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Inga 02-17-2012 04:07 PM

lighting over the planted aquarium
Alright so.. new issue is one of my lights died over my small 25 gallon planted tank. I need a whole new fixture. I was thinking of replacing the lights over the 60 gallon tank as well since I am currently just using the stock lights which are 1 bulb per fixture 24 inches long each over a 48 inch long tank. Not a lot of light. So, I need opinions and for my simple mind, directions on how each light works.

T5 Bulbs Plus and minus
T8 Bulbs Plus and minus

Can I just get one long 48 inch long light over the aquarium even with the center brace on the aquarium? Then I assume I would need to get new tops on the aquarium? IF so, where do I get those?

Don't get crazy all together, I need to stay less expensive but would like to increase my light some and be able to afford to keep it up. In other words, I don't want to spend $20.00 a bulb if $10.00 bulbs will do. Thoughts? Opinions? HELP!!! I need to make a fairly quick decision on the small tank. It needs light ASAP so my plants don't all die off.

Inga 02-17-2012 04:25 PM

Yikes, I am thinking of more questions as I go. My brain hurts with all the lighting choices.

I don't want to sound stupid but... Well, here it goes.

If I wanted to get 1 48 inch long light and put it over my 48 long 12 inch wide tank, can I do that?

If I did that (the tank has a center brace) Can I still just have the 2 flat glass tops? I currently have the crappy black stock tops on my tanks. I don't mind how they look but the flat glass would add light, right?

How do I keep those type fixtures from falling into the tank? I could just see myself electrocuting myself and my fish as I am reaching into the tank to do maintenance and the light fixture falls in.

Anyone order a fixture from here? Odyssea T5 Aquarium Lighting

Any place else you have ordered lights from that were well made, lasted long, were not overly expensive (cheap :-D ) and the service was excellent? Did I mention I NEED the small tank light ASAP?

I was thinking of ordering this for the larger tank and one like it only 24 inches for the small tank. Good idea or waste of money?

Mikaila31 02-17-2012 04:35 PM

odyessa is considered low end lighting. Their fixtures are not very efficient.

My question is what makes you think you need a whole new hood for the 25 gallon? Unless it was the ballast there is little that can go wrong that requires a whole new hood.

Inga 02-17-2012 04:37 PM


Originally Posted by Mikaila31 (Post 985253)
odyessa is considered low end lighting. Their fixtures are not very efficient.

My question is what makes you think you need a whole new hood for the 25 gallon? Unless it was the ballast there is little that can go wrong that requires a whole new hood.

It IS the ballast. The reason I WANT a whole new unit for the 60 gallon is because it is insufficient light. Do you have a recommendation to a Better lighting company that isn't going to cost a fortune?

Jayy 02-17-2012 05:05 PM

You can do shoplights with glass tops, thats what I'm doing to get better lighting. Heres my thread if it helps

mrbprint 02-17-2012 05:16 PM

I have a 48 in shop light from Home Depot. $10. Then 2 65K T8 bulbs $3 ea. $16 and my 70g is actually over lit from all the algae growing. Of course I have all low light plants- Anubias, Java Fern, Hornwort, etc. I purchased an Odessea twin bulb T5HO 36 in for my 40b and it has been great and for only $49 free shipping.

PonyMan 02-17-2012 05:58 PM

Yea I was considering upgrading to the T5s and Byron pointed out that you would basically have to upgrade just about everything about your planted tank....C02 ferts etc. So I'm staying with the T8s and am looking into upgrading my fixture to a 48" across the tank top. After reading the other thread I think I'll take a visit to walmart. That light fixture looks AWESOME!

Mikaila31 02-17-2012 06:34 PM

Just because you use T5's does not mean you need to increase everything. I would suggest T5's for the 60 gallon, that is defiantly not a tank I would use T8's on. People HIGHLY over estimate how much light they need, especially with T5's. You need to realize HO T5 bulbs are at least twice as intense at a T8 bulb. That 48" fixture you linked has 4 bulbs, and is WAYYYYYY too much light for a 60 gallon. At most you want two bulb with T5's on a deep tank to stay low tech. Even then it might be difficult, a single bulb would defiantly give you low light capabilities.

beetlebz 02-17-2012 11:45 PM

first, a 48" light on a tank with a brace is fine, the brace typically sits flat. I have a perfecto 48 strip light on top of my 55 with a brace :)

second, I prefer T8s due to the ease of getting the bulbs. USUALLY (but not lately) my home cheapo is good about carrying T8 daylight bulbs.

as for the amount of light, I have 2 24" bulbs in the 48" strip light on my 55, thats what... 34 watts? its definitely shy of moderate lighting, but my greens do ok :-) thats equivalent to a single t8 tube. Maybe go to a double tube fixture, or a single T5, maybe even a double T5, but beyond that, mikaila is right. overkill.

Mikaila31 02-18-2012 07:48 PM

Its over kill for the OP and a lot of people on this forum seem to push really low light. Be careful not to get too much light, but at the same time don't get too little. I grow plant and put an emphasis on the growing part. Most my tanks are at least moderately lite. Generally I prefer to aim for 2WPG or higher with most types of light, except T5 HO. I avoid T8's since I really don't care for them, most my lights are power compacts or spiral CFLs. You can have a lot of light and stay low tech, but its not easy balancing a tank like that. My lowest tech planted tank actually has like 41 watts on it and its only a 15 gallon. You must match light though with equal nutrients and equal plant growth. I could not do a 55 with 32 watts, I would get really annoyed with it before anything manages to grow. So I give kudos to those that can manage that low light.

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