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Old 09-16-2006, 01:34 AM   #1
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What light should I buy?

Hey all,

I'm just getting started on planted tanks. I have two aquariums right now, a 125 gallon and a 15 gallon. I have 196w of CF ready for the 125, but don't know what to buy for the 15?

It's deep - 18" H x 20" W x 10" D. I have basic gravel for substrate, and can supplement it with whatever. However, I don't want to get into CO2 right now, so have to stay pretty low on wattage.

Recommend any good setups that fit that system? I can spend some money, but don't want to break the bank.

Thanks!
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Old 09-16-2006, 01:49 AM   #2
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how wide is the 15 gallon? 20 or 24 inch?


in any case, I love these light strips:
http://www.marineandreef.com/shoppro...satellite.html

depending you can do 1x40w(20 in) or 1x65w(24 in). that should suffice for medium-med high light depending on how wide the tank is.
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Old 09-16-2006, 02:08 AM   #3
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Oops! I edited the original. It's 18" high, 20" wide, 10" deep.

Thanks!
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Old 09-16-2006, 02:53 PM   #4
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Any ideas for low-medium light? If you run med/med-high light for shorter periods of time each day can you simulate a lower light tank?

I really don't want to get too high light because I don't want to mess with CO2.

Thanks again!
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Old 09-16-2006, 03:55 PM   #5
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I'd recommend buying either a pair of the 20" fluorescent fixtures (2x15watts) or picking up an 20" incadescent fixture and replacing the bulbs with a pair of 15watt screw in fluorescents. Either of these options should put you right around medium light and avoid the need for CO2.

Something you can do if you want more light but don't want to mess with CO2 injection is to pick up some Flourish Excel. It's a liquid carbon source that can be used instead of CO2. It's not quite as effective, but still provides good results and is dosed like the rest of the ferts.
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Old 09-16-2006, 03:56 PM   #6
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40w on a 15 gallon should quality for medium-low to medium light. Since the tank is higher it reduces the amount of actual light that gets to the bottom.

Also, I do believe you can run it for less time to reduce more light, but I don't see a problem with 40w on a 15g. If I wanted a low light setup for my 15 I'd go with a 35-40w bulb.

Also, you can use Flourish Excel to substitute for CO2. Certain plants don't like the stuff but I know a lot of members have said good things about it. Even at low light dosing a little bit of it would help your plants grow.
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Old 09-16-2006, 04:46 PM   #7
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Thanks for your input! I'll look into the Flourish Excel for sure. I haven't done much research in the last 4-5 months, and I didn't hear anything about it back when I was doing that reading. I'll have to get up to date. I'm hoping that I won't have to mess with ferts too much for a while, just trying to make a slow entrance into the planted world.

I'll probably pick up the 40w light. It's not that spendy and I like the moonlight.

Thanks again! I'll post pics as the tanks come up!
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