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Old 06-27-2011, 03:15 PM   #1
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Marineland Reef or Double-Bright LED for 50 gallon?

I have a 50 gallon acrylic tank (36" x 15" x 20"). I want to have plants (easy to grow). I think I am on the borderline. Do I need the Reef or Double-Bright LEDs? (see attachment).

I called Marineland and they weren't sure. The lady said she has a Double Bright but only has low light plants. Medium light plants don't grow so well (she has a 36 gallon tank). But a customer with another 36 gallon tank said the Reef model grew algea.

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Old 06-28-2011, 07:06 PM   #2
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If you have a 36" long tank, get the 16 LED Double Bright model. You should be able to grow a bunch of plants, but no need CO2. I can believe the Reef Bright models would cause algae if you don't have CO2 injection.
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Old 06-28-2011, 07:23 PM   #3
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Thanks Big Jim.

I spoke to a couple people over the past two days who told me to avoid both of these lights (ESPECIALLY the Reef because it doesn't even have the right spectrum of light). So I ordered a 36" T5HO fixture this morning. More bang for 50% buck!
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Old 06-28-2011, 07:26 PM   #4
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Spectrum isn't nearly as important as several other characteristics of light. I built an LED fixture using diodes rated at 6500-10000K and my plants grow well. LEDs do have a higher buy-in cost, but they're cheaper in the long run because you don't have to replace bulbs and LEDs use a fraction of the energy that fluorescents do. I'm running a high-light 20H on 30W of LEDs.
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Old 06-28-2011, 08:24 PM   #5
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I have the reef capable fixture for my 36g bf. I was told by the marineland cs ppl that if your wanting the plants to grow and thrive use the reef capable. I did this and yes my plants grow like no other with no algae breakouts and im not using co2 injection either just a weekly fertilizer. So no problems so far.
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Old 06-29-2011, 12:15 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Irish.OG87 View Post
I have the reef capable fixture for my 36g bf. I was told by the marineland cs ppl that if your wanting the plants to grow and thrive use the reef capable. I did this and yes my plants grow like no other with no algae breakouts and im not using co2 injection either just a weekly fertilizer. So no problems so far.
Good for you! I'm glad. I didn't but the Reef version at the last minute because it was literally $150 MORE than the T5HO I found (including bulbs!) and more than one person said the 10K LEDs were better suited to grow algae than plants.
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