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Old 07-18-2012, 01:12 PM   #1
SilverThorn
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Default Biocube 29 Gallon LED retrofit kit?

ok well I'm very aggravated with JBJ, coralife apparently they aren't producing the pcp for this tank like they did before. It took me 3 weeks to get replacements & I had to get the blue from one store & the day light from another. & the price has gone up..from 18$ to 25$ O.o. that's 50$ each time I replace them! that's more than 100$ A YEAR. seriously considering an led upgrade! I already have 2 eccoxotic stunner strips in the tank. I was looking at this kit.

http://shop.stevesleds.com/Biocube-2...trofit-kit.htm

What do you think & anyone have any suggestions on a good option?
also wondering if this kit can be attached to the existing reflector my stunners are attached to it & they are not budging O.o. not to mention that I have had to replace the fans in the stock hood once before $$ & they are making noise again. This kit looks to come with a fan upgrade as well...
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Old 07-18-2012, 01:32 PM   #2
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That would work, although you would have to assemble everything yourself.

Personally, I'd recommend the RapidLED.com retrofit kits. They use CREE diodes, name brand drivers, and have excellent customer service. Here is a link to the four products they have for the biocube 29. Either of the dimmable models would work perfectly.
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Old 07-19-2012, 04:43 PM   #3
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Steves kit
You can get it pre-asimbled well...mostly very few parts to put together.
The leds are 3w luxeon by Philips. Wonder if these could be swapped out with 3w crees at a later time. They do have a cree option I believe. Supposedly Luxeon are brighter than crees.
The driver is the only questionable bit I think. It looks like it can run both the whites & the blues individually adjustable with manual knobs. the driver is a HNR?

With the rapid led you need additional equipment to run the dimable drivers? Potentiometers? or a controler? more $$. It looks more complex to set up. on the plus side no cutting holes in the hood. & the lights are easily replaced/upgraded.
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Old 07-20-2012, 02:03 AM   #4
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That seems a little expensive for what your getting; although to be honest I have never seen these LEDs at work. I will tell you though for ANY aquatic setup LEDs are always the best choice and its just a matter of budget. Personally for bang for buck, and ease of modification, I would check out Ecoxotics Panoramas, and even Stunner Strips if your not growing much.

Ecoxotics new Panorama RGB Pros, are freakin awesome, checkem, they will grow anything you want. They can change color and dim, and the price is really nice. Not to mention they are water proof, and easy to setup. Ecoxotic has amazing customer service as well; I think I have some reviews/unboxings, of some of their stuff somewhere in my sig.

There are hosts of new companies coming out, what seem like daily, dealing with aquarium LED systems do to the increase in LED power/technology, and growing demand. So I am very picky about which ones I buy, because most companies dont get it right the first time, if you know what I mean.
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Old 07-21-2012, 12:50 AM   #5
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the ecoxotic lighting was my next choice.
I have 2 stunner strips now royal blue & uv.
I was concerned with light dimmers. I think the inline ones should be sufficient but I also have heat concerns...they don't have much of a heat sink on them & my stock fans don't move a lot of air & the things I will need, the power supply the strips ext are bordering 230$ so the price isn't too bad. I would also want to add another stunner & the inline dimmers I may be able to do that at a later time & up grade the fans along with it a a later date.
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Old 07-21-2012, 08:22 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by SilverThorn View Post
the ecoxotic lighting was my next choice.
I have 2 stunner strips now royal blue & uv.
I was concerned with light dimmers. I think the inline ones should be sufficient but I also have heat concerns...they don't have much of a heat sink on them & my stock fans don't move a lot of air & the things I will need, the power supply the strips ext are bordering 230$ so the price isn't too bad. I would also want to add another stunner & the inline dimmers I may be able to do that at a later time & up grade the fans along with it a a later date.
You dont need fans with any of Ecoxotics stuff. The Panoramas heat sync is actually par, that shouldnt be an issue. I dont know about the Stunners dimmers, but the new Panorama RGB is all done by remote and there is just a little control box that can be mounted else where.

