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gguertin
09/14/2017, 02:27 PM
So I have been out of the hobby for a few years but back in 2012 I had gone through a few LED systems and was never able to get great success with SPS. I think I did ok with AI Sol and T5's but about that point was when I stopped although I still have the lights.

Just looking at some of the new stuff it seems most LED companies have gone with more of a cluster type of light or puck. Does this new type of light provide a better light then the old 3 cree led style that was on the Sol? Is it considered as reliable as a MH finally?

I have a 180g and plan on building a mostly SPS tank. My experience with LED hasn't been great, I have found they don't last nearly as long as advertised but I am curious if maybe things have gotten better.

I am not scared of DIY or buying something if I felt it was really going to last and not have to buy new pucks every 2 years. Anyone know of any threads that provide info on this stuff?

hkgar
09/14/2017, 02:32 PM
Have you used the search button. There are many threads on this and many opinions. You need to read and form your own opinion based on research. Some like em, some love em, some either way, some no way. I'm an MH/t5 guy who tried LED.

jda
09/14/2017, 02:38 PM
You need to be more specific about which type of SPS that you want to keep. Montis, birdsnest, stylo and poci have TOTALLY different requirements that acropora. ...and some acropora are way harder than others. What types of SPS that you want to keep will matter in a big way - there will be some who tell you that it does not matter, but look at what they keep and you will see that they don't usually know what they are talking about.

I have strong opinions about this, but since they vary with the different types, I will hold off until I know where you want to be.

gguertin
09/14/2017, 02:39 PM
So it sounds like your saying the same as back in 2012?

The new lights aren't a huge step forward then?

Have you searched this topic... I asked for threads that were worth the read the number of threads isn't feasible for an adult with a job to read.

rtparty
09/14/2017, 02:39 PM
Search for Bulk Reef Supply on YouTube. They have great videos comparing all the techs. They are unbiased and just give you the facts for the items they carry.

You will get 1000 different opinions on this topic.

Personally, I think LEDs have come a LONG way in the last couple years but they still have a long way to go for my taste. Ecotech's new diffuser will definitely help. They aren't first to do it by any means but I feel they have the best foundation and just need some tweaks.

My current tank runs a Gmann Spectra MH/T5 and I wouldn't change to any of the current LEDs on the market. Again, that is just a personal preference.

gguertin
09/14/2017, 02:42 PM
You need to be more specific about which type of SPS that you want to keep. Montis, birdsnest, stylo and poci have TOTALLY different requirements that acropora. ...and some acropora are way harder than others. What types of SPS that you want to keep will matter in a big way - there will be some who tell you that it does not matter, but look at what they keep and you will see that they don't usually know what they are talking about.

I have strong opinions about this, but since they vary with the different types, I will hold off until I know where you want to be.

So I would say yes... at this point the plan is an SPS tank but I have not narrowed it down yet. It is my understanding that all of them work under MH correct? Do they all not work under the new LED's? I want something that works for everything does that not exist :)

I am not trying to start a this vs that I just am looking for info after not being around for a long time.

gguertin
09/14/2017, 02:43 PM
Search for Bulk Reef Supply on YouTube. They have great videos comparing all the techs. They are unbiased and just give you the facts for the items they carry.

You will get 1000 different opinions on this topic.

Personally, I think LEDs have come a LONG way in the last couple years but they still have a long way to go for my taste. Ecotech's new diffuser will definitely help. They aren't first to do it by any means but I feel they have the best foundation and just need some tweaks.

My current tank runs a Gmann Spectra MH/T5 and I wouldn't change to any of the current LEDs on the market. Again, that is just a personal preference.

Thanks I will check that out!

rtparty
09/14/2017, 02:47 PM
So I would say yes... at this point the plan is an SPS tank but I have not narrowed it down yet. It is my understanding that all of them work under MH correct? Do they all not work under the new LED's? I want something that works for everything does that not exist :)

I am not trying to start a this vs that I just am looking for info after not being around for a long time.

