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Upgrading to LED


scubasteve92

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I have decided I want to get rid of my T5HO fixture and get LEDs. I have been looking at the Current-USA true lumen pro led strips. Any opinions?? Also I have no clue how much I need. I have a 20g tank with SPS, LPS, and zoas. I was thinking one actinic, one 12k white, and if needed a mixed strip. How much LED per gallon do I need?

Thanks for the replies

Josh

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I also have a 20g and went to LED. I did about a month of reserach on lighting and ended up with the 60 watt cree lights. There are big differences in LEDs and I would recommend getting a fixture that uses 3w bulbs instead of 1w. I would say 60w of 3w bulbs would be equivalent to a 100w fixture of 1w bulbs, but I can't test that. Online they say my fixture is equivalent to a 250watt metal halide but i think it is closer to a 150w.

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I am running LED's over one of my 60 gallon frag tanks. As far as I know there is no real rule of thumb when it comes to how many LED's per gallon. Just like all the other lights out there you can find just about any option you are looking for. Mine is an Evolution from ReefKoi. It is not dimmable. It is the 119W watt unit. I am looking to upgrade to dimmable fixtures in the near future. I think what you want to be most concerned with with is what the par numbers are at certain depths in your tank. Most of the reputable dealers will have that information posted.

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You could probably run 2 ecoxotic or similar Par 38's on there and it would be enough to grow just about anything. That's going to be about the best bang for the buck unless you want to make your own fixture.

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You could probably run 2 ecoxotic or similar Par 38's on there and it would be enough to grow just about anything. That's going to be about the best bang for the buck unless you want to make your own fixture.

So like the stunner strips? I am looking to do a couple of strips. How much par is ideal?

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Steve,

To answer your question earlier (on my thread), it is not the amount of watts that the LEDs have. It is how they are focused. If you were to have 20*3w LEDs with 60-90 degree optics, you would fry anything on a tank that isn't AT LEAST 2' deep.

The way it was recently described to me, is like a magnifying glass under the sun. Under normal sunlight, your ants are fine. However, under a magnifying glass (your lenses), they burn up.

So what you need to take into consideration is:

What will you be keeping?

Do you have the means to move the corals accordingly?

If you are in it for the long haul, you might consider a more expensive LED fixture. Ecoxtoic makes an incredible (I mean, absolutely INCREDIBLE) LED fixture called a Radion. They are ridiculous, however, so is the price tag (around $750+ in most stores). However, there are many other viable options for you that don't have a $700 price tag. Some of the better ones (EvolutionLEDs) range around $200-$400, and they are great fixtures.

Just be sure to explore your options, and don't buy something that you haven't read good reviews on, or seen pictures of.

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Yes, those would work fine. But you really should get leds that are more than 1 or 1.5 watts each. Two reasons you might want to put on a deeper tank and the leds will not have to be driven as hard. You can use the formula (2*cos*(h/2)) to calculate the coverage at the bottom of the tank. cos is the focal angle of the lenses in degrees and h is the distance from the hanging height to the sand bed. No lenses use cos 120 degrees. .814180971

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I have a 20g also running PAR38's. I'm using 2 Rapid LED PAR38's and a Boost PAR30 (all RB) and I have manged to burn half a frogspawn and fried a strawberry cap. So be careful acclimating your tank to the LED's. I went with the bulbs because I like the simple look they offer. Old pic befire I added the Boost bulb-

IMG_2307.jpg

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Well I was looking for strips for the lack of space they take up, but i have decided i would rather have it hanging, where did you get that side hanging kit? I need a way to suspend it from my tank attatched to the side of the tank..

is that being too picky??

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Yes, those would work fine. But you really should get leds that are more than 1 or 1.5 watts each. Two reasons you might want to put on a deeper tank and the leds will not have to be driven as hard. You can use the formula (2*cos*(h/2)) to calculate the coverage at the bottom of the tank. cos is the focal angle of the lenses in degrees and h is the distance from the hanging height to the sand bed. No lenses use cos 120 degrees. .814180971

Michael,

Is that trig formula something they teach at University of Oaklamoma. Do you remember the old joke about the junior high math teacher trying to teach Thibodaux math and she repeated "pie r squared" and he responed that "pie are round". Sorry for the corn, I sometimes get flashbacks and like to vocalize. I learned my trig at Texas A&M. I had been out of high school for six years during Vietnam and entered Texas Maritime Academy in Galveston. At that time, the Texas high school seniors already had two years of calculus. We thought that we had a good education by going to a private school in Lafayette. It was a shock for me to have to compete with these tuned in graduates after I had pickled my brain for the last six years.

Sorry to have meandered with your thread. I am in a position to compare PAR values of different MH 400W bulbs (14K vs 6500K). I will compare against a 90W LED Greenhouse Growlight fixture. Today I received 1000W MH with a 6500K lamp. It is some kind of bright. I positioned this fixture 12" above the water surface on my 75G seaweed growout tank.

