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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hey everyone ,

I took it upon myself to write a little review on this lighting system.I will list the pro's,con's, cost, and thoughts to help out those whom might purchase this unit in the near future.Just recently i decided to buy a 48'' 1X54 watt system for a 66 gallon discus setup.I dont plan on growing any light demanding plants , but kept all of them low light. Iam not a Hagen representitive , but a person in the hobby giving my opinions on this item.Please feel free to correct or add to this if you like.

Hagen T5 48" 1x54 watts ( This line has units starting from 24"-48" )

Packaging: Unit came secure with ends of the unit covered in small cardboard boxes. Outside was covered with plastic wraping taped on both ends protecting all parts outside/inside.Included in the box was a timer(wrapped in a plastic container , a instruction booklet, a hanging unit with screws&wire,and additional legs for mounting on the aquarium.

Pro's: -Quick and easy to setup
- Great looking and sturdy, no loose trim parts
- Adjustible legs , unit can be extended for larger aquariums
- * Big points* the polished internal reflector covers the entire
bottom of the unit and does not look cheap at all
- Timer is easy to use and has two outlets built in it/great for another
unit to be added
- Good length on the power cord
- Water resistant end caps for the bulb
- Can use a variety of bulbs/not only Hagen
- Brackets to hang the unit from a ceiling / wire/screws included

Con's: - Bulb not included/ purchase is neccessary
- No splash guard for under carridge
- Cost of bulbs to use / lifetime of bulb
- Does seem to produce a bit of heat

Overall thoughts: This item is not to costly.Various places seem to have them anywhere in the $130-160 price range.I made my purchase at Island Pets Un. in Richmond for 139.99.The bulb cost could get anywhere from 25.00 to 50.00 depending on the make.I spent near 30.00 for mine.Its assembled well , and looks very sleek and could look even better if its suspended from the ceiling or any other method you could think of.It sure does bright up the entire aquarium with the polished reflector, and the quality is tops.Many online sites have mentioned that the light will penetrate deep surfaces.I could see that with my setup.The timer is a neat idea , and simple to setup so the need for switches is not necessary.Some might not like that idea , but i dont mind.It does have an additional outlet to it, if you add another unit.Overall , a good purchase and fair price.Ive tried other brands, but this one seems to top them.I did spend some time researching other brands, but came back to this one.Hope this ends up helping someone else whos in the same spot.Please feel free to add on if there's something i missed. Happy Fish keeping & Plant growing !

Luke
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Gary ,

Yes your right.Those plastic mounting brackets are there to lift it a bit higher.You could settle it down flat and just use the metal adjustable legs too, but run the risk for water splashing the reflector or bulb.What i did was still use the original top that came with the aquarium , but replaced the old unit with the new T5 setup.Plenty of light is driving through, and the glass on the cover is protecting the unit from water.Those with glass tops/plastic tops shouldnt have any problems either. Sorry i guess thats what i forgot to add to this review.Keep them coming.
 

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what bulb did u end up buying for it? i.e. make, kelvin rating.. etc etc.

could u take some pictures of everything you described? this is the first product review i have read that doesn't have a picture of the product being reviewed.

otherwise, great review!

thanks!
 

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Based on these prices, it sounds very expensive for a single T5HO. Unless you're doing a lower light planted tank, is a single bulb unit even worth considering over a 4' tank? If its not for plants, then I don't see the advantage of paying for T5HO lighting.

Good review, but if I'm doing an African cichlid, SA cichlid or minimally planted community tank, I would use a cheaper lighting system. If I'm going for a planted tank, I would go for at least a 2 bulb unit. Because with the bulb cost included, you're looking at over $150 for a single bulb over your tank, right?
 

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I'm in agreement with you there, Anthony. The double tubed ones are decent for pricing, but the single tube ones are steep. But they do look a lot nicer and finished than most tank top lights, especially if you want to put them up on legs. Much nicer than the Coralife PC ones for instance. I saw a unit at Aquariums West and the fit and finish were very nice.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Ended up going with a Coralife t5 6700k bulb , here's a pic of the lighting fixture, dont have a camera to take a pic sorry.


what bulb did u end up buying for it? i.e. make, kelvin rating.. etc etc.

could u take some pictures of everything you described? this is the first product review i have read that doesn't have a picture of the product being reviewed.

otherwise, great review!

thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Anthony,

Good points , and yes cost may be a concern for some.Personally, i was not impressed with the old unit(t8 bulb) that came with the aquarium and it didnt provide the amount of light/wattage i was looking for.The two bulb unit was a thought too and i almost headed into that direction,but with the plants i chose i went with the single.The quality and style was also a factor for choosing a newer unit.The total cost was under 160 with the bulb.

Based on these prices, it sounds very expensive for a single T5HO. Unless you're doing a lower light planted tank, is a single bulb unit even worth considering over a 4' tank? If its not for plants, then I don't see the advantage of paying for T5HO lighting.

Good review, but if I'm doing an African cichlid, SA cichlid or minimally planted community tank, I would use a cheaper lighting system. If I'm going for a planted tank, I would go for at least a 2 bulb unit. Because with the bulb cost included, you're looking at over $150 for a single bulb over your tank, right?
 
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