Changing lighting, looking for Pro advise, 40 year saltwater veteran, not for newbies.

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14 foot reef

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Zzyzx

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First I’m pretty much blind and can’t see your tank setup so I’m asking questions. It sounds like it’s in the middle of the room and open on top to the ceiling? How much higher is the ceiling from the top of tank and how deep is the tank? I ask as you said you wanted to clean up the hybrid mess. The clean route would be kessil a500x units recessed in the ceiling but I don’t know if that’s an option. I’m surprised no one has mentioned Phillips coral care. No fans to deal with which is a plus maintenance wise over a large tank. My recommendation as you will get nothing but our worthless opinions here would be to either hire a consultant or deal with a lighting manufacturer directly. Most lighting manufacturer would be happy to help you plan out a system of this size and probably give you a bit of a discount as you will be buying a few fixtures. Otherwise we’ll be here for six months giving you horrible ideas that you won’t like.
 
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14 foot reef

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First I’m pretty much blind and can’t see your tank setup so I’m asking questions. It sounds like it’s in the middle of the room and open on top to the ceiling? How much higher is the ceiling from the top of tank and how deep is the tank? I ask as you said you wanted to clean up the hybrid mess. The clean route would be kessil a500x units recessed in the ceiling but I don’t know if that’s an option. I’m surprised no one has mentioned Phillips coral care. No fans to deal with which is a plus maintenance wise over a large tank. My recommendation as you will get nothing but our worthless opinions here would be to either hire a consultant or deal with a lighting manufacturer directly. Most lighting manufacturer would be happy to help you plan out a system of this size and probably give you a bit of a discount as you will be buying a few fixtures. Otherwise we’ll be here for six months giving you horrible ideas that you won’t like.
That is the most honest reply yet. Thanks, I have thought of this angle and probably will go this direction. Thanks for your honesty
 

Shooter6

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First I’m pretty much blind and can’t see your tank setup so I’m asking questions. It sounds like it’s in the middle of the room and open on top to the ceiling? How much higher is the ceiling from the top of tank and how deep is the tank? I ask as you said you wanted to clean up the hybrid mess. The clean route would be kessil a500x units recessed in the ceiling but I don’t know if that’s an option. I’m surprised no one has mentioned Phillips coral care. No fans to deal with which is a plus maintenance wise over a large tank. My recommendation as you will get nothing but our worthless opinions here would be to either hire a consultant or deal with a lighting manufacturer directly. Most lighting manufacturer would be happy to help you plan out a system of this size and probably give you a bit of a discount as you will be buying a few fixtures. Otherwise we’ll be here for six months giving you horrible ideas that you won’t like.
2 points on this, first I don't know how well the kessil would work recessed, ( cooling and maintenance) but it's a great idea. The Orpheks Amazonas may olso be an option here.
Link attached.

As for fan less light besides the coral care the ATI straton would be a second option
 

Zzyzx

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2 points on this, first I don't know how well the kessil would work recessed, ( cooling and maintenance) but it's a great idea. The Orpheks Amazonas may olso be an option here.
Link attached.

As for fan less light besides the coral care the ATI straton would be a second option
Yeah why I said I didn’t know if it was an option for him. Only one I heard of was in a ceiling with an air conditioned, semi finished attic that didn’t have insulation above the ceiling. They were supposedly able to access the light from the attic. They were on a smaller tank though so there was only three or four. I recently read about the orpheks too. They sound like a great option. I haven’t heard anything on them as they are new to market. More decent options here.
 
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Shooter6

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Yeah why I said I didn’t know if it was an option for him. Only one I heard of was in a ceiling with an air conditioned, semi finished attic that didn’t have insulation above the ceiling. They were supposedly able to access the light from the attic. They were on a smaller tank though so there was only three or four. I recently read about the orpheks too. They sound like a great option. I haven’t heard anything on them as they are new to market. More decent options here.
I may not have posed my comment how I intended it to be. I was posing those points as questions as far as the recessing the kessils, as it's a great Idea. I just didn't know how well they would work with cooling. Same can be applied to the orphek if it were recessed though. I don't know if there would be sufficient cooling available. I can picture a ceiling mounted frame to match the stand, with the lights in, or a floating canopy to hide them as well.
 

Zzyzx

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I may not have posed my comment how I intended it to be. I was posing those points as questions as far as the recessing the kessils, as it's a great Idea. I just didn't know how well they would work with cooling. Same can be applied to the orphek if it were recessed though. I don't know if there would be sufficient cooling available. I can picture a ceiling mounted frame to match the stand, with the lights in, or a floating canopy to hide them as well.
Yeah, I think they would overheat unless it was an open area above the ceiling like the one I read about. It was a conditioned space on top of that. They for sure need airspace and probably additional ventilation if it’s hot above the ceiling. Probably the same if they were boxed in an enclosure or soffit. The look would be well worth the effort in certain situations. Personally I don’t like Kessils without supplemental t5 or led bars, but that’s just me. Lighting is a very personal choice. Everyone has different tastes. Having three tanks in one, with different lighting requirements, trying not to spend a grand for either end, having everything match from every angle, and have it look nice and uncluttered is a tall order!

edit.. although you could probably get 25-30 off those noopy lights advertised on here on a single rail and be money ahead. Not for me but who knows?
 
