Free PAR meter? Photone App.

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AJsReef

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Yes your correct, it will is why the calibration is needed, if you lok at the document and the video you would understand how it affects it and why.
Just not buying into the apps ability to accurately calibrate for a phone sealed in an imperfect enclosure... Could it give insight? Potentially, but I don't think this app is a solve for owning/borrowing/renting a PAR meter that is designed for use underwater.
 
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flagg37

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I haven’t read through all 10 pages of this but I noticed you guys are all talking about putting your phone in a bag. It’s been quite a while since iPhones have been waterproof (it’s rated something like 30 mins at 6m); why not just skip the bag. I have an 11 max pro and have been washing it with soap and water periodically when I wash my hands. I’d wash it before and after putting it in the tank but I wouldn’t have any fear of damaging it.
 

diver22

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Yup but do agree, don't want to take the risk... lol, but if you decide to use it they do provide the calibration feature to consider the water and bag.

I agree with some of you, but we cannot not count things out just because we are all use to something else, technology as evolved tons throughout the years, so the only thing I would like to see is an Apogee meter the Photone App and a Lamp that is design for Reefing and do the PAR test and comparison using both Full Spectrum and B/W Spectrum.

Hopefully they will do it...
 

LeftyReefer

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Here is the response I got from the Photone app Devs...


Thank you for reaching out!

In general, the LED Blue/White is the correct setting for such a light. However, this is indeed a tricky light to measure and doing so is scratching on a technical limitation: In order to extrapolate the PAR spectrum correctly, the measurement algorithm needs to know the approximate spectrum the light is emitting and hence the setting in the app. If the spectrum of the light can be changed dynamically, it might be the case that multiple settings would apply, depending on the current configuration. We currently don’t have a comparable light to yours, so I ordered one to understand this case better.

What I propose for now: As the light is mainly blue and your “regular lighting” (not dusk nor dawn) is most likely using all the channels, the LED Blue/White should suffice and is the most correct representation of your light.

I hope this helps for the time being! Please mind that our app is generally made for terrestrial plants and their specific grow lights and our knowledge on aquarium lighting is still a bit thin in comparison. We are aware that this is a need and want to improve our app for it :)


Best regards,

Dominik
 
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LeftyReefer

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So this app has to know the spectrum of your light to give you correct PAR data back.

If the spectrum of your light doesn't match that of the algorithm, then it won't give correct PAR data.

Right now the app only has three pre-programmed LED sprectrums.... full spectrum, White/Blue, and Red/Blue.

the AB+ spectrum is popular in reefing, so maybe if they just add a AB+ spectrum to the pre-programmed options, it would be close???
 

diver22

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Thanks for sharing... I wish I had an Apogee to test the results of the B/W Spectrum on the Photne App against the result of the Apogee... If anyone can do this test please do and share result. I'm sure they will get similar spectrum related to Reefing and make adjustments. Fingers Crossed.
 

diver22

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So this app has to know the spectrum of your light to give you correct PAR data back.

If the spectrum of your light doesn't match that of the algorithm, then it won't give correct PAR data.

Right now the app only has three pre-programmed LED sprectrums.... full spectrum, White/Blue, and Red/Blue.

the AB+ spectrum is popular in reefing, so maybe if they just add a AB+ spectrum to the pre-programmed options, it would be close???
That will make sense, I'm sure they will make the adjustments for the reefing community is in there best interest...lol

That can hold true for any Vendor including Apogee they have to make changes to there calculations as things progress.
 
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Jeffbear

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This has been an interesting thread! I downloaded the app a couple of days ago on my Android. I set it up per the video. I'm not sure I can trust the results, or if I want to lol. I have an AI 16HD at 10" above my Fluval Flex 9. I have it set it up at 30% of BRS's AB+ schedule. At the water line in air is reading 302-315. As soon as I put it in the water about 4 inches it drops to 90 PAR. I was expecting 200-220 at that point in the tank. So this just makes me want to rent a PAR Meter for piece of mind. Great App, I just don't know anything about measuring PAR yet apparently.
 
