View Full Version : lighting and other equipment

04/14/2010, 08:11 PM
I'm new to the salt water tank community and had a question on lighting.

I have a 125gal tank that we are getting ready to start. We have most of the equipment ordered and should be getting it in friday.

Now in 6 weeks when it's time to start getting other types of equipment like lighting what do you all suggest? I've been looking at the T5 lighting.

Also I was told at the fish store that I will need Two Mp40 ES's And I'm happy with getting that but I haven't been able to really find any good reviews on them. Can anyone point me in the way?

I'm sorry if this is in the wrong area of the forums. But it kinda looks like the spot.

If anyone has any good info for me please feel free to post or send me a message. Again I'm new to the salt water tank area and any help/info given is going to help me out.

04/14/2010, 10:59 PM
Welcome to Reef Central!

A lot of these decisions (like lighting and water movement) are personal decisions that you should make judging by your own needs and what you want to keep in your tank.

If you want to keep a tank with just fish and live rock, then you don't need any special lighting at all. If you want to keep LPS corals, you have a few options, if you want to keep SPS corals, or clams or more light intensive critters, then your options are much better defined (and more expensive).

In my personal opinion, I have had difficulty keeping everything that I want with T5s. I have a standard 55 gallon tank with a Current Nova Extreme Pro 6 x54 Watt T5. There are endless color combinations of bulbs and you can tweak your color and light output to exactly what you want, and for some this is great. But I know for a fact that I LOVE the look of Radiums over a tank, so on my new tank I am switching to metal halides. No more messing with bulb combinations or height of the fixture off the water or wondering if my stuff is getting too much or not enough light of the right intensities.
But again, all this is my opinion for my tank...some people love mixing and matching T5s. They certainly run cooler and use less power than metal halides. And you CAN grow anything you want with T5s with the right bulbs. Don't let people tell you different. It might be a little more initial work/research though, but thats the great thing about this hobby!

You can't really go wrong with 2 MP40s, thats what I just ordered for my 180. And the ESes are the new models and only $25 more so why not get them. Do a google search for MP40W reviews and you should come up with all sorts of opinions. One thing to keep in mind, the first MP40s that were released did have wide spread problems with the "wet side" rusting and wobbling and other things. These problems have since been completely taken care of with the Gen 2 wet side. Some people still think they are "loud" but I've always thought that these people must have some crazy quiet pumps and skimmers....

Another great place to get lots of general information at your own pace (and as a matter of fact reviews on the MP40s, I believe) is www.melevsreef.com

And you can always ask any questions you have here!