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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just realized within the Coralife fixture I ordered that one of the two bulbs is a Colormax pinkish colored bulb. The fixture is the 30" dual bulb that will be sitting on top of my 36gal bow front tank. (21" depth) It also has a 6700k daylight bulb within the fixture. Should I replace the Colormax bulb with another of the 6700k to be able to do my low light plants? or will this colormax produce light in the range needed for my low tech tank? also have the stock hood with the 20w 24" bulb as well if that may need to be added (although it is not a T-5 fixture like the coralife fixture.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The colormax bulb will be fine and may even bring out the color of your plants.
Thank you for the response. wow, I just got the sucker hooked up and man those little bulbs can put out some light. I plan on getting the tank setup tonight and get the cycle started. I bet the fish and shrimp in my 10 gal are tired of the new plants I have stacked in there for the new tank lol.
 

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I have 3 of these fixtures over my 29 gallon. I have replaced two colormax bulbs so far. I replaced one with a 6500k and one with a 10000k. I noticed no real difference overall, outside of the fact I think it looks better and looks brighter (I don't know that there is actually more light, it just looks slightly brigher). I wouldn't replace the bulb until it needs replacing unless you don't like the color. I have found that with both my tanks, the amount of light seems to be the only thing that makes a big difference. Color spectrum hasn't effected much.
 

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i just got two Colormax replacement bulbs (5500 spectrum?) for a double 24" hood I have on left side of my 36" 38g tank, and it gives that side a pinkish hue. On the right side of the tank, overlapping a bit, I have a 24" Aqualight CF hood with a single 65w 6700 bulb and that side is very neutral in hue. So it's a great way to compare the two spectrums, and I have to say, I prefer the 6700/right side of the tank. The gravel substrate in particular looks more natural vs. the left. The latter looks a bit "fake" due to the pink coloration from the Colormax bulbs.

One thing about the Colormax bulbs, though: they do make the color of my fish really "pop." A MAJOR difference. My keyhole cichlids have a slight irridescence when they swim under the Colormax bulbs, mostly around their eyes and fin tips, that I never noticed before. So if you care more for bringing out the colors of your fish, and don't mind your substrate and plants taking on a bit of a pinkish hue, go for the Colormax. Even my (usually) oblivious 16-year-old noticed the difference.

Bottom line, I think spectrum (mostly) comes down to aesthetics, and what you find pleasing to your eye. Very subjective.

One question: is the pinkish hue from the Colormax bulbs due to phosphors they add, or to the spectrum itself?

[Setup update: I just ordered a 96w Aqualight single bulb CF hood (6700 spectrum) to simplify things: using two hoods is a drag. Will be interesting to see if natural hues hold up.]
 
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