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Old 07-29-2011, 04:36 PM   #1
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Apolloreefled.com

This gentleman has done some nice quantitative tests with the LED panels I started using a year ago on my 300 gallon reef. I got tired of MH and the expense associated with running them for the past 18 years. I bought 3 of these units and 1 for my algae turf scrubber. I went from 1000 watts of MH to 330 watts of LED on the display tank. Went from 500 watts to 150 watts on the turf scrubber. As I have posted and shown before, coral growth has been very good and there has been zero down side to the move. Watch the YouTube video he has done where he measures PAR at 24" to be at over 300. It's a good video. http://m.youtube.com/#/watch?v=PKIQFz86Rm4

These units are only $350 each and should last 50,000 hours. Do the math, changing MH bulbs, power bill, chiller requirements, etc. In my view, these easy to use LED panels are superior to anything I have had in the past.

I also think they are safer. No big ballast to short out and catch fire (yes, this happens, I lost one of my LFS as a result of a ballast fire), no dangerous high pressure bulbs to remove and dispose of, and much less chance of getting burned from super hot bulbs.

I have gotten much flak about LEDs on this forum because there are so many overpriced LED units and so many LED units that are simply junk. This is different in my experience and should be looked at carefully before investing in MH or T5.
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Old 07-29-2011, 05:00 PM   #2
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I wish that they made units that were longer because it is very awkward for my 36" tank.
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Old 07-29-2011, 05:04 PM   #3
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You might consider a DIY kit. The guy in the video recommends a distributor he uses for the same components he sells.
The broad angle these panels illuminate, you might be surprised and find that just one of them might do the job.
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Old 08-01-2011, 01:54 AM   #4
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Good luck. Will watch for pictures. If you grow hard corals, you need to use even more LEDs to get the right intensity.
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Old 08-01-2011, 02:11 AM   #5
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Thanks for this link Greg. I, for one, greatly appreciate your willingness to share your LED experience. It has had a positive impact on our own LED build. I completely understand your desire to find alternatives to MH. One of my strongest pet peeves to this hobby is the massive energy consumption/waste that it requires. It seems counterproductive to me to want a reef in my home to enjoy while knowing that my high energy usage may be contributing to the destruction of the natural reefs I am attempting to replicate. Not to mention that this hobby is expensive enough! I think that lighting is an area with a lot of room for growth in technology and LED holds a good deal of promise.
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Old 08-01-2011, 02:48 AM   #6
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LED is interesting. My zoas are much, much smaller, but multiplying like mad under LED. My Xenia can't find a place in the tank dark enough, while my waving hand polyps are growing up to 10" long. My hard coral is doing well, slowly. I have a piece of elkhorn near the top that is doing well. I think people misevaluate the increase in PUR from LEDs, not just the PAR. LEDs are supplying a much fuller spectrum than MH or T5 which is mostly blue if running 20k. That will shrink lower light corals and bleach others if not careful. I just use come cardboard on the top of the tank in certain locations and let them adjust slowly to the brighter light.
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Old 08-01-2011, 03:03 AM   #7
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I see a lot of "advice" on the lack of light from LED and I completely agree with you. I also notice that people want tanks that appear bright to their eyes but seem to forget that usable light to coral is much different than what the human eye can register. I love that with LED you are able to pinpoint along the light spectrum much more finely than with other light sources.

I'm a little concerned with our switch about how slowly we will need to convert over. I would hate to set anything back, or even worse, kill something because of a lighting change. The cardboard is a good idea.
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Old 08-01-2011, 04:21 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gregcoyote
Apolloreefled.com

This gentleman has done some nice quantitative tests with the LED panels I started using a year ago on my 300 gallon reef. I got tired of MH and the expense associated with running them for the past 18 years. I bought 3 of these units and 1 for my algae turf scrubber. I went from 1000 watts of MH to 330 watts of LED on the display tank. Went from 500 watts to 150 watts on the turf scrubber. As I have posted and shown before, coral growth has been very good and there has been zero down side to the move. Watch the YouTube video he has done where he measures PAR at 24" to be at over 300. It's a good video. http://m.youtube.com/#/watch?v=PKIQFz86Rm4

These units are only $350 each and should last 50,000 hours. Do the math, changing MH bulbs, power bill, chiller requirements, etc. In my view, these easy to use LED panels are superior to anything I have had in the past.

I also think they are safer. No big ballast to short out and catch fire (yes, this happens, I lost one of my LFS as a result of a ballast fire), no dangerous high pressure bulbs to remove and dispose of, and much less chance of getting burned from super hot bulbs.

I have gotten much flak about LEDs on this forum because there are so many overpriced LED units and so many LED units that are simply junk. This is different in my experience and should be looked at carefully before investing in MH or T5.
Which units do you have, the elite or ultra, and what "k". It's hard to tell how many LEDs on each unit, but is it 55. And how many watts per unit? Are you hanging yours, or are they mounted to a canopy? Also any issues with LEDs going bad? They're not cree LEDs, correct, I don't like the cree's.
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Old 08-01-2011, 02:59 PM   #9
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I bought similar units to the elite. Hung them 6" off the water.
2/3 10k white 1 watt and 1/3 450nm blue. Give full PUR spectrum right in the corals sweet spot. They aren't Cree. No bad LEDs yet.

You need to add up the total wattage, 55 - 1 watt LEDs equals 55 watts, etc.
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Old 08-02-2011, 01:06 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gregcoyote
I bought similar units to the elite. Hung them 6" off the water.
2/3 10k white 1 watt and 1/3 450nm blue. Give full PUR spectrum right in the corals sweet spot. They aren't Cree. No bad LEDs yet.

You need to add up the total wattage, 55 - 1 watt LEDs equals 55 watts, etc.
Those LEDs look really good. I didn't know of them when I bought my LEDs, but I'm experiencing very good results as well. Mine are 1 watt too, 8000k and 453nm. You get more LEDs for the money with yours though. Have you grown many sps with yours? I've been gradually adding more and more to my tank and I'm getting faster growth than with my old t5s and my highest sps is 15" under the fixtures. Everyone gives me a hard time for getting LEDs, and especially 1 watt. The other day at my local fish store, a fellow customer was laughing and said 1 watt LEDs are a joke. He had some homemade fixture with 3 watt cree 's and spent the same as me. I'm starting to think there is some major misinformation regarding types of LEDs and what works well and what doesn't. Also, many are still stuck on the old thinking that higher watt is better, maybe because halides and fluorescent are that way. Of course with them, they gradually go bad from the minute they are installed. Many of the reviews and comparisons on cree's are done by the main distributors here in the US as well. A close friend of mine decided to go aquaray aquabeams instead of Ecoxotic, and to be truthful, we both agree on better results with the lower wattage LEDs. He's had two cree's go bad as well, and another may have an issue starting. I have no idea what my par is, but I agree it's the quality of the light too. I think many who don't see overpowering light, think it's not going to work. Oh well, it's to hard to argue with everyone, but in my opinion, personal experiences win.
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