The Planted Tank Forum banner
1 - 20 of 24 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I’m looking to build a lighting setup for a 48” x 18” planted tank, where the light panel will sit 24” above the substrate (20” deep water). I’d like a reasonable amount of PAR (around 100) at the bottom of the tank to allow grasses to grow, and was thinking 90 degree optics would be required for the depth. The LDDH drivers seem a good option, but I’m not sure which dimmer/controller to choose to allow PWM and ramping the lights. I’d like to keep cost reasonable, but with good longevity as a high priority.

As LEDs are constantly evolving in form factor, if I was to buy from cutter or ledsupply, which combination of LEDs and driver/controller would you recommend as good value and sensible to build? Using ~70 x Luxeon 3w rebels would be an option, but perhaps there is a better performing per value or easier option. The strip PCBs with 2835/5050 don’t seem as easy to add optics?

i like the look of the makersled low profile heatsink, which I can get from ledsupply.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,845 Posts
A modified tc-420 or 421 is about the cheapest 5 channel controller out there short of building one of your own with an aduino or raspberry pi or esp32 board.


A single diode 24" off the water line with a lens of 40 degrees will produce a 18" diameter spot
A 120 degree strip has a 83" dia " spot"

 
  • Like
Reactions: Jatem

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
A modified tc-420 or 421 is about the cheapest 5 channel controller out there short of building one of your own with an aduino or raspberry pi or esp32 board.


A single diode 24" off the water line with a lens of 40 degrees will produce a 18" diameter spot
A 120 degree strip has a 83" dia " spot"

Tc 421 it is then.

The LEDs will be sitting 24” above the gravel (ie 4” above the water).

Looking at graphs for the carclo lenses for the luxeon rebel, the wide lens seems to be around 40 degrees (50% intensity), which seems a bit narrow.
Are there any other emitters you’d suggest, or go with the luxeon 3w stars?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,845 Posts
Opps poor reading comprehension on my part...

At 4" off the water and only 20" deep I see no need for lensing though I admit to having a bias against them in favor if reflectors IF necessary.

Anyways as to diodes, one new choice is something like this:


They do make 6500k
$27.22 per 13.8W.. not exactly cheap but $2/watt isn't horrible..
Check out their lens selection as well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Would these linear strips from cutter be suitable or comparable? They don't seem to have the Thrive in 6500k.

Cutter 560mm linear PCBs (minimum 2x of each required for 48" tank):

Bridgelux Thrive 5000k 98 CRI 48V 0.5A - $10.50 - 24W
SSK-1560ZGE-2835-TH5K Midpower Led Strip - Cutter Electronics

Cree Fidelity 4000K 98 CRI 36V 0.5-0.7A (96x) with 4x XPG3 Deep red 660nm - $28 - 18-24W
SSK-1560ZGE-XX-2835CR-Fidelity 98 CRI Led Strip - Cutter Electronics

I'm guessing the power supply might be a bit of a stretch with 48V required for the bridgelux strips (54V PSU required?). Could I run two or more of the 560mm strips in parallel from each LDD H driver, for each channel? Would I want to add some individual blue LEDs?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
If you're looking to control more than 5 channels that the TC421, you could buy a ESP-WROVER with a Voltage regulator from whatever power supply you're using to 5v (you can get from jaycar for arduino) and then either make your own program or what I've done is use SSLAC-ESP32 from bbasil2012 it is able to control 16pwm signals. Once setup it has WiFi control that you can set the sunrise sunset times from a web page interface
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Opps poor reading comprehension on my part...

At 4" off the water and only 20" deep I see no need for lensing though I admit to having a bias against them in favor if reflectors IF necessary.

