Lighting my (new) 240. What are YOU using?

JohnnyAirtime

New member
Hello guys and gals...
I'm stepping up my game, and going to a 240gal from a 125.

Currently;
My 125 is full of softies and some LPS, never going to be SPS. It's doing great with (6) 36" T5 HO.

Here's my livestock to give you an example of what i keep; http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v298/johnnyairtime/Fish-Tank/125gal/87c29f05.jpg

My upgrade;
I'll be moving all the 125 contents into the 240 in a couple weeks, and need ideas on what lighting is working for you... for similar corals. Or what you think will work for me.

I'll have (2) 250w Halides to use. And would love to get the shimmer they provide. But would also like to use T5s as they provide great par and range of light/color.

If I go with only Halides, what's a good bulb (color, quality...etc) to use?
And should I be okay with only 2, or will I need a third (considering my corals being kept)?

... the canopy lid will be split in two, for access to each side. Hence the thought of using (2) 250W halides, one for each side. With possibly using multiple 36" T5 HO bulbs to cover the lighting I'd need to supplement the halide kelvin. Will supplementing the halides with T5s lose the shimmer effect??

Throw out your ideas, what your using...etc. I'm all ears!! Pictures of what ya got would be cool too. THANKS!!!
 

dahenley

New member
What 240 are you getting?
240 long = 8' long
240 tall = 6' long (i believe its 6'long)


My 240 long uses 3-400w lights. you could do 250's since the tank is only 24" tall.
i also have VHO's for supplement's
 

launchnukes

New member
If the tank is 6' I'd say you need 3 MHs. If it's 8' I'd say 4. I have a 6' 300 with 3 MHs 350w hqi with radiums and 4 54w t5s. Whatever you do, I'd invest in good reflectors. Oh and you'll still have the shimmer while supplementing w t5s (at least I do).
 

JohnnyAirtime

New member
... it's the 8 footer, 24" tall.

Again, here's my thoughts;
If my 18" deep 125, with 234 watts gets enough light....

Why would I need so much more light? It seems everything in my 18" deep tanks does super well with only 234 watts total. I mean, really darn good. And I don't keep SPS or clams, or anything too complex.

I figure'd it might do well with;
(2) 250W Halides (10K)
(4) 36" T5-HO 39W Actinics

656 watts, which is nearly triple what I have now, for only 7" deeper water.

... I'd ALSO like to hear from those who might have less light, than some of you... and how their corals are doing with their setups (currently). When I read up on what some tank owners are using, it seems like a LOT of light when compared to what's working for me now. In the meantime, I'm doing my research on PAR for the lighting I'm thinking about... and know, that it's not always better to have too much.

So, with the T5s... I'll still get shimmer???

(Thanks LaunchNukes for the info - I checked out your "build" thread too, very nice!!)
 
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dahenley

New member
a local guy had a 240 with 6 or 8 VHO's and he kept SPS at the top with lots of LPS and others everywhere else.

The whole Watts per gallon has gone away due to Par Readings....
7" of water can drastically change PAR readings.
T-5's can give some shimmer, but nothing like what you will get with a MH.

you also have to think about spread. a MH on a good reflector will get you a 24X24 - 30X30 spread. (depending on reflector) your going to have a lot light space between the MH's but there wont be much Par.. this might be ok between rock structures or for some softies or gorgonians but its also something to think about.....
 

JohnnyAirtime

New member
I might have to give up the shimmer.
... I'm not stuck on it, but it'd be nice in this sized tank.

I used to have a 260gal (8' long, 24" deep with 2 and 3' width) and I think I only had one 400W Halide. But that was 20yrs ago... and I can't remember any part of it these days. I don't even have but a few pictures of it :(
... I do know I made my own FLAT reflector out of polished SS. These days, I see everyone using an upside down bowl type. Hmmmm....

I don't mind the lack of spread, or some low PAR areas. In fact, I think it'd give it the REEF look I want anyway (with caves, and how I aquascape my rocks in the first place).

So what would be my equivalent PAR in using T5 HOs for that deep of a tank? ... I can always sell the (2) 250W halides I have and put the $$ towards T5s.

Or someone with a 36" deep tank, let me know what they are using in the 8' long market (even though I'll be splitting my canopy lid in half for ease of feeding...etc)
 

sunlitreef

New member
Hey, Johnny, this is Justin, I got the chiller from you last summer. I have a new setup that is 30x30x80 and I chose to go with 2 14" directed sunlight tubes, and 3 led panels.
77e2f4bf.jpg

This is a 125 gallon half circle that I just broke down. It had 1 panel and 1 14" tube. This pic is when it was pretty new.
c5a8310e.jpg

This is the new layout.
 

mmoore0803

Premium Member
I used to have my 240 lit with 3 175w Iwasaki bulbs in 2 Lumenarcs and 1 Lumenbrite reflector (Icecap ballasts). I kept sps, lps, softies, and have 3 rose anemones.

I just switched them out for 3 LED panels from Larry.

Plenty of light in my system.
 

JohnnyAirtime

New member
Thanks Justin. Nice new build you got going there.


I used to have my 240 lit with 3 175w Iwasaki bulbs in 2 Lumenarcs and 1 Lumenbrite reflector (Icecap ballasts). I kept sps, lps, softies, and have 3 rose anemones.

I just switched them out for 3 LED panels from Larry.

Plenty of light in my system.

I thought about (3) 175 HQIs in a 72" light, with the (4) T5 combo.
... good to hear you did well with the 175 halides. I can't see why they'd not be enough in a 24" depth.

Anyone else have that theory? Or is everyone still on the 250W/400W halide quest?
 

dahenley

New member
i will say that living in texas where its hot.... the 400's do put off some serious heat... especially if you drop from a 20k to a 10 k bulb!!

if your not going pure SPS, then i dont see why 175's wont work. especially with a decent reflector.

you could keep SPS to the top and LPS in the middle
and softies everywhere else.
 

bkvreef

New member
How many? What lengths? ... not enough input. ;)

I had a 220g that was 7' long. I used 6 x 60" 80w t-5's and spread them out over the length. That setup worked great for me. Mostly LPS and softies, I did have a couple sps but they were higher up and did fine.
Have you thought about L.E.D.'s? I don't have any but I know that I had to replace the bulbs yearly for at least $25 each. I'm not an expert but over time I think you'd easily recoup the upfront cost.

Good Luck!
 

JohnnyAirtime

New member
I had a 220g that was 7' long. I used 6 x 60" 80w t-5's and spread them out over the length. That setup worked great for me. Mostly LPS and softies, I did have a couple sps but they were higher up and did fine.
Have you thought about L.E.D.'s? I don't have any but I know that I had to replace the bulbs yearly for at least $25 each. I'm not an expert but over time I think you'd easily recoup the upfront cost.

Good Luck!


I've thought about going with two 48" 6x54W T5 setups... but, that gets costly. So I'm still looking at used online and Craigs.

I've got a line on a 72" 3x250W Halide (w/moon leds) setup... going to look at it today. Seller is at $350 right now. And I could supplement it with my T5 retro kits for color.

And yes, I've thought about LEDs. But, the panels come in 120W, and aren't really large enough to get the coverage. I'd have to use about 4 or more panels... and at $250+ per panel (I've even emailed a China Supplier - $150/panel. However shipping is a killer!), I'd be in the 800-1000+ range for lighting. For now, I'm going to buy used and we'll see what the future holds.

If I could afford LEDs right up front, it'd be a sweet deal for sure.
 
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