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Photoperiod idea

This is a discussion on Photoperiod idea within the Saltwater Aquarium Equipment forums, part of the Beginner Saltwater Aquariums category; --> aj I thought we agreed earlier in the post that the halide was an overkill and could damage your 29 gal inhabitents. 150 watts ...

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Old 12-30-2008, 10:57 PM   #11
aj I thought we agreed earlier in the post that the halide was an overkill and could damage your 29 gal inhabitents. 150 watts of full spectrum lighting is way enough for your 29 gal,
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Old 12-30-2008, 11:08 PM   #12
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you could prob. do the 250 if you raise it up a decent height but then your just waisting bucks on electricity
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Old 12-30-2008, 11:18 PM   #13
when the lighting on an aquarium housing corals is excessive the symbiotic algae in the coral tissue will be effected, the symbiotic interplay is such that the coral provides a home & (some nutrients) for the algae, the algae like any plant uses the light source to produce sugars and other nutrients that the coral needs to survive & prosper.this is called photosynthesis. there exists a very fine line of harmony here. the excessive light will cause the coral to abort it's symbiots due to the algae overproducing food. sometimes the coral will dispell all of the algae from it's tissue and be hard pressed to replace them if needed in the future. the coral will undergo changes in shape, coloration & habits to accomodate this light. if a coral is not placed correctly as to distance from light then it will be stressed and most likely shrivel and die. they will depleat their mass due to producing slime in an effort to protect themselves. coralamorphs can not handle excessive light, there is a ton more to this scenerio but hopefully you get the gist of it.

Last edited by rugie; 12-30-2008 at 11:26 PM..
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Old 12-31-2008, 01:06 AM   #14
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I'm going to have to give props to Rugie for both his position, and his explain. I'm sorry, but a 250w MH over a 29g tank full of Softies and LPS is both unnecessary, and harmful to nearly every species you are keeping. My personal recommendation is for you to abandon any plan you have of using that MH and invest in a set of high quality bulbs for your PC fixture. You check the link in my sig, and take note that every coral you see in that thread is being housed under the very same lighting. (ok, so it's a 55g and a 4x65 PC but its very near the same). Calaustrea, Open Brain, Favia Brain, Plate corals, Frogspawn, Torch corals, Zoanthids, Leathers, GSP, Xenia, Ricordea, & various Mushrooms, all doing swimmingly under PC lighting.

Unless you're planning to trade off your current stock for some highly photosynthetic SPS corals, you really have no logical reason to even consider that amount of light on a 29g tank. Too often Aquarists are misled to believe that, in terms of lighting, "More is Better", but that simply is not the case.

I'd recommend the following Lighting schedule, (it's worked for me thus far) with your PC fixture alone and some high quality bulbs, 10000k and Actinic.
07:00 (7am)- Actinics on/Moonlights off
09:00 (9am)- Daylights on
19:00 (7pm)- Daylights off
21:00 (9pm)- Actinics off/Moonlights on

If you do want to use MH lighting for that tank, Id recommend a downgrade to a 150w unit with a 14000k bulb, supplemented with PC actinics.
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Old 12-31-2008, 12:27 PM   #15
Thank you everyone for your contributions. Rugie, I'm sorry if it seemed like I wasn't immediately supporting your ideas, but from my perspective I have had several people tell me otherwise. Your second explanation was very good though, and now I understand much better. I have not come across this type of explanation in any book I've read. Most people usually just give me a "watts per gallon" rule, and say that for soft corals you need between 3 and 5 watts per gallon minimum, LPS, 5-9 watts per gallon and SPS 7-12 and up... Doing the calculations I found that 250 watts is between 8 and 9 watts per gallon, which if I'm going by the "watts per gallon" rule, seems okay. I think the major lesson here from all of your posts is that the watts per gallon rule is crap... correct? Myself, I'm likely to believe that because I've found more evidence contradicting the "inches of fish per gallon" rule and many other rules of thumb as well.

SKAustin, thanks for the photoperiod idea as well and your supporting explanations... I'm familiar with your previous posts so I value your ideas greatly.

I think for now I will continue to do some more research on this idea. I will probably keep the 250 watt MH just because I got an awesome deal on it, and save it for a future, larger tank. For my 29 gallon, I will probably either purchase a 150 watt MH, or I will purchase a 2x65 watt PC fixture to use in addition to my current 2x18 watt T-5 fixture.

