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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 120 gallon. 4' x 2' x 2'. I had cheap aquatraders T5 HO 4 bulb fixture for the past year. I had another 6 bulb T5 HO fixture made by Current that was on my reef, so I put that on my 120 with 3 6500K's, 2 10K's and one actinic ( for the 100 cardinal tetras) The second day all plants were pearling!! this never happenend with the 4 bulb fixture. The fixture is roughly 6" above the tank. I do dose EI ferts and pump CO2 with 2 diffusers. the drop checker is borderline yellow.
is this a disaster waiting to happen?
 

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What makes you think this is a disaster waiting to happen ?

Personally and due to the fact my tank runs off natural daylight I like the real colors of plants and fish to show. So having said that you might consider replacing one of those bulbs with a warmer color bulb to balance out the color rendering index (CRI) with a bulb of 2700 - 3500 K. Check out such places as Lowes or Home Depot or here http://www.naturallighting.com/cart/store.php and other online retailers. Plants need red light too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
you moved way up in quality of reflector and most likely ballast. 4 bulbs may be too much at that height. Definitely will need to increase your dosing. Sounds like your CO2 is fine.
Im dosing N-P-K and CSM +B

100 - 125 Gallon Aquarium
+/- 1 1/2 tsp KN03 3x a week
+/- ½ tsp KH2P04 3x a week
+/- ½ tsp (30ml) Trace Elements 3x a week
50% weekly water change

will i need to increase dosage?

I kept the actinic because the cardinals GLOW blue!!
 

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I was told that 6 bulbs on a 120 is super high and will def be a huge problem with algae
That could happen if the ratio of plant mass to algae is favorable to algae. But you won't know that until you actually see algae start growing.
Is your tank chock full of plants ? Does it look like this
Or does it look like this ?

What do you think ?

Even if you do start to get algae just back off the amount of light entering the tank.
 

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With a lot of effort and luck you can use that much light without having a big algae problem. If you are supplying enough nutrients and CO2 you will be pruning more than once a week, and will always have problems keeping the tank from being over grown with plants. I think you will eventually run out of luck.
 

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Does your fixture have individual cords or switches? maybe you could shut down a couple of the inside lights? maybe only use them for some kind of high noon effect? Hoppy would the atinic count towards par? that is not really in the photo synthetic range, so does it register?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Does your fixture have individual cords or switches? maybe you could shut down a couple of the inside lights? maybe only use them for some kind of high noon effect? Hoppy would the atinic count towards par? that is not really in the photo synthetic range, so does it register?
yes I run 2 bulbs 12 hours and the other 4 about 5 to 6 hours
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
With a lot of effort and luck you can use that much light without having a big algae problem. If you are supplying enough nutrients and CO2 you will be pruning more than once a week, and will always have problems keeping the tank from being over grown with plants. I think you will eventually run out of luck.
should I increase my ferts? I am dosing the 100 to 125G from the chart now..
 

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Just raise the light a little more. I would run 2 bulbs x 8 hours and the whole 6 for less than 3 hours total.

The idea here is that we don't push the limit on light so that we are able to stay ahead of it with co2 and ferts. Co2 is the hardest to stay ahead of.
 

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Does your fixture have individual cords or switches? maybe you could shut down a couple of the inside lights? maybe only use them for some kind of high noon effect? Hoppy would the atinic count towards par? that is not really in the photo synthetic range, so does it register?
Not all actinic bulbs have the same spectra, so I doubt that you could make a blanket statement about how much PAR they contribute. For sure they do contribute some. I can't recall seeing PAR meter results for actinic bulbs though.
 
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