For that tank 2 Panorama RGB Pros would let you grow ANYTHING. I think you would come at about the same price you mentioned.

You need:
2 Panorama Pro RGBs (90 bucks a pop)
I think you only need 1 controller system, not 100%, but you can not control them independent with only 1. (50 bucks)
Then you need the power supply, but if you already have the Stunner Strip power supply you should be able to link them, and use that one. (If not its 37 bucks)
I always suggest it, but not needed reflectors. (17 bucks each)

So depending what you need, for a fresh Panorama RGB Pro setup you are looking between $230 - $350 at the very most for a full Panorama RGB Pro setup. Let me tell you too, if you dont already know, the Stunner strips were made originally for accent lighting, not main lighting so depending what kind of coral you are growing they may not get the job done. The Panoramas are HELLA BRIGHTER than the Stunners; with those Panoramas there is no coral you can not grow. Plus since this is the RGB model, you literally can change the color of the light, so no need for moon lights with these either.
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Old 07-21-2012, 01:27 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by AquariumTech View Post
You dont need fans with any of Ecoxotics stuff. The Panoramas heat sync is actually par, that shouldnt be an issue. I dont know about the Stunners dimmers, but the new Panorama RGB is all done by remote and there is just a little control box that can be mounted else where.

For that tank 2 Panorama RGB Pros would let you grow ANYTHING. I think you would come at about the same price you mentioned.

You need:
2 Panorama Pro RGBs (90 bucks a pop)
I think you only need 1 controller system, not 100%, but you can not control them independent with only 1. (50 bucks)
Then you need the power supply, but if you already have the Stunner Strip power supply you should be able to link them, and use that one. (If not its 37 bucks)
I always suggest it, but not needed reflectors. (17 bucks each)

So depending what you need, for a fresh Panorama RGB Pro setup you are looking between $230 - $350 at the very most for a full Panorama RGB Pro setup. Let me tell you too, if you dont already know, the Stunner strips were made originally for accent lighting, not main lighting so depending what kind of coral you are growing they may not get the job done. The Panoramas are HELLA BRIGHTER than the Stunners; with those Panoramas there is no coral you can not grow. Plus since this is the RGB model, you literally can change the color of the light, so no need for moon lights with these either.
You say it needs no fans but I happen to know that is not true. unless you want to reduce the life of your leds or you are using them in a fully open space not like inside the biocube hood. The heat sinks are finned that means they are designed to breath if the air can not move or circulate it will just heat up & reduce the life of the lights, also it can not be attached directly to the reflector unless it is ventilated behind the strips to alow air to circulate from the fans. I do believe a par is a type of anodized reflector not a measure of heat out put. PAR is also a measure of photosynthetic reactivity/ light output I believe. Even with par reflectors the heat still has to go somewhere. The cube vents do help, if attached directly to the hood, with no fans, but it still is not enough & the heat from the sinks mounted directly to the plastic hood can cause the black plastic to turn grey/white.on the outside above the lights (from heat). Many people have had this problem. Leds do put out less heat than pcps, watt for watt are more powerful & they do not heat up the tank the same way. They draw heat up & away that's why it has the sink but they still can get very hot. THEY NEED TO BREATH & that is a fact.
2 panorama pro strips "rgb" or otherwise are NOT powerful enough to grow many species of hard corals as you (& ecoxotic) claim. "with those Panoramas there is no coral you can not grow." (only x2?) They will not grow many species of sps however they will grow MOST soft corals & SOME lower light sps & lps corals. To really grow "anything" you need at least 3 panorama strips & that pushes the price up a bit. I'm not dissing ecoxotic (I like their products) but look around at what owners of the panorama pro (including rgb) strips are saying . No better testing for a product than actual input from real users in the real world. Even so the RGB are cool you can change the colors up & change how they dim, ect. very cool but not much difference in output from the pros at least from what I am reading.

