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£500 to spend - please help!

Ben C

Member
Joined
20 Nov 2011
Messages
169
Location
Witney, Oxfordshire
Evening all,

I have been given £500 to spend (long service award at work) and would like to upgrade my CO2 (complete new set-up) and upgrade from a cheap T5 unit to an LED lighting unit.

I've been looking at the TGM complete CO2 kit and the ADA Aquasky 601both at The Green Machine.
Not only do these come out at £558.50 in total, but the CO2 kit in particular strikes me as expensive. The Aquasky is also recommended for tanks with 'less plants or lower light plants', which makes me feel like it might not be all that effective on HC, for example.

My tank is a TMC Signature 60cm x 30cm x30cm (54l) and will be reasonably heavily planted - similar to Lauris's recent tank Escape.

Can anyone recommend me one outlet (I have to request a gift voucher for one shop/website), and what CO2 and lighting unit you would go for please.

Many thanks for your help.

Ben
 

Planted Bows

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19 Jun 2015
Messages
414
Location
Loughborough
Hi Ben,

Yes that is really expensive considering I spent £32 on the chihiros aquasky 301 version with dimmer included! Now I've never been able to carpet HC or monte carlo but with this light and my 2kg FE running at 1bps in a 30litre tank works wonders.
I think part of the problem is the branding. Chirios is the same light as the ADA version from what I've read and a Co2 system doesnt need to be expensive as all your doing is getting the Co2 from the bottle to the tank.

For my whole Co2 setup it cost me £60 and that was with a used regulator with solenoid.

Don't over spend it's not worth it


Jamie

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Aqua360

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15 Feb 2016
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paisley
Hi Ben,

Yes that is really expensive considering I spent £32 on the chihiros aquasky 301 version with dimmer included! Now I've never been able to carpet HC or monte carlo but with this light and my 2kg FE running at 1bps in a 30litre tank works wonders.
I think part of the problem is the branding. Chirios is the same light as the ADA version from what I've read and a Co2 system doesnt need to be expensive as all your doing is getting the Co2 from the bottle to the tank.

For my whole Co2 setup it cost me £60 and that was with a used regulator with solenoid.

Don't over spend it's not worth it


Jamie

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This. Especially on that size of tank, daylight robbery to spend that much imo
 

alto

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Joined
24 Dec 2014
Messages
6,228
Can you find a shop that has various LED on display? I went with an ADA Aquasky after looking at the alternatives available with reasonable customer service (Chihiros did not meet this latter requirement though sounds as if they are rather more invested in UK sales atm) - decided I only wanted low visual impact so that ruled out all the black LED units (perplexed by manufacturer insistence on BLACK housing - must be cheap :rolleyes: )

Given your tank height most planted-tank-suitable LED should work fine (there are some very low intensity LED on the market that are suited to "fish viewing" only - not all are reflected in cost)

Now I've never been able to carpet HC or monte carlo
bit confused by this comment as I've MC (slowly) carpeting in a very dimly lit tank - no CO2 or ferts or much flow as current residents are some (hopeful) B hendra

Aquamedic makes decent components but I'd be looking at CO2 Art as well
Which needle valve in the kit?
Ask for specific component details so you can check reviews etc - again, you might look for display systems you can handle


The Aquasky is also recommended for tanks with 'less plants or lower light plants',
If ADA Aquasky can't grow HC in a 30cm high tank, something is amiss o_O
 

Planted Bows

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19 Jun 2015
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Location
Loughborough
This. Especially on that size of tank, daylight robbery to spend that much imo
Are you on about my setup there? I think £60 is worth it for a full setup for saying you can buy the fluval 90g model and only lasts a month!


I've had it running for months and still have loads left in my FE!

