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T5 HO or traditional fluorescent fixtures and bulbs?

1114 Views 5 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  sandybottom
Is the hobby dying off? There seem like fewer and fewer choices.

Today's question: for 36" long aquarium, is it better to use the old standard fluoresent plant bulbs or the newer T5 HO bulbs. {the full spectrum led at about $300 are poor price value solution}.

My go to used to the All-glass but their 36" uses 24" bulbs. I don't know what advantages there
are to the T5HO for fresh water. For salt water, no brainer. But concerned since it's HO the fish will think it's too bright and hide all the time. The 36" dual bulb hoods are difficult to find. My 48's would stick out 6 inches and so that is unacceptable except for temporary emergency lighting.

I haven't found a lumen comparison and only discussion I have seen talks about how much brighter the fish are.
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Again, thank you. The T12 is 1.5 inches diameter, 12x1/8th.

Found this though, which explains the mandated changes:
"T-12's are disappearing. After 2012, they will no longer be manufactured"

I just don't get why people think LED is so great. Petco has them, but for 36" and 25w would cost $170. A T5HO is just 90 and bulbs should run about 36K hours. Heck by then LED will have advanced in effeciency and cost that it would make more sense than just novity today. Replacement bulbs are only $15.

It appears hoods for just T5 are already hard to find. So best bet seems to be T5HO and either get single strip or double and expect to disable one light.

I thought I would be ok with dual as I was running dual T12's. I even bought 2 duals, but soon discovered all 4 did was grow algae. The bacteria, non algae type. Other sites were saying that 3200 lumens each and 28w T5HO gives 5000 lumens, or about 36 PAR.

Ah, I see, two would be 10,000. Way too much. So either double for 2 bulb types and switch which is active, or one bulb hood and switch bulbs.

Thank you for getting me thinking.
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Actually, think need to go with double.
From GE/Philips specs
T5h0 39w 3500 lumens 34" length, so two would be 7000, just slightly above the 6400 for two T12's
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