The power supply is different from my stunners I have the old power supply & my stunners are only accent lighting in the cube my primary is pcp. I am well aware of the difference they make. I'm looking at 2 blue/white panoramas + power supply & a splitter. I only grow softies so it should be sufficient. Total cost right around 230$ I may add another stunner later & I still need to upgrade the fans at some point. at least 60$ for that in the future. I believe I can mount the strips to the reflector with long screws/ bolts & cut slits in behind the strips on the reflector to allow airflow & also cut out the vents in the reflector to make 2 large holes under the fans so they can draw more air. I also believe I can use my original moonlights with this mod. I am really considering this set up or The Steves led one but I am open to suggestions.
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Old 07-22-2012, 07:14 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by SilverThorn View Post
You say it needs no fans but I happen to know that is not true. unless you want to reduce the life of your leds or you are using them in a fully open space not like inside the biocube hood. The heat sinks are finned that means they are designed to breath if the air can not move or circulate it will just heat up & reduce the life of the lights, also it can not be attached directly to the reflector unless it is ventilated behind the strips to alow air to circulate from the fans. I do believe a par is a type of anodized reflector not a measure of heat out put. PAR is also a measure of photosynthetic reactivity/ light output I believe. Even with par reflectors the heat still has to go somewhere. The cube vents do help, if attached directly to the hood, with no fans, but it still is not enough & the heat from the sinks mounted directly to the plastic hood can cause the black plastic to turn grey/white.on the outside above the lights (from heat). Many people have had this problem. Leds do put out less heat than pcps, watt for watt are more powerful & they do not heat up the tank the same way. They draw heat up & away that's why it has the sink but they still can get very hot. THEY NEED TO BREATH & that is a fact.
2 panorama pro strips "rgb" or otherwise are NOT powerful enough to grow many species of hard corals as you (& ecoxotic) claim. "with those Panoramas there is no coral you can not grow." (only x2?) They will not grow many species of sps however they will grow MOST soft corals & SOME lower light sps & lps corals. To really grow "anything" you need at least 3 panorama strips & that pushes the price up a bit. I'm not dissing ecoxotic (I like their products) but look around at what owners of the panorama pro (including rgb) strips are saying . No better testing for a product than actual input from real users in the real world. Even so the RGB are cool you can change the colors up & change how they dim, ect. very cool but not much difference in output from the pros at least from what I am reading.

The power supply is different from my stunners I have the old power supply & my stunners are only accent lighting in the cube my primary is pcp. I am well aware of the difference they make. I'm looking at 2 blue/white panoramas + power supply & a splitter. I only grow softies so it should be sufficient. Total cost right around 230$ I may add another stunner later & I still need to upgrade the fans at some point. at least 60$ for that in the future. I believe I can mount the strips to the reflector with long screws/ bolts & cut slits in behind the strips on the reflector to allow airflow & also cut out the vents in the reflector to make 2 large holes under the fans so they can draw more air. I also believe I can use my original moonlights with this mod. I am really considering this set up or The Steves led one but I am open to suggestions.
You are correct, heat is the enemy of lights, or really all equipment relatively speaking. You do not need, a fan for them though, they will still last a good 5 years with out. Although I do not have a Biocube and I dont know what your mounting situation is; to me it sounded like you had something that you made that actually bypassed the hood. Though even if you where to mount them in the hood, you could just take some metal plates with holes in them and mount them between the hood and the light module. So its not really needed but admittedly is always a good idea, all the ones I have had have either been on glass or mounted above, so I have never had a hood mounted one. I can tell you though, even the Pros running at full power for hours, are still cool enough for you to touch the heat sync.

