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Ok so I have multiple t5 lights. Is the ballast the only dofference between no and ho?

Cause I have two that are magnetic coil ballasts and two that are the bigger block style ballasts.

 

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I've been running Coralife and GE NO bulbs in all my 3' and 4' HO Tek light fixtures for over four years now. To my eye the NO bulbs are just as bright as the HO tubes that came with the fixture.

I'm only lighting my tanks for 5-6 hours a day and have been changing bulbs every 18-24 months.
 

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HO bulbs do output more light in wattage even though we may not see the change by much. The ballasts are different as well, you can't use a NO in a HO fixture. If you want a mid-high light tank, use HO. If you want low-mid light tank, use NO. Of course it all depends on how many lights and the PAR, but generally you want NO for lower light and HO for higher light.
 

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HO bulbs do output more light in wattage even though we may not see the change by much. The ballasts are different as well, you can't use a NO in a HO fixture. If you want a mid-high light tank, use HO. If you want low-mid light tank, use NO. Of course it all depends on how many lights and the PAR, but generally you want NO for lower light and HO for higher light.
You CAN use NO bulbs in a HO fixture the ballast will over drive the bulbs. It will lessen the lifetime of the bulbs though and any warranty on the bulb will be void. The difference is in the ballast and the design of the bulb to handle the extra power sent to it.
 

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You CAN use NO bulbs in a HO fixture the ballast will over drive the bulbs. It will lessen the lifetime of the bulbs though and any warranty on the bulb will be void. The difference is in the ballast and the design of the bulb to handle the extra power sent to it.
This ^

and, it also works vice versa. You can use a HO bulb in a NO fixture, and it will just underpower the bulb. it might even last longer since theres less power going to it :icon_idea
 
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