View Full Version : Lighting and RO/DI

07/07/2017, 04:59 PM
Dear fish lovers,

I am coming here to ask your advice on how to set up my salt water tank for SPS.

I am running it for a bit more than one year. I bought it used. And I am improving it as I can over time. I have a new protein skimmer, new pump, new heater.

I have being using tap water and conditioners. My TDS meters reads the TAP water with 174 ppm:eek2: so it is time for my RO/DI

My lighting is composed by 3 actinic lamps that came with the canopy (2 white, 1 blue). My softies have poor growth.:headwalls:

The combination of poor quality water and (maybe) bad set of lighting could the reason for that. Moreover, since I want to jump into SPS, is better to improve my system before.

It is a 65 gallons tank, 18"L x 39"W x 18"H.

Right now, the cash is low, but I would like to be closer to good stuff, and in the future I will try to buy higher quality stuff.

For the RO/DI I was looking this one + a water pressure gauge meter

And for lighting I would like to go on LEDs. I have found this one below, I am not sure which length I should choose and if this is a good brand. I read somewhere that watts is also important:

Thank you for your time.

07/08/2017, 10:35 AM
Good morning ppl,

could anyone more experienced gimme some advice?

07/08/2017, 03:12 PM
Hey Hoono, the ro unit looks good and it's a good idea to get your tank on ro water as soon as possible.
That led light, I really don't suggest getting. Especially for someone who is new to sps.
To clarify, your current lights are not all actinic. The blue one may be but white bulbs cannot be actinic.
Actinic is actually a certain specific colour of bulb containing very blue and violet wavelengths.
I would suggest you stay with t5 lighting. It is tried and true and will always make sps corals happy. You probably need new bulbs, however. And probably another two or three bulb fixture.
Leds are not a simple light to use. They can and will make sps happy but they require more experience with sps than you have at the moment.
Your sps life will be made much easier by staying away from leds for a year or so.
Do you have calcium, alkalinity phosphate and nitrate test kits?
Do you do waterchanges?
I think you should continue to educate yourself on the methods of reefkeeping and sps keeping in particular.
We will not be able to walk you through every aspect of it. You must grasp the basics of maintaining a proper marine environment for corals.
I'm not sure you are there yet..
I do not want to be rude but your post indicates a certain lack of some basic knowledge about reefkeeping.
This may be why no one has attempted to respond to you. It is difficult to try to give information to someone who has very little basic knowledge..

07/08/2017, 06:42 PM
Reefmutt, thank you for your post. Thank you for the clarification on the lights that I have.

I do water changes 20% every week.
Alkalinity 8-9
Calcium 400-420
Nitrate <5ppm
Phosphate I need to buy it
Magnesium 1300

Understanding my poor knowledge (or experience) is the reason to be here asking for advice before jumping into SPS and be frustrated.

The T5s that came with the canopy (2 whites and one actinic) were changed last December. Before doing any change in my lighting should I get a PAR meter and check If I am having proper light conditions?

I didn't take you as rude. Actually you took your time to give your opinion, thank you for that.

07/08/2017, 08:44 PM
Ah.. ok! :) this is good info!
It's just that your first post seemed a bit scattered.. like you were really new at this.
I'm glad to see your wc regimen and the numbers you posted.
They are pretty good.
Glad to see you've updated the bulbs..
I don't think you need a par meter. On your size tank, 4 to 6 bulbs- maybe just 4 bulbs will be sufficient.
Make sure to get a decent po4 test kit. Red Sea or (my favorite) Elia High Resolution test kit or a Hanna checker.
I would get your ro set up and do several good water changes before trying acropora.
Do you have a sand bed in the tank?
With just 5ppm no3, your fish load can't be too large. Good start.
What's your skimmer?
And flow?

This thread by BigE is an excellent reference. It is a wealth of good info.. give it a read through. You will not be sorry.

07/08/2017, 11:13 PM
Thank you again for coming back for more help, hehe.

I was looking for something like that after what you said: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B019J3UPTY/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_awdb_s8oqybYCEFQ4W?th=1

I have 5 fish in that tank, the biggest one is a yellow tang, he is getting to big (I thought I would be in a 100+ gallon by now), so I am selling him.

My sand bed is about 1-2 in
My flow is a maxspec 230
My skimmer is a HOB Octupus 90 classic

I will get that Red Sea for po4, i saw some videos and it is really nice.

07/09/2017, 06:50 AM
No problem.
I see nothing wrong with that light fixture. It'll do the job for sure.
Clearly, you are on the right track with your set up.
Sps corals really like some randomized flow patterns and although the gyre is an excellent water mover, if you had another pump to occasionally redirect the flow from the gyre.. or use the gyre to redirect the flow from some other static pump, the corals would be happier and healthier.. this is not 100% necessary though.. just a positive addition..

07/09/2017, 09:56 AM
I see you have 4 gyre, do you combine your own settings or do you use one of those lunar tidal or oceanic cycle?

I see a few ppl returning from LED to T5 or MH, do you think it is because LED is "harder" to setup the intensity?

07/09/2017, 11:31 AM
I have a pair of 150s that are plugged into a hydor wave controller. It alternates them every minute.
They are mounted closer to the front of the tank.
Then, behind them I have a 130 and a 230 connected to the new controller. These two are set on random.
The bigger pumps move water right around the whole tank while the smaller pumps create turbulence in the middle and occasionally redirect the circular flow when they put out strong blasts..

As for leds. They can definitely be tougher to set up and dial in. With t5, it removes a huge element of guesswork.
For me, I grew up looking top down on my acros under mh and fluorescent.
When leds came out I found that I was no longer seeing the same thing as I was under fluo./mh. I didn't like the look.
The newer leds are much better but I still find it's not the same. However, sometimes it's better with led.. just not what I am used to.
My next set up may be led and t5.. but I'm pretty happy with my t5/mh combo supplemented with led

07/10/2017, 06:09 PM
Thanks Matt,

I will follow your advice. Get my RO/DI running for awhile. Once I have it good and the new lights, I will start a few SPS to have a feeling on taking care of them.

07/10/2017, 07:35 PM
No problem! Maybe you should start a build thread.