LED with good 24" x 30" spread - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-01-2020, 12:47 PM Thread Starter
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LED with good 24" x 30" spread

I am looking for a decent LED light that will cover a minimum spread of 24" by 30" for plants that require a "moderate" lighting requirement. Flexibility is key, as I will most likely add CO2 at some point and maybe immediately right out of the gate.

I would prefer a hanging light, but they can get expensive quick. I will need at least 4 as this will be used on an 8'L x 3'w x 2'h.

The plan is to keep most of the plants down the center of the tank, but I would like to have some flexibility if I decided to expand or do things a bit different. This tank will be a room divider so you will be able to see through to the other side.

I've thought about doing 4 Fluval 3.0 across the width of the tank but I really like the hanging lights even though they are expensive. What about doing 4 AI Prime lights? I believe the spread is only 24" x 24", but I've also ready in reality is more like 18" x 18"? Would 4 of these meet my needs? Or would they not distribute light consistently across the tank? I'm a tech nut and love the idea of integrating all the lights together and having full control over the lights as a group.

I've looked into Ecotechs and Kessels, but I'm not prepared to spend $1500 on lighting for this thing(if these are really the way to go, I may just have to buy them as I can until I have enough of them). 4 AI Primes would keep it under $1000 and 4 Fluval 3.0 would be even cheaper than that.

One thing I would really like to do is be able to monitor or track data points on the computer. This isn't a must, but definitely a like to have thing. Can the Fluvals be monitored via wifi and a computer app? Or is it just bluetooth via your phone?

Any other suggestions?

Last edited by FishFinatic; 07-01-2020 at 01:35 PM. Reason: .
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-01-2020, 05:10 PM
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Originally Posted by FishFinatic View Post
I am looking for a decent LED light that will cover a minimum spread of 24" by 30" for plants that require a "moderate" lighting requirement. Flexibility is key, as I will most likely add CO2 at some point and maybe immediately right out of the gate.

I would prefer a hanging light, but they can get expensive quick. I will need at least 4 as this will be used on an 8'L x 3'w x 2'h.

The plan is to keep most of the plants down the center of the tank, but I would like to have some flexibility if I decided to expand or do things a bit different. This tank will be a room divider so you will be able to see through to the other side.

I've thought about doing 4 Fluval 3.0 across the width of the tank but I really like the hanging lights even though they are expensive. What about doing 4 AI Prime lights? I believe the spread is only 24" x 24", but I've also ready in reality is more like 18" x 18"? Would 4 of these meet my needs? Or would they not distribute light consistently across the tank? I'm a tech nut and love the idea of integrating all the lights together and having full control over the lights as a group.

I've looked into Ecotechs and Kessels, but I'm not prepared to spend $1500 on lighting for this thing(if these are really the way to go, I may just have to buy them as I can until I have enough of them). 4 AI Primes would keep it under $1000 and 4 Fluval 3.0 would be even cheaper than that.

One thing I would really like to do is be able to monitor or track data points on the computer. This isn't a must, but definitely a like to have thing. Can the Fluvals be monitored via wifi and a computer app? Or is it just bluetooth via your phone?

Any other suggestions?
Yea for "puck style" lights best to design around an 18 x 18 footprint..
16 pucks for "flexible" lighting..
8 minimum..
Unless you jack up the height w/ concurrent par loss at depth or concentrate on a "row"


2 of these for $1080-ish might be fine. Aesthetics are a bit err questionable"..
https://sbreeflights.com/sbox-reef-l...eme-wifi-.html

Keep in mind I'm not really considering minimum light here.

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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-01-2020, 06:19 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by jeffkrol View Post
Yea for "puck style" lights best to design around an 18 x 18 footprint..
16 pucks for "flexible" lighting..
8 minimum..
Unless you jack up the height w/ concurrent par loss at depth or concentrate on a "row"


2 of these for $1080-ish might be fine. Aesthetics are a bit err questionable"..
https://sbreeflights.com/sbox-reef-l...eme-wifi-.html

Keep in mind I'm not really considering minimum light here.
Lights will be in a canopy so aesthetics aren't really important. These looks very interesting. Do you have personal experience with them?
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-01-2020, 06:40 PM
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Lights will be in a canopy so aesthetics aren't really important. These looks very interesting. Do you have personal experience with them?
I personally don't have any experience with the SB Reef lights but I have heard many good things about the lights them selves. Customer service seems to be an issue.

A recent discussion involved "which do you prefer, SB Reef or Prizm?" and the general consensus seemed to be towards the Prizm LED - likely due to fantastic customer support.

https://www.nilocg.com/product-categ...tank-lighting/


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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-01-2020, 08:58 PM
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Originally Posted by FishFinatic View Post
Lights will be in a canopy so aesthetics aren't really important. These looks very interesting. Do you have personal experience with them?
No but basically the brand is Chinese assembly and US support.
They state better quality over the Chinese "black box" lights but have somewhat the same pedigree..


Lots of light though for a reasonable price. Only 2 channels (or three not sure if they have a dedicated moonlight one)

They do sell drivers and replacement boards so THAT is a big plus.

