The real Black Box light study

Discussion in 'Aquarium Lighting By Dana Riddle' started by Manose, Nov 14, 2018.

  1. Manose

    Manose Active Member R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor

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    Some things that I have learned in reef keeping is the expense involved. One of the most important and most expensive things we purchase is our lights, and having many options to consider from such brands as Kessil,Radion,AI,Geisman and a few others.
    These are the big boys in the lighting business and they make a good quality product with the downside, "They can get pricey".
    As prices increased many hobbyist went the diy route or buying used lights from other people, while fine and a good way to do things,we do have another choice, Chinese made lights that are way cheaper
    than the big named brand lights and offer very competitive output and growth.
    A bout a year ago a video was done that examined "A" Black box light that produced some underwhelming results. I feel like the results were not good because the light chosen was a bottom of the barrel light and not one of the many respectable Chinese lights out on the market.
    Not ALL Black Box lights are created equal...
    1. many lights are well wired
    2. many use good quality heatsinks
    3. many are not a tinderbox waiting to explode or catch your house on fire when you take the family
    on a vacation :p
    I have chosen to do a study on various black box lights with my own money and time to better help us decide on what are the good and the bad among these particular lights.

    ***Results So far***

    Kessil 360x
    kessilgrid.jpg



    Noopsyche K7 ProII
    noopsychegrid.jpg
    Hydra 26hd
    Hydragrid.jpg


    SPONSORS

    We need to be grateful in that we have such an awesome place here at R2R to get such valuable information in one place, so please visit and support these sponsors willing to help us.
    @noopsyche has a sub forum you can visit here https://www.reef2reef.com/forums/noopsyche.1066/
    Please visit and show your love to Matt at The Coal Reef for supplying the space,tanks and systems we need to make this happen- https://www.reef2reef.com/forums/the-coral-reef.828/




    I will be purchasing various lights from China or where ever I can get the best samples from.
    The testing equipment will be a Seneye par meter and a 30-60 gallon cube tank.
    (I would like to thank Sustainable Aquatics for letting me use the par meter)

    There will be a variety of tests conducted by myself along with @Dr. Reef who has done some very informative work with his bacteria in a bottle studies. https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/bacteria-in-a-bottle-myth-or-fact.403226/

    This will be a long process just because of the amount of lights and money it takes to get them.
    So please be patient on results and updates.
    All lights will be sold after the study so as to recoup some of the money spent.
    Please feel free to give some suggestions on what kinds of tests would be beneficial to this study.
    ****REMEMBER****
    This is going to be a very polite discussion and testing thread so no bashing of any company please!

    I have ordered lights from 3 different Chinese manufactures to help start this study:

    1.Viparspectra - from Amazon 119$
    Vipar1.jpg Vipar2.jpg Vipar3.jpg Vipar4.jpg Vipar5.jpg
    2.New 2018 Model light from a company in China that is quiet a bit different than its competitors
    Bought from China on Alibaba for 125 for each light as I bought 2 plus 65$ shipping from DHL.

    bbwhitecobb.jpg bbwhitecobb2.jpg bbwhitecobb3.jpg bbwhitecobb4.jpg bbwhitecobb5.jpg bbwhitecobb6.jpg bbwhitecobb7.jpg bbwhitecobb8.jpg bbwhitecobb10.jpg bbwhitecobb11.jpg



     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2018
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  2. Manose

    Manose Active Member R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor

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    3. This company had this light in production for several years Aquarium System Solution
    It is called the Satellite 2 EBAY has them with flex gooseneck(rimless only) and controller for 184$ shipped
    as1.jpg as2.jpg as3.jpg as4.jpg as5.jpg as6.jpg as7.jpg as8.jpg as9.jpg
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2018
  3. kdino

    kdino Active Member R2R Secret Santa Build Thread Contributor

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    Well now this is exciting! Aside from Par, I would love to see a growth/coloration experiment. Something simple and easy to grow like Zoanthids or a simple SPS over 6 months. Same piece under each to see each lights performance.
     
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  4. JaimeAdams

    JaimeAdams Valuable Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Reef Squad 3RMAS Member Build Thread Contributor

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    Following.
    Suggestions -
    1. I see you listed your source and price of the first light, but not the second. I see price point as an important point in the discussion of cheaper lighting options, could you add them to all samples?
    2. I know that lots of people would like to see an SBReeflight tested as well.

    I applaud you for taking this one. I can't wait for results.
     
