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Old 07-16-2013, 04:56 PM   #11
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Or perhaps this one would be the best to maintain the 'lowlight' level?
http://www.catalinaaquarium.com/stor...oducts_id=1834

I am reading that the dual t5 aquatic life will be too much light...
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Old 07-16-2013, 05:07 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brybell View Post
Or perhaps this one would be the best to maintain the 'lowlight' level?
Catalina Aquarium 1 x 24 Watt T5 HO Aquarium Light for Planted Tanks

I am reading that the dual t5 aquatic life will be too much light...
you can always buy a medium to high light fixture and then talk off one of the bulbs. i always like having options when it comes to lighting. i have a quad light fixture but i only need three, therefore i take one off. if i need more light in the future, i can always add one back. i have not heard CATALINA before so i can't do a review on that, maybe others can.
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Old 07-16-2013, 05:09 PM   #13
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what exactly are you trying to grow? most hobbyists work backward. once they figure out the plants that they want to grow, then they do a research on the fixture, not the other way around. again, i would give considerations to the dual t5ho fixture even if it has too much light for your purpose now
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Old 07-16-2013, 05:19 PM   #14
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It will be fine as far as an entry level light but would not consider it quality based on my Odyessa fixtures. I understand wanting to save money as much as one can and this fixture will do just that (upfront). I bought a lot of the cheap buys mentioned as go to stuff on forums to test and use. It all worked but they have always been passable, for the price. Not exactly a glowing praise when you have to always fall back to well it was cheap as the trump card to redeem the fixture.

As far as the Odyessa fixtures I have or had the fit and finish are poor, ballast replacement has been frequent compared to other fixtures I have, using the word reflector is being generous, bulb clips go rather quick (rust) along with the bulb stand offs, and I did have wiring discolor to black in one fixture but it still worked. Would I buy another no.

Catalina Aquarium products fall in the same category (unless things have changed). Mine all came with workhorse ballasts which have performed leaps and bounds over the Odyessa. The reflectors are just as horrible as the Aquatraders if not worse on my units. They seam to run hot as they really cram everything in there tight and the units I bought had no fans initially. Corrosion and rust is a big issue again. You can negate a lot of this with the splash guard but they are hit an miss on cutting to the right size. I had a Catalina retrofit for some time but it was bad about shocking you if you touch them. Also the Catalina pushes the price in my opinion for the overall quality.

I have had no issues with the last T5HO fixture I bought, TEK elite and it looks and peforms as well as it did when it arrived. The good news is you are looking at low to mid light levels so any fixture will essentially get you there just I wouldn't bank on the the cheap fixtures ever ending up being a better deal after the money I spent to repair or remedy issues on the ones I have.
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