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Old 10/22/2017, 09:09 PM   #1
ThaChad
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New 48" Photon v2 - The Inevitable Programing Questions

Hey all,

I have searched and read many threads on Programing. While It has answered some of my questions, I am still very confused.

I had a Coralife Aqualight 150w MH x2 and 96w PC x2.

I ordered the ReefBreeders Photon v2 48" unit last week and received it yesterday (Saturday). I installed it on the tank today.

The tank mounting legs are funky, It's like they really aren't made for mounting on a standard tank with a rim, perhaps a rimless tank. I am likely going to end up cutting a slot in the rim shelf to allow the bracket to actually slide down over the tank rim.. Kind of disappointing, but it is what it is..

Anyway, I turned it on and it was in "Cloudy" setting which is all channels at 30%.

Know there is lot of threads out there and the FAQ on Reefbreeders for setting up a schedule... But I also know that typically generic settings are neither good nor maximize the ability of things.

I went into custom and the only option for "Step" seems to be 1H? I thought this light could do 30 minute steps, but I don't seem to be able to change this setting?

I wanted to do 30M steps to try and make the steps almost unnoticeable as the tank sits in my living room and any kind of jumps in the light will be very noticeable..

From there, I've read that the "RED" channel 1 is only good for growing algae and most shut it off?

I've read someone posted that Logan suggested shutting of "GREEN" channel 2 because it basically does nothing usefull?

As for everything else.. I was going to start by following Logan's suggested setup here: https://www.dropbox.com/s/fav7c4yo9o...uide.xlsx?dl=0

However It goes from 9AM to 9PM, a 12 hour schedule.. and at 9AM and 2100 (9pm) he has all 6 channels a "0". Which is to assume that he is running with no moon lights. I like having the moon lights.. Obviously Moon lights have no actual use, other than personal preference. Which is fine, I like them, so I intent to use them.. However that begs the question, how should I ramp up/down the other channels to slowly fade in and out as to not jump when "Lights On" or "Lights Off"?

Should I only have Moon Lights Channel 5 on at night? Or should I have any of the other blue channels on? Is there a benefit there? Right now I only have soft corals, but will be adding in LPS corals. No interest in SPS at this time.

I know many people here have probably spent many hours working with lighting schedule's and found combinations that seem to work better than others.. I am hoping someone can point me at least down the right road as to cut out the lengthy trial and error process.

Thank you in advance!

-ThaChad


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Old 10/22/2017, 09:18 PM   #2
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Hey Chad,

First of all, thank you for choosing Reef Breeders to light your tank!

To address your first question- the V2s don't have 30minute steps- they are only 1 hour.

The red channel does add PAR and is used by corals for growth. Many people choose not to use them, mostly due to personal preference and a belief (which is still unproven) that red light may aide in algae growth. We are testing this idea with an experiment right now and will have more conclusive results soon.

The Green LEDs are used to adjust the kelvin rating without affecting the par, they basically let you fine-tune to overall color of the light.

The schedule we have in Excel just makes a sine wave curve- you should make the 9am values about half of the 10am values, and 21:00 should be 0 on all channels- unless you want the moon lights on at night. That would make it 12 hours of daylight total.

As far as moonlights go- pick an output that looks good (I would say no more than 5% on channel 5 to avoid giving corals too much light at night) and have that on maybe 3 hours after the lights are off, and 3 hours before they come on, since that is when you will most likely be viewing the tank with moonlights on.

Start with 30% power max- it may not seem like much now but these lights are pretty powerful- and chances are you won't be going much higher than 50% with soft corals.

As for the mounting legs- you can actually turn them upside-down so that the U shape is facing upwards- that would leave you with a flat surface to sit the light on top of the tank rim.


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Old 10/22/2017, 09:30 PM   #3
ThaChad
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Also just for completeness.

I have the light mounted 8.5" off the water. Because the tank brackets don't sit down on the rim of the tank it's about 0.5" higher than it should be. Once I slot the tank rim (Unless someone else has a better suggestion?) That should drop down to 8" off the water.

-ThaChad


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Old 10/22/2017, 09:49 PM   #4
ThaChad
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reef_Breeders View Post
Hey Chad,

First of all, thank you for choosing Reef Breeders to light your tank!

To address your first question- the V2s don't have 30minute steps- they are only 1 hour.

The red channel does add PAR and is used by corals for growth. Many people choose not to use them, mostly due to personal preference and a belief (which is still unproven) that red light may aide in algae growth. We are testing this idea with an experiment right now and will have more conclusive results soon.

The Green LEDs are used to adjust the kelvin rating without affecting the par, they basically let you fine-tune to overall color of the light.

The schedule we have in Excel just makes a sine wave curve- you should make the 9am values about half of the 10am values, and 21:00 should be 0 on all channels- unless you want the moon lights on at night. That would make it 12 hours of daylight total.

As far as moonlights go- pick an output that looks good (I would say no more than 5% on channel 5 to avoid giving corals too much light at night) and have that on maybe 3 hours after the lights are off, and 3 hours before they come on, since that is when you will most likely be viewing the tank with moonlights on.

