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re Lighting Power Compacts or not

I am setting up a 25 gal tank with the Amazonian decor, Angle (which 
     I've had for years, a couple of Discus and something really small. 
     Unfortuatly I am very confused about lighting this tank.  I will be 
     useing CO2 (at a small rate).  Going by the scale of 4W per gallon, I 
     believe 100W will be sufficient lighting.
     My options:
     Power Compacts (110W, one 6500K bulb, one 7100K bulb) -
     - $180 fixture w/ lights and $45 each year (bulb replacement)
     Fluorescents (VHO, with  2 bulbs either 2x40W or 40W + 75W) - 
     - $150 ballast w/ endcaps, 4 bulbs per year = $75
     Regular Fluorescents (4 x 20W)
     - $50 2 ballasts, 8 bulbs per year = $150
     *Note:  Assuming fluorescent bulbs last 6 months and power compacts 12 
     By my thinking, the power compacts make the best overall deal!!
     Anyone have experience with pc lighting??  Any help would greatly be 
     Thanks, Boris


I too looked very hard at the  power compacts but decided they were to expensive
I ended up using T8 lamps and electronic ballasts; in addition the reflector
was built using mylar film from a hydroponics shop.
        Reasons for my decision were as follows:
        1. the power compacts are not available locally anywhere

        2. I have seen the 28w power compacts and they are not a "standard
pinout" in any lighting book I can find.

        3. The T8's have a life span of 12 - 24 months (depending on which
manufacturer you listen to).  The ballasts are a standard item readily available
and I can use my old T12 sockets.
        I ended up using a 4 tube ballast ballastronics 570-640x   cost $32 cdn
four tube
        two GE SPX 4100         cost $5.00 cdn
        one Durotest 5000       cost $8.00 cdn
        one Durotest Plant /AQ   (5500K) cost $12.00 cdn
a reasonable setup that is working fine

Alternative might be the new T5 lamps which consume even less power and are the 
most efficient fluorescents yet  
check out
as a start.

Good luck choosing

Wayne Mews