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High-end Lighting Brands

Framed Nature

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23 Aug 2022
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22
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Dallas, Texas
Hello all!

Wanted to tap into the community for what would be considered the high-end lighting brands (those around the quality/reputation as ADA). I am quite familiar with ONF and Twinstar, but am curious if there is more to the market and everyones experience with these brands!

Cheers
 

plantnoobdude

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17 Mar 2021
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1,071
Location
uk
Hello all!

Wanted to tap into the community for what would be considered the high-end lighting brands (those around the quality/reputation as ADA). I am quite familiar with ONF and Twinstar, but am curious if there is more to the market and everyones experience with these brands!

Cheers
If I could have any light…..
ATI Sunpower beast of a light, knocks any led out IMO. Just stunning, saw one on a reef tank and it was surreal, can’t imagine how good a freshwater tank would look under one.
 

oreo57

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Joined
19 Jun 2020
Messages
408
Location
USA
Hello all!

Wanted to tap into the community for what would be considered the high-end lighting brands (those around the quality/reputation as ADA). I am quite familiar with ONF and Twinstar, but am curious if there is more to the market and everyones experience with these brands!

Cheers
GHL Mitras 7004 and 7006, AI Prime/Hydra/Radion G6(all same company), Some Kessils
Orphek Atlantik V4 (if still available in fw, think it is "on demand"), Orphek Amazonia (more a commercial unit)
Probably missed 1 or 2...
 

seedoubleyou

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29 Mar 2022
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560
Location
Windsor
ATI Straton look incredible.

But it all depends on what your goals are, don’t choose a light due to its brand.
 

Framed Nature

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ATI Straton look incredible.

But it all depends on what your goals are, don’t choose a light due to its brand.
Forgot to add that little detail, thanks!

Recently, I upgraded some of my nano tanks from "budget" brands and grow lights which were indeed performing well, but the visual appearance of my scape dramatically changed with better quality lighting. Greens popped out more, reds were more vibrant etc. My main goal is to of course keep quality construction and plant growth, but also improve the visual impact of my aquascapes.

Also thanks all for your recommendations! ;)
 

Wookii

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Joined
13 Nov 2019
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Location
Nottingham
Ecotech radion do a freshwater version, very expensive but i had radions on my reef tank and love the look of them so got 3 for my discus tank and will have two over my new build.

I have a Radion XR15 FW, they're a nice light, but very overpriced and oversized. I'd take an AI Prime in preference for a point source light - better colour rendition and form factor, and just generally better all round build quality.

If I could have any light…..
ATI Sunpower beast of a light, knocks any led out IMO. Just stunning, saw one on a reef tank and it was surreal, can’t imagine how good a freshwater tank would look under one.

You can pick them up pretty cheap off FleaBay, as they're quite long in the tooth these days. I do agree though, when I see some older shots of tanks using multiple varying tubes, the colour rendition with various mixes of tube colours looks superb - as good as LED's are, they haven't got quite there yet I don't think.

Hello all!

Wanted to tap into the community for what would be considered the high-end lighting brands (those around the quality/reputation as ADA). I am quite familiar with ONF and Twinstar, but am curious if there is more to the market and everyones experience with these brands!

Cheers

The term 'high end' is quite misleading though. ADA for example is considered one of the highest of 'high end' brands, but many of their lights are made out of the same Chinese Week Aqua factory as UNS and others (and indeed Week Aqua's own lights).

Many of these lighting brands are also sharing the same LED's, and similar control board designs, then just implementing their own apps to work them.

As @seedoubleyou says;

don’t choose a light due to its brand

Choose one that provides the functionality, colour rendition and general aesthetics you prefer.
 

john6

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23 Mar 2022
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214
Location
Scunthorpe
I have a Radion XR15 FW, they're a nice light, but very overpriced and oversized. I'd take an AI Prime in preference for a point source light - better colour rendition and form factor, and just generally better all round build quality.
Its funny you say that as I had Primes on my freshwater tank and didnt like the look of them, so I went with radions and so much better colour, to my eye anyway, I also believe the lights, while being practical, should also be aesthetically pleasing to the eye, and while everybody is different, I love the look of the radions on single mounts rather than the rail.
Agree at being overpriced, but so are AI lights. Actually i can't think of anything that isn't overpriced in the aquatic industry, both fresh and salty.
 

Framed Nature

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The term 'high end' is quite misleading though. ADA for example is considered one of the highest of 'high end' brands, but many of their lights are made out of the same Chinese Week Aqua factory as UNS and others (and indeed Week Aqua's own lights).

