Michigan Reefers banner

1 - 12 of 12 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,991 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Getting back into the hobby after 3 years and want to know what I missed ***x1f601; what are the best lights out now, skimmer, pumps, controllers.... and any other equipment. Maybe not much has changed but just curious to see. Setting up a 300 gallon reef tank in about a month, and already preparing ***x1f60a;
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,991 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
Apparently emojis don***8217;t show up.... so disregard the random numbers. This site has changed a lot lol
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
231 Posts
Getting back into the hobby after 3 years and want to know what I missed ***x1f601; what are the best lights out now, skimmer, pumps, controllers.... and any other equipment. Maybe not much has changed but just curious to see. Setting up a 300 gallon reef tank in about a month, and already preparing ***x1f60a;
Welcome back.

Lighting is still being debated, I believe LED is king. An Austrian company called Orphek makes some killer LED's with some pretty nice programmable features as well as looking sexy over a tank.

Alot of cool toys. One being the KLIR filter system, supposed to be way more effective than filter socks and seems to do a great job at keeping water parameters without a lot of accesseries.

Another thing is a company created a new type of system called the "Triton method". It's a very analytical approach to reefkeeping thats supposed to pinpoint exactly your reef stands as far as all the necessary chemical levels reefs need to be at. I'd read up on it.

Apex has a really nice controller system called the Neptune. It's beasty.

Alot of strides have been made with captively bred fish.

Checkout the Maxspect Gyre powerhead. Unique design and very powerful.

I'd go watch some of BRSTV's recent videos, over the past few years theyve upped their game as far as content by testing different products on different tanks and showing the results.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,151 Posts
It's going to be impossible to answer your question since the choice of equipment is so personal. Also what do you plan to keep? Do you want low maintenance or do you enjoy tinkering. Lot's of things to consider.

As for lighting this is my personal experience. I started reefing a long time ago using MH lights with VHO supplements. Got great growth, great color on everything in a mostly SPS dominant tank. Then switched to T5 to save on electricity, reduce heat, etc. Results were almost comparable to MH.

With the arrival of kids, I took a hiatus from reefing for a few years. In the last year started a new tank with the Chinese black box LED. Growth was mediocre. Was always playing with the light to get to a color (look) that I liked. Really missed the plug and play of MH.

After reading all the rave reviews, I upgraded to the Orphek LED light. It had four different channels that you could adjust. After playing with it for too long, I settled on a setting that I didn't mind. However I felt that SPS growth was low. The caveat was that the tank was still relatively new, so this may have been the bigger influencer.

I'm now back to T5. Good color and decent growth. But also important for me is the relatively plug and play nature of it. Yes you still need to pick the bulb combination, but it isn't as crazy as with a fully adjustable LED. I like that I can enjoy the tank and not be tweaking it all the time.

However...the Orphek is still sitting in the closet and I may put it back into service.

My tank is small though. If I were to do a 300g tank (I wish I could), MH with LED supplements would be on the top of my list. From a cost perspective, the initially cash outlay for decent LED's to cover that size tank is expensive. Yes you save electricity which is important to reduce our carbon footprint, and bulbs do need to be changed out every year. But that's still a lot of money.

Highly recommend a controller. Makes life so much easier.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
396 Posts
I don't know of any legit, hardcore SPS guys that went to LED and then back to T5. Just people on reefing forums who claim they did.

I know a lot of idiots that bought high density, LED pendants with tight optics, burned their coral, then blamed their LEDs rather than their lack of common sense. Analogy - when they retrofit your office with LED fxtures they don't put all the LEDs in a single 2x4 foot panel and spotlight just one part of the office to give it cool shimmer and high PAR values. They distribute the light so your entire office has even illumination.
Now, connect the dots in your head with a reef tank.

If you spread your light sources out via lower priced LED fixtures like black boxes T5 doesn't have a distribution advantage. Best looking and healthiest SPS tanks I've seen in the past 5 years are using LED and more often than not more cheaper fixtures than fewer brighter ones.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
Welcome back.

Lighting is still being debated, I believe LED is king. An Austrian company called Orphek makes some killer LED's with some pretty nice programmable features as well as looking sexy over a tank.
There is nothing Austrian about Orphek, the owner lives in Brazil and all product is made in China and shipped from Hong Kong
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,991 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
I loved my t-5s when i had them. I wasn't super impressed with all LEDs, but a combo does sound good.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,394 Posts
Getting back into the hobby...Setting up a 300 gallon reef tank...
Go big indeed.

Heating - would highly recommend a closed loop water heater for that volume.

Lighting - unless you kept some of your old gear in the closet BETTER LED's are likely your best option. Not a koolaid drinker, I kept my MH just in case, but I believe if you compare costs for comparable coverage LED should be competitive.

Nice to have you back - looking forward to the build.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18 Posts
I've been using LEDs for the past 5 years and have grown all kinds of corals including SPS. I do think you get what you pay for. The higher end lights can be pretty pricey. I like to stick to the trusted brands. For reef tank, lightning is going to be your most important decision.
 
1 - 12 of 12 Posts
Top