[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]
RE: Lighting advice
It sounds like we are going to experiment. The 100g discus tank currently
has some Triton "Enhancer" reflectors and end caps with 40w NO FL bulbs. I
think we'll change that to T-8s with new ballasts (keep the reflectors, they
work OK). We'll have to look around town for a source for T-8 bulbs. Are
there any recommendations for bulbs in the 6500K range?
I would recomend two Sylvania 1.20 ballast factor ballast with 2 Philips 865
lamps and 2 Philips 965 lamps. I am not that confident about the lamps as I
have never achieved the results that you and many others get with their
tanks. The 965 lamps though do have an amazing CRI of 98. If the 865s cause
any problems with colors when taking pictures you can put in 4 965s for
picture taking. You probably won't be able to visually distinguish the
difference between the 865 mix and all 965s except the 865s will make the
tank brighter. The human threshold for being able to notice a change in in
CRI is supposed to be a change in 5 points.
I am confident about the ballast recomendation. If you don't use a high B.F.
ballast you will end up with less light over your tank than you get with the
The other 100g tank has cruddy 20 year old Sears shop light fixtures with
external tar ballasts. Surprisingly enough, the white Sears shop light
reflectors produce almost exactly the same lux as the costly, chromed (?)
Enhancers, given the same bulbs.
I have a theory why this is so. I think that it is impossible to design a
specular reflector that works with two NO T12 lamps per reflector. Anyway I
don't see how it can be done unless the reflector is very large. So, the
performance of a reflector with those lamps is pretty much just dependant on
the reflectivity of the reflector and not it's shape.
Since our tank is 60" long (150 cm), it sounds like we would want 4 36/40/55
kits. Two 22" reflectors could be centered nicely in both the front and in
the back halves of the hood. It looks like the 55w bulbs have the best color
choices. But given the "better efficiency" of CF (true?) and the wonderful
reflectors AH Supply touts, I'm wondering if 220 watts may cause us trouble.
We have been very content with 160 watts of "better" bulbs (Ultra TriLux and
Triton). Any thoughts on how 220 watts from AH Supply kits would compare to
160 watts of Ultra Tri-Lux/Triton light with OK reflectors? Mea culpa, I
was ignoring the lighting threads until just recently.
I have long suspected that Triton lamps operate at a higher voltage than
standard lamps but I have never been able to convince anybody to give to
test it and I don't want to spend the money to buy even one. ( to test it
you have to put a meter in series with the the lamp and measure the current
and the voltage with first Tritons and then cool whites being careful not to
fry your meter with the lamp startup voltage)
This is hard to figure out without knowing what you had before. The ballast
factor of the ballast you are replacing is unknown so would guess it's about
.88. Also, I am not sure of AH Supplies ballast factor but I just assume a
.95 B.F. I also don't have much of a clue about how much better the AH
Supply reflector is but I consevatively guess it is about 20% better. On top
of that if Triton lamps do develope a higher voltage across the lamp this
could throw things off quite a bit.
My best guess is that the 4 55s will produce about 80% more light than you
currently have. I have to make a lot of assumptions though to come up with
those numbers but still I doubt if they are that far off. The only thing
that would really screw things up would be if somehow Triton lamps really do
consume more wattage than a regular lamp. I really doubt that they are more
efficient. I would think you would be happier with 4 40 watt kits. This
should still be 35% more light than you currently have.
Just to confuse you, you might think about using 5' T8 lamps on your 5'
tank. They do make such things and probably they are not readily available
in your area but still 5' lamps on a 5' tank has a ring to it.
Has anyone noticed any interference on the TV from the electronic ballasts?
We have these two tanks in the living room with the TV and would just hate
to mess up our reception, especially after spending a few hundred bucks on
"modern" lights. We still get "free" TV from an antenna and wouldn't want to
have to add monthly cable TV bills to our aqaurium expenses.
I have never noticed a problem with my setups but things of that nature do
occur with electronic ballasts. The high frequency switching can cause some
really odd things to happen like mimicking your T.V. remote and turning the