Many of these lighting brands are also sharing the same LED's, and similar control board designs, then just implementing their own apps to work them.
Thanks for the insight! Quite a lot i got to learn here, which was why I figured it would be best to ask those more experienced. I noticed a significant amount of mentioned brands and products were primarily targeted to Saltwater instead of Freshwater. Any particular reason this is a common phenomenon? I also noticed most of these are more point-source lighting instead of what you can call more blanketed.

EDIT: One more question. Where did it come out that ADA/UNS etc use the same factory as Week Aqua? Is there any genuine differentiation between week aqua and ADA/UNS products in terms of quality of light? Sounds like that would be a better purchase overall/better value compared to buying the brand name.
 

dw1305

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UKAPS Team
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7 Apr 2008
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nr Bath
Hi all,
I noticed a significant amount of mentioned brands and products were primarily targeted to Saltwater instead of Freshwater. Any particular reason this is a common phenomenon?
I think marine folks are generally more willing (or have to) "splash the cash".

There is also the Hard Corals issue where you are going to need spectrally adjusted reef intense light.

cheers Darrel
 

Framed Nature

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Hi all,

I think marine folks are generally more willing (or have to) "splash the cash".

There is also the Hard Corals issue where you are going to need spectrally adjusted reef intense light.

cheers Darrel
Makes much more sense now! I am safe to assume that lighting that is sufficient for saltwater in this scenario is also perfectly fine for freshwater correct? Not sure if there is anything that saltwater lighting does not provide that we would need to take into consideration.
 

john6

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23 Mar 2022
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Scunthorpe
Makes much more sense now! I am safe to assume that lighting that is sufficient for saltwater in this scenario is also perfectly fine for freshwater correct? Not sure if there is anything that saltwater lighting does not provide that we would need to take into consideration.
Not at all, completely different light needed, you need lights for freshwater, not saltwater. completely different.
Saltwater lights grow coral, freshwater lights grow plants. This is very basic answer
 

Framed Nature

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Not at all, completely different light needed, you need lights for freshwater, not saltwater. completely different.
Saltwater lights grow coral, freshwater lights grow plants. This is very basic answer
Much of the recommended lighting models mentioned earlier were explicitly marketed for growing corals, that why I was getting a bit confused. For example, the ATI stuff, Orphek, etc were all branded/targeted that way. Sorry for the confusion here.
 

john6

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23 Mar 2022
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Scunthorpe
Much of the recommended lighting models mentioned earlier were explicitly marketed for growing corals, that why I was getting a bit confused. For example, the ATI stuff, Orphek, etc were all branded/targeted that way. Sorry for the confusion here.
No need for apologies mate.
The brands you mention for example have lights for reef and different lights for freshwater,
take a look at these 2 links
Same brand and model but different, ones for corals, ones for plants.
 

oreo57

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19 Jun 2020
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408
Location
USA
Much of the recommended lighting models mentioned earlier were explicitly marketed for growing corals, that why I was getting a bit confused. For example, the ATI stuff, Orphek, etc were all branded/targeted that way. Sorry for the confusion here.
Err not really even the Orphek Amazonia..
Models:

Colors. Spectrums

Multi Color LED

  • 18000K XP – Reef Day Light – SPS/LPS – 380nm – 700nm
  • Blue Plus – Blue /Violet/UV – SPS/LPS – 380 – 500nm
  • 6000K XP – Freshwater Planted – 380nm – 700nm
  • Red XP – Full spectrum red – 580nm -700nm

Single Color LED

  • 18000K ( White ) – Salted water
  • 14000K ( White ) – Salted water
  • Blue ( 450-460nm ) – Salted water
  • 6000K ( White ) – Freshwater
Or even the Atlantik but as I stated I believe it is now a special order.
Just because there is a web page, doesn't mean it exists though.

Atlantik V4 planted freshwater Aquariums LED Light​

New Orphek Atlantik V4 Gen2​

Aquascape Freshwater Planted Aquarium LED Lighting For both Android and iPhone

Replacing 400w Metal Halide Aquariums
One Unit Covers Aquariums Size of 48″ x 35″ /120 x 90 (cm)
Newest to me:
Hydra 32 Freshwater - AquaIllumination

New Hydra 32 Freshwater​

The new Hydra 32 Freshwater offers insane power and a dedicated moonlight channel, perfect for your planted tank.

Yea those comanies make their "big bucks" off salties but they throw us a bone here and there.
 
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