Long time since I started this, I suppose I should have done a build thread...
Anyway, here's an update. Since I last posted the cherries got moved to a 10 gallon home. This tank also got moved off my desk to an interior wall back to back with my pico reef tank (also a Fluval Spec V). This gets it away from the window and creates a nice display. I've also rescaped, as you might have noticed. I got rid of most of the DHG, and the little bit that's left is slowly melting away. I'm ok with this, I want it to be a lower, warmer light tank to contrast the cool light in the reef tank. Right now I've got 2x wisteria, 2x anubias nana, 1x anubias unknown, 2x java sword and a wall of willow hygro. I've been letting the algae grow on the fake log and plants for the last couple weeks, and just added 2 otos. So far they are loving the algae and cleaning it up FAST.
As far as maintenance I haven't been doing any water changes recently, just topping off. Nitrates are actually dropping. I dose Excel once a week and growth has been very fast. As you may have noticed I also ditched the stock LED and did an upgrade. Right now I'm running Cree LEDs on a LDD-HW driver controlled by an Arduino (it actually controls lights on both tanks, in the process of adding temp control, ATO, autofeeders to both tanks). I'm rocking 2x NW, 1x WW, 2x RB. The RB are on a separate driver for color balance, but they're running at about 2% while the whites are at about 10%. It's all mounted on a heatsink from heatsinksusa.com using the stock hardware. All the params are stable and the fish and plants are incredibly happy.