Lighting question for a 40g (breeder) sized beginner reef tank

Discussion in 'New to Reefing' started by Marc, Nov 10, 2015.

  1. Marc

    Marc

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    New to your forum.

    The tank will be a 40g reef. I'm new to coral so this will be a "beginners" reef. Nothing difficult to keep. However, I do want a good looking, healthy tank. I currently have a T5HO 2 bulb light (1 10k daylight bulb + 1 actinic lamp). I have recently come across an old fixture I had a long time ago. It is a 2 bulb compact fluorescent fixture but, only one working ballast. Would it be beneficial to purchase an actinic bulb for it? Or would that be too much blue and not enough daylight? Or overkill on the blue? Like I said, very new to reefs. I'm not going to go crazy (yet) with it.

    I don't know enough about the coral to spout of names of what I plan to put in it yet. I've been in the "fish" hobby for quite a while so I know to research them and take it slow before I do add anything. But the fish I hope to incorporate into the system will be:
    Snowflake Clown pair
    1 goby of some sort
    1 Blenny of some sort
    1 Flame angel

    and of course some inverts.

    The currently tank has sand, water, powerhead and light. Will be adding a skimmer and live rock very soon. Maybe today.
    Thanks in advance
     
    Marc, Nov 10, 2015
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  2. Marc

    Becky Administrator

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    Hey there, welcome aboard! :)
     
    Becky, Nov 11, 2015
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  3. Marc

    Marc

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    Why Thank you Becky. I noticed there was a lighting thread further down. If my question needs to be down there...feel free to move it. I did speak with somebody in a salt water shop last night about my lighting situation. I'll post his feedback here so if others have a similar question, they can learn from it as well.
    He said that even in a shallow tank such as a 40 breeder (18" deep) a 2 bulb fixture will really only allow for soft coral (the browns...leathers and such). He said compact fluorescent lights were hot at one time but he hasn't sold any in a couple years. He said they take a lot of energy to run, and the bulbs are expensive and lose their spectrum in about 6 months. And it's not a gradual loss of spectrum...it's big. So his suggestion was to use the money I'd spend on a new bulb for the 1 bulb compact fixture and get another 2 bulb T5HO and have a 4 bulb set up. He recommends API bulbs as they have the best overall spectrum and bulb life. And he recommends a 2 daylight, 1 blue, 1 purple or 2 daylight, 2 blue mix of bulbs.

    Anyway, as Dory would say, "Just keep swimming"
     
    Marc, Nov 11, 2015
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