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Old 08-30-2008, 05:27 AM
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Default T5 vs T8 vs T10

Must sound like a noob to ask this, but whats the difference between the 3 types?

Size difference? Light Output?
Can a T5 bulb work in a non T5 fixture?

I know the T5's are the prefered lighting for most of us. My 120g came with a dual 48" T10 hood. So Im guessing I have to stick with T10 bulbs...

Thanks for any info!
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Old 08-30-2008, 12:14 PM
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Default Re: T5 vs T8 vs T10

A T5 bulb might work in a non-T5 fixture but the output would be terrible and at $20 per bulb it would be a huge waste of money. As far as T10's, not sure. I know that I am running T8's in a T12 fixture.
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Old 08-30-2008, 04:47 PM
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Default Re: T5 vs T8 vs T10

You can't use T5 in fixtures with ballasts designed for T8 through T12 (so no).

You can get decent T5 bulbs for about 10 bucks a piece, though.

-Nish
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Old 08-30-2008, 10:57 PM
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Default Re: T5 vs T8 vs T10

You can probably use T8 bulbs in that fixture, or even T6's, however, without a decent reflector your savings will not be very much; so no need to run out and buy new bulbs. Oh, and you would have to replace the endcaps to even begin trying to run T5 bulbs, since T5's are slimer than the distance between the pins on T6-T12's. But you might still want to add another two 48" bulbs since just two bulbs will not be enough for moderate light plants.

The T# refers to the width of the bulb in eighth's of inches, so a T10 is 10/8th diameter bulb. Pretty much the slimer the bulb the more efficient the watt's to lumen ratio. So more electricity is converted into light rather than heat. However, slimmer bulbs also cannot have as much electricity run through them. This is why people don't use normal output T5's for photosynthetic applications, they just don't have enough watts.

HO and VHO bulbs are designed to be driven at double or triple (approximately) the wattage; however, there is some efficiency lost in the process. Thus, you might get more light out of a VHO T12, it won't be as efficient as a standard T12 (but this loss is made up by the increase in wattage, thus more output). This is where the slim size of T5's really give the advantage, you can slap on a nice big parabolic reflector and redirect all the extra light down, the internal reflectors of T12 VHO's cannot compete (not to mention the sheer size of an external reflector would be cost prohibitive).
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Old 08-31-2008, 04:39 AM
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Default Re: T5 vs T8 vs T10

I was actually looking at this fixture last night.

Click the image to open in full size.

4 T5 HO's 48"
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Old 08-31-2008, 03:05 PM
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Default Re: T5 vs T8 vs T10

The one thing to be wary of with pre-built T5HO fixtures is that a lot of the time you don't get parabolic reflectors. Current USA, for example is widely used by a lot of saltwater beginners, and they are told that T5HO is the best lighting, etc, etc; however, those fixtures do not have parabolic reflectors, so you lose a lot of the potential of T5HO. THUS, always check the description to see if it has real parabolic reflectors, if it does not say, call up and ask.

2 bulbs w/ parabolic reflectors > 4 bulbs with non-parabolic reflectors
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Old 09-08-2008, 01:41 AM
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Default Re: T5 vs T8 vs T10

Quote:
Originally Posted by onefstsnake View Post
I was actually looking at this fixture last night.* Click the image to open in full size.4 T5 HO's 48"
Hey, that one looks real nice, who makes it, and can you give me a link, or the name would be good enough.. Thanks, aaron
I guess, onefstsnake do you know if that has parabolic reflectors?
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Old 09-08-2008, 12:50 PM
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Default Re: T5 vs T8 vs T10

The light set up in the photo is made by Tek. They are really nice, but don't come cheap.
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Old 09-09-2008, 11:25 PM
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Default Re: T5 vs T8 vs T10

Quote:
Originally Posted by cindre2000 View Post
The one thing to be wary of with pre-built T5HO fixtures is that a lot of the time you don't get parabolic reflectors. Current USA, for example is widely used by a lot of saltwater beginners, and they are told that T5HO is the best lighting, etc, etc; however, those fixtures do not have parabolic reflectors, so you lose a lot of the potential of T5HO. THUS, always check the description to see if it has real parabolic reflectors, if it does not say, call up and ask.

2 bulbs w/ parabolic reflectors > 4 bulbs with non-parabolic reflectors
Could someone recomend a decent brand of T5 HO lighting. I was looking at the Coralife brand, but I am not sure if it is decent.
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Old 09-09-2008, 11:34 PM
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Default Re: T5 vs T8 vs T10

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason View Post
Could someone recomend a decent brand of T5 HO lighting. I was looking at the Coralife brand, but I am not sure if it is decent.

Coralife and Current USA are both well known in the planted aquarium world. If you want to start spending some money, Tek is very nice, and you can keep going up from there.

