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Thread: T5 Vs PC

  1. #1
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    T5 Vs PC

    Alright!
    After weeks of scheming and planning, my little tank dream looks like it might be a reality. I have looked everywhere on the net for information about lighting, (knowing that it is one of the more inportant things to buy right the first time). So, heres the deal, I am thinking of setting up a small 28 gal tank. I would like to keep the usual small tank critters....and perhaps a coral or two. (I am realistic here.....I am just getting my toes wet). Anyways, I am looking for lighting solutions that agree with my wallet, And I cannot decide between PC or T5. For the price PC has larger wattage bulbs, but the bulbs cost more. T5 has less wattage per bulb, but they last longer and the bulbs cost less than PC. What would be better for my application: 2X65 Watt PC or 2X24 Watt T5?

    I am trying to decide between Current USA 24" satellite 2x65 W PC or
    Current USA Nova Extreme 24" 2X24 T5

    Anytime I search for reviews on these lights all I get is websites selling them.

    Any other brands I should think about? Cost is a factor as well as location of the light. (has to sit on aquarium, cannot be suspended)

    Any info is appreciated.

    Thanks, Dan.

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    Go with the t5 all the way. There are way more bulb choices, way cheaper, and a better all around light.

  3. #3
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    Thanks!
    I was leaning towards the T5.
    So is T5 lighting newer technology than PC?
    Will 48 Watts of T5 be enough light for a 28 gal aquarium?

    Dan.

  4. #4
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    It will do, but a 4 bulb fixture would be prime! I am running a 4X39w on my 46 and and keeping an anemone and a clam, and most everything is doing great

  5. #5
    liv
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    Former Moderator liv's Avatar
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    I'm with melonbob, add more t5's if you can.

    moving.. so temporarily out of SW :b8:
    planning next tank, possibly 60x30x20 on 2x plasma.
    updated: 2011/05/30

  6. #6
    ijo
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    I would go one step further and go with a T5 retrofit. When you decided to upgrade(we assume your going to upgrade) you won't have to start from scratch and should be able to use many of the components(endcaps, ballast,even the reflectors)

    IJO

  7. #7
    Senior Member kennyfish's Avatar
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    I have had pc on my 20" wide cube for three years. In a limited space like that I believe they are superior to T5's because they pack a lot of lumens in a confined space with no heat issues. If you get a multi bulb T5 fixture, 4-6 bulbs to compete with pc in that short span, make sure they have decent reflectors. A lot of experienced people will tell you that T5 without the right reflector is no better than PC.

    I really like Ian's advice about reusing the t5 components when you expand. Because you will be upgrading as sure as the sun comes up in the East

  8. #8
    Moderator ShipWreck's Avatar
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    T5's are the only way to go if purchasing a new setup. If you cannot get more bulbs over a small space then you can use an IceCap 440 or 660 ballast to run the T5's which will overdrive them further. It is reported to reduce lamp life but the debate rages on about what the true life of a T5 is anyway.

    I run 2 660's firing 6 4' lamps total over my 120 and have had no issues with my clams.
    Rob
    -----
    Upgrade in the works! Keep looking for an update.


  9. #9
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    There is no comparison between PC / T5. The T5's are the way to go. Cheaper bulbs less power consumption / More light. I'd get a 4 bulb setup as well. Make sure they are T5HO not just T5. I agree with Icecap ballasts. They are the best. Individual reflectors are way better than combined ones as well. Don't cheap out on reflectors. They are as important as the ballasts / bulbs.

  10. #10
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    Angry yes!

    bump up then lurk

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