A look at Hamilton Technology 460nm T5 HO bulbs

Discussion in 'T5 Aquarium Lighting' started by Matt Rogers, Nov 19, 2014.

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  1. Matt Rogers

    Matt Rogers Kingfish Staff Member

    Dec 31, 2000
    Berkeley, CA
    Recently on the T5 board I reached out about actinic bulb recommendations as my bulbs were cooked and discontinued. The general consensus was that I couldn't go wrong with a couple German brands and also to go with 460nm to really pop. Having read this, 3reef sponsor Hamilton Technology asked if I would like to try out their German-made 460nm T5 HO bulbs and I gladly accepted. The timing was right. Read on for a little review.


    Hamilton Technology has been around the aquarium scene for a long time. I am pretty sure in the pre-internet days, I was seeing their ads in FAMA magazine. That had to be over 20 years ago. These guys are wise in their old age and know a thing or two. It shows in modest ways like the reflector on their Cayman Sun HQI pendants or in this case, with the packaging care taken on shipping their 460nm T5 HO bulbs my way. Check this out:


    That is two layers of styrofoam and bubble-wrap all snug in a tight box. I liked these bulbs immediately because I knew they were not broken! Hamilton gets big points for that. By now, I am sure many of you can tell a story or two about ordering online bulbs. I sure can. They do not always come packed like that.


    A little look at the bulbs - stating that they are indeed made in Germany. The other thing to note here is that the Hamilton Technology logo is a sticker. That certainly confirms a re-branding arrangement. Rumor is that the German manufacturer may be BLV. But I have not confirmed that. Removing the sticker actually removed whatever label was originally on the bulb. Regardless, I felt good that they were German made and 460nm, I was excited to turn them on.


    Pop! 'Wow.' Perhaps 'whoa' came out of my mouth. I can't quite recall, I was swimming that color. I was impressed and an immediate fan of 460nm. The pic above can't quite do this justice. That is some 'royal' blue. Almost purple. I like it. The oranges and greens of my corals really show.

    The 22" Hamilton 460nm T5 HO bulb cost $18.95. That is a buck or two more than my old bulbs, but absolutely worth it from what I've seen so far and for the special care in shipping. Check back for long term reports as I will update this, but first impressions are great.


    MarineDepot likes this.