Help with starting intensity: changing lights.

srobertb

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Hi!

I am new to the forum but have used it for years as an excellent source of information.

I have a 72”L x 18” D by 16” tall tank. I was running 4, Kessil A360x’s and a 4 bulb T5 fixture until the T5 fixture ballast blew. I had this setup for 2 years. I took off the T5 fixture (it was ugly) and ran with the 4 Kessils.

The Kessils were running at 100% for 9 hours a day and even with the T5’s I never really got the growth I wanted and the Kessils keep dying so I’m going back to Radions. They will be here on Friday. It was a quick (impulsive?) decision after the 3rd Kessil blew and I had just ordered $1k in corals (because Murphy’s law) so the lights and corals will be arriving on the same day.

I’m doing 3 of the G5 30’s 8” off the water. I did like the set it and forget nature of Kessil and so I’m pretty sure I’m just going to set AB+ with 9 hours peak and leave it. Can someone with knowledge give me a starting intensity to match the Kessils (w/o the T5’s)? It seems somewhere around 30% would be right? I’ll have to get in-line to get the clubs PAR meter so I’m flying blind here.
Thanks,
 
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outhouse

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Surprised you didn't cook your tank with kessils at 100% with such a shallow tank. Guessing that's why you had slow growth. I have a 30" deep tank and 60% cooked my corals with ocean revives. I would start of 20% and watch the tank. Not enough light is much much better then the opposite
 
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srobertb

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Surprised you didn't cook your tank with kessils at 100% with such a shallow tank. Guessing that's why you had slow growth. I have a 30" deep tank and 60% cooked my corals with ocean revives. I would start of 20% and watch the tank. Not enough light is much much better then the opposite
That’s an interesting take. My SPS have good color and poly extension but the growth isn’t that great; nowhere near where it was with radions. I never considered it may be too much light. Parameters are inline and stable. I used a PAR meter initially and was only in the 200’s everywhere with drop offs in the sand bed at 100% with 4 a360x’s + 4, 80w T5’s. The light was about 12” above the waterline.
 

Hydrored

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I would not be concerned with the too much PAR comment as Kessil's and Ocean Revive lights do not compare and especially not with SPS.

I have an 8' tank 21" deep that I ran 5 G5 XR30's over, started with 25%, and ended up around 54% putting 300/330 par at the tops of my rocks.

Personally, I would start at around 25% and hope you can get a PAR meter to figure out peak % for the PAR and acclimate to there.

I no longer use the Radions or I would take some PAR reading for ya
 
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minus9

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12" is kinda high for Kessil's without narrow reflectors. Not to sidetrack your current situation, how did the lights die? Did you keep them clean? Running at 100% and not making sure they are clear of dirt and dust is a quick way of overheating them.
Regardless, borrow or rent a par meter. It's better to start low and work your way up. Corals can go longer under low light than too high, so you can increase 5% a week and you should be fine.
 
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srobertb

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12" is kinda high for Kessil's without narrow reflectors. Not to sidetrack your current situation, how did the lights die? Did you keep them clean? Running at 100% and not making sure they are clear of dirt and dust is a quick way of overheating them.
Regardless, borrow or rent a par meter. It's better to start low and work your way up. Corals can go longer under low light than too high, so you can increase 5% a week and you should be fine.
I cleaned them 2x a month with an air compressor. They were 12” off the water and 7” when I just used goosenecks. The fixture was too difficult to work under with the T5’s and that’s why it was at 12”.

the first one stopped working. Kessil replaced. Literally a week later the blue channel died on another one. A week or so later another one died. I took them apart at their direction. They were clean. The fan spun. Something inside just died. (I also checked the power supplies too).

I don’t know what to tell you. They just died….and it was way too close to the end of warranty for my comfort (1 week after, 2 days before, the last one made it another 2 weeks

Not to drag you into a debate (and certainly not one I want to have) but while the shimmer was pretty they didn’t grow anything for me. I have a 160 tuna blue over a 10g tank that I’m happy with (bubble tips, maxi/mini/Mancini Aerolata) but these didn’t work for me over my bigger tank.

