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Old 11-13-2012, 11:13 AM   #1
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LEDs, lower light coral, and better coral color

Ok, I have 2 ecotech radions above my 55 reef. It is a mixed reef that is heavier with sps that show great growth. The penetration from the LEDs is amazing, to where even at 65% peak power I can put an sps on my sandbed if wanted, though they are mostly on the top layer. The lighting schedule is a slow sloping bell curve. Can get more specifics about it when I'm at home.

The coloration of my corals just isn't where I want it to be. They just don't pop like they should imo.

Then there is my meteor shower. I had 2, one couldn't adjust and died. The other is on the sandbed. It is continuing to encrust, but I have never seen it really extend polyps like I have seen in other people's. I have placed it in several places in the tank and currently have it under a powerhead to shade it.

Any input here would be appreciated. I haven't given any specific questions as I have come up at a loss from what to do and open to any options.
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Old 11-13-2012, 11:35 AM   #2
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Why not try lowering the light intensity even more. It's counterproductive to have your lights so bright that SPSs can be kept on the sandbed. The usefulness of having in tank light zones is every bit as important as having good strong light to begin with. Yes, high light is important, but no more so than moderate and even slightly low light areas. Maximum growth it all to often looked to as our goal. That's actually wrong. Healthy growth is important.

Think of it as you would a tree. Fast growing trees are always weaker than slower growing ones. If you try to give your very high light loving corals the maximum amount of light they can handle you not only stress them, you over stress the other corals in the system. As with every other aspect of reef keeping, it all comes down to balance and health.

How blue are you keeping the lights?
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Old 11-13-2012, 11:58 AM   #3
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They are currently set on 20k. Things are pretty blue, but become even more so in the afternoon.

I grasp the point you are saying, I'm just fearful of turning things down TOO much. I have a meteor shower and scroll that are shaded under powerheads that obviously are too much for in terms of lighting...but then there are mushrooms, blue symphodium, and red star polyps that just don't care and do their thing anyway.

I went about a month being unable to adjust the lighting, as I had been tuning things slowly over 2 months coming down from 100% power... but the laptop is back up and running so I can begin adjusting again. I'm also considering getting Hanna kits for alk, phosphate, and calcium so I can better gauge this area in tandum with lighting for best coloration/growth.
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Old 11-13-2012, 12:00 PM   #4
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I had an ongoing thread in the ecotech forum where I was basically being told to increase the power. I haven't gone back since. For so much thought being put into these lights and such, not much community/information regarding settings and schedules to compare to.
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