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I received the following response from hellolights.com........ everyone agree with the plant-kill issue?
chaz
Thank you for contacting us. The actinic lamp will be the one that you will want as long as there are no live plants in the tank. Actinic light on live plants will make the plants die slowly over time, but if you do not have plants the lamp will bring out the color much better in your discus.

My original message on the information seeking mission:
I have a 45g discus tank setup and cycled. Currently my lighting is a measly dual t5 unit, something like 45 watts. I am considering the following:
Changing out one of the t5 bulbs for a Actinic for color enhancement of discus. I would add a single 96 watt 10k unit to the tank.
OR
I could pitch the t5 unit and Get a 192 watt unit and forget the actinic
OR
I could pitch the t5 unit and Get a 192 watt unit with one actinic bulb.
I know actinic does nothing for plants, and I will be planting this, probably not really exotic stuff but I dont want to be limited to anacharis LOL.
Thoughts appreciated..............
chaz
 

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If you want to color enhance your Discus, do it with food, substrate, plants, etc. You want the lighting to enhance your plants not the fish, a 10K bulb will pop the colors in the fish though. What kind of Discus do you have anyway?

Don't pitch the lights, get 10K bulbs and add additional T5 lighting until you get what you want.

or

Use the actinic as a moonlight and get a 2 x 96 watt AH Supply bright light kit with 10K bulbs.

I do not think I agree with the actinic killing plants theory.....DC
 

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1 out of 4 of my bulbs on my planted 75 gallon display tank is actinic. It has been on there for over two years and obviously, doesn't kill my plants.
 

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I've heard many folks say that actinic is useless w/ plants, never heard it would actually harm them. Some say it promoted algae, but I think thats an urban legend. Actinic in the 430-460nm range falls within the peaks of chlorophyll a and b so I would say that it is useful light. The thing to remember is this is just a small portion of what plants need, small enough that a regular daylight bulb has enough 'blue' in it usually. The use of an actinic bulb could better go to use with another bulb (actinic bulbs are much less efficient anyhow). Many include a 50/50 bulb, that will get you a little extra blue plus a daylight spectrum. But many actinics produce light in even shorter wavelengths into the upper 300's of nanometers, this isnt of much use at all. If you have plenty of wattage of full spectrum light I dont see any harm in having a small bit of actinic also.
 

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Actinic bulbs are for color enhancement and (I think) for chlorophyll production in corals. I don't know what they'll look like on fish as I've never used them. I have (1) 6700k and (1) 5000k. My discus look great. I'm probably going to try (1) 6700k and (1) 10,000k next relamp.

Tommy
 

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actinics can't kill plants, but if you only have actinics you'd starve them. mixing it with a full spectrum bulb isn't going to harm anything.

actinics cover only the first spectral peaks required for photosynthesis and lack the second, hence the plants starving. zooxanthellae algae (lives in corals/sponges) only require the first peaks so they're geared for marine life (420-460nm range).

coralife has a t5 colormax bulb which should make the colors pop. i think it's also full spectrum, but you should look that up. if you mix with a 10000k bulb it should look great.
 
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