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fishcounter
03-13-2006, 03:00 PM
I wanted to post a poll to see how many watts per gallon everyone had over their reef. This might be a tricky poll since lighting depends on what we keep in our tanks, but I though it would still be fun to see how much we all like to increase our power bills by each month.:D

Rob
03-13-2006, 03:10 PM
just keep in mind that watts per gallon is an almost worthless (somewould say totally worthless) measurement...
there are a few places where it can be of assitance, but you should never really be depended on it as your sole source of determining light needs for your inhabitants.

just to add:
my tank is 100 gallons
2x 250 MH
2x 110 VHO
total 720 w

gwen_o_lyn
03-13-2006, 04:21 PM
I agree with Rob- it's not bad for noobs, but why learn the easy way in the beginning just to find out later that it doesn't work that well. I see this method taught on many websites and I think the reef community should be taught the correct way to think of lighting from the beginning.

But speaking of power bills- we just paid ours yesterday and I can see a difference after hooking up one 150w metal halide!! wow! The bill was double and I can't say it was any colder last month than the previous month... i don't know, but oh well... such is the reefing life :mrgreen: We just keep skimming, skimming, skimming, and pay the power bill, the power bill, the power bill!! ;)

Ok so watts per gallon:
my 72 gal has 4-65w pc lighting = 3.61 watts/g
and the 12g nano has one 150w mh = 12.5 watts/g

I'm gonna vote based on the weighted average ;)

pham411
03-13-2006, 05:06 PM
6.93 for me
2x150 ushio de halides
2x110 super actinics vhos
all on my 75
rob is right

bband
03-13-2006, 06:31 PM
4.3 WPG VHO for me. Mostly softies. I like the color VHO gives over halides and you enjoy lower electric bills Gwen! :D

byseven
03-14-2006, 12:03 AM
i got 2x65 PC and 2 x 40 NO on a 55 gal
130 + 80 = 210 /55 = 3.8

gwen_o_lyn
03-14-2006, 01:44 AM
enjoy lower electric bills Gwen! :D

Thanks- I already do :rolleyes:
At least there is a low cost of living here, so I'm thankful for that, now if this was Long Island, I'd be in trouble ;)

kj_yoda
03-14-2006, 10:09 AM
now if this was Long Island, I'd be in trouble ;)

Or Hawaii.... When Dayna Riddle was in town around Christmas, he was saying to run his 90 gallon tank cost him about $300-400 per month!!! OUCH!

that is dedication, even with all of that perfect natural sunlight there.!

I've got about 4 watts per gallon

Kevin McG
03-14-2006, 10:10 AM
Mine runs 4.1666 WPG but like mentioned above it really isn't to important. My lights are about 10"-12" off the water on a 180.

I am using 3 x 250 watt with 100 watts of actinic
Pheonix 14k are my bulbs of choice

DJGonzo69
03-14-2006, 08:10 PM
40gal =7.625/ gal
175w MH, 65w 10k PC & 65w Actinic

30gal= 4.333/ gal
65w 10K & 65w Actinic

12gal= 10.88/ gal
65w 10k &65w Actinic

5.5gal= 11.8181/ gal
65w 50/50 10K/Actinic

2.5gal= 7.2/ gal
18w 50/50 10K/Actinic

4 of the other tanks are FW.
CRAP!!!! & I wonder why my elec. bill is high. I'm sure it will go up as soon as my MH will be in full running cycle......hmmmmmm :-(

kj_yoda
03-15-2006, 12:08 AM
Here is one to make EVERYONE THINK.

Gwen and I just got back from the GA Aquarium behind the scenes tour. Let me tell you...AMAZING!!! (more in another post).

They have 14 x 2000 WATT Metal Halides, 32 x 1000 Metal Halides, Naual Sunlight and that is it. Total light on the tank = 60,000 WATTS.

Size of the tank = 170,000 Gallons (on average... depending on evaporation, etc).

