Good Low Cost light for 20 gallon long?

LifeOfAquatics

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Anyone know a good lights for a 20 gallon long ( 30 x 12 x 12 ) mixed reef? I eventually want to keep acropora and don't want to keep upgrading my light down the road. I also don't really want to spend more than 80$ on a light. i currently have a nicrew light on a planted tank that I am considering putting on my upcoming reef tank with another nicrew light (the lights give off about like 80 PAR at a depth of 12 inches so two would be around 160). is combining two lights a good idea? i also don't want to get more than one light. also, how much par is good for acropora, I'm not thinking the super higher end that need like 500+ par or whatever, just some nice basic colorful beginner acros. thanks in advance!
 
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Billdogg

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I think your best bet will be a single 'black box' type LED, like Marsaqua or Viparspectra. It will be closer to 100$ dollars.
^^^This^^^

That will allow you to keep pretty much anything. The downside is that it probably won't have the controlability nthat the pricier lights will have
 
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LifeOfAquatics

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T5s work too
for t5s, would a light like this one https://www.bulkreefsupply.com/aquablue-azure-t5-giesemann.html work fine as a standalone and the only form of lighting in a mixed reef tank? I want to eventually keep sps and my tank will be a 20 long. also, would any light fixture that fits work for that bulb? i only plan on having that one bulb. also, will I need to have some distance between the fixture and the lid of the tank or can i just put the fixture directly on like a glass lid?
 
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for t5s, would a light like this one https://www.bulkreefsupply.com/aquablue-azure-t5-giesemann.html work fine as a standalone and the only form of lighting in a mixed reef tank? I want to eventually keep sps and my tank will be a 20 long. also, would any light fixture that fits work for that bulb? i only plan on having that one bulb. also, will I need to have some distance between the fixture and the lid of the tank or can i just put the fixture directly on like a glass lid?

One bulb, no. Two bulbs for softies/LPS/low light SPS and I would do 4 for acropora.

Not all fixtures are the same. Some do not have reflectors and some have much better reflectors like ATI.

The fixture needs to be hung or have legs.

I don't believe this can be done under $80 but the results and ease of a good T5 set up an acro's is hard to argue with.
 
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