250W MH help please!!!

likefish

New member
I intend to set up a 250W MH on 1/2 of my 120 SPS tank. I intend for it to light a 2x2x2 area that will be dominated by SPS.

There are sooooo many combinations and opinions on Ballasts, reflectors, and bulbs that it is overwhelming!!!

I am begging for people to post suggestions for a long lasting, combination that will provide good results for SPS. If you care to suggest where to buy them thank you even more!!! There are lots of parts and pieces sold on the forum but i want to make sure i get it right the first time!

Bulb
Reflector
Ballast

Thank you!!!
 

d2mini

Premium Member
a very popular choice for MH on a tank of your depth is the 250w Radium bulb run on an M80 magnetic ballast. Look for a high quality reflector like a lumen bright or cayman sun.
I'm running three of these bulb/ballast combos on my tank and supplementing with (4) 80w T5 bulbs.
 

JN93

New member
yesss, 250 watt Radium 20k on m80 ballast is the way to go, i just wish they made a radium 250w Double End...
 

Bpb

New member
D2mini, you don't know me but I've seen several of your posts here and on marsh, as well as your build thread...I thought you were a radion exclusive guy? Solid recommendations on the radium and m80 ballast though

To the Original poster...

Cheap cheap cheap option:
Aquamedic used DE reflector pendant
Used galaxy 250 watt adjustable ballast
Phoenix bulb.

Pricier but top of the line option:
Brand new Coralvue Lumenbright reflector
Brand new Hamilton M80 ballast
Radium bulb

Just suggestions. But as a new member of the metal halide club I know the choices are daunting. Search the used market. There are tons other options. Any of the Lumenmax, Lumenbright, or Hamilton reflectors will be perfect honestly, and as long as you match bulb to ballast you're fine (pulse start bulb/pulse start ballast, or probe start bulb/probe start ballast). Search the stickies and just read. You'll find examples of spectacular tanks using just about every popular reef mh bulb on the market. lol just read all the last TOTM threads for inspiration

Or just go with a tried and true gold standard and get a radium and an m80 lol
 

likefish

New member
a very popular choice for MH on a tank of your depth is the 250w Radium bulb run on an M80 magnetic ballast. Look for a high quality reflector like a lumen bright or cayman sun.
I'm running three of these bulb/ballast combos on my tank and supplementing with (4) 80w T5 bulbs.

Greatly appreciated! Just got done with your thread.... very impressive! nice work


Thank you for link. Sale is pending to someone else but I am next in line. Just curious: what is the expected lifespan of these ballasts?

Solid recommendations on the radium and m80 ballast though

To the Original poster...

Cheap cheap cheap option:
Aquamedic used DE reflector pendant
Used galaxy 250 watt adjustable ballast
Phoenix bulb.

Pricier but top of the line option:
Brand new Coralvue Lumenbright reflector
Brand new Hamilton M80 ballast
Radium bulb

Just suggestions. But as a new member of the metal halide club I know the choices are daunting. Search the used market. There are tons other options. Any of the Lumenmax, Lumenbright, or Hamilton reflectors will be perfect honestly, and as long as you match bulb to ballast you're fine (pulse start bulb/pulse start ballast, or probe start bulb/probe start ballast). Search the stickies and just read. You'll find examples of spectacular tanks using just about every popular reef mh bulb on the market. lol just read all the last TOTM threads for inspiration

Or just go with a tried and true gold standard and get a radium and an m80 lol

The cheap, cheap, cheap option: what is the tradeoff in price? Performance? Longevity of equipment? Efficiency? I understand that the reflector puts the watts into the tank, what is the deciding factor on ballast/bulb combos?



Thanks again all for your suggestions and help!
 

Bpb

New member
Well...I can't show you an ad now, but I've seen the aquamedic pendants go for under $50 a piece, used ballasts go for $50-100, and bulbs...depends. Phoenix bulbs are in the $50 range, if you got a cheap SE pendant you can do plusrite 20k bulbs for $15 a piece. Just depends how much you look. Used gear is a gamble especially on e ballasts. I've never used any of those just know what they can be bought for money wise. Can't comment on par/spread, ect.

The radium on m80 looks spectacular. Crisp white with a blue enough to bring out the green corals. It's hard to describe comin from t5 lighting. It's less blue lookin and more realistic. Corals look more like a box of crayons rather than neon paint under blacklight if that makes sense. But to buy that setup brand new you're looking at $300-$400 for a single pendant that'll cover a 2'x2' area. Your call. Some people want the best regardless of cost and I can respect that, other people are trying to just get good enough for a tight budget
 

moondoggy4

Team RC
Hamilton ballast can last up to 10 years and they still service what they sell. Aqua Medic also makes a real nice M80 ballast called the cube good luck finding one though the 150's can still be found.
 

Bpb

New member
From what research I've done the reefflex cube is the favorite m80 ballast for a while now they're just hard to get new because every vendor has them listed as discontinued...though I hear if you call aquamedic directly and pester them they'll sell them still. No direct experience there

Hamilton still makes and sells them though and they're easy to find most places. I like mine well enough. They're big and heavy but fairly quiet and nice and solid feeling. One of mine is brand new, the other is beat to heck and several years old, noise, heat, and bulb color look identical with them though
 
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