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  5. Manose

    Manose Active Member R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor

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    That does sound like a good experiment!! @Dr. Reef suggested something like this and it seemed like the very thing we want to see from these lights.
     
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  6. Manose

    Manose Active Member R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor

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    Yes good catch and I will update the main thread.
    The SBReeflight will be tested once funds are available
     
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  7. acro-ed

    acro-ed Active Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Ocala Reef Club Member

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    Awesome! Following along...
     
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  8. cvrle1

    cvrle1 Active Member

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    Thanks very much for doing this. Following along

    If you could add Bloomspect 165W LED unit, it would be great, They are 95% same as Viparspectra unit, but have 2 UV lights, and their red LEDs are in a bit of a different location. I actually have one sitting around here (brand new). Could ship it out to you (if shipping doesnt cost arm and a leg) for this test if you want.

    Few others that I can think of that are quite popular:

    Mars Aqua
    Ocean Revive T247
    Aquasanrise A-029 (few other names like Sunsun)
     
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  9. Manose

    Manose Active Member R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor

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    I will make an overall list of lights for request and I tank you for your offer but lets wait and see all the lights that need to be tested first. This will be an ongoing , very long process.
     
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  10. rcpalmer1

    rcpalmer1 Well-Known Member R2R Supporter

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    I have a tank with cheap gear and one with expensive. I was planning on buy a new light for the cheap tank. The Black boxes I have on it are loud. I am really interested in the results as I was hoping to get a deal black Friday.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 15, 2018
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  11. Manose

    Manose Active Member R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor

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    Black Friday should have some killer deals from many vendors. Save the money until we establish all parameters set forth on each test phase.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 15, 2018
  12. P-Dub

    P-Dub Valuable Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor

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    Good on ya for taking this experiment on. Maybe someone can help you out with the long-term coral growth and coloration portion of this experiment (if you go that route) by comparing with some of the bigger name brand lights. This will give you a comparison making the big name lights a sort of control group to compare to. That would also require multiple tanks or a large tank or two partitioned to test lights with the systems all connected to eliminate other water chemistry variables. I think this is a great start and applaud your efforts and look forward to your results.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 15, 2018
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  13. Manose

    Manose Active Member R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor

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    The long term growth and coloration experiment would definitely require more than just me.
    @Dr. Reef proposed a idea like this but he has to wait on his Bacteria in a bottle study to be finished.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 15, 2018
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  14. wesman42

    wesman42 Well-Known Member Build Thread Contributor

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    This is awesome. Can't wait to follow along!
     
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  15. codydemmel4

    codydemmel4 Valuable Member Build Thread Contributor

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    following along
     
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  16. Dr. Reef

    Dr. Reef Always at your service R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Reef Squad Build Thread Contributor Article Contributor

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    @Manose
    You have been very helpful and i am happy to assist in testing lights and comparing results.
    I have been thinking on this and like we have discussed in our private chats, we need to come up with some fail safe testing routine and procedure.
    I have 2 testing ideas that i think can work.

    I have several 5 gal tanks that i am currently using for bacteria testing. once i am done with them i can join few tanks together via common sump so water chemistry is same for all tanks. Once things are stable i can test following:

    1. fragging few similar size sps, lps and softies from my main tank and placing them under different brands of lights and watch for growth over time.
    2. I can test coraline algae growth in each tank under different lights.

    open for suggestion any thoughts and ideas folks?
     
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  17. happyhourhero

    happyhourhero Burner of the Tips R2R Supporter Reef Tank 365 Build Thread Contributor

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    I hope your house is floating on a pool of fire retardant and that the board from UL will be sitting in on the testing. :)

    Really cool that you are doing this. Excited to see how the “mid to top” tier black boxes stack up.
     
  18. Dan I

    Dan I Active Member R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor

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    This is awesome. Would love to see positive and long term results. In the future, I might consider black box with T5 for my 180 gallon build.
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2018
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  19. Manose

    Manose Active Member R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor

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    Really good Ideas Dr. Reef as those are some real groundwork experiments. Guys, like Dr. Reed said lets keep these ideas coming
     
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  20. P-Dub

    P-Dub Valuable Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor

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    That would definitely require help. Unfortunately, the only way to glean truly meaningful data on the coral growth and coloration rates, the test/experiment would need to be performed with identical water parameters and coral frags from the same mother colony over all the test lights and include the name brand lights as controls. Someone or some folks with deep pockets needs to get involved.
     
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