Start with 30% power max- it may not seem like much now but these lights are pretty powerful- and chances are you won't be going much higher than 50% with soft corals.

As for the mounting legs- you can actually turn them upside-down so that the U shape is facing upwards- that would leave you with a flat surface to sit the light on top of the tank rim.


Thanks for the response.. I thought one of the features of the V2 was 1/2 hour programing? Obviously I thought wrong.. Did the V1 have 1/2 hour programing? I might end up having to ramp up over a longer period of time to make the ramp less noticeable.. I will have to play around I guess..


As to the mounting legs, I have attached a picture, I assume this is the intended way for the mounting legs to be installed? The directions didn't say.. With the pieces included, this was the only way I could figure to install it..

You suggest turning them upside down, I see how that would allow them to sit flat on the tank rim, but that would mean it was just sitting on a 1/2" rim/ledge and any kind of bump to the tank or light could cause it to fall off or worse into the water!

If I had a 3D printer, I could easily make a new foot that would fit beautifully on any standard tank rim, but I digress as I don't have one..

I am sure someone out there has also come across this same situation and already has a solution! That is what is great about open forum! I am sure most just hang their light(s), as I would do if it was possible in my location..

Thanks!

-ThaChad


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File Type: jpg IMG_4793.jpg (62.1 KB, 29 views)
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Old 10/22/2017, 10:14 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ThaChad View Post
Also just for completeness.

I have the light mounted 8.5" off the water. Because the tank brackets don't sit down on the rim of the tank it's about 0.5" higher than it should be. Once I slot the tank rim (Unless someone else has a better suggestion?) That should drop down to 8" off the water.

-ThaChad
Honestly it looks like you have it set up pretty well right now- and I haven't seen the acrylic piece used that way before- however it looks like you made it an effective vise/clamp to the top of the tank rim- I like that idea and will suggest that to future customers.

8.5" is a good height.

Yes, the gen 1s had 30 minute increments. They also only had 2 channels. With 6 channels it would take a very long time to do 30 minute steps.

We do have an upgraded controller on the way that breaks each hour into 10 6 minute steps automatically (ie- you only have to program each hour, the controller divides the steps up in the background).


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Old 10/23/2017, 05:21 AM   #6
ThaChad
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reef_Breeders View Post
Honestly it looks like you have it set up pretty well right now- and I haven't seen the acrylic piece used that way before- however it looks like you made it an effective vise/clamp to the top of the tank rim- I like that idea and will suggest that to future customers.

8.5" is a good height.

Yes, the gen 1s had 30 minute increments. They also only had 2 channels. With 6 channels it would take a very long time to do 30 minute steps.

We do have an upgraded controller on the way that breaks each hour into 10 6 minute steps automatically (ie- you only have to program each hour, the controller divides the steps up in the background).
I'd be interested in that controller..

How is the acrylic piece normally used? lol

My tank actually has plastic mesh screens that sit inside the tank lip to prevent certain fish from jumping out. I am considering cutting off the clamp side of the mount bracket, so it will be shaped like an "L" flipped clockwise. If I use one of the threaded knobs and Pin the rod into the fixture so that it cannot slide, this will prevent the light from coming off the tank side to side, front to back i'm not really worried about..

-ThaChad


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Old 10/23/2017, 07:16 AM   #7
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ThaChad and Logan,

I use the plastic foot in a very similar way because my tank has a eurobrace. I have to 'stretch' the legs out a bit to create a 'spring' in the legs so it stays on the edge of the tank. It can't fit down inside the tank due to the glass eurobrace. It's been that way for a year now and it still has 'spring' in the legs and holds on fine even with moving it forward and back over the tank.

Logan, any time line on the new controller? I'd gladly buy one when they become available, but it's been "in the works" for quite a while now. Is it still a 'for sure' future upgrade?

Also Logan, do you have LumenBar brackets available for sale as a separate item. I'd buy 4 of them.

Ron


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Old 10/23/2017, 01:06 PM   #8
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Hey Ron,

I already have a sample and I have been using it for several months. The issue right now is production, they were supposed to be ready this month but it appears they hit a snag, which is why I have not been so vocal about it- I want them ready before I do any marketing.

What I can tell you is that they are pretty promising, and are a nice step up in terms of smoother ramping.


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Old 10/23/2017, 03:51 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reef_Breeders View Post
Hey Ron,

I already have a sample and I have been using it for several months. The issue right now is production, they were supposed to be ready this month but it appears they hit a snag, which is why I have not been so vocal about it- I want them ready before I do any marketing.

What I can tell you is that they are pretty promising, and are a nice step up in terms of smoother ramping.
Glad to hear it and I look forward to having it! Thanks.


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Old 10/24/2017, 09:36 AM   #10
ThaChad
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reef_Breeders View Post
Hey Ron,

I already have a sample and I have been using it for several months. The issue right now is production, they were supposed to be ready this month but it appears they hit a snag, which is why I have not been so vocal about it- I want them ready before I do any marketing.

