Picking Reef Tank LED Lights – Best Guide For Soft, LPS & SPS Corals


Eight Years ago I built my latest reef aquarium. Back then LED technology was just creeping into the hobby and being the DIY nut I am, I created a DIY array of LEDs linked to my own DIY Aquarium Controller.

While the array does grow SPS, it doesn’t give them the best light and I am in the process of saving for a new light system. This comparison article is what I found while researching to replace my lighting system. I hope you find it helpful!

LED lights for a coral reef aquarium should provide corals with enough light PAR to penetrate the water, have the correct wavelengths to encourage coral feeding, and have the control to mimic natural sunlight levels to promote optimum health.


Here Are My Recommendations Depending On The Type & Size Of Aquarium You Are Looking To Illuminate.

All links on this page will take you either to Amazon.com, or the manufacturer’s website

Budget Nano or Small AquariumsAI Prime 16HD
No Budget Nano or Small AquariumsEcotech Radion XR15W
Budget Longer AquariumsAquaMaxx Prism
No Budget Longer AquariumsMaxspect Razor X
Tall AquariumsKessil A360X w Narrow Lens
or
EcoTech Radion XR30
SPS Heavy Aquariums Ecotech Radion Series
or
AI Hydra Series

To find out how I came to these conclusions and which are the Good, Better & Best in each price range keep reading…

LED Fixtures Under $100

I honestly can’t do you justice to recommend you a light that will grow coral for under $100. Yes, there are some reportedly good lights on a very large Jungle-named store for cheap, but I just cannot advise you on products I would not own or do not own myself.

Lighting is one of the items that really need to have a little bit of money spent on and spent once. Countless times I read about aquarium owners getting these cheaper ‘Black Box’ lights and they are great – for a year until they crap out and then what? Do they buy another or do they now buy what they should have bought in the first place, but now after losing +$100 already!

The lighting technology now available from the major brands is coming down in price so well that it’s becoming a ‘No Brainer’! You could even buy one of the smaller light fixtures like the AI Prime HD, then when you upsize your aquarium, you add another to it, link them, and still have full SPS capable lighting!

There are many other blogs just giving you copy and paste information from the product listings for those cheap lights. If that is what you are looking for I recommend you read one of those. If you are serious about getting a really good light that will last you for years and years, with a proven pedigree behind it, then read on my friend…


For Individual Fixture Capabilities, Videos, Specifications, Information, and Pros & Cons See After The Comparison Tables Below

By clicking on each Fixture Name you can jump to that fixtures details in this article


LED Fixtures Under $200

GOODBETTERBEST
FIXTUREKessil A80 Current USA Orbit AquaMaxx Prism
PRICE From $129.99 From $139.99 From $99.99
POWER15W18W-46W24W-96W
COVERAGEUp To 24″Up To 60″Up To 60″
Best Tank SizeNanoNano – ShallowNano – Shallow
# of COLORS47
# of CHANNELS23
COOLING FANSNoNoNo
WIFI CONTROLVia ApexNoNo
CONTROLLER RQDYesNoNo
APEX READYWith ExtrasNoNo
MOUNTS INCNoYesYes
FIXTURE COLORBlackBlackBlack
SOFTIESYesYesYes
LPSYesYesYes
SPSNoNoNo
CLAMSNoNoNo
ANEMONESNoNoNo
FRAG TANKNoNoNo

LED Fixtures Under $500

GOODBETTERBEST
FIXTUREAI Prime 16HD Kessil A360 Radion Pro XR15W G4 Pro
PRICE From $209.99 From $449.99 From $419.99
POWER59W90W95W
COVERAGEUp To 24″Up To 24″Up To 30″
Best Tank SizeNano – MediumAll – DeepAll – Deep
# of COLORS88
# of CHANNELS88
COOLING FANSYesYesYes
WIFI CONTROLYesVia ApexWith Extras
CONTROLLER RQDNoYesYes
APEX READYYesWith ExtrasWith Extras
MOUNTS INCNoNoNo
FIXTURE COLORBlack or WhiteBlackBlack
SOFTIESYesYesYes
LPSYesYesYes
SPSYesYesYes
CLAMSYesYesYes
ANEMONESYesYesYes
FRAG TANKYesYesYes

LED Fixtures Over $500

GOODBETTERBEST
FIXTURE Maxspect Razor X Radion Pro XR30W G4 Pro AI Hydra 64HD
PRICE From $449.99 From $839.99 From $629.99
POWER115W – 308W190W135W
COVERAGEUp To 60″36″ x 36″36″ x 36″
Best Tank SizeAllAll – DeepAll
# of COLORS888
# of CHANNELS488
COOLING FANSYesYesYes
WIFI CONTROLWith ExtrasWith ExtrasIncluded
CONTROLLER RQDYesYesNo
APEX READYNoWith ExtrasYes
MOUNTS INCYesNoNo
FIXTURE COLORBlackBlackBlack or White
SOFTIESYesYesYes
LPSYesYesYes
SPSYesYesYes
CLAMSYesYesYes
ANEMONESYesYesYes
FRAG TANKYesYesYes

