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I'm new to this addicti.... I mean hobby... and am trying to set up a new freshwater 36" tank. I wanted to get a T-5 fixture, and my LFS recommended the NOVA extremes they had there (of course he would recommend the ones they had in stock, but still). Anyway, my concern is that the NOVAs say they are not for use with an uncovered tank, when I intended to not use any cover.

The guy at the LFS didn't seem concerned about that detail, but I wanted to run it by the forums. Google searches aren't turning up any good info. Thanks!
 

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I just purchased a Nova 24" light and I have it over an open top tank, but the light has a plexiglass cover over the lights. It came with legs so it sits above the water several inches. I think you will be fine using that as long as you don't just sit it on the tank rim. Also, I would check Dr. Fosters and Smith's website because they were running a sale on them and you may get them cheaper thru them. Here is a link http://www.drsfostersmith.com/fish-supplies/pr/c/3578
 

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I think they're just protecting themselves from liability should your fixture fall in the water. As long as you understand the legs supplied with the fixture are only meant to sit on the tank rim and not used as a sliding device you should be fine. I always keep a few extra legs around. :D

SteveU
 

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I use a 36" Nova Extreme 4x39 Watt over an open top 46 gallon bow front. I don't use the plexiglass shield because, cooler bulbs will give you more light output. Since the light is on legs, I don't get water spots on the shields or bulbs. I do have it plugged into a GFCI outlet though.
 

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Not sure but I thought having the cover would help cool the tubes since the fan is then forced to pull air across the entire length of the fixture. Without the shield I'd think cooling would be more passive and the fan would only work close to the exhaust end.

SteveU
 

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Research T5, T5HO and PC lights before you decide which 1 best. I am still working on this. Also you may find a light system cheaper on line. Some low price high quality sites are Big Al's and Pet Solutions.
 

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I'm new to this addicti.... I mean hobby... and am trying to set up a new freshwater 36" tank. I wanted to get a T-5 fixture, and my LFS recommended the NOVA extremes they had there (of course he would recommend the ones they had in stock, but still). Anyway, my concern is that the NOVAs say they are not for use with an uncovered tank, when I intended to not use any cover.

The guy at the LFS didn't seem concerned about that detail, but I wanted to run it by the forums. Google searches aren't turning up any good info. Thanks!
The nova fixtures are a good choice. There aren't really many other commonly available T5HO fixtures that you can find at a typical fish store, except Hagen GLO fixtures which are ridiculously overpriced.

2x39W will work fine. I have a 30" fixture on my open-top 29, it's only been a month or so but no problems. There is an acrylic splash guard that should guard against splashes (hence the name) and I don't see any water vapor condensing inside vital parts of the fixture, due to the heat.

Just don't drop it in the tank.
 

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I own three Current fixtures so I'm not knocking them but I would check out Catalina before buying another Current. Lot's of members post very good reviews on them and they price better than Current.
 

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Go look at the prices on 3 foot Catalina fixtures, they are significantly more than Novas.

The 3x54W and 4x54W fixtures are both good deals though.
Surprised by that info :icon_redf Priced 48" 54w with lunar packages and price and reviews were better.
 

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Not sure but I thought having the cover would help cool the tubes since the fan is then forced to pull air across the entire length of the fixture. Without the shield I'd think cooling would be more passive and the fan would only work close to the exhaust end.

SteveU
Yeah that would sound reasonable but man, those bulbs would get hot with the plexi glass in place. The fan is rear mounted and sucks heat away from the ballasts but not to much from the bulbs.
 

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Go look at the prices on 3 foot Catalina fixtures, they are significantly more than Novas.

The 3x54W and 4x54W fixtures are both good deals though.
If you call Catalina or email them, they will price the 3 footers comparable to the sale prices of the 4 footers.
 
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