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TOPIC: Oscar Tank Lighting

Oscar Tank Lighting 4 years 10 months ago #11711

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I have a 56 gallon tank set up with a 6" oscar. The other day, my Coralife CF light flickered for a few seconds then gave up on me, so I changed out the tubes thinking they were the problem but no luck, it must be the ballast. So I started looking at my options for replacement, and noticed that there are a few LED options on the market that are reasonably priced. The Aqueon LED caught my eye in particular, it comes with a single strip of led's with expansion slots for 2 more led lamps, and under 100 bucks. Are these cheaper LED units any good, or should I stick with T5's or CF lighting? There are no live plants in the tank. I currently have a couple of T8 single fixtures getting me by, not as bright as my 36" CF, but it actually doesn't look too bad...
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Oscar Tank Lighting 4 years 10 months ago #11712

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Welcome to Ofish! B)

LEDs are fine, they are getting cheaper.
Unless you want a planted tank, lights are unnecessary and all you need is enough to illuminate the tank so it looks good to you.
Fish actually prefer no lights at all, but they become accustomed to them.
Stay away from the more intense lights unless you want plants.
Oscars love plants, they make awesome tossed salads with them.
;)
6 ft 220g - Tiger O, Rotkeil Severum 10 Silver Dollars
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Oscar Tank Lighting 4 years 10 months ago #11713

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Hey Tom, thanks for the reception. Been poking around this place for awhile, figured it was time to jump in.
I had a few plants in the tank, but they got thrashed pretty quick. I think I'll stick to plastic from this point on.
The Coralife was nice, but I think it was maybe a bit too intense. Showed off the tank nice, but the fish looked like they needed sunglasses. I think I may try the led's.
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Oscar Tank Lighting 4 years 10 months ago #11714

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GM, There's nothing worse than springing for new compact fluorescents, only to find out the ballast(s) are bad. Today's electronic ballasts are junk. Gimme back the old magnetic ballasts with separate starters.

Anyway, like Tom said, if you're not going to have live plants in your tank, there's no need to spend $100. I've got an 48" twin-tube T5HO in a 6500K color/temp range on my 55g that I paid $59 for shipped to the door, with lamps over a year ago. It's an Odyssea brand fixture from eBay. This tank has lots of live plants.

On my new 75g oscar & severum tank, I've got a BeamsWork 6500K LED fixture that was $69 shipped. It's got 72, 0.5w LEDs. Again, if no plants, you can get BeamsWork 48" LED fixtures for $50.
75g a tiger oscar and a green severum
55g community tank with plants
55g goldfish tank
29g community tank with plants
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Oscar Tank Lighting 4 years 10 months ago #11716

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The CF fixture was an old one I had around that used to be on my reef tank. It was the second one I had, I got about 2 years out of each one before they died.
I may look around a bit before I decide on a replacement, the T8's are doing a decent job right now.
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Oscar Tank Lighting 4 years 10 months ago #11718

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Stick with the T8, if it's working for you for general tank lighting.
75g a tiger oscar and a green severum
55g community tank with plants
55g goldfish tank
29g community tank with plants
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Oscar Tank Lighting 4 years 10 months ago #11721

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LED's are nice lights as far as power vs power consumption goes. They are efficient little buggers. They (most) last longer than the CF bulbs and can give off some really nice colors as well. Another benefit of LED's is the shimmer effect. It's nice to look at.

All that being said, LED's are highly unnecessary for a fish only tank. If you don't plan on having plants or going back to reef then I'd stick with a CF type bulb. I just recently bought two 48" T8 work shop light fixtures from Lowes. 14$ a piece and 5-6 bucks for bulbs. What's nice is that my local pet store still carries T8's so I picked up a few 18000K bulbs to add a little color. Pretty happy with the lighting over my 125g and all for under 50$.
"My Country is the World, and my Religion is to do good." -Thomas Paine
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Oscar Tank Lighting 4 years 10 months ago #11722

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Just to add to the above..

Another nice thing about standard LED fixtures, especially the non plant worthy ones, are they give off little/no heat if heat to the tank is an issue for you. T5's get toasty, as do the high and very high output LEDs. T8s get a little warm, but not too awful.
75g a tiger oscar and a green severum
55g community tank with plants
55g goldfish tank
29g community tank with plants
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Oscar Tank Lighting 4 years 10 months ago #11723

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~rush~ wrote:
I just recently bought two 48" T8 work shop light fixtures from Lowes. 14$ a piece and 5-6 bucks for bulbs. What's nice is that my local pet store still carries T8's so I picked up a few 18000K bulbs to add a little color. Pretty happy with the lighting over my 125g and all for under 50$.

I was tossing this idea around as well and building a canopy, but would need the 24" fixtures as my tank is 30" wide, and they want almost 40 bucks a piece (Cad.) for the small fixtures at Home Depot. Cheaper to go LED.
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Oscar Tank Lighting 4 years 10 months ago #11724

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A 30" wide tank with an oscar?

That's an odd tank size being 56g.
75g a tiger oscar and a green severum
55g community tank with plants
55g goldfish tank
29g community tank with plants
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