Okay, so I finally decided to begin an LED
reef light for my new 2.5g pico tank as a way to get my feet wet before building one for my 20g.
So I need to cover an 11in by 5in area with light. The tank is 6in from top to sand bottom.
My plan is to use 3-3W CREE XR-E whites (6500K) and 3-3W CREE XR-E blue leds. I will use a commercially made dimmable driver for ease and compactness.
I have some issues to work out:
1-How should I arrange these leds? Right now I am thinking two rows of leds. One for the whites and one for the blues. Instead of drilling, I will use thermal adhesive pads.
2-I want the tank to be on the blue end. (Love the blue look, plus I want to have Acans and Chalice corals in here). Should I have a separate non-dimmable driver for the blues and a dimmable driver for the whites? This would let me vary how much white I have to drown out the blue, right?
3-I dont want to cook anything and considering the deepest part of the tank sis 6in, I will leave out optics. Sound good? Do I need to be concerned about driving the blues at full power? I could always use two separate dimmable drivers, but could save $10 by going with a non dimmable for the blues.
More to come soon. I am considering different drivers right now. I will use nanotuners for the LEDs since they are $6.00 each. (cheapest I have seen).