Hot Tips: Your Favorite Lighting and Why

A selection of useful tidbits of
information and tricks for the marine aquarist submitted by
Advanced Aquarist’s readership. Readers are encouraged to post
them to our Hot Tips sticky in the
General Reefkeeping Discussion forum or
send their tips to for possible
publication. Next month’s Hot Tip theme will be
Shipping Corals,
Fish, and Invertebrates

Your Favorite Lighting and Why:

Sunlight, because my corals love it even if the microalgae
does too.

In my experience, reefs appreciate natural sunlight and it helps the zooxanthellae
hosting species stay happy.


I’m just saying if you can position a tank where sunlight can graze the
corals, I’ve watched them respond with great vigor. It takes a while before
they can handle that if they’re coming from a non-sunlit source, but they
really grow towards the sun.

Solar tubes, fiber optics, or just plain old windows (with some shade and
obvious temp control)?

I’ll let you know when I have the rest of the system down. I just have strong
lighting and my corals love it. My blastos, anemone and acans are very, very

— Mandarinfish


I’ve had the best success with a combination of 10,000-15,000K metal halides
and fluorescent actinics. By success, I use growth and pigmentation as my
criteria. I’ve kept many tanks successful with fluorscent-only, power compacts,
T5s, and MH-only. But my benchmark continues to be a combination of MH with

— Len


My preference is 10K mh with fluoresent actinics. I like being able to stagger
the lighing for my tank. Also, I run my MH for only 6 hours a day so it is
nice to be able to see the tank even when the MH lights are off.

— Wazzel



10k mh and uri super actinic vho for supplementation. I love the glitter
lines from the metal halides.

— mopecula


12K Metal Halides supplemented with 96watt Power Compact Actinics.

— melas

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 Advanced Aquarist

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