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Old 04-19-2013, 11:50 PM   #1
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Fluval Ultra Bright LED review

I was shopping around for a light to replace the dual bulb power compact (22") bulb fixture that I was using on my 92 gal freshwater fish only tank. The old fixture was a carry over from my old 30 gal reef tank. This unit is relatively new to the market and I couldn't find any reviews while I was shopping so I thought I'd share my thoughts on it.

I bought the 36" strip which has 102 led lights at 7500k 25 Watt 1950 Lumen.

My first concern with LED was that I would have "spot lights" in my tank and dark corners - especially since I have a 92 gal corner tank. This light has remarkable spread and there are no dark corners here.

My second concern was whether it would be bright enough. This light is brighter than the compact fluorescent bulbs I had before - granted the 22" bulbs were probably undersized for my tank. The light is plenty bright and brings out the color in my fish better. I would not recommend this light for a reef tank or a heavily planted tank - but for fish only this light is more than adequate.

My third concern - which time will only tell - is how long the led's will last. They're supposed to have a 20,000 hr lifespan. We'll see.

Pros: 1) Surprising amount of light from a low budget LED fixture
2) Very low profile (3/4 of an inch tall)
3) Completely silent. The fan on my PC fixture was imposing.
4) Far less power consumption.
5) No coughing up $50 for bulbs that are getting harder and harder to
find - especially the square pins.

Cons: 1) Light escapes from the sides/reflects off the glass top which is not
a great feature if you don't have a canopy.
2) The "moon light" looks more like a purplish/blue black light. Not
terribly natural looking - but cool looking nonetheless.
3) Again - not for the reef aquarium, but and excellent and remarkably
cheap option for the fish only tank.
4) Once the bulbs are out you're SOL. But if this $140 light lasts 3-5
years I'll consider it worth it. In 3-5 years I'll be moving on to my
3000 gal shark tank anyway.
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Old 04-20-2013, 01:40 AM   #2
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Nice review... I've been wondering about these new Fluval LED light fixtures. I suppose the Ultra Bright version is for fish only, maybe low light planted tank.. and their new "Fluval Performance LED Strip Lights" are designed for planted tanks. It would be nice if Fluval released PAR numbers for us planted tank folks! haha

Any pictures of your new light?
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Old 04-26-2013, 11:09 PM   #3
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Here is a photo of the new light.
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Old 04-26-2013, 11:45 PM   #4
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^^Cool! Nice Tiger Oscar! I used to have those as a kid! I like the DW too

If you don't mind a little critique, but I think a black background would help in hiding all those wires and add depth to the tank. Thanks for the picture!
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Old 04-27-2013, 12:35 AM   #5
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I know I need a background, but emptying the tank enought to move it out from the wall to accomplish this has been added to the list:

1. Re-grout kitchen countertops
2. Bring junk from garage to goodwill so it can once again accomodate two cars
3. Bring the barrell of batteries to the county disposal center to be disposed of properly
4. Empty out fish tank and install background.
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Old 04-27-2013, 12:39 AM   #6
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I was also contemplating losing the bubbler too. I installed it after my plecos died. I was thinking that being as deep as it is there might not be enought O2 at the bottom.

Thanks for the suggestions.
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Old 04-27-2013, 01:41 AM   #7
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Not the best photo - but you can see that the "moon light" is far more purple/blue than any moonlight I've come across.
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