65 gal lighting opinions pc mh t5ho?

iverson387

Junior Poster
Mar 19, 2008
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I have recently set up a 65 gallon tank (36"widex18"deepx24"high) and im not sure what to use for lighting. I currently have a 20 gallon long planted tank and will be moving all the plants to this tank including hc, hairgrass, vals, ect. I also have pressurized co2 and im dosing fertilizers. Now for lighting what would be my best option and how much. ive been reading some posts and was thinking about 4x39 watt t5ho or 2x96 watt ah supply or 2 70 watt hqi metal halides. opinions please have tried to get answers on other forums and cant get a good solid answer. let me know thanks excited to get this tank going.
 

tedr108

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Nov 21, 2007
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The 4 x 39 seems like the best option. That is plenty of light, especially if you have 4 of the single reflectors, rather than 2 doubles. You might even be able to, or want to, get away with 3 x 39 (1.8 wpg) depending on your plants. (The minimum for HC is somewhere around 2.0 wpg, I believe.) It all depends on how much growth you want and how much maintenance you want to do.

Anyway, I'm no expert, so hopefully others will give you some good feedback.
 

iverson387

Junior Poster
Mar 19, 2008
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ya thanks for the suggestion i like the idea of the 3x39 watt because i dont want tons of growth. jus really want happy healthy plants and a nice tank to look at but if it takes 3-6 months to grow to where i want it thats ok. other opinions wanted thanks
 

creighton

Guru Class Expert
Jun 18, 2007
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Those are all good options. For a 2ft deep tank I would suggest the 2 x 70 watt metal halides. I have a 2ft deep tank as well and I wish I would have gone with MH rather than PC. I've never used T5's but those would give you more control over how much light you put over the tank, but with the MH you're stuck with full blast all the time unless you want a half dark tank. Maybe look at this fixture: Tek Light T5 Fluorescent Aquarium Light 3ft 4 bulb 156W

You could make a conduit bar light stand and maintenance would be a breeze.

I agree with Ted. Try the T5's.

Hope that helps.
 

VaughnH

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Jan 24, 2005
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I would use the T5's too, either 3 or 4, but with separate controls for at least two of them so you have the option or running 3 even when you have 4. You can make a light fixture pretty easily and use ReefGeek retrofit T5 kits for the lights themselves. Just another option.