Anyways as to diodes, one new choice is something like this:


They do make 6500k
$27.22 per 13.8W.. not exactly cheap but $2/watt isn't horrible..
Check out their lens selection as well.
What quantity and colour combination of the toshiba sunlike 56cm strips would you recommend for my 80 gallon? The 5 year warranty seems good, and no heatsink required. Perhaps 4x 6500k 56cm strips, and 2x 3000k 56cm strips (84 watts). Would I need to add deep red or blue, and would the PAR be around the 100 I think i need on the substrate 24” below the lamp without lenses?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,845 Posts
Adding colors is sort if a personal choice but I' ll get back to that .
First I suggest going a bit "easy" by using 300mA ldds on the sunlikes.
LDD-H Series Mean Well Step-Down Mode CC DC-DC LED Drivers


Say 11w per strip not 14..
Best to use 8 6500k
2 @ any k below about 3500. 4 would give better coverage but really the low k strips are more for ambiance.
Lower the more red though.

Posting but not complete.. sorry switching computers.

Anyways cost of using "pure" sunlike is a bit expensive soo a modification
Bridgelux Thrive strips as supplement..
Soo 4 6500k sunlike to add violet and high CRI.. $27.22 each
4 Bridgelux eb 5000k to add "regular blue" (double peak in blue)and high cri.. $11.16 each
BXEB-L0560Z-50S2000-C-C3 Bridgelux | Optoelectronics | DigiKey
And 4 (or 2) 3500k $11.16 Again more for spread and symmetry.

soo sitting with $200 of diodes..
Not gonna figure out if there is a cost differentail between 1120's or 2 560's atm.
1A @41V
You can drive the bridgelux's harder and 2 in series to 40v-ish..

soo 4x 11w (4664 lumens) plus 2x 41w (11316 lumens) plus on full another 2 x 41w. Issue is you probably will not run the low K's too high..
So 126W of main light.. plus "sunrise/growth strips..

8 drivers (You can run more than one driver off a tc-421 channel btw.
48v power supply @ 250 or greater wattage..



6500
3000
5500
3000
5500
6500
Or possibly split if you use all 560mm but would increase driver count or run bridgelux's at 350mA decreasing wattage to 80w plus warm whites.
6500, 5000
3000, 3000
5000, 6500
3000, 3000
6500, 5000
5000. 6500

hmm.. not as balanced either way as I would prefer..Need to think about this a bit.. Should blend fine either way though..


Now about "colors".. You have a full compliment of everything from violet to deep red with no major gaps of any kind really.

Only real add ons would be more deep red, some IR, or lower violets i.e 400 to true uv.
Of course you can add moonlights ( I don't like blue and use cyan IF I even do moonlight) or exaggerate any color you want.
Need to figure your own need/wants with that.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jatem

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,845 Posts
Estimate.. Note I don't have a 6500 sunlike sooo K value is off .. Est using sunlike @ 6500k pushes it up to about 5600k, following the black arc.
Also diode count was corrected for lumens soo ignore "number" ratios.. This was figured to lumens.
also note no low k's were used..
again the usual caution as this is an estimate..

Colorfulness Light Product Rectangle Slope
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jatem

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Estimate.. Note I don't have a 6500 sunlike sooo K value is off .. Est using sunlike @ 6500k pushes it up to about 5600k, following the black arc.
Also diode count was corrected for lumens soo ignore "number" ratios.. This was figured to lumens.
also note no low k's were used..
again the usual caution as this is an estimate..

View attachment 1036215
That looks like a nice combo with sunlike and thrive combined. I’m afraid I don’t fully understand which aspects of balance to aim for with the layout of the channels/strips, and how many drivers i can get away with. I’ll have a read about ramping and sunset with the tc421.

I could use alu angle or box sections for a backing, but these LEDs don’t seem to need much/any heatsinking.

Thanks for the chunky spectrum calculations, it looks like a good cri coverage. 71 ppfd is probably enough at 60cm.

I would have thought these LEDs would provide similar or more PAR than the 120cm vividmax panel from MML with 72x 3w epistars, which they list on their site as having PAR/ppfd of 129 at 60cm, with default 120 deg beam. I wonder why they say it has twice the PAR?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,845 Posts
I don't really swear by spectra par data.
Not sure how it is derived.
Keep in mind MML measurement is probably at the "sweet spot" i.e dead center where par is max .