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There is no chance this is a cost savings change, not looking at any non scientifically tested options, this is a 10 year change at whatever cost, within reason.
 

Shooter6

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If it’s fairly SPS dominant, I’d get 6, mounted sideways (since the tank is so deep front to back), 16” apart (measuring from the center of the light) with the two on the ends being 8” from the side. If it’s more mixed reef, 5, spaced roughly 19” apart (9.5” from the sides). I’m starting to think to get even cover on the end tanks, you may need two XR 15s mounted in sort of an L shape or an XR 30, the 36” width/depth is going mean you’ll have some pretty significant dimming towards the edges if you go with just one XR15.
And this is why I made my first suggestion.
7k+ to run the radions...
 

Max93

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Cool setup!

Halides actually make this the easiest but since they are out....go with the G6. XR30s in the center and 15s on the ends.

You could also do AP9X fixtures in the middle and A360Xs on the end if you want to stick with Kessil
I agree with this. Xr30s for sure just make sure you get enough of them for enough power.
 
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And this is why I made my first suggestion.
7k+ to run the radions...
He said he wanted Radions or Neptunes, neither of those are what I would use to light a tank that big (not that they’re in any way bad lights, it’s just the cost), of those two, for a tank with these dimensions, I’d go with the Radions over the Neptunes.
 

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6 What ? The end tanks are basically fish only live rock with an anemone. the reef structure in the center is at best 24" front to back and the tank is only 28" deep. just more info, thanks for the input.
Sorry, I had said XR30’s and you asked how many, but I could’ve been more clear. 5-6 XR 30s for the main tank and either 2 XR 15s or an XR30 for each side tank. So a total of either 5-6 XR 30s and 4 XR15s, or 7-8 XR30s. For the side tanks, I don’t think they’d need the intensity that what I recommended would provide, but given the dimensions I don’t see any way to do less without having some obvious dimming/uneven coverage (you could do different lights for those tanks, but I don’t know that they would look seamless, as you mentioned was something you wanted. Personally, if it were my tank, I’d throw 7-8 Noopsyches on it, you’d get close to the same intensity, spectrum, and spread for about a quarter of the price.
 
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Jedi1199

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There is no chance this is a cost savings change, not looking at any non scientifically tested options, this is a 10 year change at whatever cost, within reason.


My first thought on this was the ceiling mounted Kessils. I for the life of me can't recall what the model number is. I know they work well as CaliKids corals in Concord, Ca uses them to light one of their displays.

Since the goal here is adequate light, Kessil shimmer and visual aesthetics, I think your best route will be to go with Zzyzx advice and get a consultation from a professional lighting designer. They can see the actual space in person and offer you the best options for your needs.

For what it's worth, I love Kessil lights and have them over my own reef. I don't plan to ever go away from them.

Beautiful tank by the way!!
 
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Zzyzx

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My first thought on this was the ceiling mounted Kessils. I for the life of me can't recall what the model number is. I know they work well as CaliKids corals in Concord, Ca uses them to light one of their displays.

Since the goal here is adequate light, Kessil shimmer and visual aesthetics, I think your best route will be to go with Zzyzx advice and get a consultation from a professional lighting designer. They can see the actual space in person and offer you the best options for your needs.

For what it's worth, I love Kessil lights and have them over my own reef. I don't plan to ever go away from them.

Beautiful tank by the way!!
I’m with you in the Kessils! I don’t think they make that lamp anymore but I could be wrong. They have architectural track lighting which is basically the same other than the led unit. Those are nice as the track is powered eliminating cords. I don’t know if they’d swap led clusters for some custom units but you never know.
 
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Shooter6

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He said he wanted Radions or Neptunes, neither of those are what I would use to light a tank that big (not that they’re in any way bad lights, it’s just the cost), of those two, for a tank with these dimensions, I’d go with the Radions over the Neptunes.
I would not choose either for that reason either. In the end radions required to light this system for an sps dominant reef will be ridiculously expensive. 8 to 12 xr30 depending if they chose to use xr15 for the smaller end tanks.

Being sps dominant means they have to overcome shadowing caused by the smaller light source. Remember the xr30 is still only about a 13x7inch light where all the light has to reflect outward from. This is where the atlantik,coral care, sky and ati straton have an advantage.
The kessil x500 and orphek 980 are like mh that can be mounted very high over the reef spreading the light further in a blanket. Although I would still use 8 of either of those as well.
 

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2 Orphek Amazonia 80's for the ends, 3 320's for the center.
No color tuning, just dimmable so you need to pick a "color"..
30 degree lenses 4.6' from light face to water surface (simple science)
The added "science" is once you get as many photons on the water surface as you can the water and glass will train most to stay there. And the narrower the lens but higher up cuts down on shading.

Got 6' of ceiling? Lights are about 1ft tall.
Being that far up pretty well takes them out of the "visual" equation..
Lower than that one can "highlight" the center island.
Waterproof and fanless as well.

60 degrees 2ft up.
All calculated using 30" dia "spot" size.
1120 total available wattage..
Tanks about 650gal right?
The icon 960's are full blown controllable but overkill for the ends.

Ask the experts at Orphek...my only advice involves aesthetics and physics and an alternate way of looking at it. No more, no less.

Kessil has sort of the same narrow beam lights.


Your orig. alternates don't seem much different than what you already have really.
 

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