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LED lights v fluorescent

This is a discussion on LED lights v fluorescent within the Beginner Planted Aquarium forums, part of the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium category; --> I guess I didn't ever flesh out one of my other reasons for doing the mixed bulbs... The human eye registers light closest to ...

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LED lights v fluorescent
Old 04-28-2010, 11:39 PM   #11
redchigh's Avatar
I guess I didn't ever flesh out one of my other reasons for doing the mixed bulbs...

The human eye registers light closest to green/yellow the easiest. So a light spectrum rich in blues and reds, although extremely dark to our eyes, has a LOT of PAR (photosynthetically
active radiation, light that triggers plant growth). So if someone wanted a high-growth high-maintenence tank, but didn't want to stress the fish with bright lights, then that would be a solution- have half, 2/3, 3/4 of the light in "white" for tank lighting(Close to true white, or a combination of cool white and warm white) and the rest in 440nm blue for strictly plant growth.

Of course, that assumes fishes' eyes are sensitive to the same spectrums as us.
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Old 04-29-2010, 05:35 AM   #12
They do have bulbs for every applications, spectrum range and power consumption on the market. LED technology has been around for over 30 years but only recent for aquarium application. It is still new and only a few are exploring it, give it a few years and i can see the fluorescent being phase out in the future.
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Old 04-29-2010, 12:18 PM   #13
Yes compared to flouros LED's are extremely adaptable. Its believed one of the main reasons they work so well is the spread they allow over the tank. You are not restricted to having all your light coming from one or two tubes that run the lenght of the tank. If you are building a fixture you can mount LED's anywhere, like directly above the foreground and get even light into the corners of the tank. Like already mentioned you can pick different ones, based one a really big list of specifications. Besides the common spectrum and kelivn temp leds offer things like angle of light. LED's don't cast light 360 degrees like tubes. Even a wide angle LED generally only casts is light across 120 degrees. I know sometimes reefers will go down to 20 degree LED's to highlight certain corals. It creates a spot light effect.

LED's cast a kinda different light, anyone who has run blue LED moonlights has probably noticed that the plants cast shadows. This is the same for the high powered ones.
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Old 05-01-2010, 12:02 PM   #14
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I run CFLs and I notice shadows...
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Old 05-03-2010, 07:53 PM   #15
yes I run CFL as well they have slight shadows.... its very different than LED lighting and even moonlight shadows. They cast very noticeable distinct shadows that shimmer with any leave movement. Like every leaf casts its own shadow. CFL have much more diffused light which makes more diffused shadows.
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Old 05-04-2010, 12:17 AM   #16
A good but long blog on tank lighting, including LED lights:

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Old 03-24-2012, 05:59 AM   #17
1)LED lights have a longer life span than Fluorescent lights.
2)LED light bulbs use about half the wattage of fluorescent lighting
3)LED lighting is ideal for directional lighting.
4)fluorescent light contains the TOXIC Mercury than LED light.
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Old 03-24-2012, 11:51 AM   #18
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what the hell is with this thread that brings the led sales spammers??? Must be pretty high on page rank.
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Old 03-25-2012, 08:15 AM   #19
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My experience with Led lighting is only 2 months. I have two AquaRay grobeam 1000 nd suspended over my 75 gallon tank.
These are 6500K tile type lamps. There are two wisteria plants that are growing well under this light. I just planted 7 Alternanthera reineckii rosaefolia (stem plants) and hope they grow well too.
I have 4 Anubias and two of them are growing new leaves. All 4 have a little blackbeard algae. This I am sure was from over feeding and too long a light period. My lighting period is now 9 hours; down fron 12.
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Old 04-02-2012, 04:29 PM   #20
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I am planning a long term project. A big discus tank, and for that I have been researching into LED lighting systems. I have definitely ruled out commercially available modules because:
1. They are expensive and
2. I won't get the flexibility in lighting schemes that I can easily achieve by a DIY LED system.
Currently I have a marineland LED the I got the the 20 gallon, and I have a 10 gallon running on CFL (13 W). Hands down plants under the CFL are doing much better. But I know I will be able to get a combination of LEDs that will give me similar spectrum to a CFL or a fluorescent light. As mikaila mentioned earlier, Cree LEDs are good quality.
I found this link http://theaquaticgazette.com/2011/05...cus-biotope-2/ which describes a very elegant LED system. I dare not say it is DIY as you will need a significant electronics knowledge to build one yourself. A slightly expensive but cheaper than commercial LED systems option is to get modules. For any high power LED system, you need 3 modules.
1. A power supply
2. A constant current LED driver (some times 1 and 2 come as a single module)
3. LED modules. (some times 2 and 3 come as a single module)
All of these can be bought on http://www.digikey.com/ (I don't advertise for digikey, but they are the best place to find all the electronic components in the US.)
If you are careful enough in selecting the components, requirement of fans and heat sinks can be kept away from the aquarium. The heat is generated in the driver circuits and not the LED itself (compared to other lighting options).

Considering that LED lighting has found a stronghold in high light requiring markets like street lighting, architectural lighting, car headlights etc, I feel it is just a matter of picking up a ready made module that suits the requirements as an aquarium light and putting it to use.
I am really looking forward to build a circuit that will allow me to simulate sunrises, sunsets even cloudy days using LEDs.

PS: I am just an electircal engineer trying to relive my soldering days. :D
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