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Old 03-26-2012, 04:36 PM   #1
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38 gallon lights...

Quick and hopefully easy question...

Will 2 T5 HO lights be enough light for anything i want to plant or do I need to get a 4 light fixture...the tank is 20in high...

Thanks in advance...
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Old 03-26-2012, 05:02 PM   #2
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Most people say about 2 or 3 watts per gallon. So it depends on how many watts your HO fixture is rated for. But it also depends on how heavily your going to plant your tank. Also stay in the 6000k range for your bulbs. It's never an easy answer. There's always lots of variables. Type of plants, how many plants, co2, ferts etc....
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Old 03-26-2012, 06:33 PM   #3
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WPG is an outdated and inaccurate way to measure light, especially with T5HO.


2xT5HO will be a good deal of light for a 20H. I would definitely consider getting some sort of CO2.
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Old 03-26-2012, 07:22 PM   #4
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I keep hearing that the WPG is out dated too so I haven't even really been paying attention to it too much...

I do plan on running a co2 system eventually but this is a tank still in the planning process pretty much...i was thinking about running a DIY co2 setup just to save some money, will buying a co2 system be that much better if any?
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Old 03-26-2012, 07:30 PM   #5
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Pressurized co2 is much easier to adjust, its more reliable, effective, and less of a hassle overall. So if you have the budget go for it.
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Old 03-26-2012, 08:11 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aqua_chem
WPG is an outdated and inaccurate way to measure light, especially with T5HO.

2xT5HO will be a good deal of light for a 20H. I would definitely consider getting some sort of CO2.
I agree with this but IMO it depends on what size fixture you are using with them...personally a 36" fixture would be ideal output and coverage for a 38g but not a 24" or smaller.
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Old 03-26-2012, 08:21 PM   #7
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I agree its outdated but it can be a starting point for the beginner. What is the size light kit you are using. Is it a 24 or 36?
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Old 03-26-2012, 08:25 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmazz11
I agree its outdated but it can be a starting point for the beginner. What is the size light kit you are using. Is it a 24 or 36?
It's misleading and potentially disastrous with T5HO, but that's what most people seem to want to use.
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Old 03-26-2012, 08:28 PM   #9
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Well agree to disagree my friend. And eBay has affordable co2 tanks as well as regulators. That's your most reliable method for co2. Good luck man.
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Old 03-26-2012, 08:34 PM   #10
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I was only thinking about using a 36in fixture since my tank is 36in...so yeah hehe...I'll have to check out eBay for co2 stuff...

I thought T5s are the best if not the only option for a planted tank I mean I know about LEDs and the othe types but they are more money...
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Old 03-27-2012, 04:06 AM   #11
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They are the best option price-wise usually, but there is such a thing as too much light. The more light you have over a tank the more difficult it becomes to keep things balanced. I personally think that a single t5ho over a 20g is more than enough unless you want to get super high tech.

More light = more nutrient demand/more co2 demand

Algae thrives on imbalances so it's easy to get an algae explosion if you aren't careful.
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Old 03-27-2012, 04:12 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jetajockey View Post
...

I personally think that a single t5ho over a 20g is more than enough unless you want to get super high tech.

More light = more nutrient demand/more co2 demand

Algae thrives on imbalances so it's easy to get an algae explosion if you aren't careful.
I second everything that Jeta said. Note, though, that some two bulb T5HO fixtures can operate with only one bulb.
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Old 03-27-2012, 04:16 AM   #13
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Yup, some of the better quality ones even have individual switches.
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