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Old 08-02-2011, 06:28 PM   #11
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How many power cords did it have? The newer models(after 2009 or so) they started to make these fixtures with multiple power cords. The stories of people's house burning on fire and whatever had single power cords.
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Old 08-02-2011, 06:35 PM   #12
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Mine had 2 power boxes that I think merged into one cord. I think I remember something about the multiple cord thing though.
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Old 08-18-2011, 04:48 AM   #13
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Just posting a follow up. Been having problems with my $250 ebay fixture and will probably return it if I can.

The MH bulb that came with it stopped working after about 10 days. It would light up for about 20min to two hours then shut off. The seller said it was a bad bulb and would send me a new one (still waiting three weeks later...). I went out and bought a made in japan Phoenix 14000k 150w DE MH bulb off Amazon for $45 and installed it. Worked fine for 10 days... today it will not light up. When I hit the switch on the ballast, about 3 seconds later the inner bulb glows for about 3 seconds and then goes out. I also tried the original bulb that came with it with the same results. WTF? Is this bulb bad too? Is the ballast making the bulbs go bad? Is the ballast bad (which is what I am thinking)?

Another issue is that two days ago one of the PC actinic bulbs stopped working after exactly 1 month of running the fixture. I had noticed that it was dimmer, but thought they might be a 420 and a 460 actinic. Nope, just crap bulbs. I switched the bulbs around so I know it isn't the ballast... Again the guy promised to send me a new bulb, but after the MH not working again today I think I am going to return the fixture. I don't think just bulbs will fix it and would need to drop $150 for another MH ballast and $120 for new "good" bulbs. (maybe another $40 for a 2x96w PC ballast when that dies). Still cheaper than buying a "name brand" fixture but not sure if it is worth it...
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Old 08-18-2011, 12:45 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Luky
Just posting a follow up. Been having problems with my $250 ebay fixture and will probably return it if I can.

The MH bulb that came with it stopped working after about 10 days. It would light up for about 20min to two hours then shut off. The seller said it was a bad bulb and would send me a new one (still waiting three weeks later...). I went out and bought a made in japan Phoenix 14000k 150w DE MH bulb off Amazon for $45 and installed it. Worked fine for 10 days... today it will not light up. When I hit the switch on the ballast, about 3 seconds later the inner bulb glows for about 3 seconds and then goes out. I also tried the original bulb that came with it with the same results. WTF? Is this bulb bad too? Is the ballast making the bulbs go bad? Is the ballast bad (which is what I am thinking)?

Another issue is that two days ago one of the PC actinic bulbs stopped working after exactly 1 month of running the fixture. I had noticed that it was dimmer, but thought they might be a 420 and a 460 actinic. Nope, just crap bulbs. I switched the bulbs around so I know it isn't the ballast... Again the guy promised to send me a new bulb, but after the MH not working again today I think I am going to return the fixture. I don't think just bulbs will fix it and would need to drop $150 for another MH ballast and $120 for new "good" bulbs. (maybe another $40 for a 2x96w PC ballast when that dies). Still cheaper than buying a "name brand" fixture but not sure if it is worth it...
Metal halide bulbs turn off by themselves if they get too hot. As a starter fixture, it's great, but not long term. I never got one of these and instead went for the nova current extreme pro. It was $325 new from a seller on eBay. It's 6x39w and I honestly cannot complain about a single thing. If I can find the eBay username of the guy, I'll post it.
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Old 08-18-2011, 05:38 PM   #15
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Yeah, I was considering that one as a replacement for the MH (Nova Extreme Pro T5). I see them for $312 + $8 shipping for a 36" on Amazon (from Marine and Reef). I put a wavepoint 36" 4x39w fixture on there until I can get it resolved... The guy at a LFS keeps pushing me to go for LEDs due to the savings in energy costs over time. He says they will pay for themselves in a year or two.
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Old 08-18-2011, 07:43 PM   #16
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I would be careful with LEDs. Not all can grow coral and the only thing they really have going for them is less heat and less energy. After the bulbs go out, you would need a new fixture, which is not good.
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Old 08-18-2011, 08:50 PM   #17
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I just found some interesting LED fixtures from HK on ebay. They are enclosed metal channels sealed to IP65 rating (10L per minute water spray) 2" wide X 2.4" tall x 19.6" long and contain nine 3w LEDs. They can provide them with your choice of LED colors from 20k white to 405nm UV blue. They also show 36" and 48" models but they all have to be mounted in a canopy so I am limited to 33". I think they would fit inside the plastic cover/canopy that came with my tank. I was thinking maybe three of these with various LED colors in them (two primarily daylight and one with primarily blue for dawn/dusk effect). $98 a fixture shipped. I think 27 3w LEDs should provide enough light. Most LEDs like this will last many years (5-10 years) before you have to replace them. By then a newer/better technology will be out.

I will be in China again next month and am checking to see if the seller has a shop in HK I could visit to see the lights (I have done this on past trips, you can usually get it cheaper in person too).
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Old 08-18-2011, 08:53 PM   #18
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I don't trust it..... $98 a fixture is awfully cheap. Even the DIY fixtures are 3 times more than that.
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Old 08-18-2011, 09:39 PM   #19
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Sorry but most people in the US have no concept of what things actually cost to manufacture. As consumers we get screwed on items we buy in the US because we have such a high standard of living. Heck, our "poor" people have cell phones and flat panel TVs. Do you really think a pair of jeans should cost $50? You can get the same quality in China for $5. I am a Plastics Engineer and have worked for electronics manufacturing companies for over 10 years working in Asia (I spent the last 6 years working in sourcing for a globa cell phone maker). The painted plastic case Verizon sells for $30 and the mall kiosk sells for $12 costs about $0.50 to make. The wall charger for your phone costs under $1 to make and they sell for $15-$20. The Li-ion cell phone batteries that they sell for $30-$60 cost about $2.50 from the manufacturer in China. For these lights the PCB is probably about $1. The surface mount 3w LEDs are probably not more than $2 each in manufacturing (they are $5.65 ea on digikey). Add a power supply, cord, lens, some wires, and extruded metal channel for $4. So call it $25 including labor, test and packaging. My estimates are probably high too. Still think $100 is expensive for one of these?

The fact that US companies are charging $700+ for an LED fixture is a joke. It is just what the market will bear...

Sorry, don't mean to lecture... I just have more direct experience with this than most and am not afraid of things made in China. There is crap and there is good stuff. Buyer beware. Many Chinese will lie, cheat and bribe. But many are honest. It is part of their culture. You just have to call them on it...


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Old 08-18-2011, 10:20 PM   #20
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Nonono, I definitely know everything I buy is 100% more than it should be, but I would be wary of LEDs anyways, unless other people have said it grows their coral. I don't know very much of led technology, so I wouldn't buy it myself, but if you know that it'll grow the coral you want, then by all means, buy it. I love that LEDs use a third of electricity less than my t5ho fixture does, and can be just as good, if not better.
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