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Thread: Aquarium Lighting Question

  1. #1
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    Aquarium Lighting Question

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    Hi can anyone advice on how much lighting(led) lumen K and watts is needed for a planted tank?
    8gallon nano tank, moderate planted with low light plants; anubias, Java ferns and moss. Currently dosing excel and liquid ferts.

    And how many hours of lights will be good?


    Thanks in advance! 🙂

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    Re: Aquarium Lighting Question

    Hi meiyouni,

    not an expert on your question, but the advice i had from a local plant distributor is that any light with 6500K lumen is good enough.

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    Re: Aquarium Lighting Question

    ermm , not an expert either but lumens (brightness) and kelvin (color temperature) is different.
    Suckerfish no eat poo poo.

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    Re: Aquarium Lighting Question

    Lol,my bad, I just listen what experienced mentors say,but didn't find out more.

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    Re: Aquarium Lighting Question

    Quote Originally Posted by meiyouni View Post
    [FONT="]Hi can anyone advice on how much lighting(led) lumen K and watts is needed for a planted tank?[/FONT]
    [FONT="]8gallon nano tank, moderate planted with low light plants; anubias, Java ferns and moss. Currently dosing excel and liquid ferts.

    And how many hours of lights will be good?

    [/FONT]

    Thanks in advance! ��
    Yes, color temp of 6500K is recomended. For the plants you listed, these are easy plants and will grow under most conditions. Most of the led lights from the LFS that fits your tank should work. Try around 8 hours and adjust from there.
    Suckerfish no eat poo poo.

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    Re: Aquarium Lighting Question

    Quote Originally Posted by meiyouni View Post
    Hi can anyone advice on how much lighting(led) lumen K and watts is needed for a planted tank?
    8gallon nano tank, moderate planted with low light plants; anubias, Java ferns and moss. Currently dosing excel and liquid ferts.

    And how many hours of lights will be good?


    Thanks in advance!
    Hi. First choose 6500k led light.

    Choose led light that are efficient. That is 1 watt gives you 100 lm at least. This save electricity in long run.

    Next follow the rule. 0.2 watt per liter for low light plant. 0.35 watt per liter for medium light. 0m5 watt per liter for high light plant.

    Dont go high light if you dont have high nutrients and high co2.

    Sent from my SM-G955F using Tapatalk

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    Re: Aquarium Lighting Question

    Quote Originally Posted by ljohn78 View Post
    Hi. First choose 6500k led light.

    Choose led light that are efficient. That is 1 watt gives you 100 lm at least. This save electricity in long run.

    Next follow the rule. 0.2 watt per liter for low light plant. 0.35 watt per liter for medium light. 0m5 watt per liter for high light plant.

    Sent from my SM-G955F using Tapatalk
    No issue with recommending LED, but you are asking people to apply watts per rule /per litre to LED? This is wrong.

    Watts per rule is best suited for T5 and MH. LED has a much broader range and applying this old school methodology is going to blind the hobbyist.

    We use PAR now.

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    Re: Aquarium Lighting Question

    Quote Originally Posted by torque6 View Post
    No issue with recommending LED, but you are asking people to apply watts per rule /per litre to LED? This is wrong.

    Watts per rule is best suited for T5 and MH. LED has a much broader range and applying this old school methodology is going to blind the hobbyist.

    We use PAR now.
    I agree with you PAR is better. If OP have a PAR meter please use it instead of watt per gallon rule i stated.

    But not many people own an expensive PAR meter. So for most hobbyist, using the watt per gallon is the next best thing.

    The watt per gallon i suggested has been modified for LED lighting which are more power efficient. Not the same watt per gallon for fluorescence.

    OP's nano tank is going to house very hardy plant like anubias if you read his post. This means they can deal with varieties of light condition so using the watt per gallon i suggested (which is inaccurate) but a good convenient approximation is within reasonable boundaries.

    What do you mean by led has broader range than led?
    LED is well known to produce a narrow band of wavelengths compared to fluorescence which produce a much wider bands of wavelength.
    LED also produce a narrow angle beam of light (about 90) compared to fluorescence (about 120).

    Sent from my SM-G955F using Tapatalk

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    Re: Aquarium Lighting Question

    Quote Originally Posted by ljohn78 View Post
    I agree with you PAR is better. If OP have a PAR meter please use it instead of watt per gallon rule i stated.

    But not many people own an expensive PAR meter. So for most hobbyist, using the watt per gallon is the next best thing.

    The watt per gallon i suggested has been modified for LED lighting which are more power efficient. Not the same watt per gallon for fluorescence.

    OP's nano tank is going to house very hardy plant like anubias if you read his post. This means they can deal with varieties of light condition so using the watt per gallon i suggested (which is inaccurate) but a good convenient approximation is within reasonable boundaries.

    What do you mean by led has broader range than led?
    LED is well known to produce a narrow band of wavelengths compared to fluorescence which produce a much wider bands of wavelength.
    LED also produce a narrow angle beam of light (about 90) compared to fluorescence (about 120).

