T8 vs T8, efficiency, etc.

Hey, just a postscript on the recent lighting electronics thread... 
remember that not all T-8 bulbs are the same.  There's the 18" and 36" T-8
rapid start bulbs (15 and 30 watts) that have been around for years and
use standard normal-output ballasts and starters.  Then there's the nifty
high-efficiency 24" and 48" T-8 instant start bulbs (17 and 32 Watts,
respectively) that require the modern electronic ballasts.  Heck, I've
also seen 48" T-10 normal output bulbs too, and may have seen a
normal-output T-8 (48", 40W) once or twice.  So talking about a T-8 Triton
may have been a red herring in yesterday's discussion.  Maybe.

  - Erik

Another PS: Just converted one of my 20's over to 2x17W T-8s last week. 
Had been using three full-spectrum T-12's previously.  24" 5000K bulbs
were harder to find & more expensive ($12.50 a pop) than the 48" bulbs,
but that's because my lighting supplier had to get 95 CRI tubes instead of
the usual 75's.  Still, though, that's about the same price as a VitaLite,
and same performance too.  And my hood's much cooler & has space to move
the tank lid for feeding now.  I think I need to do an efficiency study
that includes the ballast in the power consumption... so often we forget
to take those into account when they can be eating up as much power as the
lights themselves.  The ability to fry an egg on one's ballast is a
particularly good indicator of its inefficiency! 

Erik D. Olson					         amazingly, at home
eriko at wrq_com