An ldd- can drive any number of leds as long as the voltage at that current adds up to no more than 52 volts.
Of course the power supply limits come into play.... 48v ps... Max voltage out about 45 v.
These drivers sre just voltage regulators "allowing" only the amount of voltage out to produce x amps.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
Is there any benefit to getting 4x of the blueacro mini drivers vs LDDH?
I can get a meanwell PSU when I'm grabbing the bridgelux strips. Unfortunately the Sunlike strips seem out of stock now, with a 4 week wait.

If the 3500k strips will be run at low PWM, maybe I'll get 2 rather than 4 of them.
When you talk about balancing the strips below, are you referring to front to back placement in the tank and even coverage in the tank, or the combinations that the controller can use to blend the channels to give the desired warmth/cool light?

<<<<<<<<<<
6500
3000
5500
3000
5500
6500
Or possibly split if you use all 560mm but would increase driver count or run bridgelux's at 350mA decreasing wattage to 80w plus warm whites.
6500, 5000
3000, 3000
5000, 6500
3000, 3000
6500, 5000
5000. 6500

hmm.. not as balanced either way as I would prefer..Need to think about this a bit.. Should blend fine either way though..
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,845 Posts
Rectangle Font Audio equipment Electric blue Circle


Rectangle Font Audio equipment Circle Electric blue


560mm strips..
Think of each row as a 4ft t5.. ;)


Blu Acros only go down to 400mA so there is that.
Having adj. drivers is nice but mostly if you find your heatsinks aren't up to snuff. Easier than buying a lower mA driver..
I've always found those tiny adjustment pots to be a pia though.

Bummer about the 6500k's.. after all those are the lynchpin here and was sort of the point.
Not easy to get.
Bridgelux lists them but nobody carries them. Same w/ the 5600k's

Finnex used 7000k diodes and 660nm deep reds. Simplest rich and balanced spectrum I ever really found.
Too much of the yellow phosphor has a tendency to dull colors.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
The Bridgelux V6 HD Thrive array look interesting for high CRI, 6500k available, but they are small and probably run very hot, more effort to build with a heatsink.
6500K 98 CRI 1400 lumens 20v 700mA and $4.21 each.
They aren't very efficient at 116lm/W, but the sunlikes are only 105lm/W anyway.

Maybe I should just get some 5k and 3.5k Thrive EB strips, and add some individual blue luxeon (or similar) stars.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,845 Posts
Yea lumen efficiency generally drops with cri.
Keep in mind that lumens are a subset of " par" and does not always reflect the plant efficiency. I e a heavily biased in red/ blue led spectrum would have terrible lumen efficiency yet high par.

$2.58 each in a lot of 10 or more.
13.65 watts each @750 mA.
Though you may want to go to a 6x 2 array at 700 mA or less.
2 cobs/ driver
Cheap enough to suffer the cost of a heat sink.

Pair it with Luxeon " crisp white" 1203 cob @ 300mA, 3000k.
About 4.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jatem

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thanks for all the advice.
I've ordered 12 of the V6 HD Thrive 6500k array COBs and a couple of the thrive 3500k 56cm strips from digikey, and plenty of LDD-HW drivers and a makersled slim heatsink from ledsupply.
I'm going to try using ReefPi as a controller, as I already have a raspberry pi zero running 24/7 with pi-hole (network wide ad blocker), and the raspberry pi has 2x PWM pins available on board.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,845 Posts
Sounds like a plan...
There is a few "mods" to consider since you got the makers heatsink .
Consider using fans on it
Also for going sort of state if the art a row of mixed IR (<800nm) and 660nm reds.

Another option for "color" is the cheap " full spectrum" leds on stars.

