Neptune GRO Refugeum light

Crabby48

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I was on the GRO NSI test team for 7 months before they announced the product yesterday. It's a good light, has a great mounting system, and my chaeto has grown extremely well with it. And I love being able to connect it to the 2-pin 24v DC Accessory port instead of wasting one of my 120v AC EnergyBar outlets. Don't let the 20 watt rating fool you...it puts out a ton of light.
Thanks for your thoughts. I thought about messaging you about the light but thought it may have been little disrespectful. I new you had to be a NSI.
I’m looking forward to trying it on my new build
 
Aquashella

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Thanks for your thoughts. I thought about messaging you about the light but thought it may have been little disrespectful. I new you had to be a NSI.
I’m looking forward to trying it on my new build
Yes, while a product is in NSI testing, we are not allowed to discuss it outside of the NSI group. Now that it's been released to the public, I can comment.
 

Miller535

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Same here. I'd just rather purchase the real thing.

Some rebranded stuff still holds its true to form build. I've never used a Zet light for a fuge, but for the price and being able to keep it off 1 inch off the fuge water line I just couldn't pass it up.

I watched Mr. Saltwater's video yesterday. He said he has been using the light (Neptune's) for months and that it is water resistant and designed to be as close as 1" off of the water. He actually shows a picture of the light he was using being super close like that.
 

dank reefer

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I watched Mr. Saltwater's video yesterday. He said he has been using the light (Neptune's) for months and that it is water resistant and designed to be as close as 1" off of the water. He actually shows a picture of the light he was using being super close like that.
I'm just curious if it truly can out perform the tried and true H380
 

Miller535

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I'm just curious if it truly can out perform the tried and true H380
I don't know about outperform. But At a fraction of the price of the H380, if it'll at least adequately grow macro algae, it would be my choice.


Now if you had a rather deep refugium and you needed to get that light deep then the H380 would probably be the better bet. If it was not discontinued.
 

dank reefer

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I don't know about outperform. But At a fraction of the price of the H380, if it'll at least adequately grow macro algae, it would be my choice.


Now if you had a rather deep refugium and you needed to get that light deep then the H380 would probably be the better bet. If it was not discontinued.
Since it can be placed closer to the water line that the H380, it could very well out perform it. Time will tell
 

hart24601

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These look really nice and i think for most will be better than h380 as many people use them under the stand and the concentrated 90w of H380 is too strong. I use a laundry basket in a 150g downstairs rubbermaid sump, no way would this light come close to h380 there, but again for most people and regular sump setups I bet it will be a better light. The H380 is just a beast of a spot light.
 

Jon's Reef

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All speculation until we see the par distribution numbers. Here are the Kessil par @12" from BRS video. IME, an H160 (80=20 watts, 160=40 watts, 380 = 90 watts) was not enough light, the H380 has been just the right amount of light. Same test could be done with the GRO with 1" or 2" off the surface (vs 12") and remove any ambiguity from the discussion.

For reference, I run a ~100 gallon system with H380 @12" over a 12x12x14 (lwh) Triton refugium stuffed with Chaeto. No burning, just healthy green. (manually turned over every 2 weeks)
1615398610446.png

1615398645313.png
 

Miller535

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Since it can be placed closer to the water line that the H380, it could very well out perform it. Time will tell

My only other thought is it is hard to compare any Kessil light to and light panel. Almost like comparing apples and oranges, due to the way they diffuse and penetrate differently.
 

Jon's Reef

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Almost like comparing apples and oranges, due to the way they diffuse and penetrate differently.
I don't agree. If someone could measure the intensity distribution for the GRO at the recommended distance it would be a very fair and informative comparison.
 

hart24601

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For what it’s worth I run my h380 3” off the surface for a year or two now. Here was my last harvest. I still think this “new” light will work great with most sump setups.
7960DB70-6931-4D9F-B41F-96A03A6F8D2D.jpeg
 

Miller535

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I don't agree. If someone could measure the intensity distribution for the GRO at the recommended distance it would be a very fair and informative comparison.
I generally don't like to quote BRS. But in this instance I will. Comparing any Kessil to a panel light is like comparing a spotlight to a blanket of light. They are just very different. One is super small and going through a wide lens, and the other is spread out because there is a whole series of leds. Yes you could compare them somewhat. But the difference in the lights makes a lot of difference. Yes they can both get the job done. But they are still very different. Just my 2 cents.
 

hart24601

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I generally don't like to quote BRS. But in this instance I will. Comparing any Kessil to a panel light is like comparing a spotlight to a blanket of light. They are just very different. One is super small and going through a wide lens, and the other is spread out because there is a whole series of leds. Yes you could compare them somewhat. But the difference in the lights makes a lot of difference. Yes they can both get the job done. But they are still very different. Just my 2 cents.

