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Old 06-19-2005, 09:29 AM   #1
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Normal Hardware lighting

Has anyone tried puttin just a regular bulb that you get at the hardware store into their tank yet? Does it have any effect on the fish at all?? Like I could spend 30-40 dollars on a 36" light tube at a pet store or 2 dollars for a 36" lighting tube at teh hardware store... so, whats the dif?
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Old 06-19-2005, 10:21 AM   #2
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Check out the temperature rating on the bulb.

What does the color temperature of a bulb (Kelvin rating) mean?
The color temperature (Kelvin rating) gives us insight to the appearance of the light emitted by the bulb. Bulbs with lower K-ratings tend to produce light that appear "warm" such as reds, oranges, and yellows while bulbs with high K-ratings produce light that appear "cool." Sunlight at noon has a K-rating of 5500ºK and contains a blend of all the colors of the color spectrum. For this reason, 5500ºK bulbs are also referred to as full-spectrum bulbs and can be used as a reference point when selecting a bulb based on its K-rating.
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Old 06-19-2005, 11:15 AM   #3
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Check the output range to see what "color" light it is really throwing out and compare. To split the difference between the 2 extremes, check the lights in the gardening area - some of them are designed for growing plants so they may have a better light range for your tank than generic office type flourescents.
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Old 06-19-2005, 11:22 AM   #4
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You can get decent lights at CTC and Home Depot. As mentioned look for the colour temp around5000K, and a high CRI (colour rendition index) and also the output in lumens. No tube is perfect regardless of the colour rating. The lights in the orange packs at CTC are GE Chroma 50s, which are 5000K, and reasonably priced. I don't use lights that are specifically sold through the LFS because of the high price. Some of the gardening tubes are similarily over priced. Doesn't make them bad tubes, just expensive.
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Old 06-19-2005, 05:41 PM   #5
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GE also makes a "daylight bulb" 6500K thats worth considering at the hardware store..
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Old 06-19-2005, 05:45 PM   #6
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ptff and you guys wanted me to spend 30 dollars :P
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