Saying those Panoramas are limited in what they can grow, your crazy. Especially in that tank, that is not a very deep tank, it wont take much, not to mention whatever your grow is probably going to be propped up higher on live rock. I have a friend who has one of the old Panoramas, that doesnt even have a reflector with 1 Stunner strip, and is growing LPS and SPS (dont remember exactly what he had) in a cube type 30G. Just 1 of the Panorama Pros probably puts out double that amount of light, plus with a reflector maybe even 3X. I also had 1 regular Panorama Pro (no reflector) growing some smaller soft corals in a 10G tank all by its self.

I also have a store around me, that is starting to specialize in LEDs and the only LEDs they suggest or use is AI (these are very nice, but a bit pricey) and Ecoxotic. I have another one that just uses Ecoxotic too. Let me tell you they have many excellent display tanks, and the only lights they use on them are Ecoxotic Panoramas and AquaticLife T-5s. They have quite a few of these tanks as well, and they all looked great. The only complaint I ever heard from them was, they were using I believe 3-4 of the old Panoramas, blue color, in a 50-60 something gallon tank, and they said it had changed the color of the corals a little bit and made them a little more brown (they werent dying though) or it might have been a weird type of algae growing on them. I think they knew what the problem was though and I would agree, they had too much blue lighting. If I remember correctly they added some white/blue ones and corals color returned to better than normal.

The other store around me has a 90G tank that I believe uses 2 small old Panorama fixtures (6-8 units in total), and that tank is amazing. I believe he had one problem where he went to some fish show/convention, and didnt set the timer right on the fixtures, and the lights were on the whole time, and actually fried his corals. Then he has a BioCube 14 gallon (2nd size biocube) and uses only 3 or 4 Stunner strips with reflectors, and uses it for some smaller corals and frag keeping, and that tank grows pretty much what ever he puts in there.

Yes the Panorama RGB Pro and Pro put out the same amount of light. The power supply should not be different than your Stunners. The original Panoramas had a different power supply, but the Pros/Pro RGBs use the same one as the Stunners.
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Old 07-22-2012, 01:20 PM   #9
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Ok this is the third time I am typing this my internet sux big time I want to scream at it right now! Not that it will help but it will make me feel better anyway. I HATE HUGHES NET! but unfortunately that's all I can get way out in the boonies sat. internet or dial up ugh! Don't even get me started on uploading pics or video for that mater.

Ok first: the power supply for my stunners only supports 3 stunner strips. It can not support 2 pannoramas & 2 stunners. It is no longer sold by ecoxotic.

