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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Got a question on lighting...My tank size is a 90 gal. 48L X 24H X 18D.....I have no plants and type of fish Cichlids and a few plecos....Right now I have just a 48in shop light. 2x 40watt bulbs. I don't like the lighting it gives off. I know the fixtures can get pretty expensive I don't want to go crazy on this. You have color number,lumens,lux,intensity etc. All can get pretty confusing. White light is all I'm interested right now. I heard color light will bring out the color on certain color fish but I have different colors. So my question is what type bulbs should I use? And what is the best fixture without going crazy. Thanks alot
 

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Take a look at my "Tanks" button below. I have 1 4ft. fixture with 2 T8 bulbs 32w each (they are just 6500k GE bulbs from Walmart). I'm not trying to grow plants and i think it looks ok. Since my tank is exactly the same size as your's that should give you an idea. I do know that the T8's give out more light though with less wattage. Actually you may have to wait for Fogelhund to approve my profile pics.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
So whats better for cichlids T8 or T5?

Mandalawi your pic didn't show up.
 

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T5's i don't have any experience with so i can't comment on those.
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I thought the profile might be complete by now but here's a pic anyway.
 

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I'm using 4ft 54 watt T5's on my 72gal (4ft bowfront) cichlid tank. My initial plans were for a saltwater tank, so I went a little high-end on lighting... then I decided to go freshwater instead. I built a fixture for 4 T5 tubes by gutting out 2 4ft shoplights and replacing the ballasts, sockets, and bulbs (I have 2 T5 tubes in each shoplight fixture). At first I installed 2 10k white T5's and 2 actinic blue T5's. Needless to say, this is WAY to much light for a cichlid tank and probably would have grown algae like crazy. So now I run the 2 actinics early morning and evening and I run a single 10k white (without the actinics) during the day - all on timers. The 4th pair of sockets is empty. The single 10k T5 white provides plenty of crisp bright light, and the actinics give a different look morning & evening. I LOVE the T5's - lots of light from a little bulb without too much heat, and supposedly the bulbs last a LONG time (at least a couple years).

I would also highly recommend LED moon lights. They allow you to watch the night time behavior of your fish, and they're not terribly expensive. I got a 4ft strip of moonlights (blue LEDs spaced about 2" apart) on ebay for about $50-ish.
 

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I'm talking to my Fiance' now about the moonlights. I've read about them for a couple of years and seen a ton of pics but just haven't got around to doing them yet. I do like how they look though.
 
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