Neptune SKY LED Teardown – Make Your Own Conclusions

Reef Builders

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The Neptune Systems SKY LED light fixture has gotten a lot of attention this summer being the first reef aquarium light developed by the aquarium controller company. Now that Neptune Systems is officially a property of Bulk Reef Supply, a company with massive resources and an expansive media marketing machine, the hype around this light…
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Foxchase

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Honestly, to me it seems that if you want something like a Sky LED, you're better off buying the Viparspectra and save yourself a couple hundred bucks for something better built.
 

Pntbll687

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My conclusion is that BRS will not be doing any discussion beyond performance of the light. They bashed the "license plate heat sink" over and over on the black boxes, then neptune doubles down and uses an even thinner "license plate" for theirs.

No moisture barrier at all. Fans blowing down, pulling moist air directly by the radio. The "coating" that every knows will become super tacky over time. It's simple to see where money was "saved" on this light. I'm guessing most of the cost is paying royalties to phillips.

Neptune wants to be a "premium" brand and that's cool, but they should have offered an actual premium product.

@Reef Builders , we need more tear down of equipment just like this! Brands claiming "premium quality" need to be held accountable and actually show what we're paying for.
 

KimG

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Thanks for the teardown Reefbuilders. Nice to be able to see the insides.

Kind curiose if anyones as taken a phillips coralcare gen1 apart.

As others have mentioned, a lot on this light looks similar to the coralcare gen 1, including led placement, difuser and other details. It would be intersting to see how close they match. While I thinks it's a brilliant strategy (why reinvent the wheel if someone else has already done it for you?), still it would be nice to see how close they match.
For exemple, why is there a seal in the diffuser plate when the plate is full of holes and more importantly, why are the seals only on 3 sides? I can't really wrap my head around that. Curiouse if its connect to the original coralcare gen1. Is the led place exatly the same (not the colour)? are the disfusser plates the same?

Anyone one has a coral care gen1 they want to open? or a link to some website where this has been done? Maybe a german website?

The lack of water protection is worrying for me, but still, it will probably be ok. I mean, black boxes have been constructed like that for ages and they seem to last. Although, I guess, this is a pretty low bar of comparison and probably not what an 800 dollar light should be aiming for.
 

blaxsun

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Anyone else see Derrick Picker from the ReefDudes fb page trying to insult everyone saying negative things about Neptune along with saying Reef Builders and Telegraham just hate Neptune bc they don't get free stuff and kick backs?
And the plot thickens... Maybe (just maybe) the SKY LED isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.
 

Jon's Reef

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Thanks for the teardown Reefbuilders. Nice to be able to see the insides.

Kind curiose if anyones as taken a phillips coralcare gen1 apart.

As others have mentioned, a lot on this light looks similar to the coralcare gen 1, including led placement, difuser and other details. It would be intersting to see how close they match. While I thinks it's a brilliant strategy (why reinvent the wheel if someone else has already done it for you?), still it would be nice to see how close they match.
For exemple, why is there a seal in the diffuser plate when the plate is full of holes and more importantly, why are the seals only on 3 sides? I can't really wrap my head around that. Curiouse if its connect to the original coralcare gen1. Is the led place exatly the same (not the colour)? are the disfusser plates the same?

Anyone one has a coral care gen1 they want to open? or a link to some website where this has been done? Maybe a german website?

The lack of water protection is worrying for me, but still, it will probably be ok. I mean, black boxes have been constructed like that for ages and they seem to last. Although, I guess, this is a pretty low bar of comparison and probably not what an 800 dollar light should be aiming for.
There are pics of the bottoms side of the CC gen 1 online. The diffuser has additional mounting holes and is made of 2 pieces.

Also, according to the patent (https://patents.google.com/patent/US10595514B2/en?oq=US10595514B2 ) the goal is to reduce direct light emission from an angle greater than ~60 deg. The light lower than this is rescattered into the tank, while light above this angle is transmitted through the glass. To accomplish this one version of the panel (the one that is used, Fig 6) places a strongly scattering layer at a specific distance from the LED board in order to limit direct light above a 60 deg angle. Here is a simplified illustration:
1629940471524.png


The primary function of the gasket is likely a spacer to produce this gap. Why 3 sides and not 4? I don't know. Perhaps it is to allow ventilation of the cavity... or it is on 3 sides to block the scattered light (the circuit boards blocks the scattered light on the 4th side).

