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MH or T5's


bswe22
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I can’t decide if I should get a 250 watt MH light or a T5 fixture. It will be going over a 38 gallon tank. The dimensions of the tank are 36” x 12” x 20”. I am thinking of getting Aquaticlife’s new 6 bulb T5 fixture or building a canopy and retro fitting the MH and some T5’s within that. Here is a link to the T5 fixture I am looking at. http://www.aquaticlife.com/t5ho_six_lamp/index.html

If I did go the MH route, what brand should I be looking at? What type of bulb, mogul base or double ended? What temp is best, 10K, 14K or 20K?

Any thoughts would be appreciated.

Thanks

Bryan

(scratch)

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I have an Aquaticlife 24" 4 bulb fixture over my 20 gallon tank now and really like it. That is why I was thinking of putting that fixture over my 38 gallon. I also like that shimmering affect of the LED's that the light gives off at night. That is why I an thinking a MH.

 

Bryan

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I have been a T5 guy from the start (3 years ago), but recently I have set up a 40b with a 150w MH pendant. I really like the effect, but it is limited to about the center 1/2 of the tank. The ends are really dark (some mushrooms do OK, but nothing else can grow there). I think if I had a 250 MH with a better reflector it would have good coverage and be able to light up almost all the tank.

 

I really think if I was to start over, I would choose MH over T5.

 

As for bulb choice, I am using a 14k bulb and like the color and growth that my corals have. I tried a 10k bulb at the start, but it was too yellow for my liking.

 

dsoz

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For those dimensions, a single MH bulb won't get you much light at the ends, even with a good, wide-spreading reflector.

 

What is the width of that 6 bulb fixture? Will it fit within the 12" you have, or hang over the edges of the tank?

 

 

The T5 fixture is 13.9" wide. It will hang over about an inch on each side. The bulbs will be over the water, only the frame will hang over.

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Well I went ahead and ordered the Aquaticlife 6 bulb light fixture for my 38 gallon tank. Here is a link to the one I got: http://www.aquaticlife.com/t5ho_six_lamp/index.html

The next step will be getting the 60 or so pounds of live rock. Anybody have extra they want ot get rid of? The live rock will be next months prodject. I am going to also need to figure out how I want to plumb the 10 gallon sump in. This setup might take awhile. I will keep asking question and getting suggestions.

 

Thanks Bryan

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I do not know if it is to late to change your order, but in my opinion getting a light that is wider than the tank is a waste of money now and every day in the future. Unless your plans are for a new tank in the future, and you know the exact dimensions, consider getting a 4 bulb fixture. You do not need a bulb over the outside edge of the tank because the light pattern thrown off these fixtures is not a straight line but rather a cone shape. You will be spilling light (that you paid for) outside the tank. Every bulb change (every year) will cost you 50% more.

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I do not know if it is to late to change your order' date=' but in my opinion getting a light that is wider than the tank is a waste of money now and every day in the future. Unless your plans are for a new tank in the future, and you know the exact dimensions, consider getting a 4 bulb fixture. You do not need a bulb over the outside edge of the tank because the light pattern thrown off these fixtures is not a straight line but rather a cone shape. You will be spilling light (that you paid for) outside the tank. Every bulb change (every year) will cost you 50% more.[/quote']

 

 

 

The 4 bulb fixture will not be enough light for this tank. I do have the 4 bulb fixture on a different tank and there is about an inch on both sides before you get to a bulb. I know that the reflectors will spread the light out a little fusther than the tank width but that happens with any light you put on your tank. If I do not like it once it arrives, I will return it and go a different route.

 

Bryan

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