Lighting help on deep tank

Tomiam

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28 Apr 2019
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Bristol
They are indeed not cheap but then i guess it is what it is at 30" deep.
My local maidenhead aquatics has a very knowledgeable chap there and he is going to call Hagen to get some advice from their technical team.
Ive also been looking at the AI Prime HD which claims a PAR of 100 @24 inches.
Its got 80 deg lens which will help but being new to this... im unsure if they'll be sufficient with just 4 of them.
 

Tomiam

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28 Apr 2019
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Bristol
Ok...
I've got some info from Hagen (Fluval) on the par readings of their Fluval Plant 3.0 46W LED lights.
Sharing here in the hope that it helps someone in the future.

Fluval Plant 3.0 46W LED.
6" 267 par
12" 112 par
18" 66 par
24" 40 par

I'm going to go for 4 of these units, in two rows of 2.
I do appreciate not many people attempt to grow plants at a depth of 30" and thus I'm going low light & easy care plants and also bringing the plants up to the light via bogwood & rock (moss & anubis).

I ended up basing this decision on :-
What am I trying to achieve? - Grow low light requiring easy to care for plants like mosses, anubis etc. I'm not trying to light an incredible aquascape with full planting.
Availability of each unit. If I could have found a Finnex Ray 2 supplier in the UK a few days ago, I'd likely have bought them instead.
Ease of use. Having used the smart app from fluval on a light unit at a Maidenhead Aquatics, I found them VERY easy to use and set up. It also offered a lot of flexability in set up, like ramp up times over X hours at X intensity.
Support: 3 year guarantee (if purchased from authorised suplier) vs 6 months / 1 year from a lot of others. Ive bought mind from Maidenhead Aquatics who were happy to price match Swell.
Other: I read that some people were having issues with Kessils, where they broke after a year and couldn't get any support. I've read that Grobeams whine when put onto a dimmer, and the dimmer is an extra £250 but only controls 4 units. Likewise it looses it's settings in a power cut whereas the Plant 3.0's just need to be turned back on.
I'm not trying to say any of the other options I've mentioned are bad, it's just what I've read.
Twinstar 1200 looks really good, but price of 4 of them vs Fluval Plant 3.0 is too great for me to justify what I need them to do.

I hope this info proves useful for someone in the future as I couldn't find any par readings for the fluval plant 3.0 online, although I do appreciate that par values stated by manufacturer are likely to be best case scenarios.
 

Nephilim

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2 Oct 2018
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Location
Derby UK
Only recently trying aquascaping. But I did have 80cm deep marine setup. I went with metal halide at first. Which punched a go depth of the tank and was 40cm hung above. The par at the substrate was good enough to help sps {small polyp hard corals} to grow. But the cost of running them was to high. I searched for HQ t5 tube set up and found a company doing 4/6/8 banks. But at over a £1000. I thought could find cheaper. I did. I used Maxibright light unit. Theyre designed for hydroponics so run red and green spectrum lights. But I swapped them over to use guiessemen(spelling) and various different colours such as actinic and pinks to help with coral growth. These Maxibright units are relatively cheap but require you to by hanging wire kit. There is no protective clear sheet over the tubes nor any fan system to reduce heat created. But the 8 bank 60cm wide 120cm long unit I had was more that adequate to light up my marine set up. But with 8x54w you have over 400watts of light. With the gull wing reflectors that's some light coverage. I'd recommend them to anyone. Not as cheap as led lights. But cheaper than halide lighting. I changed tubes every 6-8months. Instead of the normal 12-18months. They're available on ebay. But Google them and have a think.
 

alto

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24 Dec 2014
Messages
5,918
Twinstar 1200 looks really good, but price of 4 of them vs Fluval Plant 3.0 is too great for me to justify what I need them to do.
2 x Twinstar would be more inline with the output of Fluval 3.0 but you’d still need to add a controller
As you’re not hoping to grow a HC carpet at a depth of 30inches, the Fluval should deliver everything you want :)

Having a retailer with good customer support is important
 

micheljq

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Joined
23 Nov 2015
Messages
144
Location
Quebec
Basically you dont need to change T5's until they fail. They drop a few percent in the first few months but stay stable till fail after that. They will last for years.
It depends a lot on the quality of the bulb itself. Some like Giesemann are rated 20000 hours and can be runned for many years, with a drop of probably 5-7%. But you cannot say this from all the bulbs in the market, quality is disparate. Osram's can probably be runned for a lot of time too.

Michel.
 
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idris

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Joined
3 Jan 2011
Messages
672
Location
Herts
I am absolutely no expert on lights or plants, but I've had a 75cm deep tank for some years.
It has been lit with 2x38w T8s, no CO2 and no ferts. The substrate is Adakama. So about as low tech as you can go, and (on paper) very little light.

Firstly, as mentioned by others, having a deep tank is a PITA, even with long arms. The lower the base, the easier it will be to maintain it..

As for what has worked for me with plants, I have always gone for easy plants - valis, crypts, swords, wysteria, that sort of thing. I've had a go with hair grass, and for a while had great success with Taiwan moss on tall hardscape.
When I've been my most diligent in maintaining, and the T8s have been in good condition, the tank has done pretty well.

My (old) journal is here.
https://www.ukaps.org/forum/threads/tall-250l-y-llechen-ogof.15588/page-8

6176160244_acb30696bf_z-jpg.jpg


The tank has been neglected recently, so looks nowhere near this good at the moment, but even after over a year without lights on, valis, c.wenditi and anubias have survived remarkably well.

My point is, don't be put off by anyone who says you need huge amounts of expensive lights and pressurised CO2 for a deep tank. You don't!
 

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