T-5 Reefers, Can You Talk Me Into T-5's

Discussion in 'Equipment, Lighting, Hardware, Aquarium Filtration' started by 427HISS, Jan 10, 2017.

  1. NEPAReefer

    NEPAReefer Active Member

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    I messaged you with my phone# if you want to shoot me a call later on tonight. It is just tough to type it all out and explain it on here.
     
  2. revhtree

    revhtree Owner Administrator Staff Member Team R2R R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Photo of the Month Award Article Contributor Partner Member

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    You might need a new wife.....

    HA! :p TOTALLY Kidding!
     
  3. 427HISS

    427HISS Well-Known Member

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    Ok, sounds good. What time, central time ?
     
  4. 427HISS

    427HISS Well-Known Member

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    Lol,....I told her that, and said,..? I won't choose a blond this time !
     
  5. NEPAReefer

    NEPAReefer Active Member

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    If you like you can give me a call at 8pm your time. That way I will be done with my running around after work and will be home and able to talk.
     
  6. Triggreef

    Triggreef Zoa Addict R2R Supporter CTARS Member

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  7. Triggreef

    Triggreef Zoa Addict R2R Supporter CTARS Member

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    Here is a thread I made about making a very cheap T5. I may be naive about ATI but IMO I'm after the ati bulb and ballast combo in a unit I can afford. I don't care about the fancy dimming and fans and pretty housing for the light. I just want the light at a reasonable cost. 3 of these fixtures would light your 6' tank nicely at under $500 total cost with 18 x's 24" T5 bulbs.

    for spectrum I like 4 blue+, one actinic, and one coral+

    http://reef2reef.com/threads/making...than-half-the-cost-of-a-name-brand-t5.275786/
     
  8. NEPAReefer

    NEPAReefer Active Member

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    The reason I went with the ballasts I did is bc they were cheaper than the ones on BRS and had the dimming feature, whether I decide to dim it or not, it can be used either way. It comes from a company that I have dealt with for years with my job and trust them and the sales rep I deal with. If I were to have any problems with them, all I would have to do is call and he would have new ones sent out the same day no questions asked. We have a very good working relationship. And plus they have a 5 year warranty on them.
    As for the bulbs I decided to try, they were recommended to me also by another source I have been dealing with for years. And the fact that they are made in the same facility as ATI and a few bucks cheaper was all the convincing that I needed to take the chance and try them. The color combination I decided to go with was based on how much I liked the look and color of the display tank at my local fish store which will be the same color combination of bulbs that I am going to use.
    I don't care about the fancy housing either b/c I am retro'ing it into a custom canopy I am building for my tank. Hopefully I will be able to get away without using any fans but only time will tell on that one.
    Please keep in mind that I am not knocking the way you did things. I am just explaining why I decide to do mine this way. There are ore than one way to skin a cat as they say...lol
     
  9. 427HISS

    427HISS Well-Known Member

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    Great !
     
  10. Triggreef

    Triggreef Zoa Addict R2R Supporter CTARS Member

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    No worries I agree more than one way to skin a cat. The only issue I had personally with the fulham ballasts was a lot of burnt bulbs and melted end caps. Some internet researching I found that the fulham ballasts need to have "shunted" end caps, which the fixture I have did not. When I made the thread above, I had assumed that was my mistake with the fulham ballasts, and I took them apart and "shunted" the end caps. Some time went by and I figured everything was good and it worked. Shortly after I posted that thread I had yet another failure and decided to take the advice that was offered in that thread... I ordered a whole bunch of the ati ballasts and replaced them all. No more failures but its only been about 2 weeks. Just my experience.
     
  11. NEPAReefer

    NEPAReefer Active Member

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    @Triggreef I understand where you are coming from. Yeah it definitely matters whether you use shunted or non-shunted. It causes power to back feed into the ballast and shortly the life of the ballast as well as the lamps.
     
