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Old 09-28-2005, 08:57 PM   #1
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10,000K or 20,000K MH?

It's about time to replace my MH bulbs. On my 72 gal bowfront, I'm currently running 130 watt 10,000K PC, 130 watt actinic PC, and 2 x 150 watt 20,000K MH. I really like the blue look of the 20,000K MH but am wondering if my SPS might do better with warmer color temp bulbs for my MH. I currently have a few softies, a few SPS, and a lot of LPS. I would like to start stocking more SPS. I recently read that since SPS are primarily shallow water corals, they prefer warmer color temps (eg- 6,500K). I'm afraid that warm a color temp might fuel more algae growth, plus I'm not sure that I would like that yellow look. Should I switch to 6,500K? Maybe 10,000K on the MH, or 14,000K would be better... decisions, decisions. If I do change to a different color temp on my MH, I'll have to do it very carefully so I don't shock the corals. I'd welcome some opinions on this.
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Old 09-29-2005, 01:29 AM   #2
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14k would be what I would go for, but I am new at this hobby. I wish I went for a 14k instead of 10k
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37 gal all glass
50lb LR
3' fine sand bed 1x Orange Stripe Prawn shrimp goby, 1x sixline wrassemated pair of true percula clowns, 1x CBS shrimp, 2x peppermint shrimp, 1x pistol shrimp, 1x tiger tale cuke, ~20+ snails, ~10+ hermits, 1xserpent star.
green Bubble coral, hammer coral (8 heads!) ,various Zoos,green finger leather, green star polpys ,shrooms
175w 10k MH
28w actinic 03
2x maxi jett 1200
Prizm skimmer (modded)
Hagen powerfilter(for running carbon 24/7)
nano arctica chiller
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Old 09-29-2005, 02:35 AM   #3
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I would not mix SPS with a bunch of LPS. Even if you space them out, SPS will grow pretty quickly under the right conditions and will be in trouble with the sweepers and general aggression of the LPS. Garden aquaria rarely work long term.

If you are willing to choose between the two and go with SPS, it would really come down to preference, although if you plan on keeping the highest light species I would consider upgrading to 250w MH even though you have the PC's.
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Old 09-29-2005, 11:27 AM   #4
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Any other opinions?
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Old 09-29-2005, 11:42 AM   #5
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If you like the blue, but want a warmer color, I would go with a 14k or 15k bulb. On the other hand if you have plenty of actinic suppliment, then go with a 10k. IMO you need to get what will satisfy you and the look your going for.
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Old 09-29-2005, 11:46 AM   #6
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If you like the blue, but want a warmer color, I would go with a 14k or 15k bulb. On the other hand if you have plenty of actinic suppliment, then go with a 10k. IMO you need to get what will satisfy you and the look your going for.

How about for coral growth and general health... is there much difference between the 10,000K and 14,000K?
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Old 09-29-2005, 06:30 PM   #7
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I like the color of my 14K's. I use a pc actinic to also supplement the blue with, but you could run the 14's without anything else and it would look good.

I have heard the 10K is better for growth, but I'm not positive.

Mike
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Old 09-29-2005, 10:01 PM   #8
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I would look at it slightly different. Light color for your personally veiwing is not as "important" so to speak as the needs of the corals. In terms of specrum, the best is really in the 6500-6700 range. The higher you step it up, the slower the corals tend to grow and less colorful overall. That said, the highest I would go is 10,000k. It may still have some yellow but not as much as the 6500 and still offer what the corals needs. As far as color ascetics for you, simpley add actinic supplimentation.

There are alot of good articles here...
http://www.advancedaquarist.com/index/FA.shtml

I would also pay special attention to the reflector as well. That can often make or break the effectiveness of the chosen lighting scheme.

Cheers
Steve
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Old 09-30-2005, 02:08 AM   #9
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Not to hijack the thread, but steve, do you think 20 watts of actinic supplementing would give me a nice look in addition to my 175 MH 10k in a 37 gal as well as be sufficient for corals?
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37 gal all glass
50lb LR
3' fine sand bed 1x Orange Stripe Prawn shrimp goby, 1x sixline wrassemated pair of true percula clowns, 1x CBS shrimp, 2x peppermint shrimp, 1x pistol shrimp, 1x tiger tale cuke, ~20+ snails, ~10+ hermits, 1xserpent star.
green Bubble coral, hammer coral (8 heads!) ,various Zoos,green finger leather, green star polpys ,shrooms
175w 10k MH
28w actinic 03
2x maxi jett 1200
Prizm skimmer (modded)
Hagen powerfilter(for running carbon 24/7)
nano arctica chiller
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Old 09-30-2005, 03:10 AM   #10
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The best growth and overall looks will be with a 10,000K bulb supplemented by some actinics.
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