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Unread 08/11/2021, 08:49 AM   #376
SouthBayPhoto
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Question Totally confounded on lighting. LOL

Hey all,

I'm hoping to get some help as I'm totally confounded regarding lighting. Some of it is sticker shock as well.

I've been trying to search on here and other locations to find what type of lights (and especially how many) I need for the new tank I'm picking up later today.

It is a 135g Peninsula tank (overflow at one end) that is 72" x 18" x 24" according to the person I'm picking it up from. It does have a canopy, so I can mount the lights to that (if it matters).

With that being said, the person had Radions but sold them beforehand and replaced them with just a set of T-5s. I would like to go LEDs because they seem to last longer, are easier (I think) and no bulb changes and should work well with corals.

I just want fish and a normal set of corals. Nothing exotic or fancy that are super hard to keep. I'm still doing my research on that.

Anyway, what LED lights should I consider for the size of the tank? How many of these lights do I need?

I just about choked because I looked up the Radion X30 Pro (or even the Blue) and they were like $860 EACH and upon looking at their website, it looks like I need 3 of these. That is insane to me. $2600 for lights. I just about died. So, I have been watching videos on Bulk Reef's YouTube website to try and see what they suggest and, of course, they suggest the Radions. However, they also did suggest the Kessil A360X, so I was thinking of those, but those are $460 each. Still, if I need three of them, that ends up being about $1400, plus the wi-fi dongle and K-link wires and all that stuff.

So, in short, do I really need three of these to cover the size of the tank? On my last setup 10 years ago, I ran six T-5s on a 110g tank (only 60" long). However, I never got that setup going, so I don't know if those were okay or not.

I like the idea of the Radion LEDs because it looks like you can setup a full dusk to dawn setup where the lights will work like the sun does and such. Plus, I do like the blue moonlights at the very beginning and ending of the lighting. I don't know if the Kessil A360x do that or not. I've been trying to search here to see if anyone has them and what they think.

I'm sorry for the super long post, but just wanted to get all of my info out there and see what I can use. I reaaaaallly don't want to pay like $3k for lighting if I don't have to. That is like almost triple of what I'm paying for the tank setup I'm getting today. Even the Kessil's make me hurt, but I'm considering them, but wanted feedback first.

Also, I believe he said the T-5s he has on the tank now are 6 footers, so should I keep the T-5s on the tank and run them and add the Kessils (or whatever other LEDs are suggested) to it or just run the Kessils/LEDs themselves and just store the T-5s. Bulk Reef Supply suggested in their "best of 2019" lighting video to run the T-5s and add the Kessils to it, but they were talking about a four foot tank and not a six foot tank like I have.

Again, any thoughts would be appreciated.


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Current Tank Info: 135g fish/reef tank under construction :)
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Unread 08/11/2021, 09:38 AM   #377
Vinny Kreyling
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QH2nsgrxoRI

Look @ this one


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Unread 08/11/2021, 10:32 AM   #378
Michael Hoaster
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I'm with you on the sticker shock of LEDs. They are amazing technology, with tons of cool features. I'm not rich enough to justify such an expensive 'want'. So I'm still using my metal halide setup I've had for 15 years or so, to cover my 'need'.

For me it helps to spread out cost over time, when it comes to expensive stuff. You could start out with one LED fixture, and supplement it with the T5s you already have. Then add more LEDs down the road, as you get more serious about reef keeping.

The dawn and dusk blue effect is pretty sweet. I get it with a blue LED flood light from home depot, on an appliance timer. It's a bit cheaper...


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Current Tank Info: 180g Seagrass Sandbar Lagoon, START DATE November 28, 2018
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Unread 08/11/2021, 12:47 PM   #379
SouthBayPhoto
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vinny Kreyling View Post
Thank you Vinny. I'll check that one out as well. Right now I'm pretty much going through most all of the lighting videos listed on the Bulk Reef Supply website. LOL I don't know if that will help me or make things worse. LOL


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Current Tank Info: 135g fish/reef tank under construction :)
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Unread 08/11/2021, 12:51 PM   #380
SouthBayPhoto
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Hoaster View Post
I'm with you on the sticker shock of LEDs. They are amazing technology, with tons of cool features. I'm not rich enough to justify such an expensive 'want'. So I'm still using my metal halide setup I've had for 15 years or so, to cover my 'need'.

For me it helps to spread out cost over time, when it comes to expensive stuff. You could start out with one LED fixture, and supplement it with the T5s you already have. Then add more LEDs down the road, as you get more serious about reef keeping.

The dawn and dusk blue effect is pretty sweet. I get it with a blue LED flood light from home depot, on an appliance timer. It's a bit cheaper...
Michael - Thanks for the ideas. I'm glad I'm not the only one with sticker shock. LOL I get it, just like you, that the technology is cool and they are trying to make things work better than the tried and true T-5s and/or MHs. I almost considered trying to find older MHs to do things cheaper and use those along with the T5-s that are coming with the tank. I think he has two T-5s on each side (front and back) of the tank, so I could put the LEDs (or MHs if I try that route) in the middle.

Another crazy question I have is this...what color bulbs should I run in the T-5s if I add either MHs or LEDs (most likely) to that setup? I haven't seen any of the videos mention which T-5 bulbs to use in a combo with LEDs. Should all of them be super actinic, regular actinic or should two be actinic and two be regular daylight?

It's good that we have options, but sometimes there are toooooo many options to try and figure out what to do. That's where I'm at. LOL


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Current Tank Info: 135g fish/reef tank under construction :)
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Unread 08/11/2021, 03:48 PM   #381
Michael Hoaster
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What color bulbs to run is kind of an if/then situation. For example, back in the day, when metal halides were king, most folks ran a near daylight halide, with actinic fluorescent bulbs to give fish and corals more pop. Now, with LEDs, you can adjust them to any spectrum, so you may choose T5s that complement whatever you have decided on. It's up to you!

Have fun with your new tank, neighbor!


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As many naturalists and environmentalists have suggested, we should set aside our arrogance,
our desire to conquer and control everything, and walk hand in hand with Mother Nature. -Walter Adey

Current Tank Info: 180g Seagrass Sandbar Lagoon, START DATE November 28, 2018
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Unread 08/12/2021, 06:12 AM   #382
SouthBayPhoto
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Hoaster View Post
What color bulbs to run is kind of an if/then situation. For example, back in the day, when metal halides were king, most folks ran a near daylight halide, with actinic fluorescent bulbs to give fish and corals more pop. Now, with LEDs, you can adjust them to any spectrum, so you may choose T5s that complement whatever you have decided on. It's up to you!

Have fun with your new tank, neighbor!
Howdy! I just noticed you're in Boulder. LOL I'm in Parker. Not too far away.

Thanks for the info. I'll have to think on this one. I'm thinking that the LEDs would have a schedule set where they do the nighttime to daylight and back to nighttime. So, I would think that means my T-5s really should be daylights to help the tank during the day and when the LEDs start to go into the sunset/nighttime mode, I can have the T-5s turn off and let the LEDs continue from there.

I just picked up the tank and everything yesterday (yay me! LOL) and found out he only had two 6 foot (and I think they are only 5 foot, but I'll have to measure them really quick) T-5s. I don't know what type they are (daylight or actinic or a combo). One of them cracked on the way home, but no biggie. I was going to replace them with new bulbs anyway. That's why I was wondering what type to go with.

I'm also wondering if just having the two separate T5s (with LEDs in the middle) would be okay or if I should pick up two more T5s to have two on each side (two in the front and two in the back) or is that too much lighting?

Decisions, decisions. LOL


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Current Tank Info: 135g fish/reef tank under construction :)
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