and red (my tank will have CO2)? Will the PAR be enough for that?
What is everyones thoughts on them.

I am open to other Twinstar lights also not just the E-Series.
Thanks a lot.

Pic is of the tank.
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-05-2020, 05:26 PM
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Not sure about the E series but I have the S on the same size tank and it is great for bringing out the reds. It’s SUPER bright, which helps the plants grow deep reds but definitely requires CO2.

Twinstar is generally recognized as more red friendly as it’s a full RGB with a more balanced spectrum compared to the green emphasis on ADA lights. I’d imagine the e series will look similar if not quite as bright.

Picture for reference (S series).
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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-05-2020, 05:42 PM
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I read a review saying that the 600E on a standard sized 60P aquarium will produce about 50ppfd at substrate. This is pretty good and in the high light area. You will definitely need the co2 you are planning for. The other twinstar lights are substantially more expensive. The light levels you get from the E series are good but for the money you could get better from other options, however, those won't look as slick. Twinstar does an excellent job on the aesthetics department. From watching videos you will get plants turning red with the E series dependent upon of course the type of plant and adequate fertilizer etc. But if you are even thinking of going with the S series... well that is a better light. You just pay a LOT for it.


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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-05-2020, 11:15 PM Thread Starter
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So really the E-series compared to the S-Series is that, the S just is a better light all around?
Aesthetics is important to me. I like the inside of the tank to look nice and the outside also.
I appreciate the help.

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Originally Posted by stephenscapes View Post
Not sure about the E series but I have the S on the same size tank and it is great for bringing out the reds. Its SUPER bright, which helps the plants grow deep reds but definitely requires CO2.

Twinstar is generally recognized as more red friendly as its a full RGB with a more balanced spectrum compared to the green emphasis on ADA lights. Id imagine the e series will look similar if not quite as bright.

Picture for reference (S series).
Do you dose your tank?
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-06-2020, 01:42 AM
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Originally Posted by minorhero View Post
I read a review saying that the 600E on a standard sized 60P aquarium will produce about 50ppfd at substrate. This is pretty good and in the high light area. You will definitely need the co2 you are planning for. The other twinstar lights are substantially more expensive. The light levels you get from the E series are good but for the money you could get better from other options, however, those won't look as slick. Twinstar does an excellent job on the aesthetics department. From watching videos you will get plants turning red with the E series dependent upon of course the type of plant and adequate fertilizer etc. But if you are even thinking of going with the S series... well that is a better light. You just pay a LOT for it.

You mentioned that for the money you could get better lighting from other options. Which options do you think are better? Thanks!
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-06-2020, 01:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Ramsay View Post
You mentioned that for the money you could get better lighting from other options. Which options do you think are better? Thanks!
Chihiros WRGB LED

Only available from importers so it can be a bit hard to find. But it will be brighter and the new version is controlled through an app.


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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-08-2020, 04:19 AM Thread Starter
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Is the difference between the C, E, and S series just PAR?
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 03-08-2020, 06:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JAAG View Post
Is the difference between the C, E, and S series just PAR?
Some have adjustable legs.. others don't.

Quote:
The (C-series) now has both acrylic fixed leg and the adjustable leg design that allows it to fit on wider range of fish tank sizes.

RGB-W diodes


Quote:
Twinstar LED Light (E-Series Vr. II) with "Acrylic" fixed leg design
Quote:

SPECIAL NOTE:
The Twinstar light 900ES LED light is design to fit on a 90cm long tank with 10mm glass thickness. It will NOT fit if the aquarium length is not exactly 90cm long and has different glass thickness. Please check the dimensions and glass thickness of your tank and make sure this light will fit before placing the order. Thank you.



Quote:
Twinstar LED Light (S-series) with "Metal" fixed leg design


Kind of messy..



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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-16-2020, 07:25 PM
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I ordered a Twinstar 600EA from Aqua Forest Aquarium in San Francisco. It showed in-stock but the next day I got an email saying that they were out. I called them and decided to move up to the 600S. Unfortunately I mistakenly ordered the 600SC. I say mistakenly because no one should consider that mounting style without understanding what you will get.

I have a 60cm(measured) Landen rimless tank with 8mm glass. The SC or rather all of the "C" style mounts have a single piece of fixed acrylic with a VERY small lip on the bottom that is supposed to hold the light in place ...in a perfect situation. If everything was manufactured perfectly and your tank exactly meets the mount dimensions ideally then any small bump will still dislodge the light into the tank. This is a terrible engineering idea. The only possible plus is that it looks cool.

In my case that little lip did not meet the inner surfaces of my 60cm tank perfectly so it put pressure on the tank sides making it a double risk.