Second.
I did not say that you could not grow SOME lps/sps corals.You can grow quite a few but not ALL. Many will do quite well some will do ok some will survive & many will just die. I just don't think you should say that you can grow ANYTHING. Most anything is not the same as anything. My lfs builds tanks & led systems & has done so for more than 15 years. EVERYTHING in his store is led lit. He uses eoxotic pendants on his frag tanks & panoramas & stunners in his displays. (They do look impressive) He is & has been an ecoxoic dealer almost since the first came out. He has stated the same thing I have regarding the corals some will just not grow with x2 panorama strips. He showed me some before & after pictures from one of his customers tanks a 29g biocube crammed with lps & sps only corals and a ham of a shrimp that got in almost every photo. He changed from a pendant mh after he moved no idea what size. No idea why, I like the look of pendants, Overheating/ space? Changed to 2 panorama strips in the stock hood as he was told by ecoxotic that it would grow ANY lps/sps O.o >_<. one 50/50 & one magenta/royal blue Many of the corals did very well some did ok showing medium growth & others lived while a few died or started to die over the next 4months apparently moving them up saved some but only prolonged the inevitable for others & they continued to decline slowly. He added a strip & after 2 months the increase in growth was astonishing even better han when he had the mh & all of his corals were growing great. I have seen this same thing stated on many forums by many users. Some corals did not grow well some died while many thrived with just 2 lights. With withering corals the addition of a third light this was resolved. I'm sure your friend did grow lps & sps, but what types & how high up were they placed? Were they growing & thriving or just living with moderate growth? You can grow a lot of things including sps & lps but not all Many will live & just won't grow much while some will just die. Ideal lighting would provide enough light to grow anything in the tank & you just can't do that with only 2 strips. It is a moot point for me a any cost I do not intend to grow sps or lps in the tank so 2 strips are just fine. I just don't think is is realistic to say that you can grow ANYTHING when you can't grow some corals. Sorry he fried his corals I fried some of mine the same way a while back with pc lighting & bleached out what little survived so I sympathize O.o heck when I first started sw all I was running was plain fw florescents & I fried some shrooms in my 38 deep franken tank with only 7 hrs light. O.o I was running 5 standard 24 inch bulbs at the time they were up too high & it cooked them good me tell you!
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Old 08-14-2012, 12:08 PM   #10
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The lights are ordered I went with ecoxotic leds 2 strips one white/blue one mengenta/blue for now with a 3 way splitter if I want to add another one. & reflectors & power supply. I am waiting for them to get here hopefully I can set it up this weekend.
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Old 08-14-2012, 02:07 PM   #11
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we want to see pics
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Old 08-14-2012, 06:35 PM   #12
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Silver- just as an idea- since you have cruddy internet- when writing a long post like this write what you want in a word document, then cut and paste into here. That way you only have to do it once
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Old 08-16-2012, 01:12 PM   #13
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I'll take some pics ^_^ when I get it in place this weekend. I plan to make some mods to the existing reflector to allow for heat dissipation. I may later be adding a blue module I need to see what the colors look like with the addition of my existing stunners in place. the modules have a bit too much purple/pink color. I will be adding reflectors to the stunners as well.
Yes I did have to post that long message to another program & copy it. That was the only way I could post it lol
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Old 08-19-2012, 03:41 PM   #14
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well I have been taking pics but I won't be done with this until next weekend that's when I will post pics. The lights are in but it's more purple than I wanted. I will add either 2 more stunner strips to the tank. one 8000k next to my uv & blue strips & 1 blue/white between my panoramas or one more panorama pro blue/white depends on how my corals respond to the new lights. have not decided yet. In the the tank the panoramas aren't as bright as I had hoped. even at 100%. The reflectors hurt matters rather than make it brighter it focused the light into one strip & looked horrible (don't use the reflectors), so I had to remove them. I cut up my existing reflectors to allow more air flow & cut a hole above each fan I will put a screen in over them when my new fans arrive later this week. I have also redone my rock work I have it set so the stunners come on before the panos & go off after them to sort of create a dawn/ dusk effect.
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Old 10-17-2012, 01:00 PM   #15
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I added a extra panorama strip so I have 2 blue/whites about one on at about 90% & the other at about 88% & the magenta/ blue on at around 30%. corals are looking good. My blue stunner was set to come on with the fans before & go off after the panos for a dawn/dusk effect but it seems to have stopped working yesterday O.o. need to get out the voltmeter & check the power supply & all may be a short in it or something no idea. If it's dead I may replace it or change it out & go with a couple of true lumen moon lights spaced between the panos so I get better coverage with the blue light rather than just having one strip in the back of the tank. The fans came out great I used screen from a rain gutter cover for the fans when I enlarged the openings for better air flow. The fans keep it so nice & cool it's barely even warm over the lights. I have gotten rid of some of my corals as the did not fit with my new aqua scape still have multiple mushrooms (hope to make a mushroom garden eventually in the lower part of the front of the tank) a few scattered zoas in places, brown buttons, metallic green pallys & a devils hand leather & a very tiny pulsing xena. I fraged some of them for my 4g pico nano. I recently added in some yellow polyps & will be getting a Palythoa grandis it's a black/brown & creme colored very pretty. Also getting some zoas for my pico nano peanut butter cup polyps & chocolate mint one of my faves. I hope the mints grow well for me. If I can grow them out I will frag to my larger tank. growing some yuma ricordea & florida ricordea in my nano will eventually move some to this larger tank.

will try to get pics soon sry lost the charger for my camera & my other picture card.
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