    Sent from my SM-G955F using Tapatalk
    Broader range means your led chip, 3528, 5050, 5630 and the later 5730 (i think).Agree that PAR meter is expensive. It's good to have, but not necessary. 2nd hand of course will be much cheaper.

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    Re: Aquarium Lighting Question

    Quote Originally Posted by torque6 View Post
    Broader range means your led chip, 3528, 5050, 5630 and the later 5730 (i think).Agree that PAR meter is expensive. It's good to have, but not necessary. 2nd hand of course will be much cheaper.
    How does that constitute broader range? The numbers code merely indicate the size of the chip which influences its power requirement and light output per chip. I can use 3528 of X number to get a light source that is equal to 5050 of Y numbers. The only difference is the number and size of LED chips.

    Seriously i would really like to do a poll and see how many forum users own a (first or second hand) PAR meter. I am guessing 1% or less.

    I would say, using PAR or watt per gallon rules are all approximate methods (even thou PAR is more accurate than wpg but that doesnt make PAR accurate).

    Therefore, the best method i say, is the most convenient method!

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    Re: Aquarium Lighting Question

    Quote Originally Posted by ljohn78 View Post
    Seriously i would really like to do a poll and see how many forum users own a (first or second hand) PAR meter. I am guessing 1% or less.

    I would say, using PAR or watt per gallon rules are all approximate methods (even thou PAR is more accurate than wpg but that doesnt make PAR accurate).

    Therefore, the best method i say, is the most convenient method!
    By all means, do your poll, in case you haven't noticed, the traffic on AQ is not like it use to be. A decade back, it's 2k registered user from 8.30+ till late. Now, less than 10 on some nights. But then again, you won't have known about it. I bought the PAR meter years ago at Reef forum SG. But do I use it often? I don't. Do I recommend that everyone get one? No. But when I go and do maintenance and help clients/friends with algae and stuff, I can advise because I have the right tool.

    I think no need to further explain anything to you.

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    Re: Aquarium Lighting Question

    Quote Originally Posted by torque6 View Post
    By all means, do your poll, in case you haven't noticed, the traffic on AQ is not like it use to be. A decade back, it's 2k registered user from 8.30+ till late. Now, less than 10 on some nights. But then again, you won't have known about it. I bought the PAR meter years ago at Reef forum SG. But do I use it often? I don't. Do I recommend that everyone get one? No. But when I go and do maintenance and help clients/friends with algae and stuff, I can advise because I have the right tool.

    I think no need to further explain anything to you.
    Hi torque6,

    I do not know which of my posts so far in AQ has/have offended you. If i did offend you in someway that i am not aware of, i apologise. For myself, i was offended by your post that wrongly accused me of being a clone account and denounce all my contributions here as merely to increase post counts (which isnt, incase you havnt notice).

    Given that you are here in AQ longer than me (with more contributions), you are probably senior in age over me. Given that you are actually helping other hobbyist on a professional level, you are probably more experienced in aquariam hobby over me too. For the above 2 points, i respect you for your seniority in age and experience. I also understand that due to experience alone, you would probably know alot more than me or anyone here in AQ about the aquarium hobby which we both love.

    As you have mentioned, i wouldnt have known how AQ members and AQ acitivities have been declining through the years since i joined relatively late. Then again, I also usually surf AQ from my phone using TAPATALK app which doesnt tell how many people are using the forum. However, have you also taken a step back and wonder for yourself, why so many people are lossing interest and giving up on this hobby and stop coming to AQ?

    Is it because fish keeping is expensive? I personally dont think so. Fish keeping definitely need some money, but expensive is relative to how deep individuals pockets are. Since most hobbyist whom began fish keeping must be able to affort it in the first place, so quitting the hobby is probably not due to cost.

    Is it because fish keeping is hard work? Maybe. Fish keeping requires daily, fortnightly or some regular form of feeding. It also require some maintenance in the form of water change, filter maintenance and some elbow grease on the glass walls. But alot of hardwork can be eliminated if hobbyist are aware of how to setup a low maintenance tank. Low maintenance tank is a tank that only need maintenance on a monthly, 6 monthly and some even yealy intervals. That is not much hardwork if you ask me.

    Is it because the hobby is closer to "ALGAE" keeping rather fish keeping? Maybe again. Algae is ever present in all tanks. But Aquarist tend to fight algae with half baked knowledge resulting in inevitable failure. I say dont fight mother nature, it is easier to arm ourself with good knowledge and work with algae inorder to control them and still have a stunning looking tank.

    I have observed many different and sometimes contradictory advices being given online by "experienced" hobbyist. Nothing wrong with trying to help out. But rather than anecdotal experience alone, i feel it is better to also educate the hobbyist here with the correct aquarium science. This way, there will be less failures due to tank crash, algae run away, hard tank reset and the eventual quitting of the hobby. I believe this will be good for the fish keeping community in the long run.

