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25 inches above the substrate (11 inches above the top of the tank) looks about right to get 80 micromols of PAR at the substrate using 2 bulbs in your Catalina 3x39 T5HO fixture.
 

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I have read a lot about T8/T12 vs T5HO but found little info on overdriven T8 vs anything.
ODNO T8 output increases over normal T8 (from GulfCoastAquarian's ODNO thread):


  • 2xODNO (2 power leads per bulb) - ~50% increase
  • 3xODNO (3 power leads per bulb) - ~75% increase
  • 4xODNO (4 power leads per bulb) - ~100% increase
 

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So assuming 1 [email protected]" gives ~10par, 1 T8ODNO 2X would yield ~20par. If I also assume that 1 T5NO gives about half the par of T5HO, I would get [email protected]" for T5NO.

The T5NO would yield ~10par more over the T8ODNO, that's not a lot but it gets onto the low light range(barley) for 20" depth.

Does this sound right?
If 1 [email protected]" is ~10par, 1 T8ODNO 2x would yield ~15par, 3x would yield ~17.5par, 4x would yield ~20par
 

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You should be fine with one 2x28 per tank to get low to med light

Edit: i meant with a good reflector, see Hoppy's comments below
 

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What sort of a reflector was used for this test? I would have expected about half the T5HO value. I wonder why so low?

thanks
jim
Most likely due to the poor reflector on the Coralife fixture.
 

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If it isn't "penetrating" beyond 20 inches why does the PAR meter read 14 at 36 inches?
I think HolyAngel deduced that the Aquasun bulb doesn't penetrate beyond ~20" in the Current fixture because the PAR readings with the Current 10K bulb only and the PAR readings with the Current 10K + Aquasun are the same starting at 24". It does look like the Aquasun isn't contributing any PAR from 24" on when considering those PAR readings.
 

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Hoppy is referring to the value for T5HO on his graph which is for one bulb, so if you have more bulbs then you would multiply. This is when using his graph for estimating your PAR using the data he collected.

You are measuring your PAR so whatever PAR you measure is what PAR you have within tolerances of the meter you are using.

Edit: I just looked at the graph again and it estimates around 30 PAR for 1 T5HO bulb at 29 inches. I see your confusion, when multiplying by 2 (2 bulbs wide, the 2 bulbs end to end count as one long bulb) the graph indicates you should have around 60 PAR. When you measure you have a PAR of 29, meaning your fixture is putting out about half of the PAR of the fixture Hoppy measured when collecting data.

I guess this shows how variable the PAR output of different T5HO fixtures can be.
 

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I would say raising the fixture with 2 bulbs > using 1 bulb, but either will work. Your preference depending on color mix, ability to raise fixture high enough, and possibly more light spill into the room.
 

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hey guys, quick question. is the microlmols measured at the bottom of the tank or at the tank when determining the intestity of the par?
Usually measured at the substrate level. Dang, Hoppy beat me to it, and has a better answer. :icon_smil

so if was going to run 4 36" t-5 HO's 39w each for a total of 156w..... would the be enough for a planted tank in my 150g 72L"x24H"x18D????
Depends on the type of T5HO fixture (ballasts and reflectors), the output can be highly variable between different ones. Again, see Hoppy's reply also :tongue:

i have a 55 gallon tank(21 inches tall with 4 inches of substrate). i have 4 26 watt t5NO bulbs. 2 colormax 2 daylight. the fixture sits directly on my tank. what kind of plants can i grow, or where does my system rate on this scale.i am fairly new to this but am doing ok.
Probably low light but depends on the reflectors in your fixture.
 

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I was thinking of using this LED for a 23 gal tank, total depth would be 45cm (or 17.7"). I calculated that would be approximately 90 PAR for the middle of the tank, on the substrate. Would this be considered high, med or low lighting? Also, this is a marine LED, would that work for a freshwater application?

I would consider 90 PAR to be high lighting. It would work for a freshwater application, but might have a higher Kelvin (color temp) than most freshwater type lights which would result in a more bluish look that some actually prefer.
 

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i was wanting a low mantaince tank, and really dont want to run CO2 but if i have to then i would run some sort of DYI style. i will have some live plants but nothing that will require high light. the reason i ask is because i can get

2 bulb T5 HO bulb set-up for 78w for only $49. i was going to get 2 of them to take up the 72". i cant seem to find anything scheaper.

Brandon

If that fixture can run with just 1 bulb then you should be in the low light range.

Search for threads about DIY with spiral CFL's, that might be cheaper.
 

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its aqueon, there are 2 fixtures with 2 bulbs, one colormax,one daylight in each, i add bottled co2 as of now, tried the yeast way did not like it, causes a white film on the glass.im growing ambulia and crypto wendtii at rapid rates(i am giving away ambulia, with a warning not to introduce into the wild) altelanthrea growing very slowly(roots growing out of stems), and microsword and dwarf hairgrass are alive but not growing.if i were to invest in more light, should i get 2 more of the fixtures i already have or invest in t5ho?(with the ones i have, i work at a petstore and get them at a discounted rate)...where would be a good place to buy better lighting from?

I would try increasing CO2 first, make sure you have a decent fert regime, and if growth still isn't where you want it then think about more light.

If you decide you need more light then I would get 2 more of the fixtures you have if you can get them cheap. Especially if they can run with only 1 bulb in them, so you could increase to 3 bulbs per side at first and if you still want more then to 4 bulbs.
 

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Hoppy, that fixture he is asking about is the Marineland Reef-Capable LED fixture. I don't know how the light footprint looks exactly but I am pretty sure it wouldn't be a 6-8 inch diameter spot. I know of at least one person using it for planted tanks successfully.
 

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The Marineland double bright light should work well for that tank. The word "LED", light emitting diode doesn't mean "light fixture using multiple light emitting diodes" - that's what fooled me:D
True, I found out it was that fixture by using the url of the chart exv152 linked in his post. :icon_mrgr And yes the double bright version could work, the reef-capable version might need to be suspended above the tank.

Thanks Hoppy. My intent is to setup a med-high tech setup with pressurized co2, ferts etc, but I wasn't sure if the light would be strong enough.

Also, not sure about the different colours that are emitted from these marine-type fixtures, and whether or not it'll suit my planted tank.
The reef-capable light is very strong for a shallow tank like yours, like I mentioned above it may need to be suspended above your tank. You may want to go with the double bright instead as Hoppy suggested and still use CO2, plants will grow slower, but it will be easier to manage.
 

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So, I'm setting up a 20 H and I'm trying to choose between the following:

http://www.amazon.com/AquaticLife-Dual-Freshwater-Light-Fixture/dp/B002BH5QT0
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000VK1A94
http://www.amazon.com/Coralife-08600-Aqualight-Fixture-24-Inch/dp/B002P9MFW0

The AquaticLife seems to have the best reflector (Coralife worst?). Thoughts on the quality of these and the amount of light expected?

Here is another option:

http://www.petcarerx.com/Catalog/ProductDetails.aspx?pid=20285&k=Db+Solarmax+HO2+Ho+T5+Strip

Which do folks prefer?
Here are a couple of other options to consider:

http://www.amazon.com/Zoo-Med-AquaS...h/dp/B0002DIRAU/ref=pd_sim_sbs_petsupplies_18

and the Marineland Reef-capable LED (probably need to suspend above tank for best coverage and not too much PAR)

http://www.amazon.com/Marineland-Ca...ch/dp/B00494NBPE/ref=pd_sim_sbs_petsupplies_8
 

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Someone on here told me to keep my current light until I get my co2 straightened out and my ferts down then consider a new light. Any opinions?
Very good advice :thumbsup:
 
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