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Old 06-30-2009, 06:37 AM   #51
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Keith, the deeper the tank the more wattage you need to get the light down to the corals (Penetration). If you want to get that deep into it buy yourself a light meter and measure it yourself. Then you would know the correct lighting for your setup. We can only give general information here.
Good idea but where do you get a waterproof meter?
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Old 06-30-2009, 08:51 AM   #52
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WPG was used when I started up my system 20+ yrs ago when the only types of lighting used was T12 normal output fluorescent or metal halide. Power compacts were just starting to come out and there were no T5HO's. Back then, if you wanted to keep soft corals/low light corals, you shot for 3-6 wpg using normal output fluorescent or pc's if you could find them. If you wanted to keep high light demanding corals, you used metal halide. Keep in mind, what makes T5HO's so good is the use of high quality reflectors. There is nothing special about the bulbs themselves. T5HO's without quality reflectors are no better than VHO (which do not have any good reflectors designed for them) and only slightly better than reg. fluorescent.
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What I'm looking to do is setup my hood with the proper amount of lighting for my FOWLR 120 Gal (1st SW tank and Cycking) with the capacity to support corals down the road. Anything you can help me with is greatly appreciated.
If you want to buy lights 1 time, get metal halides. You will be able to keep any corals you want in the tank at any depth. You can also use T5HO's, but a 120 is deep and you won't get the penetration like MH. You would still be able to keep any coral you want, but high light demanding corals will need to be kept in the upper levels.
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Good idea but where do you get a waterproof meter?
Apogee Quantum light meters are hand held meters that measure PPFD (Photosynthetic Photon Flux Density). The probe is waterproof and that is what is put in the water. The meter itself stays outside the tank.
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Old 06-30-2009, 11:45 AM   #53
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...
If you want to buy lights 1 time, get metal halides..
Beat me to it. If you don't know what you want to keep, and want to be prepared for anything, metal halides with supplementary actinics will work for a lifetime.
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Old 06-30-2009, 12:06 PM   #54
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the next question would be, what size/wattage should they be?
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Old 06-30-2009, 01:39 PM   #55
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For a 120g you would need two 250watt MH lamps with two actinic t-5's ( are those 90w bulbs) to mellow the color out a bit. Adds the blue spectrum light.
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Old 06-30-2009, 01:46 PM   #56
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So the assumption is 48/24/25 ? Width and depth do play a factor here correct?
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Old 06-30-2009, 01:54 PM   #57
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Yes, no one gave hard #'s so it's a generalization at best.
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Old 06-30-2009, 08:09 PM   #58
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If you plan on getting high quality Lumenarc/Lumenbright type reflectors, you can get away with 2x175w. If you plan on plain parabolic/parallel reflectors, your better off with 2x250w.
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Old 06-30-2009, 08:47 PM   #59
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I must apologize to all of you, I didn't mean to be rude or offend anyone. I thank all of you for sticking in there and helping me out, I new the lighting was going to be complicated but I didn't expect it to be this difficult, it's extremely frustrating for me at this point. Sorry. The dimensions of the tank are 60 X 18 X 26, hopefully with this info you can tell me what i need.

One more question, Is it possible to have to much lighting?
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Old 06-30-2009, 10:21 PM   #60
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Yes it is possible to have too much light. Some corals cant handle too much high intensity light. Hang in there Keith. I know lighting get tough sometimes. Just remember as was mentioned that it`s not about wpg anymore. With todays technology it`s about par and intensity. I agree that if you only want to deal with it once then get the MH`s or at least the T5HO`s with individual reflectors. Like I said hang in there . We will get you through this.
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