In this case their words probably ring more true than ever since the h380 uses their narrow optics lens - it's pretty much super small and then only going though a small lens, not a wide lens like the regular kessils. It's why h380 is such a par monster compared to the old 360s, unless you got the 360NE, which had a similar small angle, but you don't see those used much.
 

Jon's Reef

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At the end of the day if a piece of macro is sitting at the surface of the water, it does not care if the photon arrives at an angle or straight on. All it cares is the number of photons arriving at a given time. After it hits the surface there are a myriad of refractive effects, absorption by the macro and reflection from the fuge panels (also dependent on wall cleanliness), so any sub surface measurements are tricky. But for sure you are not going to see an integral par gain after it penetrates the surface.

Even though it is a panel emitter, each led produces a fully divergent beam of light. It is not a parallel beam. Par deeper into the water may maintain better on the kessil as there is a lens to reduce the divergence angle.

Simple experiment:
Make a par measurement of the GRO at the recommended distance (1” from the water) at the center, then 6” to the left, right front and back. Do you get 40 par? 100 par? 200 par? 400 par?

My guess is you will see an average par similar to the H80 (~50 par) with a bit more uniform spread.

(Not trying to be a hater. I am an apex user, love the products, trident is awesome! But claims require accountability. To quote BRS as above... Right tool Used the Right Way. For a 2-5 gal fuge, 1 probably works, but 10-20 gal fuge... you are going to need 4 of these vs 1 H380)
 
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ca1ore

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Problem with putting a panel like this 1” above the water surface in my refugium is that’s 8” underwater when the pump is off. Doubt it’s THAT waterproof.
 

ctnguye3

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Yeah, price isn't bad, and $20 cheaper than the Zetlight was...

Shady? Aww... Neptune certainly isn't the only ones rebranding equipment in their name. Business as usual.
Yup! I have the Neptune AFS, which is basically a rebranded version of the LifeGuard auto feeder made to work with the Apex. I'm okay with them rebranding a product as long as it's proven to work like the original and there's no major price increase. In this case, it's $20 cheaper! Don't think its shady at all.
 

Reefer Reboot

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For those wanting some real-life numbers, I just measured the PAR numbers that I am getting from a Zetlight E200s. It sits over the Chaeto chamber of the sump and that chamber measures 24” x 17” and has a water depth of 19” (~33 gallons). The entire sump itself is 24” tall. The light is mounted 5” above the waterline. The light is about 3.5 years old.

At 1” water depth, PAR = 111

At 9” water depth, PAR = 62

At 18” water depth, PAR = 22

PAR was measured using a Seneye reef meter with all four channels of the light at 100%.
AT 1"
Zetlight E200 at 1 inch deep.png

A 9"
Zetlight E200 at 9 inches deep.png

At 18"
Zetlight E200 at 18 inches deep.png


The light panel is approximately 6” x 9”. I have it mounted so that the length of the light runs parallel with the width of the Chaeto chamber. Moving the PAR meter anywhere under the span of the panel plus another inch beyond did not show any significant drop in PAR. Far better to have the PAR spread out evenly than to have a spotlight and burn the Chaeto.

Enough of the technicalities, time for the fun stuff. If Neptune retains the same quality in their rebranding of this light, it should remain a top notch refugium light.

The only complaint I have actually came from the wife. The tank is in the living room and with the bright pink light visible from outside at night, she thinks the neighbors might think we are running a “house of ill repute”, to paraphrase. :rolleyes: (Actually she said it looked like a W.H.;Hilarious)

As far as the water resistance goes, where as I DO NOT recommend this, I actually submerged mine while it was on! (Note to self, pay attention dummy.;Facepalm) Just the shock of seeing the light glowing underwater was enough of a jolt. I sure am glad that’s the only shock I got. I didn’t want to reach for it so I just lowered the water level in the sump (which took a few minutes) and the lights just kept on working. So now I keep them no lower than the top of the sump, thus the 5” above waterline mounting. Still, it’s nice to know they can take the abuse.
 
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