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Old 12-27-2004, 03:46 PM   #1
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Pick out a lighting setup for me!

Money is not really a factor, I just want the best lighting setup I can get (without costing me a fortune on my monthly electrical bill)

a couple of factoids:

My tank is a 37 gallon cube 24" wide and about 20" deep and 20" tall.

I need to have a glass top on my tank to keep my firefish from jumping.

I wan't to be able to keep all sorts of soft corals and possibly an anenome.

I love moonlights.

any suggestions? I was looking at the Coralife lunarlight setup. anyone familar with this?
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Hardware: 37 gallon SW tank and stand by Oceanic Systems, Magnum 350 Pro Canister Filter (half carbon), CPR Bak Pak 2R skimmer, Maxijet 1200 Powerhead, RenaCal 150 W heater, Compact fluorescent lights with moonlights. 40 lbs of liverock, 3" sand bed.

Software:2 Tank-Raised Ocellaris Clowns, 1 Purple Firefish, 1 Electric Orange hermit crab, 18 Blue Legged hermit crabs, 8 or so Nassarius snails, Xenia, Blue, green, and Green Striped Mushrooms.

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Old 12-27-2004, 06:31 PM   #2
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Do you ever see yourself wanting SPS or a clam? With the anemone Metal Halide is almost required. What wattage MH though depends on your future plans.
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Old 12-27-2004, 08:35 PM   #3
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I am stupid when it comes to lighting. so can someone explaine the benifits of MH over PC or VHO? also, what are the average lifespans of the different types of lights?

thanks!
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Hardware: 37 gallon SW tank and stand by Oceanic Systems, Magnum 350 Pro Canister Filter (half carbon), CPR Bak Pak 2R skimmer, Maxijet 1200 Powerhead, RenaCal 150 W heater, Compact fluorescent lights with moonlights. 40 lbs of liverock, 3" sand bed.

Software:2 Tank-Raised Ocellaris Clowns, 1 Purple Firefish, 1 Electric Orange hermit crab, 18 Blue Legged hermit crabs, 8 or so Nassarius snails, Xenia, Blue, green, and Green Striped Mushrooms.

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Old 12-27-2004, 09:20 PM   #4
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Yes someone please tell me the difference too. I am a newbie and I keep seeing all this stuff on MH. Sometime in the future I want to get into corals and such.
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Old 12-27-2004, 09:54 PM   #5
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I think the MH is MORE intense. You can get away with PC lighting for what you want... you might have to place the anemone in the upper portion of the tank.... I myself have a coralife lunarlight on my 60 gal and love it.... it's kewl to be able to look in even at night......
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Old 12-27-2004, 10:22 PM   #6
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With that tank I would think about a MH pendent light. Eihter 250 or 400 watts with a 20/20 bulb. A 250watt bulb would give you 6.75 watts/gal. Plenty of light for most stuff. Bumping up top a 400watt light would give you over 10 watts/gal, plenty for ANYTHING you would like to keep. A 20/20 bulb will give you a nice white/blue light so you should not need to suppliment with actinic. On the down side...The more MH light you have the higher the temp in the tank and the potential for more algea growth. Not to mention the electric bill. However, having one pendent light will allow you to adjust the height so you can control it a bit more. I am currently thinking of putting together an SPS and clam tank using the Oceanic 30gal cube with a 250watt MH pendent so I have done a little research on the matter. good luck in the hunt...Lando
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Old 12-27-2004, 10:26 PM   #7
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Sorry...forgot to mention that MH is more intese and, thus, you get better light penetration with it. If you are going through a glass top it is a good way to go. But you should look into using egg-create on top instead of glass as it will allow for better light penetration and more gas exchange for your tank.
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Old 12-27-2004, 10:58 PM   #8
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yeah but i got a jumper in the tank. (purple firefish.) what would be the potential downside of the PC route and moonlights.

(i want moonlights) :P

I am not really interested in clams. I mostly want soft corals, but I wouldn't mind an anenome. My rockwork will reach fairly high by the time I am ready to start adding an anenome. (3 to 4 inches below the surface.) not that I would place the anenome that close to the surface.

here is the one I am looking at: https://www82.safesecureweb.com/weba...ry_Code=CLAAPF
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Software:2 Tank-Raised Ocellaris Clowns, 1 Purple Firefish, 1 Electric Orange hermit crab, 18 Blue Legged hermit crabs, 8 or so Nassarius snails, Xenia, Blue, green, and Green Striped Mushrooms.

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Old 12-28-2004, 12:17 AM   #9
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The coralife light is awesome. I know it is not as intense as MH, so you will be limited a little. I have the lunar light model and I love the moonlights. It is really quiet and well-built. They probably could have done a better job on the legs. I broke 2 of them just trying to install them. But other thank that, I have no complaints. With the 2x65w, you will be getting around 3.5 w/gal. Coralife makes a 2x96w model that would be better.
I do not have any experience with MH's , so I cannot compare the two. Obviously the MH are more powerful, but I do not know how "neccessary " they are to keep soft corals. I have heard many success stories from other forum users who use PC lights with soft corals and anemones. HTH!
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Old 12-28-2004, 06:41 AM   #10
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so is it true that if you have MH lights, you dont need the actinic blue lights? to be honest, i like them for the blue haze they cast over the water.

also, MH lights are hell expensive.... whats the best place to get them from??
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Old 12-28-2004, 09:57 AM   #11
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I would not say MH's are that much more expensive than other lights, it just depends on how you do it. You can get a retro kit and build and pendent or put one in a canopy very easily. I built a wooden canopy and added a 2x250 MH with T5's. My tank is sealed in that respect so no glass top is needed. I have a peg board on the back so nothing can get out but hot air.

MH's can be used without actnics but you will need to get a bluer bulb(14k-20k) Some say coral growth will not be as fast but some say they see no difference.

The look of MH's can't be beat IMO but be prepared for heat issues if you seal it up in a canopy. Fans will be required.

I don't know much about anemones but I know people that have them with PC lights. Keep in mind they may move alot though if they are not happy.

HTH
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Old 12-28-2004, 10:09 PM   #12
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Is it normal for anenomes to move a lot when they are healthy? Mine don't move that much. They typically find a spot at the start then stay there. After some months they'll decide to move around again and stop for a long period of time.
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Old 12-29-2004, 02:50 PM   #13
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It is not considered normal for an anenome to wander. They will doe this at as they find a spot with the right amount of flow and light. If They begin to wander after that it could be a sign they are not happy with things. It is ussually and indication of delining water quality.
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Old 12-29-2004, 07:23 PM   #14
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It is not considered normal for an anenome to wander. They will doe this at as they find a spot with the right amount of flow and light. If They begin to wander after that it could be a sign they are not happy with things. It is ussually and indication of delining water quality.
Good points, I would also add they will uproot if there has been a change in water flow or it's time for a bulb change.

Cheers
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Old 12-29-2004, 08:37 PM   #15
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just a quick note for the person asking who has good prices on MH lights: hellolights.com and reefgeek.com seem to be the most reasonably priced from the research ive done, esp reefgeek.com.

i strongly reccommend the current usa orbit PC fixtures, includes moonlights also, i absolutly love love love mine, ive had problems with a coralife fixture i have, but never one with the current usa. just my suggestion. bigalsonline.com is having a sale on them right now too

good luck in whatever you choose to go with!
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