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Planted Bows

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Loughborough
Can you find a shop that has various LED on display? I went with an ADA Aquasky after looking at the alternatives available with reasonable customer service (Chihiros did not meet this latter requirement though sounds as if they are rather more invested in UK sales atm) - decided I only wanted low visual impact so that ruled out all the black LED units (perplexed by manufacturer insistence on BLACK housing - must be cheap :rolleyes: )

Given your tank height most planted-tank-suitable LED should work fine (there are some very low intensity LED on the market that are suited to "fish viewing" only - not all are reflected in cost)


bit confused by this comment as I've MC (slowly) carpeting in a very dimly lit tank - no CO2 or ferts or much flow as current residents are some (hopeful) B hendra

Aquamedic makes decent components but I'd be looking at CO2 Art as well
Which needle valve in the kit?
Ask for specific component details so you can check reviews etc - again, you might look for display systems you can handle



If ADA Aquasky can't grow HC in a 30cm high tank, something is amiss o_O
Like I said I couldn't carpet HC or monte carlo. Now I'm not sure If this was down to poor lighting I had before or if I just didn't plant it right! I'll upload a picture of what my carpet looks like now :)

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Planted Bows

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Also I was to bothered about the customer service. I just wanted a dimmable light that was under a budget :)

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Planted Bows

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Also aqua360 I intend to get a larger tank at Some stage to IMO it's very good value for money :)

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Aqua360

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Are you on about my setup there? I think £60 is worth it for a full setup for saying you can buy the fluval 90g model and only lasts a month!


I've had it running for months and still have loads left in my FE!

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no, I was saying that spending £500 + on a 60cm tank seemed insane to me, but that's just my personal opinion; the quality would certainly be top notch for that price.

£60 for co2 on your tank is more up my street lol.

But op, I don't want to come across as rude; apologies for any offence
 

micheljq

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23 Nov 2015
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142
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Quebec
You can check the TMC Aquaray Grobeam 600, probably one would be enough for a 54 liter tank. They come with a 5 years warranty.

Michel.
 

Nelson

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17 Nov 2008
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2,536
Location
Norfolk
Can anyone recommend me one outlet (I have to request a gift voucher for one shop/website), and what CO2 and lighting unit you would go for please.
Just been having a look,and getting both from one outlet seems quite hard at the moment o_O.
There's Co2 Art https://www.co2art.co.uk/ ,but not much lighting choices.
Not sure if you can get your vouchers for shops in Europe ?.
Aquasabi's website is down at the moment :(.
Then there's also Green Aqua http://www.greenaqua.hu/en/
 

Ben C

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Thread starter
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20 Nov 2011
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169
Location
Witney, Oxfordshire
Thanks for all the replies. I'm not looking at the TMC GroBeams and Dennerle Refillable CO2 units on Aqua Essentials (looks like the latter needs a separate solenoid, but I've emailed Richard to confirm).

Anyone have any opinions on either of these?

Many thanks
 

Daveslaney

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21 May 2016
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Nottinghamshire
I would go with Kessil lights either the A160 tuna sun or theA360 run at lower intensity but the spread would be better.
A dual stage fire extinguisher reg from co2 art,Fire extinguishers are reasonably cheap and available.
 

alto

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24 Dec 2014
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6,228
If you're going TMC look at light details on their website
The ultima's offer better colour rendition - note the specifications on the tile vs strips
No idea why TMC lists PAR through air as this really tells you nothing about substrate PAR once tank is filled - but they've received decent reviews from one guy that's quite knowledgeable re PAR & PUR - & of course they appear in several ukaps journals

Depending on plant goals a single tile (30watt) should do fine - hardscape would likely determine if you'd need additional lighting in specific areas

Kessil would up the lighting costs but perhaps more versatile - I'd be inclined to go with two of the new A80 units as the new reflector tech in these means significantly better efficiency re light/watt
( & they've been designed to hit that 30cm height tank very nicely )


You might contact a couple of sponsors re special order CO2 kit if they don't stock your preference
Hint: look at the live aquascaping events ;)
 
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