Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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FuzzAz 03-19-2008 08:39 PM

Looking for help with light bulb color
I hope this is the right place for this post. I am inexperienced in the subject of aquarium lighting. here is the situation. I just installed a retrofit kit in the stock hood of my 36gallon bowfront aquarium because I want to make this tank a planted tank. Aquarium plants are also new teratory for me. this is the kit I used basicly it is a single 65 watt compact flouresent, works out to about 1.8 WPG or 12 lumins per square inch, and DANG its alot brighter compaired to the stock 20 watt bulb. I have predominately yellow, orange, and red decor in my tank, except for the plants, and with the new light the glowlight tetras(my only fish in the tank now) and the decor seam washed out. I am using the bulb that came with the kit and it is the two color smartpac 10000K/460 nm Actinic bulb. Now my questions are, is this bulb acceptable for a freshwater planted tank. Waht kind of bulb would work better with my decor and still work well for my plants?

herefishy 03-20-2008 01:09 AM

That is alot of light for certain. You will be able t ogrow plants that have high lighting requirements. Normally lamps in the 6500K range are best.

okiemavis 03-20-2008 08:18 PM

I could be wrong here, but I was under the impression that you only need actinic for saltwater (for coral growth and the like). Freshwater plants grow best from red and green lights, so you really don't need all that extra blue.

Oldman47 03-22-2008 07:29 AM

FuzzAz, the bulbs you are looking at are for SW tanks. 50/50 bulbs only give you half the wattage for your plants, the blue light is to make a reef tank look more like the intense white you might see on a reef. It provides nothing to your plants. Any lamp from 5000K to 10000K would work fine for plants but I am also partial to a lamp around 6500 to 6700K for aesthetics (personal preference). I am sure you could order the kit with whatever bulb you want but migh not be able to get it from that source to suit you. You can also get nice lighting kits from AHSupply. They are about comparable price and the one I got is a very good quality kit. When you order from them, you order the bulb separately to suit your uses. If you get both at the same time, you still only pay shipping once.

beetlebz 04-01-2008 05:38 AM

personally id pick up either the daylight 6700 or 10000 or the "dual daylight" bulb. The higher number will make your colors pop but thats personal preference :)

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