If anyone has any further information please feel free to post, as I love hearing about people's experiences, whether they be successful or not!
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Old 12-31-2008, 09:53 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by ajmckay View Post
I think the major lesson here from all of your posts is that the watts per gallon rule is crap... correct?

The "Watts per Gallon", much like the "inches of fish per gallon" perspective is not really "crap" per se, but rather is meant as more of a quick reference guideline. It is intended to give you a quick starting point on which to base further research. Too often, newer hobbyists hear this "guideline" and restate it as a "rule". From there, alot of other new hobbyists become victim of poor information. Hopefully, you can recoup some of your expenses from that light, and maybe invest some other equipment or supplies.

Last edited by SKAustin; 12-31-2008 at 09:56 PM..
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Old 01-09-2009, 01:57 AM   #17
Exclamation I need opinions!

Okay.... As promised I am doing a ton more reading on the subject of aquarium lighting. What I know is that I will most likely stick with soft corals and LPS... I'm not planning on obtaining any SPS corals, however a few months ago I said I wasn't even going to get into corals at all... sooooo we'll have to see...

I've decided that I think I should stick with fluorescents... First off because my wife doesn't like lights hanging from the ceiling at all... Next, they are cheaper to operate. Lastly, they are dependable and there are tons and tons of options with them.

Right now, however, I am still having the "PC vs. T5 vs. VHO" conundrum... I've read on and on about how great T5's are, and how they're the best for value... The thing I don't like though is that I need to have 4-6 bulbs to get the wattage and they have to still be replaced in 18 months or so... That and they are expensive compared to PC. I am 75% sure that I will not get T5 lighting (insufficient $$, with a retro I can only get a 2x24 for my budget).

I was minutes away from buying a JBJ 2x65 PC fixture, but on several forums I hear people complaining that PC has the worst color of the 3 fluorescents and I for sure don't want that... If I did get PC I would get coralife bulbs, probably 1 daylight 10k and 1 actinic.

So my other choice VHO had never really interested me... but now I'm reading that their color is just as good as T5, and they are relatively inexpensive and you can get by with fewer bulbs that last just as long as T5s.

So basically I will go with either PC or VHO. From what I understand I'll get better quality light from a VHO, and I can get a retro and build a 150 watt hood for approx. $170(plus the added benefit of adding tubes as my tank grows in light requirements or if I buy a larger one). On the other hand I could get a PC fixture that's all nice and put together (the JBJ's look great!) for a little less, about $150 for a decent one.

What are your thoughts on these 2 lighting options? My main priority is the quality of light and the health of the organisms!

Note that I've read tons about these 3 lights, so if you have any personal experiences THAT is what I'm most interested in hearing!

Last edited by ajmckay; 01-09-2009 at 02:03 AM..
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Old 01-09-2009, 10:50 PM   #18
Opinions wanted

Any ideas?
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Old 01-10-2009, 12:45 AM   #19
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Personal experience: I've used PC lighting on my 55g, Coralife 48" 4x65w Lunar Aqualight. Coral health seemed okay, but I was extremely dissatisfied with the coral growth. overall color was good, but bulbs did not compliment the fluorescent abilities of most of the corals. Colors paled in comparison to others I'd seen.

Have since upgraded to the Aqualight Pro with 2x150w 14000k Pheonix MH + 2x96w Coralife PC Actinics. Lighting seems a bit too blue, but WOW! colors really pop. Next plans are to try the ReefLux 12000k bulbs
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Old 01-10-2009, 12:52 AM   #20
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ive had coralife PCs for a few weeks when i first started. Quickly switched to t5s by icecap.(a company who is NJ local) i couldnt be happier with t5s. im even adding an additional 2 bulbs to the current 4 i have.
t5s arnt that bad on price if you buy a retro kit and assemble it yourself.

IMO compacts suck, reefs are "basically" set up on the foundation of lights,flow and a protein skimmer.
ofcourse!! ofcourse there is more to it then that, but thats what really makes things happen.
another opinion is that why settle for something you know will just be upgraded, or settle for something that allows for little to no upgrades ( the JBJ for example )
i guess it all comes down to what your budget permits but i personally would get t5s.
another thing to consider is are you going to upgrade tank size? for sure most people do within a year so keep that in mind. take me for example, at the moment i have these 48inch t5s sitting ontop of my tank thats def. not 48 inches long. they stick out alittle but thats fine im waiting on that upgrade. same thing with my sump.. its 45gallons. i just knew when i set this tank up id be going larger.

whats the deal with the canister filter?
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