    I would like to add that, seniority and experience doesnt always constitute being right (usally it does but not always!). Otherwise, young people will never be valued for their creativity and be able to come out with new inventions and knowledge. I would also like to add that, it is ok to be wrong or have misunderstanding or be unsure. It is ok to recieve constructive feedback from others, especially in an open forum like AQ where posts are for all to read and reply. It is however very dishearten if one remain stubborn, hold on to misconcepts and perpetuate misconcepts.

    Tank on people! "Dustins fish tank"

    P.S. For all readers, Please use PAR for lighting considerations if you have the PAR meter.
    Last edited by ljohn78; 8th Mar 2018 at 00:31.

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    Re: Aquarium Lighting Question

    Quote Originally Posted by ljohn78 View Post

    Is it because fish keeping is expensive? I personally dont think so. Fish keeping definitely need some money, but expensive is relative to how deep individuals pockets are. Since most hobbyist whom began fish keeping must be able to affort it in the first place, so quitting the hobby is probably not due to cost.

    Is it because fish keeping is hard work? Maybe. Fish keeping requires daily, fortnightly or some regular form of feeding. It also require some maintenance in the form of water change, filter maintenance and some elbow grease on the glass walls. But alot of hardwork can be eliminated if hobbyist are aware of how to setup a low maintenance tank. Low maintenance tank is a tank that only need maintenance on a monthly, 6 monthly and some even yealy intervals. That is not much hardwork if you ask me.

    I have observed many different and sometimes contradictory advices being given online by "experienced" hobbyist. Nothing wrong with trying to help out. But rather than anecdotal experience alone, i feel it is better to also educate the hobbyist here with the correct aquarium science. This way, there will be less failures due to tank crash, algae run away, hard tank reset and the eventual quitting of the hobby. I believe this will be good for the fish keeping community in the long run.

    I would like to add that, seniority and experience doesnt always constitute being right (usally it does but not always!). Otherwise, young people will never be valued for their creativity and be able to come out with new inventions and knowledge. I would also like to add that, it is ok to be wrong or have misunderstanding or be unsure. It is ok to recieve constructive feedback from others, especially in an open forum like AQ where posts are for all to read and reply. It is however very dishearten if one remain stubborn, hold on to misconcepts and perpetuate misconcepts.
    I don't see myself as knowledgeable, I am just someone who sees and read enough scenarios to understand what would likely works and what may not work. Taking an example of a 2 feet tank setup (15G) with high PAR led, iwagumi style rock scape, monte carlo with co2 injection. Out of a course of a decade+, I have seen countless of similar setup, 95% fail or start to fail due to tanks being over-run by algae or melt in a span of 2-7 months. If a newbie here on this forum opens a thread asking for advice on starting a similar setup, my advise to him/her would be "not to attempt" it and try a different scape or approach, because there are other ways to enjoy this hobby. But there will be people who will recommend highlight, high PAR LED for this kind of setup just because it is a popular brand.


    These are the same people who are also quick to point out our stubborness and misconceptions. They fail to realise that some "experienced" hobbyist don't form our own conceptions out of thin air.


    Sure, there is nothing wrong with trying to help out, but the intention is not desirable when wrong advise is given, resulting in failure of another hobbyist tank. Or causing/asking hobbyist to make "another" purchase which is redundant.


    Again, citing example. A guy just last month on FB, overloaded his tank with neon tetra with a uncycled tank (nitrate was a high 50PPM), tank was a small/nano 45cm long (less than 10G) and has both ammonia+ nitrate spike, I advised that it would be better for him was to reduce his bioload (give way some fish) and do small 5-10% water change daily and feed less. No one agree with me and the majority of users told me not to stress the hobbyist and just do 50% water changes and go to shop and buy Seachem Prime help manage nitrate. He lost all his tetras within the week. What to do, I already did my best.


    I agree that experience does not constitute being right because I have seen tanks defying aquarium science and doing well dispite the odds. But I can't use this 5% success rate and based my advise on this findings. It has to be what will work generally.


    I advocated that this hobby is unforgiving and will always do so. This is because there are too many factors to manage and results whether positive/negative do not show themselves immediately when attempt to resolve certain problem, etc algae. There is a fair amount of guess work when comparing to other hobbies available. Again citing examples, countless of reported ideal tank parameters of 0 ammonia, 0 nitrate, 0 nitrite, gh/kh stable 6 or 7, PH 6.5 but fish/shrimp dying? What really happened? Really fish weak? You sure? You do not know. Again example, 2 java moss grown in 2 tanks, same setup, 1 turned brown, the other flourishing. Why? You do not know. Again, we can only guess. That's how difficult this hobby is.

    Maintenance and water change takes time. It's not a 10mins chore, period. The larger the volume, the longer the maintenance. The smaller the tank, the faster you do your maintenance but given the smaller volume of water and it's parameters, the more unstable it is. This is also aquarium science.


    I didn't however said that this hobby is expensive. It is only expensive if you make impulse and redundant purchases based on feed back given by other hobbyist who are currently not facing the same problem as you or worst, had not faced the problem at all.

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