In addition, there is some discussion of tabs along the periphery. They are likely alignment tabs, either to the case or they correspond to an assembly fixture at the factory.
 

lynn.reef.nerd

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Anyone else see Derrick Picker from the ReefDudes fb page trying to insult everyone saying negative things about Neptune along with saying Reef Builders and Telegraham just hate Neptune bc they don't get free stuff and kick backs?

I don't understand this argument. Aren't reviews by NON-sponsored (no kick backs) better reviews? Or am I totally missing the point.
 

Foxchase

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I don't understand this argument. Aren't reviews by NON-sponsored (no kick backs) better reviews? Or am I totally missing the point.
That's exactly what I said. I commented on how both telegraham and reef builders have taken this light apart and the quality is sub par and Derrick commented back "this is such a dumb comment. hate Neptune much?"

I just responded with basically no I'm just not in their pockets and i can call out when companies are trying to rip ppl off.
 

hmmmmm

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Kind curiose if anyones as taken a phillips coralcare gen1 apart.

Here you go mate ;) I have a couple of the old Gen1's laying around. One of them has a broken diffuser so i was taking measurements from a good one. I have a big laser cutter so i was thinking i could cut one from lexan or something similar.

The unit is 3 feet from where im standing so i undid some screws and took some pictures..

The diffuser plate is pretty incredible, no plastics here. This is a thick piece of frosted safety glass. It shattered in a million pieces like a car window (happened with the previous owner, no idea how he managed that).

You can clearly tell the whole unit was made for industry use. The entire glass panel has a big rubber seal around it, so no moisture can get in. The top side only has 2 openings for the power and data cable, but they are using connectors with seals as well. I honestly think this will survive a brief submersion with the power on. The leds are basically enclosed between the thick glass and frame, no fans or electronics in this area.

I don't have the the diffuser plate here but i took a piece of the broken glass of the bolt to measure it ;Happy 5 mils thick
IMG_20210826_153235.jpg

Held in place with 4 of these, they have some rubber bits on them to ensure the seal.
IMG_20210826_153206.jpg


Overview
IMG_20210826_152032.jpg


Deep gutter for the rubber seal (seal is glued to the diffuser plate)
IMG_20210826_152025.jpg


Acrylics panels
IMG_20210826_152014.jpg


Close up
IMG_20210826_152055.jpg


Connectors
IMG_20210826_152044.jpg


One of the acrylic panels
IMG_20210826_152232.jpg


Led panel
IMG_20210826_152405.jpg


Other side, you can see the backside of the led panel is metal, and mounted 'cold' to the frame/cooler. So no paste/glue or anything, just pressure mounted with the 12 or so bolts.
IMG_20210826_152431.jpg


IMG_20210826_152453.jpg




I can get these lights seconds hand for around $700 for a pair with the optional controller (and they have a new bluetooth controller now from the new one, thats also compatible with the V1). Considering the build quality, no fans, moisture resistance, build in PSU etc they are great value for money. But they look weird in a home and are very heavy. Im using them for my future frag system.

Not all roses and sunshine though.. I emailed them a while back to get a new diffuser. Philips Coral Care department basically told me to go away.. No support now the new ones are out. Which i think is illegal because these lights were sold upto a year ago, and as a manufacturer you have to support your product for a certain amount of time (so making sure you have spares and what not. EU rules, no idea how it works in the states). For example if i buy a refrigerator the manufacturer has to supply parts so i can keep it running for lets say 5 or 10 years. I never pushed the issue because its takes a lot of time and im pretty sure they will charge me more than a second hand light fixture costs...

Just something to be aware of, really disappointing as i was expecting better from this company (They are from the Netherlands as well, so my opinion may be skewed ;Happy) Nevertheless, very solid fixture imho







Reply i got from philips, stating they dont sell any spare parts, in Dutch (browser or google tranlate if you can be bothered)
-----------------------------------------

Geachte heer,

Zojuist hebben wij terugkoppeling mogen ontvangen betreffende Uw vraag over coral care.

Helaas verkopen wij geen losse componenten van de lamp en ook word de coralcare gen1 lamp niet meer geproduceerd.
Wij kunnen U hiermee helaas niet assisteren.


Hopende U hiermee voldoende te hebben geinformeerd,
Joost
-----------------------------------------
 
Last edited:

KimG

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There are pics of the bottoms side of the CC gen 1 online. The diffuser has additional mounting holes and is made of 2 pieces.

Also, according to the patent (https://patents.google.com/patent/US10595514B2/en?oq=US10595514B2 ) the goal is to reduce direct light emission from an angle greater than ~60 deg. The light lower than this is rescattered into the tank, while light above this angle is transmitted through the glass. To accomplish this one version of the panel (the one that is used, Fig 6) places a strongly scattering layer at a specific distance from the LED board in order to limit direct light above a 60 deg angle. Here is a simplified illustration:
1629940471524.png


The primary function of the gasket is likely a spacer to produce this gap. Why 3 sides and not 4? I don't know. Perhaps it is to allow ventilation of the cavity... or it is on 3 sides to block the scattered light (the circuit boards blocks the scattered light on the 4th side).

In addition, there is some discussion of tabs along the periphery. They are likely alignment tabs, either to the case or they correspond to an assembly fixture at the factory.
Hi John

Thanks for the explanation. IT makes good sense.
Also, thanks for taking the time to put all the info out on the sky tread.
It has been really helpfull to have additional information, some that even Neptune does not seem to willing to share.

Your explanation makes good sense
Cheers
 

KimG

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Here you go mate ;) I have a couple of the old Gen1's laying around. One of them has a broken diffuser so i was taking measurements from a good one. I have a big laser cutter so i was thinking i could cut one from lexan or something similar.

The unit is 3 feet from where im standing so i undid some screws and took some pictures..

The diffuser plate is pretty incredible, no plastics here. This is a thick piece of frosted safety glass. It shattered in a million pieces like a car window (happened with the previous owner, no idea how he managed that).

You can clearly tell the whole unit was made for industry use. The entire glass panel has a big rubber seal around it, so no moisture can get in. The top side only has 2 openings for the power and data cable, but they are using connectors with seals as well. I honestly think this will survive a brief submersion with the power on. The leds are basically enclosed between the thick glass and frame, no fans or electronics in this area.

I don't have the the diffuser plate here but i took a piece of the broken glass of the bolt to measure it ;Happy 5 mils thick
IMG_20210826_153235.jpg

Held in place with 4 of these, they have some rubber bits on them to ensure the seal.
IMG_20210826_153206.jpg


Overview
IMG_20210826_152032.jpg


Deep gutter for the rubber seal (seal is glued to the diffuser plate)
IMG_20210826_152025.jpg


Acrylics panels
IMG_20210826_152014.jpg


Close up
IMG_20210826_152055.jpg


Connectors
IMG_20210826_152044.jpg


One of the acrylic panels
IMG_20210826_152232.jpg


Led panel
IMG_20210826_152405.jpg


Other side, you can see the backside of the led panel is metal, and mounted 'cold' to the frame/cooler. So no paste/glue or anything, just pressure mounted with the 12 or so bolts.
IMG_20210826_152431.jpg


IMG_20210826_152453.jpg




I can get these lights seconds hand for around $700 for a pair with the optional controller (and they have a new bluetooth controller now from the new one, thats also compatible with the V1). Considering the build quality, no fans, moisture resistance, build in PSU etc they are great value for money. But they look weird in a home and are very heavy. Im using them for my future frag system.

Not all roses and sunshine though.. I emailed them a while back to get a new diffuser. Philips Coral Care department basically told me to go away.. No support now the new ones are out. Which i think is illegal because these lights were sold upto a year ago, and as a manufacturer you have to support your product for a certain amount of time (so making sure you have spares and what not. EU rules, no idea how it works in the states). For example if i buy a refrigerator the manufacturer has to supply parts so i can keep it running for lets say 5 or 10 years. I never pushed the issue because its takes a lot of time and im pretty sure they will charge me more than a second hand light fixture costs...

Just something to be aware of, really disappointing as i was expecting better from this company (They are from the Netherlands as well, so my opinion may be skewed ;Happy) Nevertheless, very solid fixture imho







Reply i got from philips, stating they dont sell any spare parts, in Dutch (browser or google tranlate if you can be bothered)
-----------------------------------------

Geachte heer,

Zojuist hebben wij terugkoppeling mogen ontvangen betreffende Uw vraag over coral care.

Helaas verkopen wij geen losse componenten van de lamp en ook word de coralcare gen1 lamp niet meer geproduceerd.
Wij kunnen U hiermee helaas niet assisteren.


Hopende U hiermee voldoende te hebben geinformeerd,
Joost
-----------------------------------------
Thank you for that.

That was great :)

I absolutely love the construction of this light.

Also nice to see that despite a lot a similarities there are clear differences between that and the sky.
Although not all necessarily good for the sky.

Not really good the answer they gave though.
I'm not sure that law is already in place (I'm also on this side of the pond, slight north from you). As far as I'm aware, the new right to repair laws that hopefully will be introduced will required manufacturers to keep supplies to repair equipment for at many years (up to 10) after they stop selling equipment. However, currently, I'm not sure if manufacturers are required to supply parts for other than warranties. But not really sure. One would hope they have to.

Once again, thank you for the internal images of the coral care. It really is a beast of a light.

Cheers
 

telegraham

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Anyone else see Derrick Picker from the ReefDudes fb page trying to insult everyone saying negative things about Neptune along with saying Reef Builders and Telegraham just hate Neptune bc they don't get free stuff and kick backs?
In all fairness, technically Derrick didn't point the free stuff and kickback finger at me; however, I might have been called a Neptune hater, but that's not the case. I'm simply anti-spin and pro-data. Sometimes those two don't jive with the Neptune message.
 

telegraham

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Here you go mate ;) I have a couple of the old Gen1's laying around. One of them has a broken diffuser so i was taking measurements from a good one. I have a big laser cutter so i was thinking i could cut one from lexan or something similar.

The unit is 3 feet from where im standing so i undid some screws and took some pictures..

The diffuser plate is pretty incredible, no plastics here. This is a thick piece of frosted safety glass. It shattered in a million pieces like a car window (happened with the previous owner, no idea how he managed that).

You can clearly tell the whole unit was made for industry use. The entire glass panel has a big rubber seal around it, so no moisture can get in. The top side only has 2 openings for the power and data cable, but they are using connectors with seals as well. I honestly think this will survive a brief submersion with the power on. The leds are basically enclosed between the thick glass and frame, no fans or electronics in this area.

I don't have the the diffuser plate here but i took a piece of the broken glass of the bolt to measure it ;Happy 5 mils thick
IMG_20210826_153235.jpg

Held in place with 4 of these, they have some rubber bits on them to ensure the seal.
IMG_20210826_153206.jpg


Overview
IMG_20210826_152032.jpg


Deep gutter for the rubber seal (seal is glued to the diffuser plate)
IMG_20210826_152025.jpg


Acrylics panels
IMG_20210826_152014.jpg


Close up
IMG_20210826_152055.jpg


Connectors
IMG_20210826_152044.jpg


One of the acrylic panels
IMG_20210826_152232.jpg


Led panel
IMG_20210826_152405.jpg


Other side, you can see the backside of the led panel is metal, and mounted 'cold' to the frame/cooler. So no paste/glue or anything, just pressure mounted with the 12 or so bolts.
IMG_20210826_152431.jpg


IMG_20210826_152453.jpg




I can get these lights seconds hand for around $700 for a pair with the optional controller (and they have a new bluetooth controller now from the new one, thats also compatible with the V1). Considering the build quality, no fans, moisture resistance, build in PSU etc they are great value for money. But they look weird in a home and are very heavy. Im using them for my future frag system.

Not all roses and sunshine though.. I emailed them a while back to get a new diffuser. Philips Coral Care department basically told me to go away.. No support now the new ones are out. Which i think is illegal because these lights were sold upto a year ago, and as a manufacturer you have to support your product for a certain amount of time (so making sure you have spares and what not. EU rules, no idea how it works in the states). For example if i buy a refrigerator the manufacturer has to supply parts so i can keep it running for lets say 5 or 10 years. I never pushed the issue because its takes a lot of time and im pretty sure they will charge me more than a second hand light fixture costs...

Just something to be aware of, really disappointing as i was expecting better from this company (They are from the Netherlands as well, so my opinion may be skewed ;Happy) Nevertheless, very solid fixture imho







Reply i got from philips, stating they dont sell any spare parts, in Dutch (browser or google tranlate if you can be bothered)
-----------------------------------------

Geachte heer,

Zojuist hebben wij terugkoppeling mogen ontvangen betreffende Uw vraag over coral care.

Helaas verkopen wij geen losse componenten van de lamp en ook word de coralcare gen1 lamp niet meer geproduceerd.
Wij kunnen U hiermee helaas niet assisteren.


Hopende U hiermee voldoende te hebben geinformeerd,
Joost
-----------------------------------------

This is awesome!
 

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