Both options can use fleabay stars. Both types of red have low v(f) so large strings are possible. Most are $1 or less per star


The " crisp white" cobs were suggested to keep in the theme of adding violet. Yea a bit pricey compared to the strips or the other cobs. The spacing would have been 6 6500k plus 2 crisp 3 sets of 2 and the 2 crisp in between 2 sets.
..6500 x 2... Crisp.. 6500x 2... Crisp.. 6500 x 2
.....color bar..? Or not
....... Repeat 1....



A " trick" though is not to evenly space them to get a more even coverage.

Cob.....Cob........Cob..........Cob.......Cob....Cob

At even spacing the overlapping cones of light produce a center hot (er) spot.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jatem

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
LEDSupply were able to cut the makersled heatsink to the precise length I was after, and ship within 12 hours, which is great service.
I also ordered some full spectrum LED stars.
Reef-pi is now up and running on the same board as pihole. I had to change the reef-pi config to use a different port for the reef-pi interface, so I can access both pihole and reefpi web interfaces.

The rasp pi has only two PWM outputs, but I could add extra hardware for more. Will two channels do the job, if I put the full spectrum on the same channel as the 6500k cobs? I haven‘t found many examples of how people setup their ramping for sunrise, midday, sunset. Would I use mainly the 3500k for sunrise and sunset, with the 6500k coming in for strong white midday light?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,845 Posts
LEDSupply were able to cut the makersled heatsink to the precise length I was after, and ship within 12 hours, which is great service.
I also ordered some full spectrum LED stars.
Reef-pi is now up and running on the same board as pihole. I had to change the reef-pi config to use a different port for the reef-pi interface, so I can access both pihole and reefpi web interfaces.

The rasp pi has only two PWM outputs, but I could add extra hardware for more. Will two channels do the job, if I put the full spectrum on the same channel as the 6500k cobs? I haven‘t found many examples of how people setup their ramping for sunrise, midday, sunset. Would I use mainly the 3500k for sunrise and sunset, with the 6500k coming in for strong white midday light?
Theoretically one can put a bunch of ldds on one pwm channel but best to just add the "hat" to it.
Example:

The native pwm circuit maxes out at like 40mA(? ).
I' ve read about problems with too many drivers on one channel. Do not remember what " too many" was though.

Best practice is to keep like colors on one channel.


Yea low k is sort of the sunrise channel.

You may want to look over this code ..
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Sounds like a plan...
There is a few "mods" to consider since you got the makers heatsink .
Consider using fans on it
Also for going sort of state if the art a row of mixed IR (<800nm) and 660nm reds.

Another option for "color" is the cheap " full spectrum" leds on stars.

Both options can use fleabay stars. Both types of red have low v(f) so large strings are possible. Most are $1 or less per star


The " crisp white" cobs were suggested to keep in the theme of adding violet. Yea a bit pricey compared to the strips or the other cobs. The spacing would have been 6 6500k plus 2 crisp 3 sets of 2 and the 2 crisp in between 2 sets.
..6500 x 2... Crisp.. 6500x 2... Crisp.. 6500 x 2
.....color bar..? Or not
....... Repeat 1....
I've ordered a fan for the heatsink.
I'll get hold of a pca9685 board to the raspberry pi so I can adjust the colours, and perhaps use just 2 of the 6500k COBs as a sort of moonlight for in the evenings. I could probably mount both the pi and the pca9685 inside the heatsink, so the wiring is tidier. I thought I'd use a bus bar configuration with the 48V power lines to supply all the wired LDD-HW drivers - any suggestions as to something like a bus bar which will fit the small gauge driver wires, and allow up to 10 or so common +ve and -ve connections to 48V?

I don't mind ordering some of the Crisp White bridgelux COBs and some more drivers, if that will give me better colour or growing light for plants than the thrive 3500 led strips combined with 10x cheap "full spectrum" stars? I'm looking forward to getting this running in a week or two.
 
1 - 20 of 24 Posts
Top