If you want an absolutely tried, true, set-and-forget style of light then go with MH/T5 or an ATI T5 fixture. Even some LED/T5 combos are east to use. Aquatic Life has their new combo fixture coming out and for me, that seems super promising.

Some (very, very few IMO) LEDs are truly set it and forget it. Again, Ecotech may be the best here with their Coral Lab setting. That is for you to figure out though IMO.

DivingTheWorld
09/14/2017, 02:52 PM
Yeah, this is one of those topics where people who run a particular kind of light swear by them and defend them to the death. There are dozens of threads very similar to this.

By sps, I assume you mean Acros? I am also a T5 guy who used to use LED (Radion G3s). I have an sps/acro tank and will buy T5 again if I upgrade to a larger tank. For me, the color and growth between led and t5 is like night and day.

IMO, led can work but you need to use double what the manufacturer suggests. That gets expensive quick! And no, I don't think led has improved much in the past few years.

hkgar
09/14/2017, 02:57 PM
Biggest problem is led light simply does not diffuse and creates "hot" spots.

jda
09/14/2017, 02:58 PM
Regardless of what people say, there are no real advancements in the panels. ...a few different diodes here and there, new puck configurations, new hangers. In the end, they still shadow, fail to blend colors really well, have big gaps in spectrum and have no output under 400nm. They same rhetoric still applies today, which was mostly BS then and still is because for a decade, you cannot "have come a long way, but still have a long way to go and going to be the wave of the future..." it is OK to have gotten there already if you were going to.

Yes, every single SPS from easy-to-hard flourish under T5 and MH. There are a small few who can get good results out of COLONIES of Lorpies, Grannies, Lokani, Millepora, etc. if they have massive amounts of panels and otherwise were excellent acropora keepers before they switched, but these are outliers in the big scheme - even these will usually admit that the color is not quite as good, but they are keeping the panels for one reason or another.

I also use MH and I don't supplement a lot, but I have VHOs over the tank that I rarely run since I like to save the electricity, but I like the look and that the bulbs will last twice as long as T5 and I have to replace half as many... but mostly because I like the color of Actinic White and Super Actinic of I would have been on to T5 by now.

There are not really many threads worth a read... just like this one probably will, they get derailed by fanboys of either side and people who think that SPS is SPS and there is no difference in a digitata and a millepora light-wise. Besides being driven by fanboys, they are driven by noobies with a tank full of frags. Check out the build thread of Big E, JB NY, Copps tanks is always nice, Dr. Joshi has a nice writeup of his experiences since switching to LED (he does undersell all of the coral that he lost), tbd-320-reef has a nice build thread - the build threads are great.

hkgar
09/14/2017, 03:00 PM
Ecotech's new diffuser will definitely help. They aren't first to do it by any means but I feel they have the best foundation and just need some tweaks.

My current tank runs a Gmann Spectra MH/T5 and I wouldn't change to any of the current LEDs on the market. Again, that is just a personal preference.

Biggest problem is led light simply does not diffuse and creates "hot" spots.

I don't think diffusers will work for led because the light is not 360 degrees but is 180 degrees so there is no upward light for the diffuser to diffuse.

jda
09/14/2017, 03:01 PM
I want something that works for everything does that not exist :)

...sorry that I missed this. Yes, this exists. MH, T5 and even VHO can all handle this in spades, but I would not even consider VHO unless you just love them from the past (I am one of those).

rtparty
09/14/2017, 03:17 PM
Biggest problem is led light simply does not diffuse and creates "hot" spots.

I don't think diffusers will work for led because the light is not 360 degrees but is 180 degrees so there is no upward light for the diffuser to diffuse.

Have you ever seen a diffuser on an LED system? Watched any of the BRS videos where they factually prove that diffusers DO work for LEDs?

Does it make LEDs as good as or better than MH or T5? Not for me but they are closer. For some, LEDs are greatest thing since sliced bread. That is why this topic will never resolve.

gguertin
09/14/2017, 03:24 PM
So it sounds like mh/t5 for me just wanted to verify first.

Anyone know is there a gotta have reflector and ballast for the halides? I will go with 250w radium and the ati t5s

dz6t
09/14/2017, 07:03 PM
Biggest problem is led light simply does not diffuse and creates "hot" spots.



