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Old 05-20-2008, 07:25 PM   #1
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MH bulbs

For those of you that use MH's, what bulbs do you use?

I've been using Hamilton 175w SE 14K bulbs for the last 5-6 years and have been happy with them. I tried those cheapo Ebay bulbs and thought they were junk.

I was checking bulb performance at Sanjay's Lighting site and decided to order Iwasaki 175w 15K's. Instead of PAR (Photosynthetically Available Radiation), Sanjay does his measurements in PPFD (Photosynthetic Photon Flux Density), which is a measure of the number of photons in the range of 400-700nm falling on a 1 meter square area per second.
The Hamilton 14k's are 29 PPFD while the Iwasaki's 15k's are 71 PPFD (which, by the way, is higher than many 250w bulbs). I'm going to have to light acclimate my tank when I add these new bulbs as there is quite an increase in output. Has anyone used these bulbs and if so, how do/did you like them?

I figured I would add this if anyone was interested. This is the performance of all the bulbs Sanjay tested using a 175w Advance magnetic ballast. The CCT is the actual color of the bulb. The Iwasaki is 15,215k colored bulb.
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Old 05-20-2008, 08:52 PM   #2
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That's pretty cool. I'm assuming you want the spectrum to peak between 400 and 460nm?
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Old 05-20-2008, 09:26 PM   #3
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Well, I'm no lighting expect by any means, but the 400-480nm is the blue-er (is that a word? lol) end of the spectrum and is typical for 14k-15k bulbs to spike in that area.
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Old 05-21-2008, 04:51 PM   #4
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Larry,
What didn't you like about the eBay bulbs?
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Old 05-21-2008, 06:52 PM   #5
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Cmor,
I tried the 14k bulbs from Greatdel for $10 each. The color was good at first, but I noticed right off the bat they weren't as bright as new Hamilton 14k's. Then 1 bulb blew out in 2 months (the seller did send me a replacement) and they started shifting color...it got really yellow after about 4 months.
I asked Sanjay about the bulbs. He said they are typical of Chinese knock-offs. They lose PAR fast and are just a low quality bulb.
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Old 05-22-2008, 07:52 PM   #6
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Oh well. Either I'm the only person on this entire forum that uses MH or......no one knows what kind they use? It's not a test or a trick question
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Old 05-22-2008, 08:32 PM   #7
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Sorry don't use MH. I'm using you as my tester though. If i do eventually get MH i have this thread bookmarked so i can go back and see which one was the best : )
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Old 05-22-2008, 11:17 PM   #8
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Oh, sorry, I have the 834W one of these:
Metal Halide Aquarium Lighting: Aqualight Pro HQI/Compact Fluorescent/Lunar Light Fixture
But am unsure of the manufacturer of the MH bulbs.
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Old 05-23-2008, 11:53 AM   #9
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I Have used the Ebay bulbs in the past. The 10,000k bulb is not as bad as the 14,000 or the 20,000. I have also spent well over $80 on one bulb (XMs) and wasn't impressed with them. I think the growth of my corals speaks for the quality of the bulb. Iwasaki bulbs are supposed to be pretty good but I'm not going to find out wiht them at the price they are.
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Old 05-23-2008, 12:51 PM   #10
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Ziggy, what bulbs are you using now?

I'm all for trying to save a few $$$ where ever I can...that's why I tried the Ebay bulbs. They were around $40 for 2 shipped from Hong Kong, but I only got about 4 months out of them. I ordered the Iwasaki's from HelloLights for $80 each, but with a 5% discount for Reef Central members (you don't actually have to be a member, just know the coupon code) and free shipping. Supposedly these Iwasaki's are rated for twice the hours of a standard mh bulb and only need to be replaced every 18-24 months. Well see. If I get 18 months out of them, they end up being more economical than the Ebay bulbs.

I tried XM's and found them very similar to Hamiltons. They are also in the same price range...about $60 each. I used to get Hamiltons a few years ago at a real good price from a member here. Sparky...you still around?
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