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Koh23

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Seems kinda low, but again, that is not super duper powerfull light, so, maybe this measure is not so far from.accurate.....

Kinda wonders me, so much users here, from all parts of the world, yet, there's no gather topic on this topic.... ;)

At least i didnt find one, so, maybe its not bad idea, users here probably have all kind of lights, from cheap chinese to most expensive units, why not post their par readings, it would be very helpfull info for people who dont have acess to real par meter, if nothing, as guideline for specific light/conditions.....

Yes i know, it takes time and money, theres youtbe for popular lights, but still....it would be great.....
 
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diver22

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This has been an interesting thread! I downloaded the app a couple of days ago on my Android. I set it up per the video. I'm not sure I can trust the results, or if I want to lol. I have an AI 16HD at 10" above my Fluval Flex 9. I have it set it up at 30% of BRS's AB+ schedule. At the water line in air is reading 302-315. As soon as I put it in the water about 4 inches it drops to 90 PAR. I was expecting 200-220 at that point in the tank. So this just makes me want to rent a PAR Meter for piece of mind. Great App, I just don't know anything about measuring PAR yet apparently.
Remember the Android App is in Beta as well, they are discrepancies using Android, On there site they have other videos that pertain to Android and iPhone and it explains that same thing.

Also would be a good test to stop water agitation and take a reading, if you have an iPhone would be great to try it out.
 

diver22

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I actually been in contact with Support, I sent them yesterday a bunch of Light models Black boxes and high end ones so they can run some test and hopefully create something specific to Reefing Light Spectrum would be intresting what they find with the current B/W spectrum.. Fingers cross.
 

LeftyReefer

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This has been an interesting thread! I downloaded the app a couple of days ago on my Android. I set it up per the video. I'm not sure I can trust the results, or if I want to lol. I have an AI 16HD at 10" above my Fluval Flex 9. I have set it up at 30% of BRS's AB+ schedule. At the water line in air is reading 302-315. As soon as I put it in the water about 4 inches it drops to 90 PAR. I was expecting 200-220 at that point in the tank. So this just makes me want to rent a PAR Meter for piece of mind. Great App, I just don't know anything about measuring PAR yet apparently.

I'm assuming you correctly applied the 1.32 underwater correction factor? if so, then it is what it is.... an AI prime is not a super powerful light, plus you mentioned you are only running it at 30%..... at least you can turn it up.

Were you using the Blue/White light source setting?
 

diver22

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Downloaded the app yesterday and briefly played with it. So far I like it for reference on my nanobox duo. Following along to see how this develops.
Do you have a iPhone or Android ? And also are using the full spectrum or B/W option ?

I’m going to vacuum seal my iPhone tomorrow and test with the B/W spectrum, I did Par readings with Apogee about 5 months ago and going to do the same light intensity and see the differences …
 
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Jeffbear

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I'm assuming you correctly applied the 1.32 underwater correction factor? if so, then it is what it is.... an AI prime is not a super powerful light, plus you mentioned you are only running it at 30%..... at least you can turn it up.

Were you using the Blue/White light source setting?
I did apply the correction factor following the posted video. I have the app set to Blue/White as well. My expectations were similar numbers to the BRS video for my size tank. That's just not the case in my particular tank. My light is set to 35% (sorry I was off 5%) of the BRS settings not over all. They are UV 60% V 59% RB 49% B 42% G 4% DR 4% CW 19%
 

LeftyReefer

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I did apply the correction factor following the posted video. I have the app set to Blue/White as well. My expectations were similar numbers to the BRS video for my size tank. That's just not the case in my particular tank. My light is set to 35% (sorry I was off 5%) of the BRS settings not over all. They are UV 60% V 59% RB 49% B 42% G 4% DR 4% CW 19%
As telegraham points out in his light tests... BRS's tests give you the "best possible scenario" in their light tests... they are trying to sell those lights after all. They use in-tank testing, in clean bare tanks, which bounces around more light and will increase the PAR during those tests, but often don't translate to real world tanks where we have film algaes on surfaces, rocks and corals blocking reflections, dirty water, currents, etc... BRS makes every light look better than it actually is. LOL.