The adjustable CA/EA/SA versions of the Twinstar are MUCH better designed and should fit any tank within even a large deviation.

I will contact AFA to see if I can exchange the light.

My other alternative would be to modify the 600SC mount to make it secure. I vaguely remember seeing a post here or on UKAPS where someone had done some very modest acrylic work to fix a similar light. Can anyone point me to that post?

Best,
Paul

Last edited by mourip; 06-18-2020 at 08:02 PM. Reason: edit.
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-17-2020, 12:26 AM
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I would not risk it. I had the same problem with my 900E. I have retrofitted two wooden legs using a router to mortice out a slot that exactly fits the fixture and change out the lights (had to resolder the wire). I would not recommend this procedure for a new light.

Instead you can try something like this: https://www.petco.com/shop/en/petcos...-bracket-clips
Which is just a plastic clip to give your rimless tank a lip. I did something like this (but I used a different plastic thing from some random plastic divider I had).

Alternatively you can mortice out a wooden adapter for the legs but this would not look great.
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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-17-2020, 01:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeffww View Post
I would not risk it. I had the same problem with my 900E. I have retrofitted two wooden legs using a router to mortice out a slot that exactly fits the fixture and change out the lights (had to resolder the wire). I would not recommend this procedure for a new light.

Instead you can try something like this: https://www.petco.com/shop/en/petcos...-bracket-clips
Which is just a plastic clip to give your rimless tank a lip. I did something like this (but I used a different plastic thing from some random plastic divider I had).

Alternatively you can mortice out a wooden adapter for the legs but this would not look great.
Did you glue anything to the plexi "legs" or just use the plastic divider as a stop?

I was thinking of cannibalizing several Jardli plastic lily pipe holders to make several "H" shaped clips which would use the plastic screws for added security.

If I have to pay shipping from DC to CA plus a re-stocking fee to trade for an SA version this might be cheaper and would not affect my warranty.

BTW. I grew up in El Cerrito. Is Albany Aquarium still there?
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post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-17-2020, 01:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mourip View Post
Did you glue anything to the plexi "legs" or just use the plastic divider as a stop?

I was thinking of cannibalizing several Jardli plastic lily pipe holders to make several "H" shaped clips which would use the plastic screws for added security.

If I have to pay shipping from DC to CA plus a re-stocking fee to trade for an SA version this might be cheaper and would not affect my warranty.

BTW. I grew up in El Cerrito. Is Albany Aquarium still there?
Yah Albany is still there although their prices just aren't very competitive compared to some other options in Hayward or even AFA now (think $7ea for otocinclus). Last thing I bought from them was some rock from their sump to get my reef tank seeded with microfauna. Tropical Fish World has been my go to for custom fish orders since they are happy to order whatever I want as long as I prepay and I just pick it up on the day they receive the shipment to QT myself. I got 8 honeycomb cats for a decent price this way. Otherwise I shop AFA in SF.

Regarding the light, I didn't attach anything, I just used the plastic clips as a stop to keep it from falling in. If you feel okay with it, you could totally just screw or drill something in. My preference is to keep the light as in-tact as possible in case I'm really not happy with it and would like to resell it down the road.

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post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-17-2020, 11:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeffww View Post
Yah Albany is still there although their prices just aren't very competitive compared to some other options in Hayward or even AFA now (think $7ea for otocinclus). Last thing I bought from them was some rock from their sump to get my reef tank seeded with microfauna. Tropical Fish World has been my go to for custom fish orders since they are happy to order whatever I want as long as I prepay and I just pick it up on the day they receive the shipment to QT myself. I got 8 honeycomb cats for a decent price this way. Otherwise I shop AFA in SF.

Regarding the light, I didn't attach anything, I just used the plastic clips as a stop to keep it from falling in. If you feel okay with it, you could totally just screw or drill something in. My preference is to keep the light as in-tact as possible in case I'm really not happy with it and would like to resell it down the road.
I am on an email thread with AFA to see about exchanging for the 600SA. If they ask for a re-stock fee I will probably just modify the legs. It is a nice light!

The "C" style leg design is a stumper though...
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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-18-2020, 08:07 PM
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Good news. I was able to contact Steven at AFA.

He was able to duplicate my issue on one of their own tanks. Evidently there is a manufacturing issue with my 600SC plexi mount.

He was really great and is cross-shipping me a 600SA and even sent a return UPS label.

Really excellent service.
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post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old 06-18-2020, 08:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mourip View Post
Good news. I was able to contact Steven at AFA.

He was able to duplicate my issue on one of their own tanks. Evidently there is a manufacturing issue with my 600SC plexi mount.

He was really great and is cross-shipping me a 600SA and even sent a return UPS label.

Really excellent service.

Glad you got it worked out. Steven's great and really helpful.

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