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Re: RE: Optimal Aquarium Depth and Fluorescent Lighting

Hi everyone, my name's Emery.  I'm new to this list-serve/Digest thingy, so
forgive me if I screwed up in replying...

Well, as you know of course, the wattage of the lighting depends on several
factors.  The depth and and size of the fish tank are quite important, but there
are others that you might want to consider.  For example, if you're planning on
filtering your water with peat moss, then you might want to go with a higher
wattage.  Water filtered through peat tends to be more dark and does not allow for
as much light penetration.

I haven't had much experience with metal halide, I like fluorescent myself.  I'm
not one with an extremely large budget for these types of things!  (although, if I
did...)  My favorite type of fluorescent tube still remains the Vita-Light.  VHO
can be nice, if you can afford it.  It seems now that the face of (fluorescent and
general artificial) lighting is taking a turn.  If any of you subscribe to
Aquarium Fish Magazine, you'd understand.  A new product called the SHOLight has
come out from Perfecto, and it seems quite nice.  It's basically a high output
light which gives out 55 watts on a 21 inch tube.  The shape of the tube is more
of an elongated U as opposed to the straight line of a regular tube.  They
advertise that the spectrum (daylight) will remain stable for 3 years!  That's 6
times as long as regular tubes.  You can get more details by buying the March 1999
issue of AFM, the product review is on page 86.  It's now available through the
Pet Warehouse (www.petwhse.com).

I'm not usually one to preach new products, but this one looks promising!

Hope this helps,


Date: Sun, 24 Jan 1999 16:13:00 -0800
From: Bob Hoffman <rshcjh at concentric_net>
Subject: RE: Optimal Aquarium Depth and Fluorescent Lighting

If anyone replied directly to me, their reply went to an incorrect
address.  The correct is associated with this message.  Sorry for the
confusion.  The continuing joys of a involuntary ISP change.

Aquatic Plants Digest wrote:
> Date: Sun, 24 Jan 1999 08:48:23 -0600
> From: "Wilson" <jwilson at knology_net>
> Subject: RE: Optimal Aquarium Depth and Fluorescent Lighting
> > From: Bob Hoffman <bhoffman at deltanet_com>
> > 1) What would be the optimal (realistic) depth that would allow for a
> > reasonable diversity of aquatic plants including a Madagascar lace
> > plant?
> > 2) Given that depth, how much lighting would be required?
> > 3) What types/combination of bulbs (fluorescent) would be best?
> >
> > My thoughts are a 28 inch deep tank, with four 75 watt VHO bulbs (70
> > gal. tank) or two 75 watt VHO bulbs (40 gal. tank), bulbs would be all
> > URI AquaSun's.  Any thoughts, comments, and/or suggestions would be
> > appreciated.
> Based on my experiences with my 225 gallon (28" deep), it became painfully
> obvious that it takes a LOT of light to reach this depth. On a smaller, deep
> tank, MH is probably the best bet.
> I was using 4 72" 160w URI Aquasuns, but they have a strange ability to
> bleach perceived color from everything. A combination of 2 URI and 2
> Durotest Vita-lites "looks right" color wise. The Vita-lites add a much more
> "green" look to the tank. They are on separate Icecaps, it is pretty odd to
> flip back and forth comparing the light. (too white or too green:-)

I know Vita-lites come in a 48" 110watt VHO bulb but are there a similar
24" VHO bulbs?  If so, a source for them would be appreciated.  If not,
it would seem I am pretty much stuck with Aquasuns.  I really don't want
to go with MH.  Any other suggestions?
> 28" depth is also a major pain to work in unless you plan on a 6" substrate,
> or have really long arms.:-)

I have a 90 gal. reef tank that is 25 1/2" in depth, so I am used to the
wet armpit syndrome.  However, I was planning on a minimum 4-5"
substrate and, therefore, the situation should not be much different
than what I deal with at the present.