I don't think diffusers will work for led because the light is not 360 degrees but is 180 degrees so there is no upward light for the diffuser to diffuse.


MH and t5 have reflectors, led can't benefit from reflector much. Diffuser and reflector work very differently. Diffuser on clustered based led such as Radion and kessil can improve spread and soften hot spot but can't solve shadowing problem for SPS colonies.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

dz6t
09/14/2017, 07:17 PM
Have you ever seen a diffuser on an LED system? Watched any of the BRS videos where they factually prove that diffusers DO work for LEDs?



Does it make LEDs as good as or better than MH or T5? Not for me but they are closer. For some, LEDs are greatest thing since sliced bread. That is why this topic will never resolve.


In my experience, diffuser cut down a lot of PAR, it can be up to 40% lost of total PAR value in a given area, say 24x24 inch.
Also diffuser does not solve shadowing problem for SPS colony, it is just purely physics and no magic lens can solve that problem.
To minimize shadowing issue for LED, use multiple panels with grid layout is the way to go. Or supplement led with t5.



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Reefable
09/14/2017, 07:51 PM
I believe its a combination of good water quality and lights..i have been using 3 Ecotech Radion xr30 pros in combination with 2 bulb HO T5 on my 150G display and have been able to grow Bali Slimer, Blue tip green stag, Secale, Purple tip Valida, sunset Milli, Red Planet, Red Dragon to name a few sps...i have had great success and coloration...it comes down to personal preference...There is a YouTube video by Mr.Saltwater Tank TV done on Vivid aquariums 800G sps tank wherein Vivid aquarium used part MH and part Ecotech Radions....Good luck....


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

jda
09/14/2017, 08:43 PM
So it sounds like mh/t5 for me just wanted to verify first.

Anyone know is there a gotta have reflector and ballast for the halides? I will go with 250w radium and the ati t5s

With Radium 20K, M80 is the spec ballast. I would not stray from this. For ATI bulbs, that is up to you...

Giesemann Spectra is a great fixture. You can also check out Hamilton - they have MH and T5 fixtures. If you are going pure retro, then Hamilton has reflectors too.

Wazzel
09/15/2017, 06:21 AM
LED works just fine for SPS. I have yet to find one I can not grow under my LED. The condensed puck arrangements do suffer from coverage issues and you will need 1.5 to 2 times the number the manufacturer recommends. All the control ability and differences between manufacturers really makes it difficult for LED users to share information. To get good guidance you really need to find someone using the same light.

Like someone said, there really has not been any great technical advancement in LEDs. IMO what is happening is enough people have been using them long enough that they have figured our an operating parameter envelop that will be successful. Basically the kink are all but worked out. Also, people have figured out the need to stop trying to be cute or over thing the scheduling of the lights. Simple ramps or even on/off is a whole lot better than running things all over the place during the photo period.

Be ready that they will look a little different, but that should be no surprise. All three of the light systems have their own particular look. The fact that and LED unit will not look just like a radium on a M80 ballast is really not a short coming.

My last tank was Mh/VHO and I have not noticed a significant difference in growth rate or color. The tank does look different, but corals are the same color, but only differ in the shade of the color. I am almost 4 years into LED only nd have been happy with them so far. Would I do them again? Maybe. It really depends on what I was trying to do and how my evaluation of lighting systems went for that particular tank. I don't really have strong feelings for or against any of the lighting systems. All the lighting system work and all have pros and cons.

Hope you can find the lighting system that meet your needs.

MondoBongo
09/15/2017, 06:47 AM
I don't really have strong feelings for or against any of the lighting systems. All the lighting system work and all have pros and cons.

+1

i've used LEDs for almost my entire tenure in the hobby. i keep an SPS dominate reef, and haven't had any issues i could even come close to attributing to LED lighting.

for me i like LEDs because they're low maintenance (no bulb replacement), and don't generate much heat. when i was running MH i would notice an up to 5 degree temperature jump at times when the lights came on.

