Oh my God – Lighting has changed in the last several years!
Ok – I used to have a heavily planted CO2 injected 77 gallon tank… which I ran 4 x 55w GE9325 lamps over. It worked fine – but alas about 5 years ago I guess… I took down the tank etc…
Well of course I now want to get set up again. I am looking at a couple of possibilities, and one of which is setting up a 55 gallon (a little shallower than the 77 so it a little easier to maintain). . May save the 77 for another project.
So back to the lighting… Price is not the deciding factor, however I kinda ruled out buildmyled as I am in Canada, shipping would be problematic etc.. I am trying to decide on either the Marineland Aquatic Plant LED (48-60” unit) or the 48” Finnex FugeRAY Planted+ fixture. I think the Marineland is about twice the price of the Finnex if not even a little more, but may be brighter for the price point?
The tank is 48x13x20 (not rimless) and I want to go LED…. Well – now I am totally out of my element… I was an old school WPG kinda guy… and now trying to figure the PAR stuff is difficult… I most certainly want a slim fixture that will throw very little to no ambient light other than what is directed down into the tank.
The 55 gallon tank is 13 inches front to back so I was thinking the marineland fixture would be suitable (1 only) and should be a par value of 83 at 24” deep? (Tank is only 20” deep).
I have no idea what PAR rating the 48” Finnex FugeRAY Planted+ will give me? Would I need 2 of them rather than 1?
I am not really familiar with LED fixtures in general so I am also curious about heat. The Manufacturer’s websites for both have little in detailed pictures and videos showing up close these fixtures... but on my old setup I had a sliding glass cover on the top of the 77 to prevent the Discus from splashing water up towards the hot lamps. I see a fair number of setups with open top... and the fixture just laid across on its mounting clamps. Any fear of water splashing? I have always had a cover in the past… you open top folks lose many fish to the ones that try to go over the top? Lose much to evaporation?
To top it all off… I won’t totally rule out BML fixtures… Cause I could possibly say shag it and pick up a 120 gallon 72” tank and BML is the only one that makes a 72” fixture.. but I think I would need 2 of them.. and cost starts getting up there at that point… tank, stand, fixtures, etc…