I need a light fixture for my exo-terra 24x18x36high viv.
I have looked around and found this fixture that seems to be super inexpensive, is it any good or do you have any lights you would suggest fo a tank this size?
4-bulb fixtures are unncessary for vivariums. Current, Deep Blue, are good brands. Stay away from Coralife - it's just not suitable for vivs. Because the viv is so tall, a high-output setup might be the way to go - it's up to you. You tend to get what you pay for in the T5 market.
that fixture looks like it has a terrible reflector. I've also heard they get really hot. in my opinion you get whatcha pay for. Sunlight supply, current usa, and AH supply are some good brands you should look into.
If it were me, I would shoot for around at least 2++ watts of flo. light per gal.
(yes... true...i am really into light )
I know it is more of an aquariumists loose formula, but for me, it has applied well to vivs too.
That viv is approx. 65 gal. , I would use at least a 4 x 24 watt T5 HO fixture.
Now remember, all 4 lights do not have to be on all day. A few light timers can turn them on and off in sequence so the light can step up to full brightness, like mid-day sun, and then dim down as "dusk" approaches.
I find my frogs respond to the changing light levels.
Exo makes a 24" strip that has 3 sockets. It is not as fancy as a t5 fixture, but it can hold 75 watts of CFL. Something to think about.
Anyway, that's my 2 cents. I hope you do a build thread on it.
PS. the lights you mentioned, Gro Beam, those are LED arn't they?
I think Mod Scott on this forum is using them. Maybe he will see this and chime in, or you could IM him.
Re the gro beam, I can shed some light on that (sorry. lol). 2 500s wont cut it over such a deep viv. 2 1000NDs however will, or 3 500s might just cut it if you want to spend a bit less. Will do a better job of bringing out frog colours than flourescents, and should help with plant growth. Will use a heck of a lot less power than a load of T5HOs as well.
That would be close to $600.00 for the 2 1000's. I can't afford that. I was looking around the net last night and found these bulbs which use the same emitters as the grobeams, but I would have to rig up some kind of setup to use them. 21w Marine LED Bulbs - LED Pacific Aquarium Supplies
It would end up costing quite a bit less using these but would no be nearly as compact or convenient.
I have the same problem about 36 high pentagon viv with a canopy. I have used 2 6500k CFL with a grow bulb from lowes and though the cage is bright nothing seems to grow very well. Its been about 4-5 months since i planted. I dont know if its enough light or its just getting to hot inside. sometime 80 degrees at the bottom which i would suspect even hotter near the top!