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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been looking around for a good light for my newly converted reef tank to freshwater. So far I've landed on Finnex Planted+ 24/7 .

Of course none of the models quite fit my 72" tank and I'm not quite sure what the width coverage would be, i.e. would I need to use two fixtures side by side to cover the 24" width. Tank dimensions are 72x24x24.

Last time I had planted tank I made a "fixture" using some aluminum U channels and some cree xm-l u2 LEDs, I think I used about 14-16 LEDs for 120g tank, so with same layout that would mean about 20-24 LEDs for 180g. Of course by the time all parts are bought I may end up spending $300-500 depending on LEDs (XT-E vs XM-L2), and fixture won't look very neat lol. So I'm leaning towards something retail hehe.

If that finnex 24/7 fixture is a good choice for high/med light tank (possibly with ferts and co2, but definitely with just black blasting sand to start with, will be moving soonish so do not want to deal with dirt then), which length would you suggest?

48" obviously won't cover whole tank well, but would 1' edges on each side get enough light for some low light plants still? and more importantly would I be able to get 24" width covered well with just one fixture. Alternatively I could get two 48" and stagger them so they start from opposite sides and overlap in the middle or would that be too much light? (although if I understand it, this fixture can be dimmed)

Thanks!
 

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I have a planted + 24/7 on my 75G. With the light centered on the tank i have dead spots in the upper corners. It's not a huge deal but for me that's where my fish like to hang out. I just added a stingray simply for better display of fish colors.

If your tank is 72" why not 2 36" fixtures?

As far as dimming the fixture you can choose a customer or pre programmed "color" but by doing so you lose the 24/7 mode.

The light is really only at its brightest for a few hours of the cycle of running on 24/7 mode
 

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I don't believe Finnex or the new Fluval make 72' fixtures. You will definitely need 2 fixtures in order to get a good even spread with a 2 foot deep tank. With that said, you could do 36' fixtures but then you are looking at buying 4 fixtures and that adds up. Look into the Green Element 3w fixtures, I believe they are made buy Beamswork and come in 72' models. Just a suggestion and I'm in no way a lighting expert.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Or for about $300 I could DIY a fixture, which would be about the same as buying two of those 48" Finnex ones. Similar layout worked for me before, although with just cool white leds.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
However much 5 bags of black blasting sand will give me. So between that and that the fixture would not be right on the water surface there will be likely 24" if not more between the light and the substrate.

Not sure how much PAR my DIY fixture would have, but I'm starting to lean towards that more and more.
 
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