What I can tell you is that they are pretty promising, and are a nice step up in terms of smoother ramping.

That's good news. I look forward to seeing it!

Though I ponder why not just develop a Smartphone app? Even my TV's remote is on my Smart Phone now! Just seam's the way of the future and seam's like it would give you complete control.

-ThaChad


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Old 10/26/2017, 11:35 AM   #11
ThaChad
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Does anyone have a video of their light cycle (preview) with a Photon V2?

I'd like to see how some others have theirs set up...

Mine is very rough right now, drastically changes colors when shifting between hours..

I wish there was a way I could just put the numbers in on the computer and download them to the light and/or remote, it'd be soo much faster/easier.

Thanks,

-ThaChad


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Old 10/27/2017, 04:49 AM   #12
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First, the fish and coral couldn't care less about the hourly jump in the change brightness or color of light. So that's a personal issue and not a problem for the aquarium.

Second, you should start thinking of the hourly change as being like a grandfather clock that chimes on the hour, every hour of the day. If/when you notice the hourly light change, just think of it as the lights reminding you that it's the top of the hour and let it go. It's just not a big deal.

Finally, you are in control of the change in the color of the light. Mine change brightness that I can see most hours. The only time I really notice the change in color is a couple of hours when it's going from blue to white during sunrise and from white to blue during sunset. My fish and coral don't care, so why should I (or you)?

The alternative would be to pay hundreds more for fixtures that change more gradually... or sit tight and wait for the new controller from Logan.


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Old 10/27/2017, 08:58 AM   #13
ThaChad
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Reefman View Post
First, the fish and coral couldn't care less about the hourly jump in the change brightness or color of light. So that's a personal issue and not a problem for the aquarium.

Second, you should start thinking of the hourly change as being like a grandfather clock that chimes on the hour, every hour of the day. If/when you notice the hourly light change, just think of it as the lights reminding you that it's the top of the hour and let it go. It's just not a big deal.

Finally, you are in control of the change in the color of the light. Mine change brightness that I can see most hours. The only time I really notice the change in color is a couple of hours when it's going from blue to white during sunrise and from white to blue during sunset. My fish and coral don't care, so why should I (or you)?

The alternative would be to pay hundreds more for fixtures that change more gradually... or sit tight and wait for the new controller from Logan.

Your right somewhat.. Fish and Coral may not care (But who really knows?)

It IS a personal thing, which is what it is.. You don't understand how bad mine look right now lol... I was playing with it a little bit and got it looking pretty good for a few hours change... But Right now I'm just hoping someone will share their channel 1-6 settings that I know will have to be tweaked to my personal liking, but hopefully get me a lot closer than I am now...

Once I get mine setup to MY liking, I will share my final settings also so that maybe others can try it and maybe they'll like my settings and/or tweak it to their liking and hopefully share with others... That is what makes Public forum soo awesome!

-ThaChad


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Old 10/28/2017, 10:06 AM   #14
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As I mentioned above. I am sharing my Lighting Schedule I Created.

Comments? Suggestions?

-ThaChad


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File Type: jpg Photon 2 Light Schedule.jpg (43.8 KB, 26 views)
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Old 11/09/2017, 12:24 PM   #15
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That's good news. I look forward to seeing it!



Though I ponder why not just develop a Smartphone app? Even my TV's remote is on my Smart Phone now! Just seam's the way of the future and seam's like it would give you complete control.



FWIW, the stand alone ability of this light is one of the main selling points for me.

I personally refuse to buy a piece of hardware that requires internet connectivity or a smart phone to function.

Thanks for supporting your product here Logan!


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Old 11/10/2017, 05:37 AM   #16
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FWIW, the stand alone ability of this light is one of the main selling points for me.

I personally refuse to buy a piece of hardware that requires internet connectivity or a smart phone to function.

Thanks for supporting your product here Logan!
I agree completely! I have 2 other fixtures that require using wifi and I hate them. They are a PITA to use.


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Old 11/10/2017, 03:37 PM   #17
ThaChad
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Quote:
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FWIW, the stand alone ability of this light is one of the main selling points for me.

I personally refuse to buy a piece of hardware that requires internet connectivity or a smart phone to function.

Thanks for supporting your product here Logan!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Reefman View Post
I agree completely! I have 2 other fixtures that require using wifi and I hate them. They are a PITA to use.

Except that this light requires a proprietary remote, which works fine, but I can't imagine it working any better than an APP on a smart phone, which would probably actually work better as it would be faster.. It already uses WIFI so it's not like it's reinventing the wheel. Doesn't mean it shouldn't come with the remote, but would be great if it also had a Smart Phone App. No need for Internet Connectivity.

I was super impressed when I opened the box and saw the remote, I was like WOAH, super fancy remote! Until I started using it and the feel and function said "Chinese Cheap" all over it.. But it functions, and it does the job. So I guess no need to over build it. Though I would MUCH prefer an onboard control, like the V1.

-ThaChad


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