Understood, I'm just stating what I've read on T5's lately. I was considering switching from halides to T5's so I've been reading up on them on RC.
There are so many variable's involved, maybe the individual reflectors Borneman was using were not designed as well as the IceCap or Sunlight parabolic reflectors, maybe he spaced them too far apart? I don't see how you would have dead spots with placing reflectors next to each other. The reflectors are only 2.5" wide and are not that direct that you would have spots in between them...but I didn't see his test so I'll have to try and find it. I wouldn't suggest he is lieing but I've read counltess posts/test of individual reflectors performaning head and shoulders above flat reflectors. That's not saying you can't have good results with flat reflectors, you certainly can, I'm just saying much more of the light is sent back into your tank. I'm looking for a couple of the test now but can't seem to find them, I'll post back when I do.
There is some debate on longevity of bulb life but I do konw cooling or not cooling the bulbs has a HUGE impact on bulb life. Some are saying they should be replaced every 8-12 months but I've seen spectral graphs where only minor noticalble shift took place at 18 months. Here is a test on cooling of the bulbs where they dropped from a par of 161 to 113 if not properly cooled: http://reefcentral.com/forums/showth...=t5+reflectors
Ballast have a huge impact on amount of light as well, the ice cap ballast overdrive the bulbs and produce about 50% more par as seen in this test with only debatle not proven decrease in bulb life:
Do you need this expensive top notch equipment to run T5's successful..no of course not, but with some of this equipmnet you can easily duplicate the intensity of MH
's that cannot be done with PC
's or VHO