Lighting suggestions for 5' tank

Sean W.

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Hey guys,

My first reef tank has been up and running for almost a year now and it has been a complete and massive success. I am going to be buying a house soon so my current 55 gallon tank will be taken down and little to none of my existing equipment will be re-used.

The new tank is looking like it will be a 110 gallon - 60"W x 18"D x 23"T and I was looking for a lighting solution.

I will be keeping softies and LPS corals, little to no SPS. I like Toadstools, Kenya trees, torches, hammers, frogspawn, bubble coral, mushrooms, duncans etc. Pretty much anything that has movement, is up my alley.

I spoke to the guys over at BRS, and they suggested 4x Ai Prime 16 HD fixtures, but that is ~$1,000 solution. Cost isn't really a factor, obviously any money that can be saved is good, but I don't mind spending the money on the right solution.

The BRS guys are a little biased towards what they sell, so I was wondering if you guys could point me in a different and better direction. Unless 4x ai primes is the way to go, I'll stick to that.

Thanks!
 
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Operator Wrasse

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I love my 16HDs. You could get away with 3 for awhile, but you'll have a bit of shading to deal with when your tank grows out. I would highly recommend 3-4 16HDs.
 
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oreo5457

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There are about 1/2 doz like ai primes.
Redsea, Popbloom, Nicrew, Reefi, ect.
All about $1000 or less when you figure the correct number of units.
4tube ati. Add about $100 for bulbs.
Replacement schedule is err arguable but figure 18 months


 
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Kirkslittlereef

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848C5645-C2CB-49F0-AA7B-A7B86286D0DC.jpeg

Just picked up a reefbreeders photon 50v2+ for my 5’ tank!
 
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srobertb

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Hey guys,

My first reef tank has been up and running for almost a year now and it has been a complete and massive success. I am going to be buying a house soon so my current 55 gallon tank will be taken down and little to none of my existing equipment will be re-used.

The new tank is looking like it will be a 110 gallon - 60"W x 18"D x 23"T and I was looking for a lighting solution.

I will be keeping softies and LPS corals, little to no SPS. I like Toadstools, Kenya trees, torches, hammers, frogspawn, bubble coral, mushrooms, duncans etc. Pretty much anything that has movement, is up my alley.

I spoke to the guys over at BRS, and they suggested 4x Ai Prime 16 HD fixtures, but that is ~$1,000 solution. Cost isn't really a factor, obviously any money that can be saved is good, but I don't mind spending the money on the right solution.

The BRS guys are a little biased towards what they sell, so I was wondering if you guys could point me in a different and better direction. Unless 4x ai primes is the way to go, I'll stick to that.

Thanks!
Like asking which football team to root for.

for what you want, almost any light will work.

lots of lights, for what you want, will claim to cover a 2x2’ area (your kessils, Radions, AI’s, etc). So 60” tanks are a bit tricky. You either end buying a bit more light or not enough. Here is my experience:

AI: Why that’s a name I haven’t heard in a long time. I was a first adopter of these fixtures waaaayy back when. I think I’m like 2 generations behind.

Radions: They all look like crappy PlayStation knockoffs circa 1995 with their shiny black plastic and fins. I’ve run G3, G4, and now I run G5’s. The G5’s are better than the G4’s by far when it comes to aesthetics. They create a very bright but blanket-esque light a lot like T5’s. I would probably go with 3 XR15’s for what you want but you might be happier with 2 XR30’s (which I think claim a 36” spread). The 3 (or maybe 4) XR15’s will allow for more even placement.

kessils: I love and hate them. They look awesome. They are minimalist in design and I dig that. They are a single source point of light which just isn’t great as a stand alone light for corals that get big and create shade- not an issue for you. I find them to be unreliable. Others do not. I would recommend 3 of them and a 4th and/or T5’s if you get the SPS bug. They create beautiful light and give your tank a high energy look. I used them for just over 2 years. They didn’t grow anything for me and my PAR numbers were underwhelming. Then they died. I can’t compare them to the Radions I installed until my new PAR meter arrives this weekend but after a week everything looks better and I’m just guessing at intensity with the AB+ program.

i had a 4 bulb T5 fixture plus 4 a360x kessils. The radion looks, to my eye, like the T5’s on steroids without the Kessils. Everything looks so much happier under the radions.

Honorable mentions: Orpheks and Stratons. I don’t think they’re right for what you’re trying to do. I would have gone with the Stratons if they were advertised more. I think you have to get them via gray market from Europe but they look like they have great spread and don’t look like floating PlayStations hovering above my tan

someone else will have the exact opposite response because they had a different experience than me.

Kessil replaced 3 lights that all died. 2 just outside of warranty’s. I have heard terrible things but they only gave me a little pushback

I have heard good things and terrible things about Radion customer service but have never had to file a claim.
 

DaneGer21

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Although my tank is wider, I have a 60x36x24. I run 4-hydra 26hds in an aquatic life hybrid fixture(with the wider/longer end caps), and then use 2-blue+ and 2-actinic
 
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