My research tells me that the T5 is far more efficient, about 200 to 400%, than the standard bulbs. I just ordered the Tek T5 for my 125 gallon freshwater tank and am anxious to try it out. I was told not to use actinic bulbs except for salt water reef tanks. When researching the bulbs I did not see one at 8K. The ratings were 6K, 10K and 11K. I have also learned that when using the T5 at over 2wpg CO2 supplementation is preferred. Finally, you will have to modify your ferts and trimming habits. I hope this helps and I will let you know how my new system works out. I should get it in the next few days.