Since their introduction in the last few months, the XM 15000Kmetal halide lamps have generated a lot of interest. This articlepresents a complete analysis of these lamps. The lamps and ballastsused for the evaluation are presented in Table 1 below. As usualthese lamps were tested using the identical setup to all myprevious tests [1], thus allowing for direct comparison between thelamps.

Table 1: List of XM 15000K lamps and ballasttests reported in this article

Lamps Ballasts
XM 400W 15000K (Mogul base) PFO-HQI
Taiwan – HQI
Standard Magnetic (M59)
IceCap (Electronic)
Blueline (Electronic)
Reef Fanatic (Electronic)
EVC (Electronic)
Coralvue (Electronic)
XM 250W 15000K (Mogul base) FO-HQI (ANSI -M80)
Standard Magnetic (M58)
IceCap (Electronic)
Blueline (Electronic)
Reef Fanatic (Electronic)
EVC (Electronic)
XM 250W 15000K (Double Ended) PFO-HQI (ANSI -M80)
IceCap (Electronic)
Blueline (Electronic)
Reef Fanatic (Electronic)
EVC (Electronic)
XM 175W 15000K (Mogul Base) Standard Magnetic (M57)
Lumen General (Electronic)
XM 150W 15000K (Double Ended) HQI
Icecap (Electronic)

XM 400W 15000K

Table 2: XM 400W 15000K performance on allballasts

Ballast Power
Watts
Input
Volts
Input
Amps
PPFD CCT Efficiency
PPFD/Watt
Magnetic -M59 452 123.2 4.0 104.7 0 0.2316
PFO-HQI 512 121.3 5.55 114.8 0 0.2242
Blueline 383 122.2 3.27 75.4 0 0.1969
Reef Fanatic 428 122.5 3.64 83.9 0 0.1960
EVC 418 121.4 3.59 85.4 0 0.2043
Icecap 416 122.9 3.5 82.2 0 0.1976
Taiwan – HQI 457 122.2 4.01 106 0 0.2319
Coralvue 453 121.2 3.87 103.8 0 0.2291

Figure 1: Spectral data for XM 400W 15000KLamps on all ballasts

fig1-xm400W15K.gif

XM 250W 15000K Mogul Base

Table 3: XM 250W 15000K Mogul Base performanceon all ballasts

Ballast Power
Watts
Input
Volts
Input
Amps
PPFD CCT Efficiency
PPFD/Watt
Magnetic (M58) 295 122.8 2.82 55.7 0 0.1888
PFO-HQI (M80) 352 124 3.18 80.2 0 0.2278
Blueline 253 122.6 2.17 41.9 0 0.1656
Reef Fanatic 256 123.1 2.2 53.2 0 0.2078
EVC 272 122.4 2.33 50.6 0 0.1860
Icecap 255 123.2 2.29 47.6 0 0.1867

Figure 2: Spectral data for XM 250W 15000KMogul Base Lamps on all ballasts

fig2-xm250W15K-mogul.gif

XM 250W 15000K Double Ended Lamps

Table 4: XM 250W 15000K Double Ended Lampsperformance on all ballasts (unshielded)

Ballast Power
Watts
Input
Volts
Input
Amps
PPFD CCT Efficiency
PPFD/Watt
PFO-HQI 288 122.7 2.72 56.3 15714 0.1955
Reef Fanatic 255 123.6 2.18 61.6 39197 0.2416
Blueline 250 120.8 2.19 55.4 16126 0.2216
Icecap 242 122.8 2.28 53.3 21981 0.2202
EVC 272 122.0 2.33 66.8 16404 0.2456

Figure 3: Spectral data for XM 250W 15000KDouble Ended Lamps on all ballasts (Unshielded)

fig3-xm250W15K-DE-U.gif

Table 5: XM 250W 15000K Double Ended LampsPerformance on all ballasts (Shielded)

Ballast Power
Watts
Input
Volts
Input
Amps
PPFD CCT Efficiency
PPFD/Watt
PFO-HQI 288 122.7 2.72 45.5 12898 0.1580
Reef Fanatic 255 123.6 2.18 49.6 22625 0.1945
Blueline 250 120.8 2.19 45.4 13115 0.1816
Icecap 242 122.8 2.28 43.5 16099 0.1798
EVC 272 122.0 2.33 54.9 12854 0.2018

Figure 4: Spectral data for XM 250W 15000KDouble Ended Lamps on all ballasts (Shielded)

fig4-xm250W15K-DE-S.gif

XM 175W 15000K Mogul base

Table 6: XM 175W 15000K Mogul base performanceon all ballasts

Ballast Power
Watts
Input
Volts
Input
Amps
PPFD CCT Efficiency
PPFD/Watt
M57 198 124.4 2.06 39 0 0.1970
Lumen General 181 124.4 1.63 35.8 0 0.1978

