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i have a 20 gallon long tank setup and never realized that lighting was such a big deal. currently all im using is a desk lamp with a 60watt bulb. i have access to a fluorescent tube housing but didnt think to use it.

what do you guys suggest.
 

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coralife aqualight 65watts 6700k
 

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What are you trying to get out of the tank?

The fixture xcooperx recommended would work great if you are going for a high light tank with co2 injection and fertilizers.
 

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I have a twin-tube flourescent fixture on my 20L (2x20), so its around 2 wpg. It grows crypts and stem plants, but very, very slowly. I have no co2, and I don't dose. if you go this route, get the special "twin-tube" glass top. I have the standard one, and the black plastic "flex strip" blocks part of tyhe light.
 

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I have a twin-tube flourescent fixture on my 20L (2x20), so its around 2 wpg. It grows crypts and stem plants, but very, very slowly. I have no co2, and I don't dose. if you go this route, get the special "twin-tube" glass top. I have the standard one, and the black plastic "flex strip" blocks part of tyhe light.
hey fishguy, i'm looking at the "special twin tube glass top" here...
Aquarium Hoods & Canopies: All-Glass Twin-Tube Versa-Tops

how is that different from the standard model that i'm assuming you have listed here?
Perfecto Glass Canopies

seems like they both have the hinge in the middle. they seem identical in fact, other than the hinge in the former is brown and the latter is black.

i keep a few 2.5 and 5.5 gallon low light, no co2, very little fertilizer tanks for my killies. i'm able to grow cryptos, small swords, and ferns (the ferns love it). i go to the glass store for these tanks and get whole pieces cut for just a little more than what the glass canopies cost. they're soooooooooo much nicer too. maybe i'll do this for a 20-long, low-light tank that i'm thinking of setting up for some nothos (an annual killie).

still wondering about those made-for-twin-tube canopies to which you refer though. can you explain please? thanks.
 

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Without CO2, and with 65 watts, you might get into some trouble.

Perhaps the 30" Aqualight T-5 Fixture, maybe even the double one (2x18w).
I think with the flat reflector of the Coralife 65 watt you would be OK, especially if you get some of the legs to pull it higher up. I have one on a 25 gallon tank setting on the rim and all is well. Its a new tank, but I've used this setup before with low tech - no problem.
 

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If you are going to go non-CO2, I can't recommend the Coralife T5 fixtures enough. Someone already recommended this light in this thread, Coralife F/W T-5 Aqualight Double Strip Light-30". I just setup a 20 gallon high about a week and a half ago with the 24" version and I couldn't believe how much the stems grew after a couple days. No dosing, just Excel and Aqua Soil & Power Sand. These fixtures are so small (thin and low profile) that the normal glass covers that they have at Petsmart work fine.
 
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