Total Watts per gallon = 0.35!!! and this is their coral tank! There are large specimens of coral growing quickly in this tank. They also have natural UV from the sun going directly into the tank.

gwen_o_lyn
03-15-2006, 02:24 AM
Great calculations Kevin!! I'm glad someone was paying attention ;)

DJGonzo69
03-15-2006, 03:10 AM
I'm sure natural sunlight is a big part of their lighting. Nothing can compare to the piercing power of the sun. Imagine the elec. bill on that place..whew!!!

pham411
03-15-2006, 06:40 AM
4.3 WPG VHO for me. Mostly softies. I like the color VHO gives over halides and you enjoy lower electric bills Gwen! :D

true, i do like the colors of vhoz also

kj_yoda
03-15-2006, 09:46 AM
Great calculations Kevin!! I'm glad someone was paying attention ;)

I looked at pictures... I cheated! hehe.

gwen_o_lyn
03-15-2006, 09:40 PM
If you can look at pictures and tell that the tank was 170,000 gallons, then you're GOOD ;) I didn't even know that.

kj_yoda
03-15-2006, 10:16 PM
Bruce Carlson said the size of the tank before we left on the tour

mdavis203
03-17-2006, 11:44 AM
4X54 watts T5 HO on 55 gallon.

Clayman
03-20-2006, 02:41 AM
2 x 250watt halides
156watts T-5 actinics
total 656watts /100gallons that makes 6.5wpg here.

plack
03-20-2006, 10:28 PM
What matters is the intensity of light the type of coral and the depth and color temperature! No one can blanketly state watts per gallon it's stupid 250 watts of pc lighting versus 250 watts of metal halide is very different also the distance the coral is away from the light. Like I said this poll is STUPID I sighned up to this website JUST to state this !!!!!

gwen_o_lyn
03-20-2006, 10:53 PM
Welcome to TR ;)

Please go easy on the original poster of this thread/poll. Most noobs were taught this way since it's much easier to calculate watts per gallon then to have to think outside the box and relate many factors *like u mentioned* that don't make sense to new saltwater hobbyist.

This thread will be a good learning tool for new people in the hobby. Thanks for your input :)

fishcounter
03-20-2006, 11:19 PM
this poll is STUPID
First of all, welcome to TR plack. As Gwen mentioned, I am new to the reef keeping hobby and I have a lot to learn. Thanks for defending me gwen.;) Since I posted this poll I have done more research and I am getting a better understanding of a reef tank and its lighting requirements. Yes, I regret posting this poll because its not the correct way to judge the lighting requirements for our tank. At the time I did not know that. However, thanks to the people at talkingreef who have calmly educated me, I have learned a lot and I am progressing in the hobby.

Just one word of advice, please learn to express yourself intelligently instead of just joining a wonderful community and calling someone's learning process STUPID. You would be better off calmly educating aquarists instead of getting so offended at them when they try to learn something new.

With that said, we would love to hear about your tank and welcome you.

Rob
03-21-2006, 01:54 AM
What matters is the intensity of light the type of coral and the depth and color temperature! No one can blanketly state watts per gallon it's stupid 250 watts of pc lighting versus 250 watts of metal halide is very different also the distance the coral is away from the light. Like I said this poll is STUPID I sighned up to this website JUST to state this !!!!!

Plack, i welcome you to Talkingreef.
as others have stated, we all agree with you, im have no idea where this comment came from, because as you can see if you read through this poll, we all clearly stated this, and worked to educate the poster.

now that said, here at Talkingreef we work to educate those that need it, we do NOT step in and make an insensitive post knocking what people dont know.

we were all newbies at once, and we have all made uneducated mistakes. but it is the mission of Talkingreef, to work with and teach people to learn everything they can, and to make sure we all learn from our own (and others) mistakes.

All that said, Talkingreef will not take kindly to people getting flamed for posting something that one might see as "stupid". There are NO stupid questions here, there are only questions that need answers.

please do not take this too personally, i only want to clearly state that Talkingreef is dedicated to providing a welcoming community for everyone regardless of there knowledge or experience, and welcome all members that want to kindly help others learn this hobby we all love so much.

We welcome you to continue to participate in the forum, and join our conversation, but i must ask that you refrain from making negative posts such as you did. you are welcome to voice your opinion, even if it differs from everyone else, just please refrain from calling people names or saying thing they are doing or asking are stupid..

plack
03-21-2006, 09:09 AM
Fishcounter I am sorry I did not read too much of the thread in detail not enoughp to see it was not posted by a moderator. That is my fault I am sorry I came off the way I did without Reading it I just ASSUMED it was started by a Moderator I thought all polls were ( ok now that was stupid of me) So Sorry
I normallly read more first

Rob, I will read who starts polls and the thread first.

Bad way too start off all sorry

Paul

fishcounter
03-21-2006, 12:33 PM
Paul- thanks. We are glad to have you and any experience you can bring to the table. Don't stess about the post. I am just glad we have got another aquarist that can join in at talkingreef. Maybe you can help me. I have been trying to do some research on how to light my aquarium, I was wondering if you or anybody else in the reef could help me understand what it is that I should be looking for in a light. As paul mentioned, light intensity and color temperature are important. How do we know what the light intensity will be for a particular lamp and if its right for the aquariums we are trying to keep?

