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Old 09-27-2008, 02:43 PM   #1
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Q: What would you do??????? WWYD ?

I'm not clear why some folks here have bio-cubes with T5 or compact florescent and others have metal halide. I am looking to build a small reef ( 30 gal. or so) in my bedroom over the winter and need suggestions as to which way to go as far as lighting . Some nano style set ups have halide lighting and others not. Mostly I will have soft corals, clams,mushrooms and the sort. I am very much a NEWBIE to this and just want your help to make my next adventure a success. Thanks for any thoughts or suggestions you have on choosing the right self contained compact tank.
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Old 09-27-2008, 02:47 PM   #2
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The lighting you need is dependant upon what types of corals you want to house. The experts will be able to look at what you're wanting to keep and make recommendations.
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Old 09-27-2008, 03:00 PM   #3
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For those corals all you really will need is the Compact Florescent.

Not to sure about the clams though.
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Old 09-27-2008, 04:15 PM   #4
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from what i understand, clams need very strong lighting, the soft corals would be fine with whatever
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Old 09-27-2008, 04:27 PM   #5
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I agree. For softies and shrooms, PC lighting will be fine. If you want to try some LPS, then look at T5s. For SPS and clams you'll need at least T5s and maybe halides.

I had T5s (4x39 watts) on a 30 long and had no trouble with LPS corals, and the lighting was almost too much for some of my shrooms.
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Old 09-27-2008, 04:38 PM   #6
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As far as the corals PC`s or T5`s will be ok on what you mentioned. The clam depends on what you get. Some clams need more intense lighting while some like the squamosa clam need medium lighting. You can look in my images to see what it looks like. I only have VHO lighting and it`s doing pretty good.
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Old 09-27-2008, 10:09 PM   #7
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Thanks to you all, I think I'll do some research on a standard JBL biocube,my wife saw the 24 gal at LFS today and liked the size. They had it up and full of coral( actually a sea horse only tank), they said they have made no mods on it. It did not have a protein skimmer on it, not sure if that is ideal for me, as I can't do a water 30% PWC every 3-4 days like they said they do.I would assume I could add a small in sump model later ?

Glad to hear I don't need the halide lighting for a simple coral/fish aq.
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Old 09-28-2008, 03:04 PM   #8
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I agree with what has been said to this point. The only thing that I don't agree with is using PC lighting. The bulbs tend to "shift" and are only good for 6-8 months. They produce a lot of heat and don't generate enough lighting for most SPS, LPS or clams. I would go with T5 at a minimum and look at using a 150w MH along with the T5s. T5 produce more intense light then PCs do and will give you more options. If you add the MH then you will be setup for your clams and SPS corals.
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Old 09-29-2008, 01:22 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Ziggy953 View Post
...The bulbs tend to "shift" and are only good for 6-8 months. They produce a lot of heat and don't generate enough lighting for most SPS, LPS or clams. ...
Hmm... don't tell my LPS.

All lights shift over time, but you're right... I replace my PCs every 6 months like clockwork and can really see the difference when the new ones are put it.

But I'd disagree that PC lighting isn't good enough for "most" LPS. Assuming you have enough wattage, I'd say you could do just about all the LPS you want under PC, assuming you place it correctly.
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Old 10-02-2008, 01:26 AM   #10
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I have used PC bulbs for 5+ years and never had any problems. Most LPS will not be a problem. Best LPS growth I ever had was a 4x55 PC setup on a 75 gal tank.

I use halides on my 180 with SPS and clams but my frag tank uses PCs. Nothing against T5's but PC's work fine.
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