View Full Version : Lighting for 90 gallon reef

08/30/2009, 05:29 PM
I am building a 90 gallon mixed reef and need some help with the lighting.

What is the difference between a 4 X 110watt Ice Cap VHO setup and a 4 X 54watt T5 HO setup?

VHO setup = http://www.marinedepot.com/IceCap_48_inch_VHO_Retrofit_Kit_4_Lamps_48_Inch_Fluorescent_Retrofit_Kits-IceCap-ICK242-FILTRTRFFE-ICK484-vi.html

T5 HO Ballast = http://www.ballastwise.com/item.asp?PID=24&FID=15&level=1
I have saw this ballast used in a few builds on here. Then get lamps, reflectors and stuff from hellolights.

I am also going to run 2 X 250watt HID bulbs

Ballast = http://www.ballastwise.com/item.asp?PID=128&FID=17&level=1

Reflectors = http://www.hellolights.com/index.asp?PageAction=VIEWPROD&ProdID=1663

Bulbs = 1400K Phoenix Bulbs

What is the thoughts for coming up with the best lighting and growth?

08/31/2009, 01:06 PM

08/31/2009, 01:15 PM
I ran my 90g with 4x110 vho on icecap...looked good, grew very well...switched to a 6x54w ATI powermodule...I have an open top in prominant viewing space so looks were important. Love the t5's.
If you are running 2x250w in addition to the vho or t5's, then I'd go with the t5's...VHO actinics are fantastic, but I do like the much greater variety of bulb choices from the t5's...I really like the blue+ and fiji purples. There is less power used with the t5's, BUT you must make sure there is good cooling of the bulbs for the best bulb life & color rendition. You also need to have good/great quality reflectors for t5's to really work. Vho have internal reflectors.

08/31/2009, 01:42 PM
This will be inside a open back canopy with a 120mm fan on each end to come on when the regular lights come on. Then I will probably put 1 or 2 fans in the top to come on just with the MH's. This should cool them good.

09/01/2009, 02:04 PM

09/01/2009, 04:54 PM
If you have the space for good reflectors, go for the t5's. Sounds like they 'll be cool enough, and you're using them for color, in addition to growth.