The Planted Tank Forum banner
1 - 14 of 14 Posts

· Registered
Joined
·
429 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've decided to start working my way back into the hobby after a LOOOOONG time away, and somewhat starting over as far as my knowledge. I've had nearly everything needed to set up a 40 gallon breeder tank sitting in storage for a few years, and it seems like a shame to let it go to waste. I've got the tank, decent substrate, filter(s), heaters, co2 gear (minus the actual tank) etc, only thing missing is the lighting.

Can anyone save me some time searching endlessly for info and give me some suggestions on ideal lighting for this setup? Specific fixtures would be great, but I'll take general advice as well. I'm fine with pretty extensive DIY if that's a factor/option and would possibly save me some $$$. Thanks in advance for your help. :biggrin:
 

· Registered
Joined
·
13,293 Posts
I've decided to start working my way back into the hobby after a LOOOOONG time away, and somewhat starting over as far as my knowledge. I've had nearly everything needed to set up a 40 gallon breeder tank sitting in storage for a few years, and it seems like a shame to let it go to waste. I've got the tank, decent substrate, filter(s), heaters, co2 gear (minus the actual tank) etc, only thing missing is the lighting.

Can anyone save me some time searching endlessly for info and give me some suggestions on ideal lighting for this setup? Specific fixtures would be great, but I'll take general advice as well. I'm fine with pretty extensive DIY if that's a factor/option and would possibly save me some $$$. Thanks in advance for your help. :biggrin:
w/ the current "state of the art" an odd yet pertinent question is "what do you want the light to do"?

Static lighting can be done w/ high-ish intensity using anything from T5's (36" not being very common in the cheap variety.. to LED's like this:
http://www.aquatraders.com/LED-Aquarium-Lighting-Beamswork-Freshwater-Plant-p/56426p.htm

From there you have the "programmable" type LED's at $300 plus..(DIY may run $100 less)
http://www.marineland.com/Products/...led-aquarium-lighting-for-aquatic-plants.aspx

or high powered targeted spectrum:
http://www.buildmyled.com/dutch-planted-6300k-xb-series/

Besides that and how much you want to spend.. the only other "advice" would be to find lights w/ a wider spread due to the 40b dimensions..
 

· Registered
Joined
·
429 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Appreciate the info, I'm surprised at how cheap that first fixture is for a 36" led, is there any good feedback from people who've used it? Guessing for a co2 injected tank you'd probably need 2?
 

· Registered
Joined
·
13,293 Posts

· Registered
Joined
·
13,293 Posts
I've been out of the hobby and lost track of some of the terminology, fill me in on what you mean by static color.
Well w/ LED's one of their strengths is ease of dimming and channel control..
as a simple example you could make a 3000K LED bar and a 10000K LED bar, each on a dimmer
and at "full" you have a effective CCT of 6500k.. Dimming either of the channels changes the color temp.. Your no longer "stuck" w/ one color (static) or need to go buy various bulbs.. that sit there..
Granted there are dimmable t5's ect.. but compared to the current state of the art of LED's pretty primitive..
Adding colors and ramp timers you can "imitate" a lot of things .. from sunrise/sunset to moon phases to "passing clouds"..
 

· Registered
Joined
·
429 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Well w/ LED's one of their strengths is ease of dimming and channel control..
as a simple example you could make a 3000K LED bar and a 10000K LED bar, each on a dimmer
and at "full" you have a effective CCT of 6500k.. Dimming either of the channels changes the color temp.. Your no longer "stuck" w/ one color (static) or need to go buy various bulbs.. that sit there..
Granted there are dimmable t5's ect.. but compared to the current state of the art of LED's pretty primitive..
Adding colors and ramp timers you can "imitate" a lot of things .. from sunrise/sunset to moon phases to "passing clouds"..
Ah, I see. While that sounds incredible and all, I think my current budget is a little limited for the top of the line led fixtures at the moment. I'd ideally like to do a high light setup though, from what I'm seeing right now, if you're not able to spend top dollar, it sounds like you can get more light for your $ with t5 fixtures still?
 

· Registered
Joined
·
13,293 Posts
if you're not able to spend top dollar, it sounds like you can get more light for your $ with t5 fixtures still?
no they are pretty similar...
Generally speaking

what you get for your top dollar would be way more light and programmability..

for $81 you get this:
Super energy efficient 3 watt high output LEDs
24x 6500K LED
Use 72 watts
Which is roughly equiv to 144+ watts of T5's..
Package Content:

1 x 36"Aquarium Light Fixture
4 x 39W 6700K T5 HO Fluorescent Lamps
3 x Dual Bluemoon LEDs
2 x Flippable Brackets
$79.99
 

· Registered
Joined
·
429 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·

· Registered
Joined
·
13,293 Posts
Which fixtures are you comparing there?
This one.. and the 3W Beamswork..
http://www.thelashop.com/fish-tank-...ighting.html?gclid=COism4C78sACFWqCMgodgVQAFQ




seemed like an average T5..

A more critical analysis w/ comments:
Using Hoppy's PAR chart for the Aquaticlife T5 36" fixture
you get approx 132 PAR @17"
Using the image and extrapolating for one. you'd only get 65 PAR for the LED..
In this case 2 is equal to one.. bringing you to double the price for the LED's ..but I don't think that is the end of the story.

First problem is inherent in Apogee and Apogee like meters..which according to Apogee and others:
http://www.apogeeinstruments.com/content/Quantum Sensors-LEDs.pdf

They will overestimate light in areas that the tube is high in and underestimate light in the area that white LEDs are high in..

second is a problem in my own use of Watts (besides the normal one)
Going by published spec is prone to multiple errors..

So my personal bottom line is:
LED's are more efficient than most measurements present..

I'll admit that the 80 Beamswork may not be "quite" equal to 4 T5 tubes.. but I don't believe, in reality, that they are that unequal..
Both BTW are plenty for a planted tank..
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top