PAR READINGS

1. 1000W MH with a 6500K lamp

a) In air 12" from glass shield: 1650

b) Underwater 6" 900

c)Underwater 12" 600

d)Underwater 18" 200

2, 90W LED (26X2W Red, 19X2W White)

a) Maximum 1500

b) 6" 500

c) 12" 220

d) 18" 100

3. 400W MH with a 14K lamp

a) Maximum at 1" with meter default to zero

2000

b) 6" 500

c) 12" 200

d) 18" 110

The 90W LED compares favorable against a 400W MH with a 14K bulb. I could not compare against a 6500K 400W lamp as I received a mogul lamp instead of a double ended lamp. I would be willing to bet that the 6500K lamp will double PAR values. I have heard many people voice the belief that actinic lamps will give higher PAR values. Not even close. When I first used Ice Cap 660 e-ballast, I compared PAR values between a 40W Daylight Delux bulb (6500K) against a 110W VHO Super Actinic bulb. The PAR values on the 40W lamp were doubed the PAR values of the 110W lamp. Ice Cap along with Champion Lighting did controlled test and proved that the Ice Cap would overdrive the NO 40W lamps to produce 81W of light. In that case, 81W produced twice the PAR of a 110W Actinic lamp.

No one can tell you how much PAR per galloon. It depends on many things. I have operated low light (PAR 50) reef systems for years with good results. Not every reef tank situation requires sunglasses.

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I forgot to add that today was a beautiful day with bright sunshine. At 1 PM sunlight PAR values were 1800 PAR. During the summer, sunlight PAR values will be above 1900 for half the day.

Patrick

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That formula is to determine the lens angle that is required to cover the area on the bottom of the tank. In other words how many fixtures you will need. According to some information that I have read a 70 degree lens will provide you the max amount of par for a led. The smaller angles such as 30 degrees will provide more penatration of depth. I use no lenses because my leds are on top of the waterline 2 inches and this has probably prevented the burning of corals. However; I have fried some live rock and coralline with the lights. After High School I had to take 3 Calculus courses and a engineering math. Yep, Catheral-Carmel was no help on that one.

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I think an easier way is just to get a baby pool and wait until your greenhouse is built. Rent a little spot and call it good.

Michael,

Before I buried 3' deep tanks in the ground, I experimented with a small baby pool. In direct sunlight, in eight afternoon hours, 40 gallons of water increased from 69 degrees to 120 degrees. Even with 3' deep in the ground, three 100G rubbermade tanks and a 75G glass tank increased in temperature from 75 to 81 degrees within 4 hours today. I almost pulled out fans to do evaporative cooling. Il fait chaud.

Patrick

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Your right, Back in the 70's tried using baby pools to grow algae. Worked alright for alittle while. But then the Calerpa ? turned white and we started growing a mighty fine crop of hair algae. It must have been from using all that tap water.

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Interesting discussion. Well that makes since. I guess it is really coming down to the amount of money and the style as long as the rating on the equipment is good. Right? Kinda?

Right! Once again, think of the analogy I used. It is exactly the same thing. Do some research, and don't rush into buying!

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Interesting discussion. Well that makes since. I guess it is really coming down to the amount of money and the style as long as the rating on the equipment is good. Right? Kinda?

Right! Once again, think of the analogy I used. It is exactly the same thing. Do some research, and don't rush into buying!

I have maintained a 55G mushroom tank with beaucoup filter feeders using four 40W florescant bulbs: two Daylight Delux bulbs (purchased from Home Depot for $3 each) and two 40W actinic bulbs at $20 each. Depending on the livestock determines the required lighting, circulation, filtration etc...

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Josh,

While the PAR meter gives me an evaluation tool that is a standard that people can compare, I do not rely only on the numbers. Just as in the case of high phosphate levels, I do not measure phosphate, I look at the system to decide if I need to use phosphate resin. If my system is using phosphate as a nutriant for growth, why would I want to pull it out. As a result of these high nutriant levels, I use many janitors, snails and micro-fauna and fana, tunicates, worms, sand bed claims. Don't ask me the names of these red hair like worms, ask Doctor Ron Shimek. I intend to rejuvinate all my deep sand beds and mud filters with detrivores from several different sources. I will use this biodiversity to enhance my systems. As an entension of my sponsorship (Castille Coral Ranch) I will provide for the Austin Reef Club members, that want it, detrivore populations thru live sand and macro. This is called "Lagniappe". For people that do not want live sand, I could provide decorative macro that is not suited for mass cultivation and sales, but would be well suited for a display speciman.

In retrospect, I like low light level systems: easy to maintain, easy on cost, less heat so less cooling cost. Many systems will operate and maintain excellant displays until you crank up the light intensity. Even though the technology is available today, I see more people get caught up in the hipe to "light it up" and create many problems that would never come up if light intensity had not been pushed so hard. In my case, I am pushing growout of seaweed as a commercial agricultural venture, thus 1000W MH growout lamps.

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