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Thread: 48" T5 + MH fixture Odyssea --comments and feedback

  1. #1
    Carnivorous plant enthusiast vraev's Avatar
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    48" T5 + MH fixture Odyssea --comments and feedback

    Hey guys,

    I posted this on a canadian reef forum and figured I should ask here as well. Anyone have experience with these fixtures? are they safe??


    Hi guys,

    I am new here and was hoping on asking some advice about this fixture. It is the cheapest one and technically offers the best bang for the buck.

    A little bit of intro, I am not into aquariums, but I do have terraria. I grow carnivorous plants and focus on pitcher plants. I have two tanks beside one another (2' x 2' x 3' tall) so two 90G tanks. I am currently using a 4 x 54watt 4' T5 fixture and added a 2 x T8 4' fixture. However, that is not enough to give enough colour to my plants.

    I have been looking to upgrade my lights and came across this
    http://www.aquatraders.com/48-716W-M...bo-p/54267.htm





    I searched high and wide and I do see that 4y ago, some of their fixtures have caught fire, but can't find any such complaints in the recent years. They do seem to have improved:

    Fixture Configuration:

    2x External Quick Connect 250W Electronic HQI Metal Halide Ballast
    2x Internal Twin Output T5 Electronic Ballast
    4x Power Switch on Fixture (2 for T5, 1 for LED, and 1 for Cooling Fan)
    1x Power Switch on each HQI Ballast
    3x Power Cord (2 for HQI and 1 for T5)
    Non-Corrosive Powder Coated Aluminum Housing
    2x Built In Heavy Duty Cooling Fan
    Glass Cover for HQI
    Acrylic Lens for T5
    Highly Polished Reflector
    Set of Mounting Leg

    The separate ballasts for each bulb should minimize fire risk. Also I like the 3" clearance with the legs...should give some room for hot air to escape.

    My question still is about risk of fire. I mean I live in an apartment building and I am a student. I don't have insurance and the lights will be running for at least 12-14h a day. I am already planning on adding a layer of glass pane underneath the fixture separating that from the tank and maybe even removing the blinds under the window and placing ballasts up there. But my window faces east, so every morning there is direct sunlight enough to raise temps to 90F in tank (which is why I keep blinds down).



    Do you guys think its a safe fixture to work with? Have any of you had issues with it? BTW, I do also plan on buying or replacing those bulbs with the MH 6500K bulbs as well. http://www.aquatraders.com/Odyssea-2...lb-p/64309.htm

    ANy advice or suggestions would be welcome. My budget and preference is lowest price for most light as possible. I can't afford the fancy 600$ + fixtures. This is pushing it as well. I will try to recover the cost my selling my T5 for a 100$.

    thanks,

    V
    thanks guys

    V

  2. #2
    Physalaemus's Avatar
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    Hi there,

    I think the biggest problem you will run into is HEAT! Having metal halides that close to the plants and directly over an enclosed space, heat will quickly build up in the tank. Halides are typically suspended a foot or so above an aquarium. On top of that, aquariums, being full of water, have a lot more thermal inertia than a terrarium. I think you would be better off a) ordering a 6-8 bulb t5 unit from a hydroponic supply and/or b) building a shelf to raise the plants up closer to the lights you have now. Hydrofarm has an 8 bulb t5 for 200$ http://www.amazon.com/HydroFarm-Comm...4367560&sr=8-2


    Just my 2 cents.

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    31drew31's Avatar
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    Hey vraev I've never used that fixture but I'm currently using an Odyssea fixture (2x HOT5). The plastics are as cheap as they get and the build quality is very cheap like the price. That said I have been using it for about 8months now with no problems. The bulbs it came with were crap even though they were HOT5's and 6500k they were barely brighter then some regular T5's I had so I switched them out immediately.

    I have a friend that is running a fixture like the one you are looking at on a dart frog viv, different manufacturer though and he keeps it about 18" above the top of the viv otherwise it would turn into an oven. I don't think you would have fire problems with the fixture itself, but it would have to be mounted away from the top of your terrarium.

    Andrew

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    Carnivorous plant enthusiast vraev's Avatar
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    Hmm..thats a very good point. Forgot about the thermal capacity of water. Makes sense why people with aquaria can use them at such a close range.

    Hmm....that 8 bulb T5 looks great. Double the intensity....

    Or what if I get 150 watt MH for each tank. Would that help? My issue is get enough light down to the plants. There are some plants which are tall (glabrata and aristo), so I can't raise the shelves too much without creating very shadowed areas.

    ---------- Post added at 02:42 PM ---------- Previous post was at 02:41 PM ----------

    Thanks for the input Andrew... hmm.... would u happen to know which manufacturer it is? I found some others like Hamilton fixtures and they cost a arm and a leg.

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    31drew31's Avatar
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    His is a Giesemann. I believe he bought it used. I think it is this model:

    http://www.seaquestmarine.com/48_inc..._inf150_48.htm

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    Sarracenia freak Brie's Avatar
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    I would immediately say no, not over an enclosed tank like that. When you run halides on an aquarium, you NEED to have an aquarium chiller to keep the temperature in line. Each halide bulb is like a little mini sun, with temp to match. 5 mins on and that tank would be like 120 degrees. I'd stick with T5s. And I personally found out even those get pretty dang hot so cooling/ventilation is in order.

    I, and others here, use this fixture.
    http://www.greners.com/grow-lights/f...-6-8-tube.html

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    i dont do pots. amphirion's Avatar
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    oh dear...from the reviews i've heard in the aquarium community, you get what you pay for.
    i've heard about poor soldering jobs and stuff catching on fire or melting...

    http://www.3reef.com/forums/reef-lig...hts-36614.html
    http://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/f...-any-good.html

    it seems thought that somehow the merchandise might be improving as you go through the thread...but it is your call.
    " You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means." -Inigo Montoya
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    Let's positive thinking! seedjar's Avatar
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    HID lights like metal halides are certainly handy for penetrating through a tall canopy. But you do need lots of clearance - 18-24" is still cutting it close. I wouldn't want to spend much more than a minute under an HID lamp at that range, so treat it as a bare minimum for your plants.
    For your terrarium though, I think you're already pretty well covered with that big T5 you've got; if you need more light at lower levels in the tank, why not get a pair of T12 shoplights and put them on the sides of the tank? It's not like you need the light to travel far - deep is that tank anyways, 18"? HOT5s are safer at closer ranges than HID lights, but still kind of overkill if you're able to get your plants right up next to the tubes.
    If you really want to go forward on HID lamps, look around for some low-wattage ones. They sell 80W and 150W sizes marketed primarily at orchid growers and amateur greenhouse keepers as a way to supplement sunlight. They still get hot, but nowhere near as much as those big suckers. You take a hit in efficiency, but not much, and it suits the purposes of terrarium growing much better. You can use two or three and spread them out/aim them at different angles. FYI, though - if you want to scale up in the future, 600W bulbs are apparently the sweet spot in terms of efficient power-to-light conversion.
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