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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK, I'm new to the forum found this place while doing some research on starting my FIRST planted tank. I've found tons of very useful information here so major kudos to everyone.

Basics of the setup is

  • 56 G tall 30" long X 24" Tall X 18"
  • Fluval C4 HOB filter
  • Marineland Double bright LED (2 double bright rows of 6K LED Daylight bulbs 8 bulbs total and a single center row of 60mw Blue LED's 4 bulbs)
  • Fluval Plant Stratum substrate topped with sand (Don't remember the brand *petsmart*)

I'm not using a pressurized Co2 system Just using API liquid Co2 along with Seachem Flourish.

Plants I have are (Excuse me I don't know all the scientific names :frown:)

  • Water sprite ( is growing excellent, tons of new growth)
  • Green Cabomba ( is growing but slowly)
  • Java moss
  • Java Fern (Has lots of new growth starting but growing kinda slow compared to the water sprite)
  • Guppy Grass (Is growing fine)
  • Dwarf Hair grass (Growing pretty good but the dang fish keep pulling it up)

Plants I'm looking to add for some more coverage in the background

  • Jungle Val
  • Anacharis
My questions are

  • should I upgrade the lighting ? (I really prefer the slim look of LEDs) I do have a Odysea Quad T5 with 2 24w 10000K daylight bulbs & 2 24w actinic bulbs & the stock single 20w T8 hood I could use but just don't like the style or lighting either put out.

  • Upgrade the filter to a Fluval 306 canister

  • or get a Pressurized Co2 system (Thinking the Aquatek CO2 Regulator with Integrated Solenoid Valve for Paintball Tank)
With current income I can only upgrade one thing right now so which do you think? Opinions & advice is always welcome.

Thanks in advance.

21,012 Posts
I think you may be borderline on having enough light for plants. That Marineland Double Bright light barely gives you 20 micromols of PAR at 24 inches distance. A Finnex Ray2, 24 inch long light, hanging about 6 inches above the top of the tank would give you much better, but still low light. (Right at the top of the tank it might give a bit too much light for low light conditions.) I think that is the change I would make.
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