DIY LED floodlights any good???

Mark Keetch

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So my MC is struggling at the moment. That and my Alternanthera Reinekii Mini. Both are faded red and green. They are both low down in the tank so have been told it could be my lights not reaching the depth enough for them to colour up nicely.

At the moment I have got 2 of these.....

https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07L2RQ3WR/ref=cm_sw_r_sms_awdb_t1_7epCEbX82RZ7G

But am thinking of going for 2 or 3 of these.....

https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07ZZ26WDV/ref=cm_sw_r_other_apa_i_e1oCEbTY0VAWP

My main concern though is the floodlights arent full spectrum, they're just white.
 
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The Warm white ones I've seen didn't look that good to me. I’m running a cool white COB spot on my Nano and it looks good. I have easy plants like Anubias and Moss and they’re growing like mad.
 

Tim Harrison

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My main concern though is the floodlights arent full spectrum, they're just white.
White light is composed of all the wave lengths of the visible spectrum so it is really full spectrum.

The Warm white ones I've seen didn't look that good to me.
Agree, best to use cool white, that is a colour temp of around 6000-6500 Kelvin.

This might be of help https://www.ukaps.org/forum/threads/redneck-led-lights.50916/#post-505808
 

Mark Keetch

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The Warm white ones I've seen didn't look that good to me. I’m running a cool white COB spot on my Nano and it looks good. I have easy plants like Anubias and Moss and they’re growing like mad.
Thanks. I'll make sure I dont get warm white then.

Agree, best to use cool white, that is a colour temp of around 6000-6500 Kelvin.

This might be of help https://www.ukaps.org/forum/threads/redneck-led-lights.50916/#post-505808

Excellent bud. Thanks. So definitely worth using a couple of floodlights? I take it they manage to achieve the depth easier?
So 6000-6500 Kelvin is best, what about lumens? I have a 4ft tank with approx 300 litres of water in it so should I be aiming for 6000 lumens?
 
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Thanks. I'll make sure I dont get warm white then.



Excellent bud. Thanks. So definitely worth using a couple of floodlights? I take it they manage to achieve the depth easier?
So 6000-6500 Kelvin is best, what about lumens? I have a 4ft tank with approx 300 litres of water in it so should I be aiming for 6000 lumens?

It’s more the depth of the water that will determine how bright your lights need to be, at least for small plants near the substrate.
 

Mark Keetch

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It’s more the depth of the water that will determine how bright your lights need to be, at least for small plants near the substrate.
So the bottom plants are 550mm from the top of the tank and there will prob be another 400mm gap between the lights and the top of the tank. So approx 950mm between the lights and the MC.


@Tim Harrison you reckon 3 of these will be ok with the info I put above regarding the distance between the lights and the MC?? So 3 of these will give me 6000lm

https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07T8LZV9F/ref=cm_sw_r_other_apa_i_qbqCEbEMFV41A
 

Tim Harrison

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Not sure if the light has the same output but yes I reckon you'll need 3 for good coverage...

ledflood20w-jpg-jpg.jpg


Thanks to Clive...
If PAR at the substrate level is approximately 50 micromoles or less, this is generally considered low light.
If PAR at the substrate level is between 50-150 micromoles, this is generally considered medium light.
If PAR at the substrate level exceeds 150 micromoles, this is generally considered high light.

You'll probably have medium light at substrate level. Just choose your plants accordingly check out Troica's plant list. MC will probably be okay if you dial your CO2 in properly and concentrate on achieving max flow and distribution.
 

Mark Keetch

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Not sure if the light has the same output but yes I reckon you'll need 3 for good coverage...

ledflood20w-jpg-jpg.jpg


Thanks to Clive...
If PAR at the substrate level is approximately 50 micromoles or less, this is generally considered low light.
If PAR at the substrate level is between 50-150 micromoles, this is generally considered medium light.
If PAR at the substrate level exceeds 150 micromoles, this is generally considered high light.

You'll probably have medium light at substrate level. Just choose your plants accordingly check out Troica's plant list. MC will probably be okay if you dial your CO2 in properly and concentrate on achieving max flow and distribution.
Ah man I really wish i understood what was going on in that graph. Lol. That's all a bit too technical for my simple mind. Lol.

