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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone. I am new to this forum and this is my first post.

I am looking to make the move from T5 to LEDs. I tried reading the FAQ but it's too much to absorb. Can someone kindly help me out?

Finnex has several LED options to choose from. Is there a single stand-alone unit that will sufficiently light a standard 90 gallon for freshwater plant growth? By that, I mean comparable to 3 or 4 T5 lamps of 54 watts.

Also, how is the power consumption? I am looking to save money in the long run.
 

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Is there a single stand-alone unit that will sufficiently light a standard 90 gallon for freshwater plant growth? By that, I mean comparable to 3 or 4 T5 lamps of 54 watts.

Also, how is the power consumption? I am looking to save money in the long run.
The finnex ray2 has the highest PAR values. To match four T5HO bulbs on a 24 inch tall tank you'd have to go with two or three fixtures though. Your biggest issue would be the height & width of your tank.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Fitting three LED fixtures on a 18" width would be tight... not that I can afford to buy three anyway.

I am currently running a dual T5ho but was told it's not enough (based on wpg). Please provide any inputs you have on the two options I'm debating on:

1. add a Finnex Ray2 in addition to my dual T5ho
2. replace completely with a Finnex quad T5ho

Does option 1 yield significant savings in electricity? I can't afford the rising hydro rates.
 

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Fitting three LED fixtures on a 18" width would be tight... not that I can afford to buy three anyway.

I am currently running a dual T5ho but was told it's not enough (based on wpg). Please provide any inputs you have on the two options I'm debating on:

1. add a Finnex Ray2 in addition to my dual T5ho
2. replace completely with a Finnex quad T5ho

Does option 1 yield significant savings in electricity? I can't afford the rising hydro rates.
difficult subject.. Watts are watts and the only "billable" thing..
Adding watts is never savings.. and unless you are willing to spend the "up front" dollars on replacing the T5's all together w/ LED's I see no "savings". Even then your savings in the long run are dented by your up front costs.

From my own, completely biased, no scientific proof unofficial "rule of thumb" you can probably use 1/2W of LED to replace 1W of T5's...but you would still need a high W LED and not cheap...

You can cut down your "increased cost of electricity" by adding LED's to supplement your current fixture instead of 100W of new t5's....
w/ for example 50W of LED's....

48" RayII is 39W... consider it equal to one "tube"....

AS to WPG.. the only thing that counts is are you happy w/ growth???

And if you are set on more light then I'd suggest either the supplemental LED or a 3 tube t5
The Fuge RAy w/ red LEDs is a low wattage high par choice as a supplement as well.....

FULL replacement would need around 90W plus of LED's (like 3-RayII)
...for high light.. around 60 for medium.. just ball park estimates..and over $300US unless you want to DIY...or dig through fleabay for some cheapish Chinese ones..
Personally I prefer 1W LED's over lots of tiny ones so "beamswork" and related brands are a suppliment option as well.. and personally .. slightly better..but arguable.
 

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Check out buildmyled.com. These are the Cadillac of LED fixtures. Good PAR ratings.


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Agreed and 1 can "possibly" replace 3 t5 tubes.. but more likely an equal or less.. Certainly no problem beating 2 tubes. Then they have to figure out how much" savings" vs $300 outlay..

It is a tough choice. For me though the "quality" of LED vs tubes is a partial factor.. I really like the "intangibles" of multi-colored LEDs..but that is not an economic choice..
 

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I've been really happy with my buildmyled unit that I got to replace my dual T5HO unit on my 90 gallon. I went with the medium light 6300k Dutch unit because I want to stay out of CO2 on that tank for now. Another big advantage on LED is the heat factor over the T5HO units - I hadn't seen that mentioned yet. If you want to go single unit replacement, then BML is one of your best choices to consider. Oh, and a dual T5HO is definitely low-light on a 90. That is what I just replaced.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
48" RayII is 39W... consider it equal to one "tube"....

The Fuge RAy w/ red LEDs is a low wattage high par choice as a supplement as well.....
Thanks for the help. So, adding a Ray2 is comparable to only adding one t5ho lamp? Anyways, I know that the "wpg" doesn't meant a whole lot.

Which option is more successful for growing plants?
dual t5 with Ray2, or dual t5 with Fuge Ray Planted+
 

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No, a Ray 2 is way more light output than a single T5HO tube. Look for a post in this section from a user named "Hoppy". He has a really good post with charts in it. He describes current measuring techniques, and also has graphs with the outputs from lots of different fixtures (both T5HO and LED). You can literally look for your fixture (or a comparable one) follow the graph, and see the expected output rating. He has measured a lot of fixtures, and it is a great resource to utilize. As for adding multiple fixtures, in the LED world, adding a 2nd fixture of the same strength is basically doubling the output. It isn't exactly double, but awfully close. So for example, if you had 30 PAR at the substrate with a certain LED fixture, adding a 2nd one would put you very close to 60. Search for Hoppy's LED post, and you'll get a ton of easy to understand information.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks for sharing the info. I had a quick glance at Hoppy's thread but it was too technical for my liking. I will take your word for it when you say a Finnex LED fixture has more output than a single t5 lamp.

