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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i have not set up the tank for plants yet due to the expense. the biggest problem is the lighting. i have a 42 gallon hex and its 26 inches deep. because of the dimensions of the tank it seems that i have to go with metal halide lighting and its not cheap. there is a great light that ive seen working at the LFS but its made by coralife and costs about 300 bucks. it also comes with a 14000k bulb but that wont work so i will have to spend another 40 bucks on a 6700k bulb.

after i get my tank planted then i will buy the fish. so thanks for the tip on the rams, i will check it out.

also, does anyone have any suggestions for my lighting problems? can i go with a cheaper CF lighting system and still keep plants alive? are there any low light plants that look good?

ok i did some looking, again i want to stress that the biggest thing stopping me from getting this going is money, especially lighting. the next highest cost is the filtration. right now im running an aquaclear 300 which is a hang on back type filter. i want to upgrade to a rena x2 can filter and that is about 140 dollars. i cannot buy the filter and the uber expensive MH HQI type lighting. so what do you think of this lighting instead, its T5. http://www.marinedepot.com/ps_ViewIt...IT5~tab~4.html
what sort of plants can i grow with this light that would be beneficial to my fish and would also look nice?

another option is go with this HQI light which is only 150 bucks. if i did this i could probably also buy the rena filter still. http://www.fishneedit.com/150w-metal...ndant-lig.html

i just need some help. i have no experience with aquatic plants so i really dont know how important buying the uber nice HQI light is vs going with a 70 dollar 48W TF HO lighting system. If I can grow plants with the T5 then its a no brainer i think. I will be adding co2 and dosing ferts but as of right now i havent gotten into the whole dosing thing except that it looks like EI method is the easiest for me. I just want to avoid algae and I want a good looking tank for my fish to live in and for me to see.

HELP!

thanks.
 

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For a densely planted 42 gallon aquarium you might want to consider the XP3 over the XP2. You'll want the extra flow once it is full of plants. Check out www.kensfish.com for a good price and great service.

The link to the T5 light isn't working. Is it the Nova Extreme light? If so, it should work well enough for your purposes. You don't need metal halide until you start talking about 30" deep tanks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
ill look into which light it is later. i was planning on using a hydor powerhead to move water around in the tank. which would be better? a hydor koralia and rena xp2 or just a rena xp3?
 

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ill look into which light it is later. i was planning on using a hydor powerhead to move water around in the tank. which would be better? a hydor koralia and rena xp2 or just a rena xp3?
If you plan to add the Hydor powerhead, then the XP2 should be sufficient. Kens Fish still has great prices too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
ok, can someone chime in and help me understand which one of these will be better?

T5 lighting http://www.marinedepot.com/ps_ViewItem~category~24_inch_Current_USA_Nova_Extreme_2x24_watt_T5_HO_10K_Freshwater_Freshwater_Aquarium_Supplies_Lighting_Fixtures_T5_Lighting~vendor~Current_USA~SearchStr~10k+freshwater%2cfreshwater~action~view~idProduct~CU01127~idCategory~FWLTFIT5.html

or CF lighting
http://www.ahsupply.com/36-55w.htm
the 55inch deal. i would also have to buy a housing for this.

another option is to go with the same AH lighting supply place and go with their 2x55W fixture and housing. probably ends up being cheaper than the T5 for more wattage and what seems like good reflectors.

I put two of the current nova extreme T5 lights in my shopping cart at marinedepot.com and it was almost 200 bucks for 96W. with the AH supply store I can get 110 Watt fixture, bulbs, encloser all for 162 bucks.

whats better?
 
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