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Re: Aquatic Plants Digest V3 #1179

James Purchase wrote:

> I've been looking over the "CF Bright Kits" offered by AH Supply and I'm
> seriously considering chucking the 3 175W MH Pendants over my 130G, 6' long
> tank (the MH ballasts have caused me no end of headaches and I'd rather NOT
> sink any more money into replacing them).
> A friend from my local plant group seems quite satisfied with 4 55W CF over
> her 120G, 4' long tank, so I'm thinking that perhaps 6 55W CF would perform
> well over the 6' length of my tank.
> I know that the Watts/Gallon "rule" is at best only a rough guide, but this
> would work out to only 2.5 W/G, whereas my MH Pendants (when they _worked_
> properly) provided 4 W/G.
> I have absolutely _no_ experience with this new generation of CF bulbs and
> am wondering if 6 55W tubes will be enough, or should I plan on 9 instead
> (3.8W/G)?
> I'm sure that some of you must be using CF bulbs over 6' long tanks - and
> I'd love to hear what you'd recommend.

Compact Fluorescents (as well as their PowerCompact, VHO and SHO
variants) have a much higher light output per Watt than regular tubes
and probably even higher than MH.
I have 4 96W PowerCompacts over my 72 inch, 150G tank which gives me on
paper about 2.5W/Gallon and it's simply too bright.  I can light my
entire street with my hood!
I suggest that you build your hood yourself, starting out with 4
55Watters and the option to add some more (even 28W) later.
For comprehensive technical information on this type of lighting check:
Hope this helps

Johan Henckens
johan at mmdg_org