One thing I was little surprised by was how little of an increase in PAR I got by turning up my light...

I had my lights set 10/60/60/60/10/10 the first day I installed this app. Basically 60% blue channels, 10% white, red, green. Those settings gave me about 640 PAR at the water surface.

the next day I turned my lights up a little... now running 10/70/70/70/10/15. Turned the three blue channels up slightly (from 60% to 70%) and added a little more green (10% to 15%). Those changes only added about 3-4 PAR more overall. 644 PAR after the change. a 10% bump in blues only gave me 4 more PAR.

Now I'm curious to see how much (or little ?) PAR increase I will get by turning my blues up to 100%.

I had planned to vacuum seal my phone some time this weekend and do some underwater testing, but there is also a local frag swap this weekend, so I may get distracted.... we'll see.
 

Jeffbear

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As telegraham points out in his light tests... BRS's tests give you the "best possible scenario" in their light tests... they are trying to sell those lights after all. They use in-tank testing, in clean bare tanks, which bounces around more light and will increase the PAR during those tests, but often don't translate to real world tanks where we have film algaes on surfaces, rocks and corals blocking reflections, dirty water, currents, etc... BRS makes every light look better than it actually is. LOL.

One thing I was little surprised by was how little of an increase in PAR I got by turning up my light...

I had my lights set 10/60/60/60/10/10 the first day I installed this app. Basically 60% blue channels, 10% white, red, green. Those settings gave me about 640 PAR at the water surface.

the next day I turned my lights up a little... now running 10/70/70/70/10/15. Turned the three blue channels up slightly (from 60% to 70%) and added a little more green (10% to 15%). Those changes only added about 3-4 PAR more overall. 644 PAR after the change. a 10% bump in blues only gave me 4 more PAR.

Now I'm curious to see how much (or little ?) PAR increase I will get by turning my blues up to 100%.

I had planned to vacuum seal my phone some time this weekend and do some underwater testing, but there is also a local frag swap this weekend, so I may get distracted.... we'll see.
I rewatched that video again. I think I can go way higher with my lights now that I see their number for a 12" cube at 8" above the water. I'm going to increase my lights over the next couple of days and retest. My Monti's on my top rock are what tell me my light might not be high enough. The green monti in browning a bit between the ridges. I'm told that's a sign of not enough light if all other factors are controlled.
 

JNalley

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I haven’t read through all 10 pages of this but I noticed you guys are all talking about putting your phone in a bag. It’s been quite a while since iPhones have been waterproof (it’s rated something like 30 mins at 6m); why not just skip the bag. I have an 11 max pro and have been washing it with soap and water periodically when I wash my hands. I’d wash it before and after putting it in the tank but I wouldn’t have any fear of damaging it.
Yes, waterproof, which isn't covered by warranty or apple care. If the Liquid Damage Indicator is tripped, and your phone suddenly stops working, you will need to buy a new phone...
 

JNalley

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As telegraham points out in his light tests... BRS's tests give you the "best possible scenario" in their light tests... they are trying to sell those lights after all. They use in-tank testing, in clean bare tanks, which bounces around more light and will increase the PAR during those tests,
Another way to put this is, they're doing a test without all the variables in order to give people at least SOME extra information, and most of the time I see the PAR tests, it's not about "This is how much PAR you can achieve" (though I have seen that once or twice) it's more about achieving the best spread to get rid of center hotspots and find the proper mounting height. Don't get me wrong, I am not the biggest BRS fan, and they are indeed trying to sell you stuff, especially Apex gear, but their light information is at least reasonably well thought out if you use it for its intended purposes and not a "How much par will I get" purpose.
 
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