Symphyllia spp. coralSymphyllia are some of the most colorful large-polyp stony corals out there. Their bodies resemble Lobophyllia in many ways, but unlike lobos, they have a much more diverse color arrangement. I’ve seen them come in just about every color imaginable, and it is very common for them to have large bands of colors. Unfortunately, I don’t do very well with Symphyllia. As colorful and amazing as these corals are, they’re a no-go for me until I learn more about why they might be struggling in my system.
Many marine aquarists illuminate their refugia with the most basic of lighting systems. These usually consist of an aluminum shop light and a compact fluorescent bulb, which isn’t exactly the most visually appealing arrangement. Eshopps is looking to change all that, however, with the upcoming release of their yet to be named LED refugium light. This sleek little fixture sports a razor thin design that sports the signature blue coloration that permeates thought the entire Eshopps lineup. It has a footprint of 5″ x 4″, with a thickness of just 5/16th of an inch. Helping the light to jut out over the water is a mounting bracket that blends right into the fixture and can affix to acrylic or glass of varying thickness thanks to nylon thumbscrews. Getting back to the fact that the refugium light is without a name, Eshopps is looking for a little help in the creativity department.
Here’s some great news for EcoTech Marine fanboys, which includes us too by the way. The Pennsylvania based water pump, and more recently LED lighting, company is celebrating their 10 year anniversary, and they’re doing it in style. They recently announced a Photo Contest over on their Facebook Page in which hobbyists can win all sorts of EcoTech Marine gear. The contest is held monthly, with different themes for each one. For example, July’s theme is “Impressive Diversity” and the first place winner will get a package that includes a VorTech MP10wES. The contest is open to just about everyone, and it’s driven by votes from Facebook fans. There are already a bunch of impressive pictures of diverse reef life in this month’s contest, so head on over there and vote. If you didn’t enter this month, don’t fret, as there are many more to come. We’d also like to congratulate EcoTech Marine for their accomplishments, as it’s not easy to stick around for a decade in this business and do this well.
Pacific Sun has released several new LED-only fixtures over the last couple of years, but it seems that they’ve recently started to show a little more love toward T5HO lighting. Besides their new Pandora Hyperion S, which we’ll introduce in a day or two, they’ve also got a really beefy new fixture called Ariel, both of which feature supplemental T5 lighting. The Ariel fixture is offered in a few different configurations, with the 1200w model being the most powerful. It sports a total of six LED panels at 15o watts each with an additional six slots for 54watt T5 bulbs. The other shallow water models dial down the LED juice, with the mid-level Ariel having 145w LED panels and the lower end model using a 75w cluster. The Arial T5/LED hybrid fixture measures 1250mm L x 650mm W x 50mm T (or roughly 49.2″ x 25.6″ x 2″) and comes with electronic ballasts and dedicated cooling fans. According to Pacific Sun, the fixture can fully illuminate aquariums up to 2 meters long and 140cm wide (or roughly 78″ by 55″). In terms of water depth, the 1200w model can light up tanks up to 150cm deep (almost 60″). These are all huge numbers from a four foot long fixture, so you know the light output has to be pretty significant to back up these claims. The Ariel has built in wireless control in the from of both Bluetooth and WiFi. The T5 bulbs each sit under special shaped reflectors. That’s about all of the info that Pacific Sun has released to this point, but they promise more to come. So, we’ll keep our eyes peeled and be sure to stay tuned for updates.