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Old 08-19-2017, 01:55 PM   #1
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Lighting advice needed

So I have a 65 gallon bow front reef tank, it's been up for a little over a year now but doing good, I'm trying to find a good light source for the soft coral and others I plan to get, I read that I should use "cool color" bulbs, for blues and violets to make the coral pretty, anyway I figured I could get a couple of fixtures cheap and then hang them above my tank, apparently the higher the "k" the cooler the color bulb, so would getting two bulbs that are around 10-15k each be a decent idea for my all day lighting? I've always used very basic lights, never really splurged on one of the high end led's, any advice or ideas/opinions are really appreciated.

My tank also has a plastic brace that runs from the back to the front at the top of my tank, right in the center, so I have a concern about it melting under something hot, I considered a thing aluminum shield over it, but I don't want water splatter to rust the metal and get in my tank, advice on this would be appreciated also, thanks guys.
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Old 08-19-2017, 02:00 PM   #2
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Go with Chinese led boxes off Amazon or eBay, they let you grow anything and are a good price, plus it won't melt anything
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Old 08-19-2017, 02:04 PM   #3
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That would solve your situation. Each unit covers about 2 ft of tank length.
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Old 08-19-2017, 02:07 PM   #4
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Thanks so much, I'll look at them now, what about regular high k fluorescent bulbs? Like the regular old socket you screw in and out, or possibly the 4 prong fluorescent bulbs?
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Old 08-19-2017, 02:56 PM   #5
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If you are going to do fluorescents you'd need to use t5 high output bulbs. A 4 bulb fixture would work fine for softies and most lps corals in that size system.
Regular fluorescents aren't gonna do the job for corals.
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Old 08-19-2017, 03:03 PM   #6
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Gotcha, so I could basically run to Home Depot/lowes and get a four bulb t5 fixture, and I guess what the important thing is are the bulbs, I was thinking one actinic and the other 3 regular, what do you think about that?
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Old 08-19-2017, 03:03 PM   #7
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I could even use jack chain to hang that fixture above the tank also
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Old 08-19-2017, 03:38 PM   #8
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Make sure it can take t5ho bulbs as I don't believe the Home Depot ones have the correct ballasts but I'd get a second opinion as I've never gotten a fixture from them.
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Old 08-19-2017, 03:44 PM   #9
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Lighting advice needed

I see, I had another idea, a basic metal halide fixture that hangs above, and for the center brace made of plastic I could get a thin sheet of aluminum and make some sort of triangular shape to kind of shield it into the water, it's just a theory but do you think that would be alright, I saw the Chinese box lights on Amazon and I think they're ideal, but I would need two and hey are 100 each, if I can save money and just do the work I'd prefer that
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