I may bring in more light with the Radions but I hate that aquatic life fixture; I’d rather add 1-2 more Radions instead.

the Radions have been installed for an hour. I turned them on and my wife (who has limited tank knowledge) was immediately like “oh it looks so much better!” So obviously for us, we already like them better.
 

minus9

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I cleaned them 2x a month with an air compressor. They were 12” off the water and 7” when I just used goosenecks. The fixture was too difficult to work under with the T5’s and that’s why it was at 12”.

the first one stopped working. Kessil replaced. Literally a week later the blue channel died on another one. A week or so later another one died. I took them apart at their direction. They were clean. The fan spun. Something inside just died. (I also checked the power supplies too).

I don’t know what to tell you. They just died….and it was way too close to the end of warranty for my comfort (1 week after, 2 days before, the last one made it another 2 weeks

Not to drag you into a debate (and certainly not one I want to have) but while the shimmer was pretty they didn’t grow anything for me. I have a 160 tuna blue over a 10g tank that I’m happy with (bubble tips, maxi/mini/Mancini Aerolata) but these didn’t work for me over my bigger tank.

I may bring in more light with the Radions but I hate that aquatic life fixture; I’d rather add 1-2 more Radions instead.

the Radions have been installed for an hour. I turned them on and my wife (who has limited tank knowledge) was immediately like “oh it looks so much better!” So obviously for us, we already like them better.
No worries and no debate from me. I don't get caught up in "best led" or whatever. I think each light has its good and bad, but it's ultimately up to the end user to figure out what they like best. Each tank is different and certain lights don't always work out in a given situation. Sorry to hear about the lights going down. I've had new gear go down, sometimes it's the luck of the draw. I've had good results with kessil, but I also treat led's as if they are half powered or only cover half the area the manufacturer suggests. So I have more than needed, especially with sps.
Hopefully you can get a par meter to help figure out where you need to be.
Good luck and I hope it works out, just go slow and observe.
 
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srobertb

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I’m with you that the tank spread every company gives is garbage…even BRS contradicts their own “suggested coverage” in their videos. I also don’t like running electronics like this at 100%. I was shocked at the PAR readings from the local club’s meter. It was tuned for LEDS and my readings with everything were like 200 at full blast; even with 4x80w of T5’s. It was uniform but disappointing. From water to sand bed is 12” in some places too.

glad they work for you. I really liked the look of kessils (in and out) and I’m bummed about it.

No worries and no debate from me. I don't get caught up in "best led" or whatever. I think each light has its good and bad, but it's ultimately up to the end user to figure out what they like best. Each tank is different and certain lights don't always work out in a given situation. Sorry to hear about the lights going down. I've had new gear go down, sometimes it's the luck of the draw. I've had good results with kessil, but I also treat led's as if they are half powered or only cover half the area the manufacturer suggests. So I have more than needed, especially with sps.
Hopefully you can get a par meter to help figure out where you need to be.
Good luck and I hope it works out, just go slow and obse
 

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I’m with you that the tank spread every company gives is garbage…even BRS contradicts their own “suggested coverage” in their videos. I also don’t like running electronics like this at 100%. I was shocked at the PAR readings from the local club’s meter. It was tuned for LEDS and my readings with everything were like 200 at full blast; even with 4x80w of T5’s. It was uniform but disappointing. From water to sand bed is 12” in some places too.

glad they work for you. I really liked the look of kessils (in and out) and I’m bummed about it.

No worries and no debate from me. I don't get caught up in "best led" or whatever. I think each light has its good and bad, but it's ultimately up to the end user to figure out what they like best. Each tank is different and certain lights don't always work out in a given situation. Sorry to hear about the lights going down. I've had new gear go down, sometimes it's the luck of the draw. I've had good results with kessil, but I also treat led's as if they are half powered or only cover half the area the manufacturer suggests. So I have more than needed, especially with sps.
Mine are about 9" from the water and I'm only at 95% for 4hrs and 92% or 90% 2hrs on either side of the peak and I easily get 400+ par 6" to 8" under water, but I also have six 360x's over my shallow 90g, so there's a lot of overlap. I'm actually going back to halides with 4 360x's in the corners as fill. If I were just doing tables and montis, then I could just use 4 of them on their own, but I'm a stick head and I hate the flat look of T5's, but that's just me. Keep us posted on the change.
 
