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Old 07-22-2011, 12:47 PM   #1
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Protein skimmer and light guidance

Hi everyone,

I just about have my tank ready for me to start adding water.

I am still in need of lighting and a protein skimmer.

I have a 125 gallon tank. Can anyone tell me what to look for? Of course I'm trying to stay cost effective.

I would like a protein skimmer that I can sit in my refugium and leave alone.

As far as lighting, I like the idea of LED lighting but not sure how economical that is right now.

And what does running lighting typically raise your electric bills by per month?

Thank you in advance!
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Old 07-22-2011, 09:52 PM   #2
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I told ya I'd find you some links for ya. These are just to get you started, beware the sticker shock on the lighting. LOL That will be your biggest expense in my opinion.

72" 12x39W Nova Extreme PRO T5HO 3x10k/3x460nm Actinics by Current USA*(1082) - AquaCave
AquaticLife T5 HO 6-Lamp Light Fixture w/ Lunar LEDs

If you went with 2 36" fixtures it might be a bit cheaper. There are also these for metal halides.

Oceanlight 72" Metal HalideFixture 3x250 HQI + 2x150HQI, by AquaMedic* - AquaCave


I dont have any cool links for led's but lets just say they are more than the above if you want quality and reputable

There is this option as well, but might limit some coral choices down the line
3Ft/4Bulbs fixture

As far as skimmers the following site has the footprint listed for all their models so you can be sure it will fit below.

Protein Skimmer, Protein Skimmers, Aquarium Marine Reef Foam Fractionators
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180g Reef - 60g Rimless Reef -90G FOWLR- 125g Malawi Cichlids- 40b REEF- 34g Fresh Planted-working on- 20L FOWLR- working on
I have a mix of many different saltwater fish amongst my tanks, but I love my Tangs most of all.
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Old 07-23-2011, 01:01 AM   #3
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I told ya I'd find you some links for ya. These are just to get you started, beware the sticker shock on the lighting. LOL That will be your biggest expense in my opinion.

72" 12x39W Nova Extreme PRO T5HO 3x10k/3x460nm Actinics by Current USA*(1082) - AquaCave
AquaticLife T5 HO 6-Lamp Light Fixture w/ Lunar LEDs

If you went with 2 36" fixtures it might be a bit cheaper. There are also these for metal halides.

Oceanlight 72" Metal HalideFixture 3x250 HQI + 2x150HQI, by AquaMedic* - AquaCave


I dont have any cool links for led's but lets just say they are more than the above if you want quality and reputable

There is this option as well, but might limit some coral choices down the line
3Ft/4Bulbs fixture

As far as skimmers the following site has the footprint listed for all their models so you can be sure it will fit below.

Protein Skimmer, Protein Skimmers, Aquarium Marine Reef Foam Fractionators
hey for this: 3Ft/4Bulbs fixture I found all kinds of comparative stuff on ebay.

What exactly should I look for in a light fixture? If I just got 2 of these, what are they missing that they will limit my coral choices? I don't think I'll be going all out with coral anyways, I just want some corals so this might be the way to go.

Any help?
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Old 07-23-2011, 02:30 AM   #4
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In a better fixture ie: more money you can get individual refloectors which dramatically increases the light received by the corals. Also, a four bulb fixture is fine for a 12 wide but we have 18" so you wouldnt get as much spread.
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180g Reef - 60g Rimless Reef -90G FOWLR- 125g Malawi Cichlids- 40b REEF- 34g Fresh Planted-working on- 20L FOWLR- working on
I have a mix of many different saltwater fish amongst my tanks, but I love my Tangs most of all.
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Old 07-23-2011, 06:39 AM   #5
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go with a skimmer that is rated for 200g, like an octopus.As for lights you need to make your mind up on the corals front.If you want corals down the line then spend the money on the lights,I dont know where you are but have heard a lot of good things about craigs list.LED's are spot on,you will save an awful lot of money within 2 years.
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Old 07-23-2011, 04:38 PM   #6
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LED's are spot on,you will save an awful lot of money within 2 years.
the right LED fixtures are spot on, not just any LED fixtures. many of the fixtures out there that claim are good for reef tanks are NOT. Just do your research before purchasing, and i don't mean to follow the advice of a guy that bought his $150.00 LED fixture a couple weeks ago and swears it's the best.
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Old 07-27-2011, 12:51 PM   #7
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Hey all,

I am researching lighting; What is the difference between T5, T8, etc?

Would a light like this one work?


http://www.amazon.com/Marineland-Capable-Lighting-System-36-48-Inch/dp/B00494JTFU/ref=sr_1_6?s=home-garden&ie=UTF8&qid=1311775430&sr=1-6


I will want easier to maintain corals; so I'm guessing soft corals, So I don't care to have a $2000 light; just something that will penetrate my tank properly and work.

Any help please?
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Old 07-27-2011, 02:18 PM   #8
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I have done some research on that fixture mainly because that is what I was going to get. All in all it is an on one. You will only be able to keep low light corals. If I were you I would look at the nova extreme pro 6 bulb t5 fixture. It's alittle more expensive but you will be able to have almost any coral you want. If you do end up going with the led I would recommend getting some t5"s for extra light
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Old 07-27-2011, 02:27 PM   #9
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I have done some research on that fixture mainly because that is what I was going to get. All in all it is an on one. You will only be able to keep low light corals. If I were you I would look at the nova extreme pro 6 bulb t5 fixture. It's alittle more expensive but you will be able to have almost any coral you want. If you do end up going with the led I would recommend getting some t5"s for extra light
Hey Tom,

I am not opposed to getting some T-5 lighting, apparently I can get T-5's cheaper right? But what is the difference between T-5, T-8, etc???

I know I am WAY over complicating this, I know I want 2 32" fixtures due to the width of my tank (6 ft long tank but has a 1 ft or so strip of glass in the middle of the tank)

What I don't know is what is a proper light to get to penetrate deep enough; tank is about 3 feet tall if I remember.

I know with any hobby there is always the commodity; I play hockey, sky dive, scuba dive, and have been involved in several other hobbies and there's always thousands and thousands in expense but if you know what you're looking for you can save a ton of money.

I don't know what I'm looking for in lighting, so if you could tell in a cost effective way, which specs I should look for, how many bulb light I need, etc. I'll research and buy one next week.

Thank you very much for the help
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Old 07-27-2011, 02:40 PM   #10
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I like the Aqua C EV series protein skimmers. Not that I've used any others and can offer comparison, but I used the 180 model on my 155g and loved it. EV Series
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