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Old 01-29-2007, 01:34 AM   #1
JM
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Halide Question

Right now i have a 260W PC fixture on my 120g. Originally i was planning on A FOWLR, but i am beginning to want a full reef. I know that 230W on this tank isn't enough for corals, but a friend of mine has a 150W Halide pendant that he is selling and i am thinking of buying it. My question is... As far as lighting goes is 150W from a halide lamp different than 150W from PC or T5 lighting? I think its pretty much agreed upon that halide lighting is the best, but is this because it is stronger or is a Watt a Watt regardless of what kind of bulb is putting it out? And finally is it worth it for me to buy the one 150W halide pendant for my 120g. I only want to keep soft stuff like leather, shrooms, and soft polyps.
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Old 01-29-2007, 09:52 AM   #2
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A 120 is a pretty deep tank. I would suggest 250w halides. That would allow you to keep pretty much whatever you wanted assuming you have enough flow, ect... 150w MH would allow you to keep most corals, but you will need two of them. A MH bulb will light about 2' x 2'. If you only use one, your tank will be considerably darker on each end. If you can put the soft corals up high in the tank so they are close to the lights, you could probably keep some of them under the lighting you have. MH is different from fluorescent in that it is more intense. 150w of MH is brighter than the same wattage of fluorescent.
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Old 01-29-2007, 11:56 AM   #3
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MH`s have more intensity than PC`s or VHO`s. I also agree that a 120 is too deep for a 150watt MH. But probably added to your PC`s you would be able to keep Soft corals,mushrooms and polyps.
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Old 01-29-2007, 12:11 PM   #4
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So if i use the 150MH and the PC fixture i should be ok? I don't plan on doing anything crazy as far as corals go. Just some of the more hardy soft corals. I just want to make sure that i will be producing enough light for them to be healthy. The 120g is 24" deep.
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Old 01-29-2007, 12:28 PM   #5
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The MH pendant will only cover a limited area. I think only 24 inches. So you`ll have a limited area to put these corals unless you get another MH
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Old 01-29-2007, 01:59 PM   #6
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I have a 4' 72g bowfront tank and I have 570w of light on it. Dual 175 MHs and 2 110w VHO actinics. That gives me almost 8wpg. which allows me to put most any coral in my tank and provide it the amount and intensity of light it needs to thrive. Most of what I have read says you should have around 5-9WPG for corals so 120 would need 600w-1080w of light to allow for good coral growth. Remeber that most all corals survive because of photosynthosis of the zooxanthellae that live within the coral. Light is very important! Do some more research on lighting and what is needed to keep corals before you buy anything for your tank. HTH Good luck!
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Old 01-29-2007, 09:47 PM   #7
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I have done research and i know about wattage per gallon and all that stuff. That is why i know that i definitly don't need 600-1080 watts to keep a few soft corals in my tank. I've been maintaining my best friends reef which is a 72bow for the past 2 years. This tank has just over 3wpg of T5 lighting and all the coral both soft and hard in the tank are growing out of control. And this is not over a couple months so u can't say well long term it won't be good. This is two years of health and growth. I am pretty sure that if i only keep hardy soft corals that don't have spectacular light requirements like i stated in previous posts i will be fine with less than 600wpg. I just have the opportunity to get a 150w halide for 100$ and i was wondering if i should get it. I'm not going to spend 700$ on lighting just to make my tank a reef, because i am plenty satisfied with my FOWLR, but if the halide along with my PCs sounded like a reasonable combo i would do it.

IMO your tank has too much light on it and u probably have a good chance of burning certain corals.
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Old 01-30-2007, 12:27 AM   #8
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IMO your tank has too much light on it and u probably have a good chance of burning certain corals.
Wow, that is a pretty strong statement. I run 2x250's MH and 2x54 watt T5's on my 75 gal. Is that too much too? Been running for over 3 years.... I house about ever coral you can think of... mushrooms to acros and even a clam.

I think you are taking the wattage rule too generally. MH lights do not equate to the WPG measurements that some people use. IMO, you could have some softies in a 120 with the current fixture you have. I ran a 4x55 PC fixture on my 75 when I first started and had a lot of growth with mushrooms and leathers. In a 120 gal, the depth will prevent you from keeping some things.

If you think the 150 pendant is a good deal then go for it but I know there are MH kits on ebay that go for the $120 range and that is a 250 watt reflector/ballast/bulb kit. I run a 150 pendant on 1/2 of a 4ft 33L. The tank is 12" deep. Works well for the acros that are under it. Honestly, I don't know what a pendant would like like over a tank that size. It would be tough to get the current fixture and the pendant over the tank. You would have dimmer areas on the ends for sure. If that is what you are looking for than go for it.
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Old 01-30-2007, 01:33 AM   #9
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Depth isnt an issue i'm not looking to spread coral throughout the tank. I just want some pieces to add some color to my tank for now, like i said i am not going crazy and doing an all out reef with acros and clams and stuff like that. Most likely any corals i get will be half way up the water column and higher so light penetration isn't a huge issue. My friend also has two 100w ice cap retrofits. I'm thinking i might be better off with them along with the PC fixture than the halide.
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Old 01-30-2007, 05:39 AM   #10
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I wasn't trying to start an all out battle of lighting on here. I just shared what I have learned over the past couple years. Whta I have on my tank works for me and what I have in my tank. good luck...
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