T5 LED or MH

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T5 LED or MH

Post by joon on Wed Apr 04, 2012 9:35 pm

i righly dont know what lighting i should use. i want to be able to have some sps and i know they need lots of light. MH are just so hot and i dont think i want to deal with that. how are LEDS

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Re: T5 LED or MH

Post by icereefer on Thu Apr 05, 2012 6:15 am

joon wrote:i righly dont know what lighting i should use. i want to be able to have some sps and i know they need lots of light. MH are just so hot and i dont think i want to deal with that. how are LEDS
Sounds like LEDs is what you want then if you don't want to deal with the heat issues MHs produce? you can get good growth using T5's too.
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Re: T5 LED or MH

Post by mpedersen on Wed Apr 18, 2012 3:48 pm

LED or T5 would be your answer. Cost wise, this last year was more or less the tipping point where LEDs became more economical in the long run (but more expensive in the initial purchase). I'm running LEDs (Ecoxotics) on my display tanks, although I have T5's on most reefs in the basement. Metal Halides are still quite good from a SPS standpoint however; the energy efficiency edge has gone to LEDs recently, and good bulbs are pricey, but some people aren't yet willing to give up their MH fixtures. Of course, the reality is such that if you're starting fresh, LED is probably the way to go. RGB LEDs are helping round out specturms a bit more so you get a more "complete" look out of the light.
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Re: T5 LED or MH

Post by Swanwillow on Wed Apr 18, 2012 7:56 pm

Hmmm, I ran LED for a year, but my sps never colored up. Went back to MH and now the colors are amazing. That said, I would love to find LEDs that actually bring out the colors in my sps. So I love LEDs but I'm stuck with MH for the moment.
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Re: T5 LED or MH

Post by mpedersen on Wed Apr 18, 2012 8:18 pm

Part of the issue with SPS color is that of course it WILL be different under different lights; I had to add more blue to my default setup. Of course, any time you change light you have to let the corals adjust too. But what really helped for me was nitrate reduction.
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Re: T5 LED or MH

Post by Swanwillow on Wed Apr 18, 2012 8:55 pm

mmhmm, I think my issues was using not strong enough. Same set up as yours, except I used stunner strips instead of adding another full-blast blue strip.
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Re: T5 LED or MH

Post by mpedersen on Thu Apr 19, 2012 1:10 am

Well, I have stunners PLUS the full blast blue strip. It's still way less wattage than any Metal Halide we'd throw over a tank likethat. And the Big Blue made a big difference. BUT, I still didn't get the colors "right" until I got my water quality under control. The blue showed me that, for example, my pink birdsnest could be pink, but it took nitrate reduction to actually make it pink.
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Re: T5 LED or MH

Post by Minnesotareefjunkie on Sat Feb 07, 2015 2:18 pm

Water quality is huge for sps coral coloration.  First off for sps corals to display good coloration you need to have nitrate as close to zero as possible and phosphate 0.04 or less.  The next factor I look at is chemistry for max color lower natural saltwater conditions are ideal.  Kh 6.5-7.5 ca 410-420 mg 1230-1300 potassium 380~400 these elements are critical.   The next is the addition of zinc iodine iron potassium iodine Floride vanadium boron and other trace elements, these each have a unique role so don't skimp out on trace elements and don't start dumping them if you have high po4 or no3 wait until your ready.  And quality reef salt I personally use red sea blue bucket for low Kh.  If you know your water is spot on you can start seeing what lights can really achieve.   I personally ran mh t5 combo vs radion on my tank and the radion with the right graph and intensity displayed way better color. Many refers do very well with a high quality t5 fixture like the diuna or powermodule.  I enjoy the led for power savings no bulb changes and 1/6 the evaporation.  Many who have not had success with leds often are using fixtures that are not quite capable or there is another water related factor such as high dkh and no3 present in the water.  If your water quality is not completely up to par halide will show the best color on your stony corals from my experience.  Once you find that balance it is very rewarding often it requires good filtration and carbon.

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Re: T5 LED or MH

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