C02 distribution and flow in the tank is really good. I can see a lot of microbubbles from the diffuser in fast flow in all sections of the tank
 

alto

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You don’t need to buy Kessil (or similar)
But
You do need to look at the technical specifications that allows these LED more efficient depth penetration
(high intensity LED, suitable drivers, reflector lens design etc)

What are your tank and light details?
Is it really light limitation - ARm does take longer to establish than its taller cousins, MC actually grows quite well even in shaded areas (but obviously also slower so will take longer to establish)

If you add additional lights, and the limitation is actually CO2 or nutrients, you will only strengthen the imbalance

(I’ve Kessil A160 and various other lights, Kessil design is recessed so much easier on the eye when sitting on the sofa etc)
 

Mark Keetch

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You don’t need to buy Kessil (or similar)
But
You do need to look at the technical specifications that allows these LED more efficient depth penetration
(high intensity LED, suitable drivers, reflector lens design etc)

What are your tank and light details?
Is it really light limitation - ARm does take longer to establish than its taller cousins, MC actually grows quite well even in shaded areas (but obviously also slower so will take longer to establish)

If you add additional lights, and the limitation is actually CO2 or nutrients, you will only strengthen the imbalance

(I’ve Kessil A160 and various other lights, Kessil design is recessed so much easier on the eye when sitting on the sofa etc)
Hey bud. So the light I have is this one, the spec of the light is on one of the pictures on the listing

https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07L2RQ3WR/ref=cm_sw_r_sms_awdb_t1_7epCEbX82RZ7G

The tank is 350 litre tank but is holding about 300 litres of water. The MC is sitting about 600mm away from the light at the minute. The C02 distribution is good around the tank as all areas have fast flowing microbubbles and the DC is showing a lime green in all areas of the tank. I am dosing Ei at 20ml per day but have added extra Phosohate to the current mix to eliminate GSA which seems to have worked.

The MC going a paler green than from the start I'm guessing is lack of light or lack of iron. I was going to work with the light side of it first and then if still no luck maybe look at other causes like iron and anything else it could be.

Here is a pic of when I planted it compared to 3 months later. The green is a lot paler

20200115_205724.jpg


20200312_201517.jpg


Screenshot_20200317-040720_Gallery.jpg
 

Tim Harrison

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@Tim Harrison where is your tank in relation to where you sit? I'm just trying to picture how bright the lights are going to be to where we sit on the sofa. Because they'll be elevated quite high above the tank, the lights are going to be easily visible from the lower position where we sit on the sofa :eek::confused::cool:
It was torn down several years ago. The lights are bright and there is considerable spill; no shades. Will be very distracting if you're trying to watch TV, for instance.
 

Mark Keetch

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It was torn down several years ago. The lights are bright and there is considerable spill; no shades. Will be very distracting if you're trying to watch TV, for instance.
Thanks bud. So if I could bite the bullet, I been looking at the Twinstar 900EA. Just read a thread on comparison between twinstar and Kessil. Reading it, I'm definitely swaying towards the twinstar. For me it's less work involved as it just plonks straight on the tank rather than having to make brackets/hangers for it, there is less light spill, and the reds and purples show up more in the fish and plants.
 

Tim Harrison

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alto

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Sorry I’d forgotten that light :oops:
(one of the reasons it’s relatively economic is the lack of water resistance (and likely UK rating))

The MC may be pale due to multiple factors - diatom attack, low light, low nutrient etc
I’d add the extra iron as that’s an easy try (I assume)

Order the Twinstar (you’d need 2 Kessils and having run a similar tank with 2 x A160WE Tuna Sun, I wished I’d gone for the 360s so I’d have extra light to dim ... except it was also a budget decision), just check the wattage etc between the EA and the S versions
(Call around if anyone has a display model on discount, check the Swap Forum etc)
 

Mark Keetch

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You might also look at
Aqua Medic Qube 50 Plant LED - I prefer Kessil for appearance and 120* vs 90* lens but @sciencefiction gives it a good review here (you can also search her journal for photos)
(I found it listed at Charterhouse)

https://www.ukaps.org/forum/threads/led-lighting-for-24”-high-tec-tank.52502/#post-521909
Thanks for the recommendation bud. But they're £160 each and I'd need at least 2 on my tank. The tank is 4ft long.

I'd love to be able to afford the 900S but that's an extra tonne on top of the price of the EA. I'm having to stretch to get the EA as it is o_O:(

Think the plan is to get the 900EA and also change my ferts from Ei back to either TNC complete or another all ready made fert. I've noticed the tank starting to struggle ever since I started dosing Ei so I think I've either mixed the incorrect amount of dry salts into the mix for my tank, or I'm dosing the incorrect amount into the tank. So I think with the combination of the twinstar and dosing a different fert, I could get back to having a healthy tank again
 
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