Figure 5: Spectral data for XM 175W 15000KMogul base Lamps on all ballasts

fig5-xm175W15K-Mogul.gif

XM 150W 15000K Double Ended

Table 7: XM 150W 15000K Double Endedperformance on all ballasts (Unshielded)

Ballast Power
Watts
Input
Volts
Input
Amps
PPFD CCT Efficiency
PPFD/Watt
Icecap 172 123.2 1.46 33.5 14182 0.1948
HQI 181 123.2 1.62 30.9 11004 0.1707

Figure 6: Spectral data for XM 150W 15000KDouble Ended Lamps on all ballasts (UnShielded)

fig6-xm150W15K-DE-U.gif

Table 8: XM 150W 15000K Double Endedperformance on all ballasts (Shielded)

Ballast Power
Watts
Input
Volts
Input
Amps
PPFD CCT Efficiency
PPFD/Watt
Icecap 172 123.2 1.46 26.5 14300 0.1541
HQI 181 123.2 1.62 25.18 13094 0.1391

Figure 7: Spectral data for XM 150W 15000KDouble Ended Lamps on all ballasts (Shielded)

fig7-xm150W15K-DE-S.gif

Discussion and Summary

A question of interest for most hobbyists is – How do this lampscompare to the XM 20000K lamps.? Table 9 shows a comparison of thePPFD values for the XM 15000K lamps and the XM 20000K lamps. Whatis interesting to note is that several of the lamps – the 250Wmogul ended, 250W DE, and 150W DE lamps had in fact correlatedcolor temperatures around 15000K. For the other lamps the Licorsoftware used with the spectroradiometer was unable to compute thecorrelated color temperature. Spectral plots of all these lamps on”HQI” ballasts (except 175 which is on magnetic ballast) are shownin figure 8. They all have very similar spectral shape, yet thecolor temperature was not computable in all cases (More on ColorTemperature in a future article).

Table 9: Comparison of PPFD with XM 20000Klamps

Lamp Ballast PPFD XM 15K PPFD XM 20K
400W Mogul Magnetic -M59 104.7 128
PFO-HQI 114.8 98
Blueline 75.4 91
Reef Fanatic 83.9 96
EVC 85.4 94
Icecap 82.2 99
Taiwan – HQI 106 114
Coralvue 103.8 na
250W Mogul Magnetic (M58) 55.7 73
PFO-HQI (M80) 80.2 79
Blueline 41.9 na
Reef Fanatic 53.2 61
EVC 50.6 na
Icecap 47.6 53
250W DE (unshielded) PFO-HQI 56.3 55
Reef Fanatic 61.6 na
Blueline 55.4 na
Icecap 53.3 44
EVC 66.8 na
150W DE (unshielded) Icecap 33.5 32
HQI 30.9 28
175W Mogul Magnetic (M57) 39 na
Lumen General 35.8 na

na – data not available

Figure 8: Spectral plots of all XM 15000K lampson “HQI” ballasts

fig8-allXM.gif

A comparison with the spectral plot of a XM 20000K lamp is shownin figure 9. As seen from the figure, the XM 15000K when comparedto a XM 20000K on the same ballast does have less output in theblue region at 454nm and 420nm, and has higher output from 460 nm-700nm (except for around 550 nm). This would tend to indicate thatthis lamp would appear less blue than a XM 400W 20000K lamp andhence a rating of 15000K.

Figure 9: Spectral comparison of a XM 400W15000K lamp with a XM 20000K lamp

fig9-400Wxm20kcompare.gif

Comparison of the 250W Mogul XM 15000K with its 20000Kcounterpart reveals very similar results to that of the 400W lamp,as seen in figure 10, and similarly for the 250W DE lamps as seenin figure 11.

Figure 10: Spectral comparison of a XM 250W15000K lamp with a XM 20000K lamp

fig10-250Wxm20kcompare.gif

Figure 11: Spectral comparison of a XM 250W DE15000K lamp with a XM 20000K lamp

fig11-250WDExm20kcompare.gif

Acknowledgements

I would like to thank several people whose help made this studypossible. They were kind enough to provide us with lamps andballasts for testing: Jason Ghee from Hellolights.com for supplyingthe lamps used in this study, Patrick at PFO Lighting, Andy atIceCap Inc, Perry at Sunlight Supply, Vince at Ocean Encounters,Champion Lighting, and Reef Fanatics for the ballasts. Finally, Iwould like to thank Dr. Paul Walker of Penn State University forthe use of the spectroradiometer.

References

  1. www.reeflightinginfo.arvixe.com

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Josh Saul
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 Josh Saul

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Josh Saul is a technology consultant for large global banks. He has been involved in the aquarium hobby for 15 years and has been SCUBA diving for more than 20.

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