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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone! very new to this forum, so bare with me. My tank is a hexagon tank that is 24" tall (roughly 21" after sand substrate) and 20" across. I have been looking and searching for a light that can reach the bottom of my tank to grow dwarf hairgrass. I also have anubias, java fern, and crypt with driftwood in my tank. I currently have a stock light that came with it, but it needs replaced badly. I have found a few T5 light fixtures that I am hoping one will be able to get my plants growing until I save up enough money. I am dosing the plants with excel and have a DIY CO2 system on it. The light fixtures I found were a Odyssea PS Dual 6500K and a Odyssea PS Quad 6500K. Just wondering which would be the best for my tank. Thank you!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
What is in your current light fixture?
It is the light that came stock with the tank. I attached some pictures to show you.

anyone know which one of these would work the best for me? Just need someones opinion, thank you
 

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It's an 18 inch bulb
An 18 inch T8 bulb has 15 watts. An 18 inch T5HO has 18 watts. So, a dual T5HO would more than double your light. You would go from 15 watts to 36 watts.
All fixtures are not equal. Some have better reflectors than others. I had an Odyssea fixture and they do not have the greatest reflectors, but it worked well with my low tech tank. Mine was a dual fixture with T5HO bulbs. Unfortunately, the ballast died after about a year. I am not sure if it was just bad luck or if they are not long lived fixtures. The current fixture you have does not have a reflector at all, unless a white plastic is considered a reflector.

You may find that you have more algae problems on your existing plants, if they are growing well under your current light. You may need to shade them somehow or raise the light (distance of fixture from the water). You will also have to add a lot more plants to the tank. I can't say how it will work out in your tank, it will be trial and error.

If you do get this fixture, I would start with a low photoperiod (time the light is on) of about 6 hours.

Just my thoughts.
 

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The light spread of a pendant style fixture would be your best bet for this type of tank, imo. Your tank is more of a circle than a regular shaped tank and the light spread on a pendant fixture is a circle so it would cover your tank nicely. However, for a tank that's 20"s from surface to substrate and assuming your fixture is at least 6" above the surface so over 2 feet of light travel, it's going to take quite a bit of power from your light for enough of it to hit the substrate for carpeting plants. Which a kessel would certainly do, but they are "expensive" and your other plants aren't very light demanding so with the intensity of light you would need for a carpet would be way to much for your existing plants, causing problems later on. Unless you did a nana petite carpet (which would be absolutely awesome) then a quality polished reflector (or for that matter, very smooth shiny aluminum foil) on the inside of your current fixture with a quality T8 bulb should be plenty of light for low demanding, low to medium-low light plants.

Hex tanks make pretty sweet paladariums too :)
 

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