T8 or T5?
I'm completely new to florescent tubes so sorry if these questions are stupidly simple but I was wondering:
1. What are the differences between T8 and T5 bulbs? Benefits/negatives
2. Which would you most advise me to get for my 30inch long, 15 inches tall, 12 inches deep aquarium in which I wish to potentially grow plants?
3. Does a T5 tube need a different starter unit to a T8, and visa versa?
4. Can any UK residents suggest a decent starter unit for the tubes to use?
Sorry if these seem dim and not worth your time but I've always wanted decent lighting but haven't got a clue what to get over the internet.
Feed back greatly appreciated.
PS What wattage would you suggest as well?
When it comes to T5, they are different wattages again. But the main thing to remember is that T5 comes in NO (normal output) and HO (high output), and I think now also VHO (very high output). The NO is basically the same as the T8 in terms of light intensity from the same length and type of tube. The HO is 1.5 to 2 times the light intensity. [The VHO I'm not familiar with, they are more for marine tanks growing corals.] So you can see that having 1 T5 HO tube is comparable to almost 2 T8 tubes, again with same length and type.
A single tube T5 HO tube would be OK, for low and moderate light plants, and floating plants. High light plants would struggle and likely not last.
A dual tube in T8 would be fine. I would not get a dual T5 because with HO tubes that would be too much unless you intend diffused CO2 and significant nutrient supplementation.
Hope this helps.
The dual tube T8 would be my choice also. If you don't mind paying more up front, a dual tube normal output T5 would be good and save on energy costs in the long run.
Thanks very much, just what I needed :)
Unfortunatly I don't think I can install dual tubes into my hood as there looks like there is only room for one tube plus clips.
But I will have a look into T5 single tube as I am not being too ambitious in my first stock of plant
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