LEDs are also nice and slim, so they fit in my hood nicely.

as others have noted, i did use more than the manufacturer recommendation when setting up my new tank. originally i was in a 4 foot 75 gallon tank with two AI Vegas, and it was great but there were some dim spots in the corners. probably could have solved that by lifting the lights a bit higher, but then i was getting more spread than i really wanted. anyways... when i upgraded to my 6 foot 160 gallon, i put 4 units over the 6 foot length (3 would have been the typically recommended amount from AI i believe) and i've been very happy with my coverage.

JTL
09/15/2017, 10:30 AM
I am still trying to figure out what is a good intensity for my leds. I am curently running them 12 hours but max of 50% for only 3 hours. The max of the panel is about 400 watts. It is hard to know if I have too little or too much since they are pretty new frags. I did lose a slimmer and have some whitening of the tips on a purple stylo but there are clear visible polyps. I also have some bleaching on one side of a cali tort the same as the slimmer. It happens to be the side closest to the power heads. Too much flow?

Wazzel
09/15/2017, 10:38 AM
I am still trying to figure out what is a good intensity for my leds. I am curently running them 12 hours but max of 50% for only 3 hours. The max of the panel is about 400 watts. It is hard to know if I have too little or too much since they are pretty new frags. I did lose a slimmer and have some whitening of the tips on a purple stylo but there are clear visible polyps. I also have some bleaching on one side of a cali tort the same as the slimmer. It happens to be the side closest to the power heads. Too much flow?

If you can not get guidance on you LED unit get your hands on a par meter. They will take the guess work out of working out your settings.

JTL
09/15/2017, 10:45 AM
Mark, I think Ron and I are going to hook up one of these days and he has offered to bring his when he visits. Since he has the same fixture as mine (Reefbreeders Photon 2) I am just using 50% of his settings only because my corals are so new. I know it is really hard to give much meaningful advice on lighting due to all of the variables.

Wazzel
09/15/2017, 10:55 AM
Mark, I think Ron and I are going to hook up one of these days and he has offered to bring his when he visits. Since he has the same fixture as mine (Reefbreeders Photon 2) I am just using 50% of his settings only because my corals are so new. I know it is really hard to give much meaningful advice on lighting due to all of the variables.

If you are using the same fixture Ron would be a good guy to get guidance from.

wildman926
09/15/2017, 01:13 PM
LED works just fine for SPS. I have yet to find one I can not grow under my LED. The condensed puck arrangements do suffer from coverage issues and you will need 1.5 to 2 times the number the manufacturer recommends.

Would you share what fixtures you are using?

Wazzel
09/15/2017, 01:22 PM
Would you share what fixtures you are using?

Sure AI-hydra52 (non-HD)

Current tank.

http://reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2519918

It's predecessor.

http://reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2421524

Ron Reefman
09/15/2017, 02:03 PM
Mark is right, Ron is a good guy to get guidance from... WHAT! I'm sorry, I just had to say that. I've been so beaten up by a couple of never led users here that I thought I was a leper!

But Mark and MondoBongo are right. I have only used leds for the last 6 years and they have changed some. More control than anything. And way more than MH or t5. Easier and cheaper too. My new tank is just a year old and with new RB Photon V2 leds and the sps corals are growing just as good as in my old tank with MH & t5. BTW, the new tank is due to the old 180g springing an unfixable leak. You can see some 6 month old pics of the new tank here: http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2593017

John, I have lots of small frags in my tank as well. Running the lights at less power doesn't help them. They need light. I run 6am to 9pm, with 4 hours of midday at 90% on both blue channels and 40% on the white and violet. I only run the red and green at 10% during those 4 midday hours. My early and late hours are quite dim. My frags are doing just fine.

hkgar
09/15/2017, 02:49 PM
Ron,

Glad to hear you got through Irma in pretty good shape. Were you down there (Cape Coral) when Charlie cam through? I was living on the inter coastal in Matlacha. Window blown out, piece of roof torn up and my boat was sunk. Black mold beyond belief within just a few days. Complete tank lost. Moved to Michigan within 4 weeks. (Serendipity as I had a week before Charlie gone to Michigan and bought a house).

