02-15-2011, 10:18 AM
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Zoo med vs Nova Extreme T5HO
I want to upgrade my lighting fixture and would appreciate any recommendations. I have a 55g with a 24" Aquasun T5HO currently mounted on one side. The other side has a Marineland top (basic LED hood, very low intensity). The original plan was a light gradient with plastic plants on the "dim" side. I since found the plants as addictive as the fish! The plants on the side with the Aquasun fixture are doing well a month into the process (microsword, rosette sword, ozelot sword, Americal Val, cokscrew val, cabomba, rotalia, myro). I'm dosing with Flourish Excel and Flourish Comprehensive with ecocomplete substrate. Light is currently on 10 hours total (two-hour break from 12-2) which seems to minimize algae in the tank.
Due to a canopy design I am building, the interior of the canopy will be 48" max so the 48" fixtures won't fit well. I'm going with an offset 36" T5HO (dual) fixture, which still provides some of the lighting gradient I orginally planned. Any recommendations of Nova Extreme vs the Aquasun T5HO? I prefer the lower $$ fixtures.
This is really an equipment question, but since it is for my plants, I thought this is the best place to post!