Swapping diodes is a fairly easy DIY...


Diodes are prob. average efficiency and ACTUALLY run at about 2W each so don't believe the ratings till if and when you find differently.

Bump:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Immortal1 View Post
I personally don't have any experience with the SB Reef lights but I have heard many good things about the lights them selves. Customer service seems to be an issue.

A recent discussion involved "which do you prefer, SB Reef or Prizm?" and the general consensus seemed to be towards the Prizm LED - likely due to fantastic customer support.

https://www.nilocg.com/product-categ...tank-lighting/

Prizm.. same factory (?) different spectrum..
No wifi (?)

Last known fw spectrum from sbreef:


ch"A" blue/teal/violet/red/warm/neutral
ch"B" green/10k/red/warm/neutral

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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-01-2020, 09:17 PM
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There is no way on earth that 4x Primes are going to cover this monster tank unless you just want ambient light and not actually grow anything unless it's directly under the light. You have 3 ft front to back width which is not small.

AI prime at most is going to cover 18x18 square inches. Length wise you are going to need 5x primes to cover the length and them multiply that by 2 to cover the width so you are looking at 10 units.
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-01-2020, 09:32 PM
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Originally Posted by FishFinatic View Post
Lights will be in a canopy so aesthetics aren't really important. These looks very interesting. Do you have personal experience with them?



Ok now you have a height restriction. will determine lensing..
Hanging lights generally need 8-16" of height..(90 degrees or smaller)
Strip lights are generally 3-6" (120 degree spread)

Best to build one..


NOTE: changed the image to include fish..

Last edited by jeffkrol; 07-02-2020 at 01:56 AM. Reason: edit
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-02-2020, 12:22 AM Thread Starter
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Tell me more. Did you build that? What kind of software are you running to control it? I'm a DIYer, I just want to make sure it's high quality and will last

Tank looks absolutely fantastic by the way
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-02-2020, 01:16 AM
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Tell me more. Did you build that? What kind of software are you running to control it? I'm a DIYer, I just want to make sure it's high quality and will last

Tank looks absolutely fantastic by the way
Designed the spectrum and picked out a lot of the diodes and lenses..
someone else built it.. It's pretty straightforward..
Now has a few years under it's belt and runs as new.
Actually it is really over watt-ed but better than under..


Main diodes were Luxeon Rebels off evil bay (asst whites) .
Steves has competitive prices currently though..


as to overall cost.. forgot..but not horrible for what you get..
All the whites were about $61 total. Violets were , I believe about $4 each.
Heat sinks are annoyingly expensive though.




Don't remember who's violets we used though..
Believe the controller chosen was the Coralux Storm X but not exactly sure atm.
https://coralux.net/?wpsc-product=st...led-controller


Hardest part was getting the reflectors as opposed to lenses. They are kind of hard to find at a decent price.
On full, pulls 6.5A.

I'd have to do some looking back to get wattage.
7(8 )drivers 5(6) channels (IF the cyans were added)..


ONLY issue was the cyan channel was skipped due to a shipment error..


Earlier pic and lower height.


200 gallon tank btw.
build date was early 2017.

In a canopy one could skip the lenses all-together ..

My opinion is reflectors don't hot spot as much as lenses..
Optic 10170 Led Lumileds Luxeon R White | Carclo Optics


Quote:
80 DEG FWHM DIA 20mm REFLECTOR OPTIC
rough estimate is 260W-ish..

"new" buy list.


rough est.. $450 (drivers/diodes/power supply/driver boards/controller) plus $'s for wire/aluminum/thermal paste/asst hardware.
No lenses

72 x 6-ish array I believe..

Reason I didn't include heatsink costs is because people pick/scavange what they can..
but to give you an idea..



About $700 total...Probably ways to shave $100 or so..BUT at your 350gal or so.. may need to up your diode count a bit..but that
depends on your light total needs.
Good thing about DIY is once you get the base one can always add especially if the thought of expansion is built in.
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PART #: LRS-350-48
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Last edited by jeffkrol; 07-02-2020 at 06:04 AM. Reason: edit
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-02-2020, 11:57 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by jeffkrol View Post
Designed the spectrum and picked out a lot of the diodes and lenses..
someone else built it.. It's pretty straightforward..
Now has a few years under it's belt and runs as new.
Actually it is really over watt-ed but better than under..


Main diodes were Luxeon Rebels off evil bay (asst whites) .
Steves has competitive prices currently though..


as to overall cost.. forgot..but not horrible for what you get..
All the whites were about $61 total. Violets were , I believe about $4 each.
Heat sinks are annoyingly expensive though.




Don't remember who's violets we used though..
Believe the controller chosen was the Coralux Storm X but not exactly sure atm.
https://coralux.net/?wpsc-product=st...led-controller


Hardest part was getting the reflectors as opposed to lenses. They are kind of hard to find at a decent price.
On full, pulls 6.5A.

I'd have to do some looking back to get wattage.
7(8 )drivers 5(6) channels (IF the cyans were added)..


