T5 or mh for reef tank?

Discussion in 'Metal Halide Aquarium Lighting' started by KHouck, Jan 22, 2011.

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  1. KHouck

    KHouck Plankton

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    Will be setting up a 125 reef. Got a great deal off cg. Should I go with 2 36" x4 t5, 2 48" x4 t5, or 250w x3 mh. I really want to go with the t5 cause i can't afford a chiller, but i don't want to be limited on coral options. What would you guys do?
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  3. 2in10

    2in10 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Go with the 36" T5. What brand are they?
  4. element

    element Fire Worm

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    Neithor...LED.
  5. Bloodkip

    Bloodkip Ritteri Anemone

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    MH, shimmer effects and able to keep anything. I don't see how people have heat problems with MH. My tank only goes up 1 degree. Sure, mh might be a problem if you don't have A/C or the tank is in like a garage or something.
  6. KHouck

    KHouck Plankton

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    I have thought about led. I would easily be able to install and understand how it works, i am very good at soldering and like to mess around with small electronics. I would just cost a lot. I don't want to pay 500 for leds then like 150 for drivers and almost 200 for heatsinks. Do you think that I could get away with the 36" t5s? Would I have to put the sps on top or could they go towards the middle? I would be getting oddysea fixtures, I already have one and it is actually good quality, except for the bulbs, which i would replace.
  7. 2in10

    2in10 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I would place acros on top and montis middle top with the Odyssea fixture. Individual reflectors are the way to go.
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  9. aquariaman

    aquariaman Pajama Cardinal

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    IMO, i have always gone with metal halides. Even on my frag tank i refuse to buy anything else. When i got into the hobby, i wanted my tank to look the best it can look. Don't get me kiddin, you can still have a heck of a reef tank with t5! I think you can get the best growth and "ocean resemblance" with metal halides. That is my opinion! But you don't have to have either of those to have a beautiful tank. You can always make a tank pretty in your own way no matter what you own or buy!
  10. m2434

    m2434 Giant Squid

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    I sort of disagree with the able to keep anything statement . to say you will be able to keep any light loving corals, if water conditions are ideal, would be more accurate. There are certainly corals that just do not like that much light. Also, light can actually be a stressor to many corals if water quality is not idea. Assuming water quality is ideal, there are shaded areas for certain corals, if the op wants to keep them (some ricordia, candy cane corals, some acanthastrea, even some zoanthids etc... do not always like lots of light) and the op wants to keep some more light loving corals, then I agree with that statement. T-5s may be safer though if a wider range of livestock is attempted, although you do loose the shimmer.
  11. Tmobo

    Tmobo T-Rev

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    Personally, I like t5's but you have to get decent ones. With t5's you pretty much get what ya pay for.
  12. m2434

    m2434 Giant Squid

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    Also, just to add, I do think MH penatrate better, so if it is a particularly deep tank this may be a consideration. No so in a shallow tank though...