The question remains, do I add a Ray2 or a FugeRay Planted+? The price is negligible on Amazon.
 

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The FugeRay Planted+ is not going to cut it on a standard 90 gallon. I have seen posts (on WAFishBox forum) that show the Planted+ is about 20% less PAR than the Ray 2. So, the Ray 2 is definitely going to get you closer, but you'd still need multiple Ray 2 fixtures on a 90 - if you want to be above the "low light" bar. I still suggest checking out BML for a single light solution. By the time you get into adding multiple fixtures, you're going to be close to a single unit price from BML. Also, you can go with a high output fixture from them, add a dimmer to it, and dial it to what you want. That will give you the most flexibility in the long run. You'll have plenty of light, and as your needs or experience grow, you can adjust the light output up or down. With T5HO and the Finnex fixtures, there is no standard dimming. If you need more light, you have to add multiple fixtures. I'd just go with a high regular output, or an XB unit from BML with a dimmer, and you'd be set. Also, I have 5 Finnex Planted+ and Ray 2 lights as well, so I do really like the Finnex line. It's just a matter of matching the best lighting options to your tank, and not worrying about being tied to a specific brand - IMHO.
 

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Best comparison is Catalina single tube t5ho 60par @ 15" I assume 54W is HO..??
Ray II 88par @15"

Ok a bulb and a 1/2...... ;)
 

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Thanks for the help. So, adding a Ray2 is comparable to only adding one t5ho lamp? Anyways, I know that the "wpg" doesn't meant a whole lot.

Which option is more successful for growing plants?
dual t5 with Ray2, or dual t5 with Fuge Ray Planted+
Ray II has more measured PAR but many think it's output is flat.. Mixing w/ the t5's it might not really be an issue..Popular workaround is one of each.. but not applicable here.

Planted plus has the 660nm "boost" in the spectrum.. Something "usually" short in most T5's even some of the pink ones.. I'd consider it over the RayII for that reason.. but I'm obsessive..;)
 

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And the PAR for a 6300K-XB buildmyled with a 90 degree angle is as follows:
(depth vs. distance from center)
______0" 3" 6" 9"
3" = 482, 236, 19, 2
6" = 286, 227, 71, 12
12" = 150, 132, 101, 46
18" = 116, 104, 93, 69
24" = 77, 75, 71, 62
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
BML is out of my price range and I don't want to deal with shipping and duties to Canada.

I'm still very torned between the addition of either the Ray2 or Planted+. Maybe I'll just flip a coin unless someone is kind enough to provide a good argument which to add.

A quick recap for those that want to provide assistance:
I am currently running dual t5ho on a 90 gallon standard with pressurized co2.
 

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BML is out of my price range and I don't want to deal with shipping and duties to Canada.

I'm still very torned between the addition of either the Ray2 or Planted+. Maybe I'll just flip a coin unless someone is kind enough to provide a good argument which to add.

A quick recap for those that want to provide assistance:
I am currently running dual t5ho on a 90 gallon standard with pressurized co2.
The planted plus adds 660nm reds... Ray2 doesn't.. Not all PAR is equal (sounds a bit funny )...and technically usually PAR meters underestimate red..
the Finnex Planted+ has incorporated TRUE 660nm RED LEDs- which studies have found to be one of the most efficient wavelengths for plant photosynthesis. The true 660nm red LEDs also offer a warmer tone throughout one's aquarium.
 

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BML is out of my price range and I don't want to deal with shipping and duties to Canada.

I'm still very torned between the addition of either the Ray2 or Planted+. Maybe I'll just flip a coin unless someone is kind enough to provide a good argument which to add.

A quick recap for those that want to provide assistance:
I am currently running dual t5ho on a 90 gallon standard with pressurized co2.
I apologize. I have heard a lot of good reviews about the Finnex (Ray2 and Planted+) and the Current True Lumens fixture. A lot of my friends will mix Ray2s and Planted+ to get a more diverse spectrum. Sometimes Finnex will be on sale on Amazon and of course there is always [Ebay Link Removed]
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Thanks Jeff. I was leaning towards the Ray2 but the argument of the red has really got me thinking that maybe the Planted+ is better despite the lower output.

Would you be able to answer if the blue moonlight feature is safe to leave on overnight?
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I apologize. I have heard a lot of good reviews about the Finnex (Ray2 and Planted+) and the Current True Lumens fixture. A lot of my friends will mix Ray2s and Planted+ to get a more diverse spectrum. Sometimes Finnex will be on sale on Amazon and of course there is always [Ebay Link Removed]
I will probably get rid of my t5 completely in the near future and follow the route of Ray2 combined with the Planted+. Thank you for the feedback. I want to try one led fixture first before I commit myself to a second.
 
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