ONLY issue was the cyan channel was skipped due to a shipment error..


Earlier pic and lower height.


200 gallon tank btw.
build date was early 2017.

In a canopy one could skip the lenses all-together ..

My opinion is reflectors don't hot spot as much as lenses..
Optic 10170 Led Lumileds Luxeon R White | Carclo Optics




rough estimate is 260W-ish..

"new" buy list.


rough est.. $450 (drivers/diodes/power supply/driver boards/controller) plus $'s for wire/aluminum/thermal paste/asst hardware.
No lenses

72 x 6-ish array I believe..

Reason I didn't include heatsink costs is because people pick/scavange what they can..
but to give you an idea..



About $700 total...Probably ways to shave $100 or so..BUT at your 350gal or so.. may need to up your diode count a bit..but that
depends on your light total needs.
Good thing about DIY is once you get the base one can always add especially if the thought of expansion is built in.
Wow, Jeff. Thank you for all the effort. I'm going to take a serious look into this.

Bump:
Quote:
Originally Posted by gus6464 View Post
There is no way on earth that 4x Primes are going to cover this monster tank unless you just want ambient light and not actually grow anything unless it's directly under the light. You have 3 ft front to back width which is not small.

AI prime at most is going to cover 18x18 square inches. Length wise you are going to need 5x primes to cover the length and them multiply that by 2 to cover the width so you are looking at 10 units.
I hear you. What about 4 Fluval 3.0s running the width of the tank?
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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-02-2020, 03:23 PM
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Wow, Jeff. Thank you for all the effort. I'm going to take a serious look into this.

Bump:



I hear you. What about 4 Fluval 3.0s running the width of the tank?
27 par at 2ft depth. Go for it if that's what you looking for.

You have to decide what kind of tank you want first and then choose a light accordingly. Low tech the fluvals will serve you well. With high tech you are going to have to spend some money. Or you can always go t5 which is what I would do anyway for that size of tank. 2x 8x48 fixtures will let you grow whatever you want in that tank.

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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-02-2020, 04:12 PM
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Wow, Jeff. Thank you for all the effort. I'm going to take a serious look into this.
It's a sickness...
Quote:
Originally Posted by FishFinatic View Post
I hear you. What about 4 Fluval 3.0s running the width of the tank?
Problem with any "strip" lights is your width.
At 4" the Fluval covers about 14" front to back.
Second problem is butting fixtures end to end (applies to t5's as well) and concurrent "shadow zone".
visually it's not always there but measurement wise it is..
This has some nice pics of an 8ft (but narrower) tank.
It "self corrects" w/ depth though but I have this "thing" about fish swimming into "dead light zones"
https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/li...t-tank.328384/

It's certainly not fatal but "I" will always prefer the correct size light.
Even the 2 SBReefs I mentioned have this but one needs to see how much distance is the last diode to the other fixtures last diode

to get an idea of how err "bad" it might be.


Bottom line is w/ any strip light I'd consider 3 deep not 2 besides you need the power..

Their design (width/height) is designed around 12-14(16)" depth.
you can raise them..but lose par deeper.

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Last edited by jeffkrol; 07-02-2020 at 04:30 PM. Reason: edit
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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-02-2020, 05:09 PM Thread Starter
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It's a sickness...

Problem with any "strip" lights is your width.
At 4" the Fluval covers about 14" front to back.
Second problem is butting fixtures end to end (applies to t5's as well) and concurrent "shadow zone".
visually it's not always there but measurement wise it is..
This has some nice pics of an 8ft (but narrower) tank.
It "self corrects" w/ depth though but I have this "thing" about fish swimming into "dead light zones"
https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/li...t-tank.328384/

It's certainly not fatal but "I" will always prefer the correct size light.
Even the 2 SBReefs I mentioned have this but one needs to see how much distance is the last diode to the other fixtures last diode

to get an idea of how err "bad" it might be.




Bottom line is w/ any strip light I'd consider 3 deep not 2 besides you need the power..

Their design (width/height) is designed around 12-14(16)" depth.
you can raise them..but lose par deeper.
What about just running the 30" - 36" version with the width of the tank (front to back) equally spaced out across?
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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-02-2020, 05:13 PM
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What about just running the 30" - 36" version with the width of the tank (front to back) equally spaced out across?

Pretty standard reef pattern...How much height do you have available? (est what will fit and distance from light FACE to water line).
Oh never mind.. drifted to the SBReefs.. Fluval is no issue..

Actually "equal spaced" is out..

7= $1000
224 total watts..

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Last edited by jeffkrol; 07-02-2020 at 07:51 PM. Reason: edit
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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 07-02-2020, 05:42 PM
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Another option with DIY but not out yet is the new Bridgelux Gen 3 Thrive EB strips. Those will not need a heatsink at nominal current. Running 6500K with 5000K at 2:1 ratio = 6000K with 100CRI at 98-99 R9 value so basically "The Sun".

You can do V series Thrive COBs too but that would be a lot of soldering and require a lot more voltage.
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