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Recommendations on lighting?

Postby NLW66 » Mon Nov 18, 2019 5:33 pm

Setting up a 90G Tropheus moori tank (24'' deep). Tank has a black background. Substrate will be mixture of white and black sand. My intent is to stock with Tropheus moori "purple rainbow" lufubu or Tropheus moori ilangi.

Lighting is absolutely critical for visual appeal, and I am wondering if y'all have any suggestions or preferences in terms of lighting. I use a Beamswork DA 6500K on two mbuna tanks. The Beamswork lights have been great, but I am wondering if there is a "better" lighting system to accentuate the coloration of the tropheus?
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Re: Recommendations on lighting?

Postby noddy » Mon Nov 18, 2019 7:31 pm

I found that the lighting requirements differed depending on which type of tropheus I was keeping. In my 26" tall Lufubu tank I used a double 48" t5 fixt. with one 10,000k and one 6700k (could have been 6,500k) bulb. Same lighting worked on Linangu and I would imagine it would work well with Illangi.
On my Moops tank I used a double t5 with one 10,000k and one colormax.
What I absolutely would not do is have a black background with any Tropheus. It will cause the Trophs try to blend in and look very dark.
I used sheets of blue colorplast on my 5' tanks.
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Re: Recommendations on lighting?

Postby punman » Tue Nov 19, 2019 1:10 pm

For many years for my tropheus, and in fact, all African cichlids I used 10,000 K and an actinic bulb that gives the blue light. It was my favourite combo.

I now, for a few months, have a couple of cheaper LED fixtures on one tank - one fixture I run on the blue and white setting and the other on straight blue.
Tanganyika Cichlids all the Way!
90 Gallon: Tropheus Black Bemba
135 Gallon: Frontosa mpimbwe f1 and A. calvus
Fish tanks - betcha can't have just one!
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Re: Recommendations on lighting?

Postby sir_keith » Fri Dec 13, 2019 8:55 am

If it ain't broke...

I use the Beamswork DA 6500K fixtures on just about all of my tanks, and I think they work especially well with Tropheus. Many of the different Tropheus populations need just the right light to look their best, and one way to get the flexibility to do that is to use bespoke Beamswwork Timer/Dimmer modules (~$15 each) that are made especially for these lights. These modules allow you to control the 6500K and actinic lights independently, setting both 24-hour on/off cycles as well as allowing you to dim the lights in ten increments from 100% (full on) to 10%. If you set the actinics at 100%, then lowering the intensity of the 6500K LEDs yields progressively 'bluer' light, so you can chose whatever setting you find most pleasing. I generally use 100% actinics plus 20% or 30% 6500Ks, which shows off even mostly black Tropheus (e. g. Lunangwa Sud) to best advantage. I use the same settings on my featherfin tanks, which are heavily planted with Anubias, and a 12 hour light cycle is plenty of light for luxurious plant growth. The Timer/Dimmer modules are also nice in that you no longer have to fuss with turning all the lights in the fish room on and off every day.

I do agree with noddy- a black background on a Tropheus tank is not a good idea. I'd go one step further and suggest that you use all light gravel as well.

Good luck!
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