Another option no one has mentioned is buying retrofit kits if you have a canopy on your tank. Current USA makes some very nice Nova Extreme HO T5 retrofits with very very nice reflectors. Again though, you will be paying a decent amount for them.
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Old 09-10-2008, 01:23 AM
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Default Re: T5 vs T8 vs T10

Quote:
Originally Posted by therizman2 View Post
Coralife and Current USA are both well known in the planted aquarium world. If you want to start spending some money, Tek is very nice, and you can keep going up from there.

Another option no one has mentioned is buying retrofit kits if you have a canopy on your tank. Current USA makes some very nice Nova Extreme HO T5 retrofits with very very nice reflectors. Again though, you will be paying a decent amount for them.
That's a big jump from Coralife to Tek. Anything in between?
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Old 09-10-2008, 01:31 AM
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Default Re: T5 vs T8 vs T10

If you're the type to make a fixture or don't mind paying extra money to buy a fixture from AH supply or somewhere else, the retrofits seem to be the way to go based on their double reflectors. To save money, you're gonna have to buy the fixture with dual light strips under one reflector (which is quite a bit worse for light output, apparently). I bought two Hagen dual-glo fixtures which are ok but rather expensive and have since found something even cheaper but they're not in the U.S. yet. PM me if you're interested.

-Nish



Quote:
Originally Posted by therizman2 View Post
Coralife and Current USA are both well known in the planted aquarium world. If you want to start spending some money, Tek is very nice, and you can keep going up from there.

Another option no one has mentioned is buying retrofit kits if you have a canopy on your tank. Current USA makes some very nice Nova Extreme HO T5 retrofits with very very nice reflectors. Again though, you will be paying a decent amount for them.
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Old 09-12-2008, 11:54 PM
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Default Re: T5 vs T8 vs T10

Check out this site. www.diyreef.com Deb is great to work with. She usually carries retro fit kits on workhorse ballasts.
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Old 09-13-2008, 09:53 AM
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Default Re: T5 vs T8 vs T10

Quote:
Originally Posted by psychemjr View Post
Check out this site. DIYReef.com Reef Aquarium Lighting and Supplies Deb is great to work with. She usually carries retro fit kits on workhorse ballasts.
haha you beat me to it .
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Old 09-13-2008, 04:33 PM
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Default Re: T5 vs T8 vs T10

Has anyone ever used the Sunleaves Pioneer II Jr. ?
It's only $89 at Josh's Frogs.... It's a T5 Light with two
VitaLume T5 Tubes.....
Josh's Frogs - Sunleaves Pioneer II Jr. - Lighting
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Old 09-13-2008, 05:02 PM
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Default Re: T5 vs T8 vs T10

the same people that make the Tek light also make a few lower end fixtures for green houses etc.. anyways check out sunlight supplys

.: Sunlight Supply - horticulture and aquarium lighting systems :. Website
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Old 09-17-2008, 03:38 AM
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Default Re: T5 vs T8 vs T10

How has everyone's experience been with 2 bulbs vs. 4 bulbs in a fixture with T5 lighting?
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Old 09-17-2008, 04:47 AM
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Default Re: T5 vs T8 vs T10

I am actually using t2s on my tanks now. They are ridiculously efficient and have much better PAR (photosynthetically activating radiation) ratings than many other bulbs. They are also pretty cheap.
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Old 10-11-2008, 06:05 PM
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Unhappy Re: T5 vs T8 vs T10

wow and i thought lighting would be one of the easier parts of building my tank...... i have seen people on here talk about fixtures from home depot is that something totally different??? i am starting a new build appx. 27" wide, 22" deep and 40" high am i gonna need a $300 light set up???
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Old 10-11-2008, 07:52 PM
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Lightbulb Re: T5 vs T8 vs T10

OK So i Bought the Sunleaves Pioneer II Jr.
From Josh's Frogs To answer your question
Jason it has 2 bulbs and it works amazing,
It's super bright, but not hot, and my plants
are loving it... for $89 It's completely worth it...
My tank is a 50 Tall and it radiates with
a very natural light, i completely recommend it,
and so did Josh himself

Justin
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Old 10-11-2008, 08:02 PM
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Default Re: T5 vs T8 vs T10

Lighting was absolutely the most confusing part of setting up my paludarium.

This question is sort of related to the rest of the thread, so I thought I'd stick it in here. I've got 2 T5 bulbs in a fixture over my 29 gallon. They're nice, but I'd like just a little bit more light. The fixture has no reflector, just a white plastic backing. Would taping some shiny tinfoil to this make any difference? I mean, I could just try it, but is there some hidden danger to doing it that I'm not aware of?
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Old 10-11-2008, 09:02 PM
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Default Re: T5 vs T8 vs T10

There's probably no problem with using reflective tape. The thing is, the shape is the most important thing. You might get more light but if it's not reflecting it downward, it's not going to make that much of a difference. I was surprised by the ammount of light a white plastic background reflected by itself. Parabolic reflectors are shaped in a way that the rays of light are reflected downward. If it's not shaped in this manner it could be hitting the side and back to the other side back and forth or into the bulb. It'll just generate heat and the light won't be going the way you want. It's this reason that the single bulbs with single parabolic reflectors are far superior for light vs. power consumption.

-Nish
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