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My New BML LED Lighting

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I got my new LED setup from BML last week.. I got it installed, but will be building an arduino to handle the lighting schedule.

I first tore apart my old canopy and made it shorter.. I also painted it black to match the bottom..

I decided on 2ft fixtures in the event that I ever get a larger tank I can keep the lighting and just add a strip or two if needed.

Here is the configuration.


...and here is how they are mounted..



I mounted the drivers on a piece of plywood that I will later mount to the wall. I wired all of the drivers together so they can all be controlled with one pot to dim them. I will later mount this to the wall behind the tank once I get the arduino built.


Here is the tank..


That photo is with them turned all the way up. I have them turned back to about 50% at the moment and will slowly over the period of a month or so ramp them up.

Thanks to Nick, Randy, and all the BML Crew! The lights are great and look awesome!

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ok.. now for the juicy stuff...

Tim (timfish) came over with his trusty rusty PAR meter to take some measurements on my new BML lights on the tank.

We were both pretty shocked at the results, but in a way that you wouldn't think.

So here is the configuration of the lights in the canopy and they are sitting ~3" from the surface of the water.


The shocking results of this configuration were that the PAR measurements were lower than expected, but more shocking was how evenly the light was distributed. We didn't measure the entire tank before Tim suggested on adjusting the lights. Here are the results before we moved the lights.


Now a pic of how we reconfigured them.. Note that we did not move them much, yet the results were astonishing.


Here is are the measurements after moving the lights.


I am not done moving them and have an idea of more angles for them.

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Very cool Jake! I love the "low-profile" canopy. Definitely need to find out how you're going to dim them as that feature is still missing on mine.

I think this is the custom configuration I used:


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I have no idea what my par reading is on my tank, but I have two 36" BuildMyLED fixtures and my SPS are growing like crazy. I even had a frag of some SPS down on the sand bed (24" deep tank) that was growing. It's now, recently on a frag rack. So I know the output of these LED's can grow SPS.

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Hi Jake. The tank looks awesome! I'm glad Tim was able to help you reposition the light, as it looks like he did a great job smile.png Here is the spectrum we used for the two custom strips. http://www.buildmyled.com/custom-report-details/?partNo=PS2460S101LMATLPMALOMJAML While most scientists refuse to give a min PAR (PPFD) number for a large/diverse group of corals, many people say you want a minimum of 100 PPFD for SPS. Most can handle much more than that, and the increased light levels will typically lead to different colors and growth rates.

Unfortunately, PAR meters do not provide accurate readings. In general, the less the meter costs, the less accurate it will be. Take a look at this recent article by Dana Riddle. http://www.advancedaquarist.com/2013/2/equipment Dana shows the sensor response curve over various wavelengths in Figure 7. Many hobbyists use the Apogee unit since it is the least expensive PAR meter. However, the Apogee will under-report the amount of PAR in the blue range. This is an issue with reef tanks, as most reef lighting systems have between 60-75% blue wavelengths. Hence, you need to account for this 'loss' to get a true PAR reading in your tank.


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Cool, Thanks for the info. The second link is a dead link, but I did a search on that page for apogee and I think I found the article that was intended. I'm going to clean the tank this weekend sometime and then break out the camera and take some high res images. Will be posting those in the photo section, but I'll put a link in here to them.

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