I know that watts are a measure of electricity that the bulb needs to run while lumens are a measure of the intnesity of light the lamp puts out. So, even though we should be looking at light intensity, are watts and lumens correlated in any way?
i.e. Is there a difference in the intensity of light for a 10,000 k MH that is 150 watts as opposed to a 10,000 k MH that is 250 watts? What causes the difference in light intensity? If we don't really care about watts, how come everything is sold in watts and not by lumens or color distribution charts?
Also, I am getting frustrated because as I research the inhabitants I want to try and keep in the future, the most information I can find is, "THis coral needs moderate light". That doesn't tell me much. I know that there is not one light solution for a tank because we have so many species, However it would be nice to look at the coral I do want to keep and try to get the best suited lamp for them.

Thanks for the help, and once again, welcome to TR paul.

gwen_o_lyn
03-21-2006, 01:29 PM
Eddy,

Understanding lighting is definitely one of the harder concepts to grasp. I have so much to learn myself. Tell us what size a tank, the measurements, and what types of corals you would like to keep. I can usually recommend types of fixtures, but I'm not that good at explaining "why" you want that fixture.

Paul- please don't assume I know everything just because I have a title here- believe me, I have a lot to learn. It wouldn't have mattered who started the poll- it's all a learning process and that is why we are here :)

-gwen

fishcounter
03-21-2006, 02:31 PM
well,
I am starting a 90 gallon (48" long x 24" high x 18" wide). Here is a list of some of the coral I am considring keeping. I still have a lot of research to do, so this list might narrow or morph:p

Turbinaria sp - Cup Coral
Acropora sp - Purple acropora
Zoanthus sp - Button polyps
Caulastrea furcata - Candy cane coral
Caulastrea curvata - Trumpet coral
Tubastraea sp - Tube coral
Fungia repanda - Plate coral
Euphyllia glabrescens - Torch coral
Sarcophyton elegan - Yellow leather coral
Acanthastrea - Brain coral
Blastomussa - Blasto
Ricordea - Ricordea

I am also interested in keeping a bubble tip anemone and some clams.
Thanks for the help gwen!

RazerCorals
03-21-2006, 04:31 PM
Pretty much the only use I see from it is to compare watts per lumen achieved. That is for every what you put out, how much intensity do you get.

gwen_o_lyn
03-21-2006, 08:17 PM
Well I'd say you want at least 2-250w metal halides. I would get 10,000K for the temperature and supplement with either PC, VHO, or T5 actinics.

You could also try just T5's on their own, but they are new and not everything is quite known about them.

Some examples:
I like this one- has both T5s and MHs
http://www.marinedepot.com/md_viewItem.asp?idproduct=AQ1831

These are nice:
http://www.marinedepot.com/md_viewItem.asp?idproduct=ES53526

kj_yoda
03-21-2006, 10:42 PM
All I have to say is that I have had a lot of luck with my T5s

plack
03-23-2006, 01:47 AM
Well, here is some of what I know in a nutshell.

corals grow at different depths and light colors penetrate at different depths.

10k= 0-30 foot depth fastest growth rate
14k= 30-60 foot depth medium growth rate
20k = 60-90 foot depth slowest growth rate __ but the best colors many say :-)

Also corals adapt a bit and change in nature I have been told and read by lecturers etc in this field.

If the coral is a shallow coral then it needs intense lighting if it is growing deeper than less intense and more blue 20k actinic lighting is natural for it.

ahh then theres the confusion of color.
As I understand it the brown corals are very healthy and the one's that are more colorfull are actually adapting to too much light in some cases ( see 2nd reading source listed for a more detailed answer). I have read many statements that 7 to 10k (red ) lighting is good to keep red/yellow corals while 20k is better to bring out the blues.

Some places to read (3 for now)

I can provide a much longer list if desired

http://www.advancedaquarist.com/2006/1/lines

http://www.reefs.org/library/talklog/s_tyree_060202.html
(see section 2 of this for why they are brown)

This next one is really cool it shows what your tank might look like with diffferent color bulbs

http://metricksystem.com/chris/250wcolour/

Paul :-)

fishcounter
03-23-2006, 02:13 AM
Awesome articles paul. Thanks! I have got a lot of reading to do now. I am looking forward to it.

gwen_o_lyn
03-24-2006, 08:38 PM
10k= 0-30 foot depth fastest growth rate
14k= 30-60 foot depth medium growth rate
20k = 60-90 foot depth slowest growth rate __ but the best colors many say :-)



I don't like to respond to lighting threads because I don't know that much, but I don't think the above information is correct. 20K has a higher par value than 14K, so therefore you would get better growth under 20K than 14K. Of the three, 10K is usually the best for coral growth.