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  12. Daniel Waters

    Daniel Waters Member ETRC Member

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    I had Kessil's on my 6 foot tank because I loved their shimmer. Like your wife, though, the shimmer got to be too much. Instead of going back to T-5 only, I simply added some T-5's in the front and back of my canopy to supplement the current Kessils. The T-5's help with the shadowing from the LED's and reduce the shimmer effect so that it's not nearly as noticeable. With the LED's producing most of the light and just using two 2 bulb setups with the T-5's, my bulb replacement cost is more manageable.
     
  13. Scott.h

    Scott.h Well-Known Member

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    I have a little of everything going on. I like the looks of LED and some of the controlable features for sure. That said, I don't like the overall health and growth the cheaper LEDs give to some corals. I also have the 48" 8 bulb Ati adjustable fixture. It's a very nice fixture. Well built and you can split the bulbs into two Channels and ramp them accordingly. T5s have a decent bulb selection now days and are pretty much plug and play. Good spread. I have a hybrid tank as well. I'm not going to say do or don't go t5 because they both work, but I'm not a fan of cheap LEDs. I have thousands into this stuff, as many do. Personally I draw the line before spending radion prices, especially when you need so many if you don't want the shadowing. Buy once cry once, but buy what you can afford. Halides are too bulky for me even though heat isn't an issue for me. They work well with the right bulb and reflector. When you start plugging fixtures into the apex that has kilowatt hours configured into the outlets you might be surprised as to what it really costs to run them. In a bad way.
     
  14. Big E

    Big E Well-Known Member

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    You're going to be sorry trying to cut corners on cheap ballasts. Buy whatever LET kits you need and be done with it.

    http://www.bulkreefsupply.com/t5-ho-miro-4-retrofit-kit-let-lighting.html

    Or buy a standard Sunpower and you'll get about 8-10 months out of the bulbs with the active cooling they have.

    You don't need massive par, you need correct spectrum especially for Sps. Most Sps will thrive at 300-350 par.
     
  15. Big E

    Big E Well-Known Member

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    The HEP ballasts in the LET fixtures are the same as what's in the Sunpower fixtures.

    From another forum........the ICN designation means it for T5HO----------

    "The ICN-2S39-T is a dual mode ballast. It can do 24W and 39W T5 2 bulbs. It also has the advantage that when you run 24W mode it has a ballast factor of 1.12. This means that bulbs will be over 10% brighter than a HEP and 25% brighter than a Workhorse.

    Also, power factor stays at 1.0 which means it is not overdriving the bulbs by doing this. It is just a more efficient ballast."
     
  16. Velcro

    Velcro Well-Known Member

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    Here's a pretty strong argument for t5:

    You'll never have to worry if your lighting is a factor in coral success. This is assuming you change your bulbs appropriately and use proven bulbs (Don't do something like 8 GE 6500K bulbs over a 40 breeder ;) )
     
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  17. Centerline

    Centerline Well-Known Member R2R Supporter

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    Dissenting View: I cant think of one reason to not use MHs if bulb replacement cost and heat are not a problem. So I'm going to encourage you to go back to what worked for you in the past.
     
  18. Centerline

    Centerline Well-Known Member R2R Supporter

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    Its a different shimmer, broader, less focused ripples. That statement doesn't look like it makes sense but I can express it any other way.
     
  19. Centerline

    Centerline Well-Known Member R2R Supporter

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    One more thing ;) ....
    The new T5 format LEDs such as the E5 provide some great options for color rendering. A 6 or 8 bulb fixture with one or two of these produce some great results. I use one of the blue pops with a 1 GE 65k, 1 KZ New Gen and an ATI Blue Plus on a Giesemann spectra with 2 250 Radium MH bulbs. My preference for general viewing would be the Radiums but that combo of T5s with that single E5 produces a beautiful blue with no shimmer at all.
     
  20. Velcro

    Velcro Well-Known Member

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    Have you compared the e5 to a royal blue strip like the reefbrite? Obviously there's no shimmer with the e5, but how is the color? I've been thinking about trying two of these in my spectra for royal blues instead of building crew light bars.
     
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