One area of fish keeping often neglected is aquarium lighting. Effective lighting not only enables you to view the contents, but it also enhances the colour of fish, and invertebrates. Inappropriate aquarium lighting may not only have a direct effect on the welfare of corals and fish.
The health of many species is directly related to the quality and quantity of light they receive. They use the energy from lighting as a means of powering photosynthesis on which their health depends. Those that concern us most are the microscopic symbiotic algae, or zooxanthellae, which inhabit the tissues of many marine corals, and the tropical aquatic plants that we grow in our freshwater aquariums.
In marine tanks, especially with corals, lighting is extremely important. If the lighting is wrong you can lose a lot of money.. Not to mention the disappointment of the corals dying. With marine tanks we usually start using 2 to 4 tubes across the top of the aquarium with a mixture of white and actinic tubes . We only use T5 fittings as they are the stronger of the straight fluoro tubes. Always use T5 tubes that are high output, low output tubes are not strong enough for marines. We prefer to sell australian made lights as they are more reliable unfortunately they are more expensive so most T5 fittings we sell are made in china. T5 lights are also available in quad fittings (4 tubes in 1 Fitting) being made in china they are very competitive on price with some double T5 lights.
Metal Halides are the best for marine tanks, unfortunately they are the most expensive. We still prefer a mixture of halide and T5 fluoro's.
L.E.D are the newest in lighting. Most people are looking at L.E.D because of the low power consumption they have. They have a mixture of white and blue light in the same fixture. They also have the advantage of low heat output which can be a problem with marine tanks. Unfortunately these lights are still relatively new and there is not universal agreement as to how good they are over the long term. Good LEDs will grow corals and they are getting better but there are leds and there are leds. Some are very good and some are not. The price does not mean it is good just because it is expensive. Some LEDs are very expensive. The cost of the unit may well negate the savings in power that everyone is on the bandwagon about. T5 and metal halides are proven and will keep your tank going for the long term.
There are lots of different L.E.D fitting we mainly sell Aqualina L.E.D's. We carry different types of l.e.d's high output l.e.d's are what you use for marine tanks. Low output lights are not strong enough for marines. L.E.D lights all have white and blue in the fitting, The handy thing with this is you can switch the white lights of at night and only have blue lights on which gives a good night time effect. We also have a small clip on l.e.d which is great for a tank up to 61cm x 61cm. We also have a l.e.d that you can adjust the light intensity manually. The most popular l.e.d we have is also the most expensive it has a built in lunar cycle following the light changes in a day. From blue in the morning, to bright midday sun, to moonlights at night. You can also turn the lights on and off whenever you like. All sizes from 61cm to 122cm are available. They will soon have 160cm and 183cm lights. L.E.D lights are designed to be hung from you ceiling most fittings will come with hanging brackets. The reason for this is that the light from l.e.d’s shine straight down they do not tend to spread the light rays out to the sides. This is slowly changing as l.e.d’s are evolving the new lights that are arriving are now having a 90 degree spread which will be heaps better.