Rob
03-24-2006, 09:03 PM
we all have to be careful of generalizations and absolutes.
to be specific, neither of these statements are 100% accurate.

lighting has different affects on different species.

while Gwen is right, that 14,000K bulbs usually lower PAR ratings than 10,000K or 20,000K, that doesn't mean it alwayswill give the lowest growth rate.

a 10,000K bulb might give great growth rate for one species, but not as good for another.

again, with everything you need to get a bit more specific, and say, 10,000K would likely give you the best growth rate for a shallow water Stony coral that does well in bright light, but at the same time, it might inhibit growth, or even bleach or kill, an other that is not meant to have such lighting.

gwen_o_lyn
03-24-2006, 09:08 PM
I agree. My statements are for the overall big picture, but certainly varies like Rob said. Each species are different.

And the bulbs do vary par rating by manufacturer.

Rob
03-24-2006, 10:40 PM
And the bulbs do vary par rating by manufacturer.

absolutely, good point, make sure you check out this information when picking your bulbs

CarmieJo
05-16-2006, 11:54 PM
Hi Paul,

Welcome to TR.

thrlride
06-12-2006, 02:49 PM
Like Rob said, generalizations aren't good but in most cases the 20k has the lowest PAR value. All bulbs being constant, as the CCT changes closer to 20k the bulb will have less PAR output.

For instance, the XM10k has great PAR on a m58 ballast, you switch to the XM15k and the PAR drops off considerably. Then you have the 20k XM and the PAR is even less.

All of this changes with the ballast used as well as the bulbs chosen.

It is a pretty safe estimate that the higher the kelvin, the weaker the bulb though.


I don't like to respond to lighting threads because I don't know that much, but I don't think the above information is correct. 20K has a higher par value than 14K, so therefore you would get better growth under 20K than 14K. Of the three, 10K is usually the best for coral growth.

fat walrus
06-13-2006, 12:41 AM
best rule: if its working, don't mess with it. lol

JR Aquatics
09-08-2006, 10:24 PM
I have on my 90gal:
- 2 250watt 10ks MH
- 2 96watt actinic PC
=692watts
7.6 watts per gal

Pinecone_Jeff
10-23-2006, 05:26 PM
Here's an awesome look at an experimental tank at the Steinhart Aquarium in it's temporary facility in downtown San Francisco. It's a 20,000 gal reef tank that's 18 feet deep with 20,000 watts of MH. At different depths, they're charting how well certain corals are doing so when they move to their new aquarium (2007 I believe is whey they will open) they'll have a better understanding of where certain corals will thrive and where they won't.

http://www.calacademy.org/aquarium/coral_reef.php

Here, is an example of how the watts/gal myth is obviously broken. at 18 feet deep, the watts/gal is only 1/gal! This is what they state as their biggest challenge:


Biggest challenge: Replicate the energy from a tropical sun by using artificial lighting to penetrate water that is 18 ft deep without burning the corals in the shallow surface water. Steinhart's specialized system consists of more than 20,000 Watts of metal halide lighting to simulate the tremendous energy of the tropical sun.

I just saw this tank a couple months ago and it's jaw dropping. Just the depth of it is amazing. Almost 3 stories tall! And this is with no aquascaping.

They don't mention what kinds of experiements they're doing with lighting and coral positioning, but being the Academy, you can bet they're doing some fantastic research.

There are stairs the zig zag up one side with observation windows at each landing and corals stacked right up against the window for close observation. Absolutely stunning! I can't wait for the final design of this tank. You can bet I'm gonna keep being a member! :)

Oh, btw, the guy at the bottom of the page is the reef aquarist and biologist in charge of the tank. His name is Bart Shepard and he's quite a cool fella. I took a couple reef aquarium courses he taught through the Academy. So much fun. We got the behind the scene tour of the aquarium to boot! And we had the aquarium all to ourselves at night. :) I hope they continue doing courses like that with the new aquarium.

CarmieJo
10-23-2006, 10:38 PM
Jeff, that is cool. The research will be invaluable!