Ron Reefman
09/16/2017, 04:34 AM
Gary,

Yup. I had just moved in with a girlfriend (now my wife) and we had just put a new roof on her house (it was in serious bad shape). The roof didn't lose a shingle due to Charlie, but we lost all the soffit around the house! And we didn't have hurricane shutters back then. I watched Charlie blow nearly 100mph winds at our front windows!

We were without power for 10 days but we didn't have any tanks back then.

Funny that you lived so close by, Matlacha is maybe 4 miles from our house. And you move to Michigan. That's where I'm from originally (my first 30 years around Detroit). I moved to SW Florida in 2000 after a 20 year stint in Columbus, Ohio.

JTL
09/16/2017, 08:32 AM
Mark is right, Ron is a good guy to get guidance from... WHAT! I'm sorry, I just had to say that. I've been so beaten up by a couple of never led users here that I thought I was a leper!

But Mark and MondoBongo are right. I have only used leds for the last 6 years and they have changed some. More control than anything. And way more than MH or t5. Easier and cheaper too. My new tank is just a year old and with new RB Photon V2 leds and the sps corals are growing just as good as in my old tank with MH & t5. BTW, the new tank is due to the old 180g springing an unfixable leak. You can see some 6 month old pics of the new tank here: http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2593017

John, I have lots of small frags in my tank as well. Running the lights at less power doesn't help them. They need light. I run 6am to 9pm, with 4 hours of midday at 90% on both blue channels and 40% on the white and violet. I only run the red and green at 10% during those 4 midday hours. My early and late hours are quite dim. My frags are doing just fine.

Ron, I have a copy of your lighting schedule and I am running at 50% of your power. I don't think I should double the power all at once. Maybe increase it incrementally over time. Thoughts?

hkgar
09/16/2017, 09:59 AM
Gary,

Yup. I had just moved in with a girlfriend (now my wife) and we had just put a new roof on her house (it was in serious bad shape). The roof didn't lose a shingle due to Charlie, but we lost all the soffit around the house! And we didn't have hurricane shutters back then. I watched Charlie blow nearly 100mph winds at our front windows!

We were without power for 10 days but we didn't have any tanks back then.

Funny that you lived so close by, Matlacha is maybe 4 miles from our house. And you move to Michigan. That's where I'm from originally (my first 30 years around Detroit). I moved to SW Florida in 2000 after a 20 year stint in Columbus, Ohio.

When Charlie was shown to be headed to Matlacha there wasn't much time left, so I went to my nephews house who, at the time lived on the four lakes in Cape Coral. I remember watching Lanis (screen pool enclosures) flying by.

I am originally from Michigan and grew up in the Detroit area. Detroit through 4th grade and then Birmingham.
I hated summers in Florida. I spent 4 years there.

Ron Reefman
09/17/2017, 04:43 AM
Ron, I have a copy of your lighting schedule and I am running at 50% of your power. I don't think I should double the power all at once. Maybe increase it incrementally over time. Thoughts?

John, over time is the best way. I'd bump things up at maybe 5% every 10 days to 2 weeks at first and even slower toward the end. I'm not saying my levels are the right ones, but so far (1 year in) my corals and anemones sure seem happy. My bright colored rock flower anemones even had 5 babies.

When Charlie was shown to be headed to Matlacha there wasn't much time left, so I went to my nephews house who, at the time lived on the four lakes in Cape Coral. I remember watching Lanis (screen pool enclosures) flying by.

I am originally from Michigan and grew up in the Detroit area. Detroit through 4th grade and then Birmingham.
I hated summers in Florida. I spent 4 years there.

I was born in Detroit and we moved to Birmingham when I was 5. I went to Groves High School and my older brother went to Seaholm (before Groves opened). I love Florida summers because the snowbirds are gone and the water is so warm I can snorkel for hours in just a dive skin! We live just a bit more than a mile NNW of the four lakes!

If you ever visit down here, let me know. Maybe we can get together for lunch or a beer!:thumbsup: