Switching from MH to GHL Mitras

Discussion in 'Aquarium Lighting By Dana Riddle' started by KJoFan, May 16, 2018.

  1. KJoFan

    KJoFan Valuable Member Partner Member 2019 Build Thread Contributor

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    I will soon be making the swap from 250w MH to the GHL Mitras 7206 fixtures. My tank is young and sps are frags, but I don't want to shock them. Since I don't have a par meter, or easy access to one, my plan is to check my lux readings at the surface with the MH and then try to match (probably undercut actually) those readings with the leds. Is this a solid plan, or should I be aiming for something different to minimize shock?
     
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  2. HolisticBear

    HolisticBear Valuable Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Partner Member 2019 Reef Tank 365 Build Thread Contributor

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    Seems like a good plan. As an owner of the Mitras, finding the "right" color balance is tricky (both the individual channel output AND the the manual power balancing features). The sheer number of options in these fixtures means you can be constantly changing settings. The less often you change from one setting to another, the less stress you generate for the corals.
     
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  3. KJoFan

    KJoFan Valuable Member Partner Member 2019 Build Thread Contributor

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    I am actually hoping to just find/use someone else's profile or project or whatever they're called and only mess with intensity for acclimation purposes. Otherwise, as you say, I'll be tweaking it constantly and never "happy" and my corals won't be either. I hope they're able to render a color I like. :)
     
  4. Stixlife

    Stixlife Member

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    Thinking of ditching these Kessil ap700 for mitras any suggestions before making the jump? How about pairing them up any issues?
     
  5. HolisticBear

    HolisticBear Valuable Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Partner Member 2019 Reef Tank 365 Build Thread Contributor

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    No sure I want to hijak Op's thread, but since I replied earlier I'll respond: I'll be ditching my Mitras for Orphek in a few weeks. A major appeal of the GHL when it was released was the 6 puck design, but since then others have introduced diffusers and we other approaches like the Orphek. When your GHL arrives, let's say you want 15k at max power. It's not easy. The default high temperature setting is wrong, the default fan speed is wrong, it doesn't power-balancing the LED automatically, you need to figure out the right percentage per channel. You will spend lots of time researching topics that are controlled automatically in AI, Radion, or Kessil software. You might be silently thermally limited, so you need to ensure you're not. Comparing "hotspots" (not spread) you probably get 1/2 the peak PAR compared to a Radion G4Pro.

    The six puck design is cool, but it's a light for people that enjoy tinkering + researching settings. It's basically the opposite design model as something like a Kessil. There are people that are really happy with them. The color output is really nice, but it took a really long time (months) to get them to do what I wanted them to do on day 1.

    There are no instructions on the light mount, not a big deal. But if you look for help online, you'll basically only find my posts helping people out rather than an official instructions.

    GHL holds it value well. So if you don't like them, you can probably sell them for very close to what you paid.
     
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  6. Stixlife

    Stixlife Member

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    Thank you for your help.
     
  7. KJoFan

    KJoFan Valuable Member Partner Member 2019 Build Thread Contributor

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    Orphek does not have a diffuser though as far as I know. Didn't want your statement to seem misleading. There's always going to be new/different tech coming along. I think any of the major players in the LED realm are legitimate really. It all depends what you want.

    I haven't looked extensively at Orphek, but they seem quite similar to the design of the Reefbreeders or Chinese black box fixtures, with a few more bells and whistles. Either way, to each their own. :)
     
  8. KJoFan

    KJoFan Valuable Member Partner Member 2019 Build Thread Contributor

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    @mcarroll @saltyfilmfolks Tagging you guys for input. I took some lux readings of my halides last night and despite being the exact same fixture and both Radium bulbs I got different readings. Under one max lux was 850-900 (with the meter set to 100,000) and 1200 under the other as I recall, what kind of surface readings should I be aiming for with the leds? Is it a direct translation (I think no)? I figure aiming lower is better, but how much lower should I aim for to start?
     
  9. mcarroll

    mcarroll PM me R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award

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    On your meter, is the "100,000" setting a x100 multiplier?

    If you're curious about the disparity, check the power consumption from the wall on each one. They're close enough IMO. ;)

    Most LED systems won't deliver 90,000 or 120,000 lux in their standard form.
     
  10. KJoFan

    KJoFan Valuable Member Partner Member 2019 Build Thread Contributor

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  11. mcarroll

    mcarroll PM me R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award

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    Take a messurement to see what it is now.

    My guess is that it's too low and (if so) I just wouldn't worry about using acclimation mode – it's for corals that are used to dimmer light.
     
  12. mtraylor

    mtraylor Valuable Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor Article Contributor

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    Oh wow. Well welcome to the GHL club. So when do you plan on making the change. Just a word of wisdom. Don't bother with the acclimation crap. You will not need it. The spread on the light is very wide so you will not have anything to worry about. Have you set the lights to high output 100%. That is the first thing you need to do. How many are you running and over what size aquarium? Is this just a frag setup for testing purposes?
     
  13. HolisticBear

    HolisticBear Valuable Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Partner Member 2019 Reef Tank 365 Build Thread Contributor

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    I disagree with this. This resulted in very disappointing PAR for me. In about 60 minutes in a well ventilated 72 degree room, the Mitras (not in a canopy) can reach their max acceptable temperature and will thermally limit themselves. You will have no indication this is happening. You'll just read the temperature on the unit and if it's the max temperature, it's not running at 100%. You can break out your PAR meter to verify.

    Many of the GHL defaults are suboptimal (i.e wrong) including the max temperature. GHL said you can set it to 65, I think it defaults to 60 or something. The fan speed also defaults low (not 100%), but even after fixing that, I found it's still pretty easy to thermally limit the GHL with 'high output'. I've met more than one Mitras user who didn't realize they were being thermally limited, but they were when they looked.
     
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  14. KJoFan

    KJoFan Valuable Member Partner Member 2019 Build Thread Contributor

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    Once lights come up to their peak in the schedule I'll take some readings and see where I'm at and report back.

    I admit so far it's been a bit of a struggle to get the lights behaving how I want. On one of them (the one I plugged into the computer to get initially set up) has lost control of it's buttons. They don't light up and don't do much. I want to try to re-calibrate the keypad but every time I plug it into my computer it won't connect/crashes GCC. So, after awhile I just gave up. I did manage to get it set to slave mode though (using the PLM-PWC card in my profilux to control). But, I find the crashing concerning, but admittedly the software is the weakest link of GHL products.

    Anyway, I have not set them to high output, I don't think... I am running 4 units over a 150g, 5x2x2. My issue at the moment is I can only get them about 5" off the water with the limitations of my canopy and mounting abilities. I need to do some re-configuring and then I can reach a max of about 8.5" which I think is the minimum GHL suggests. If I can't get them further up (I do need to, right?) then I"ll have to re-think the whole thing and possibly abandon the canopy or construct a new, taller one.

    And this..I just don't even know. They do run warm I have noticed, but I don't even know what the max temp for them nor what they are set to. As said above I had tons of trouble connecting even one successfully to GCC for initial setup. Tons and tons of crashing. o_O

    Honestly, they are above my tank running the project I chose (someone else's) and...that's about all I could manage. I need all the help I can get!
     
  15. mtraylor

    mtraylor Valuable Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor Article Contributor

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    Yeah I ran into a heat issue probably similar to what you are referencing to back in 2012 when I first started using mitras when they came out. Thanks for the reminder. This was a 6100 series light and puck series. I used allot more white light then and the fixture was noticeable hotter and hitting the max temp. I only noticed when I was burned by touching it when cleaning it. Its easily remedied with increasing the fan speed to allow 100% fan speed. This will reduce the temperature and allow the fixture to operate within its allowable range. I just plotted the temp of the unit each hour back then to monitor the temp and lighting schedule I set it too to ensure I stayed within spec. I was very concerned that I was burning up the unit and not happy with the default settings. I recommended them to give you a warning when you move out of efficiency mode that you should increase fan speed.

    I have never had a PAR meter, but I'm sure after you reach max temp of the unit it will degrade as most things do at that point. I don't think they GHL defaults are wrong, I think they are just subdued when you get them. The unit comes is energy efficiency mode there fore the fan speed, etc does not have to be that high. I did argue that the fan should always be allowed to hit 100percent from the factory. Just makes since to me. Of course that didn't get me anywhere.

    Yeah I made all the adjustments to the max temp and everything back then. You can set to 65. I have no idea the default now as its been many years since I fooled with it and my memory is not that good. I have been running mine at 100% since and when I check the temperatures in the units I have not reached the max temp and that is including a check just now.

    IMO its the only way to run the unit. AT 100%. Been running it this way since day one and the units have no degradation in operations, so they have not overheated or anything in over 6 years of use. Obviously they are upgraded to 6300's now.

    Sounds like if you have a power meter though....then you could do some more fine tuning if needed. So did you ever see a degradation before you reached the max temp? If so can you plot your results. I would love to take this back to GHL if that is what you are seeing. I expect to see it over the temp limit, but not under. The operating temp is the only tool you have if you don't have a power meter.
     
  16. mtraylor

    mtraylor Valuable Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor Article Contributor

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    Just FYI. Mine are about 5 inches off the water now. No issues. They used to be about 6 and some change when I had 4, but after adding a 5th light, I don't need the spread at almost 7 inches so I have them closer now. I have mine free hanging from the ceiling no canopy. They do run warm, so a canopy can only add heat I would think. Don't worry about the recommended height. The spread for your aquarium will determine that.
     
  17. mtraylor

    mtraylor Valuable Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor Article Contributor

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    Make sure you set your fan max speed to 100percent and you can set the the max temp of unit to 65
     
  18. HolisticBear

    HolisticBear Valuable Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Partner Member 2019 Reef Tank 365 Build Thread Contributor

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    Need to fix the crashing first.

    My only recommendation on the crashing might be to investigate what version of GHL PC SW you're using. They typically post a beta and stable version. Potentially a slightly older version might work. The opening page of GCC (has to connect first thou) will show you firmware. You shouldn't be running an old version, but would be good to check.
     
  19. KJoFan

    KJoFan Valuable Member Partner Member 2019 Build Thread Contributor

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    The top of the canopy is all open and the lights are basically as far up in there as they can be at this point, so I am hoping they get enough heat dissipation, but time will tell. I like the canopy to prevent light spill into the room but I don't want to damage the units either. I might look into installing fans into the canopy too to help transfer heat out.

    I assume this can only be done by directly connecting the units to the PC and through GCC?
     
  20. KJoFan

    KJoFan Valuable Member Partner Member 2019 Build Thread Contributor

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    GCC is version 1.1.1.3. Profilux is running 7.10 but I don't want to update it because every time I update firmware on the Profilux it wipes out ALL my settings for everything and I have to re-do it all. Despite backing up and trying to restore them. It never works and never has.

    Firmware for the Mitras themselves is unknown as I can barely getting it to connect/show up in GCC. Maybe I need to find a different USB cord or something and try that.
     
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