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I would not be concerned with the too much PAR comment as Kessil's and Ocean Revive lights do not compare and especially not with SPS.

I have been told ocean revives are strong lights. Mine 8" above the water and cooked branching hammer on the bottom, as well as frogspawn. I thought like you and at 60% I upped it to 80 on my B channel. Growth didnt just slow, it reversed. Thats in a 210 30' deep. Even my nems hid under rocks. The biggest mistake people make with kessils and ocean revive is have the intensity turned up to high. Its exactly why so many people fail with kessils, and the forums full of slow growth and then they sell them off.
 
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srobertb

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Mine are about 9" from the water and I'm only at 95% for 4hrs and 92% or 90% 2hrs on either side of the peak and I easily get 400+ par 6" to 8" under water, but I also have six 360x's over my shallow 90g, so there's a lot of overlap. I'm actually going back to halides with 4 360x's in the corners as fill. If I were just doing tables and montis, then I could just use 4 of them on their own, but I'm a stick head and I hate the flat look of T5's, but that's just me. Keep us posted on the change.
+1 to the flat look on T5’s. It was disappointing how they washed out the kessils (x4). I started a while ago with T5’s and MH’s and once LEDS came out I was all of over them; first with a rapid led fixture I made myself and then with an AI. T5’s felt like a step back to me.

I swear you can feel the energy hitting the tank with MH’s though. They make everything look so energetic. I don’t miss the heat issues though.

THe kessils looked awesome but way less awesome with all the T5’s on. I had 4 over a 6’ shallow tank. In hindsight maybe 2 more of them and ditching the T5 hood may have made me happier (and maybe they wouldn’t have been run so hard and lasted longer). I drank the BRStv koi laid on the hybrid combo.

I felt into a bottle of rum last night and thought about mounting 3 of the 4 Kessils a360x’s I have in between 3 G5 XR30’s just for the photo op. I bet I’d have a enough light then!

Unfortunately I sold 3 of them but I’m considering keeping one + a 55 deg reflector as a spotlight if I ever get a carpet anemone or something that wants a PAR bump. I have some weird emotional attachment to the Kessils even though they didn’t work for me and died at 2 years.

I may need light therapy!
 

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I have been told ocean revives are strong lights. Mine 8" above the water and cooked branching hammer on the bottom, as well as frogspawn. I thought like you and at 60% I upped it to 80 on my B channel. Growth didnt just slow, it reversed. Thats in a 210 30' deep. Even my nems hid under rocks. The biggest mistake people make with kessils and ocean revive is have the intensity turned up to high. Its exactly why so many people fail with kessils, and the forums full of slow growth and then they sell them off.

I agree on the too much light for some, It was more that it’s SPS with the height they are mounted at. I own a PAR meter and set my lights to that, my 4 Stratons are set with the ends lower and centers higher. Best bet is to get a par meter.
 
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srobertb

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I’m all over the PAR meter. I’m thinking about just buying one. My social director (wife) will ask the local club what the wait time on the meter is but it feels like a useful too to have at home at this point.

I wish the Straton’s had more of a digital footprint. I didn’t even know they existed until I looked at (I believe) was your build thread a day or so ago. I would have gone with 3-4 of those instead of the Radions. They look like they have better spread.
 
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I’m all over the PAR meter. I’m thinking about just buying one. My social director (wife) will ask the local club what the wait time on the meter is but it feels like a useful too to have at home at this point.

I wish the Straton’s had more of a digital footprint. I didn’t even know they existed until I looked at (I believe) was your build thread a day or so ago. I would have gone with 3-4 of those instead of the Radions. They look like they have better spread.

They offer complete overage, I replaced the G5 radions with them and couldn’t be happier. The fact that at peak lighting we could here the fans on the G5’s was a deal breaker for us
 
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srobertb

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They seem like a really great light (The Stratons). I wish they had gotten more love from BRS. I’m guilty of using them for reviews and guidance; obviously too much. So far the light noise hasn’t bothered me but admittedly they’ve been running for about 12 hours now so we shall see.

The Radions look like I hung 3, 90’s era video game consoles over my tank. I can’t stand it. May need to call the cabinet guy and build a hood.
 

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