Light Fixtures In Detail Under $200


Kessil A80 Tuna Blue Series LED Lights

Perfect For:

A80 Tuna Blue Model – For Nano Reefs & Fish Only Aquariums
A80 Tuna Sun Model – For Freshwater Planted Aquariums & Fish Only Aquariums
H80 Tuna Flora Model – For Refugiums & Freshwater Planted Aquariums
All links to Amazon.com

Information:

The A80 Series of LED lights from Kessil are an incredible powerhouse of a light in an inexpensive, silent-running a stylish form factor.

Using Kessils Dense Matix LED cluster you get high PAR lighting with no ‘Disco Ball’ effect through the water. The colors are seamlessly blended with the added benefit of the shimmer on the sandbed that is very hard to replicate with other LED technology.

The A80 Tuna Blue is specifically designed for small saltwater nano aquariums or low depth aquariums like frag tanks where their small size allows them to be unobtrusively placed over the tank.

The A80 uses 15W of power which is focused by the lens into a small coverage area providing the maximum amount of PAR in the coverage areas below.

15W is not a lot of power to penetrate water AND give high PAR ratings, hence why this light is great for nano tanks or shallow frag tanks. When you compare the A80 to the A360X, which has 90W of power, you can see why.

The A80’s can be daisy-chained together to be controlled as one array when you need more than one light over a longer aquarium. By using just a heatsink and no cooling fan these lights run totally silent making them perfect for small dorm/bedroom aquariums.

Mounting Options:

The A80 series has an available Gooseneck which allows for simple mounting to either a rimless aquarium or any other surface.

The 24″ gooseneck is flexible enabling you to set the position and height required for your aquarium.

You can find the Gooseneck Here at Amazon.com

Kessil Mini A Series Gooseneck
Mini Gooseneck

Control:

On-Light Control
Each A80 light comes with 2 dials on the top face. One dial allows you to manually tune the color of the light and the other tunes the intensity (power) of the light.

Each time the light is powered on the settings of the dials will be automatically applied each time. This type of control can be done using any plug-in timer to control when the light is ON/OFF.

No dimming, ramping, varying intensity or scheduling features will be controlled. Just set & forget. For these features, you will need to connect the light to an additional controller.

Kessil Control
Kessil has its own light controller dedicated to providing the ultimate features from all of its lights. The Spectral Controller X will allow many options of control to allow you to set up the lights exactly how you want them to run.

  • Easy Programming Features
  • Intuitive Setup Controls
  • Daily Lighting Schedules
  • Intensity ramping schedules
  • Acclimation Mode
  • Lunar Cycle Mode
  • And many more…

The Spectral Controller X comes with all the brackets, cables and hardware to instantly connect to your light and be up and running. When more than just the Dial Control is required, this is a great, inexpensive way to step up your controlling needs. It is also compatible with all of Kessil’s LED lights so if you add on or upgrade this controller will continue to control your newest additions.

For more information, you can find it Here at Amazon.com

For more details on the Spectral X Controller, you can visit the Kessil Website HERE

Apex Control
The A80 series is Neptune Systems ‘Apex Controller Ready‘. This means it can be controlled in two ways by any aquarium controller, but this part will concentrate on the Apex Controller as it is the most popular in the hobby.

To control the simple ON/OFF functions the power to the light can be plugged directly into an Apex Energy Bar. This will allow the controller to control the 110v power to the light.

Neptune Systems Apex Energy Bar

To control the dimming, color, and intensity of the A80 series you will need a few accessories. The Kessil A80 series uses a 0-10v signal and the Apex uses a different control protocol.:

Neptune Systems Apex VDM Module

This converts the Apex communication signal into the 0-10v signal required by the A80 series lights.

This module allows 4 items to be independently controlled using the full suite of features offered by the Apex Controller.

Find it Here at Amazon.com

Kessil Type 1 Control Cable

This 6ft cable allows the A80 Series light to be connected to the Apex VDM Module.

If running multiple A80 lights on an aquarium only one of these cables is required to allow all the A80’s to be controlled as one unit.

Around $19.95ea Here at Bulk Reef Supply

Specifications:

Dimensions0.98″ x 4.88″ / 2.5cm x 12.4cm (H x D)
Unit Weight0.88 lb / 0.4kg
SpectrumDeep Ocean Blue to Sky Blue
CoverageMixed Reef = 14” x 14” at 4” from water line
Softies/LPS = 20” x 20” at 6” from water line
Fish Only = 24” x 24” at 8” from water line
Power Supply100-240V AC (input), 24V DC (output)
Power Consumption15W
Stocking CapabilitiesSoft Coral, LPS Coral, Fish-Only

PRO’s

Inexpensive
Silent-Running
Integrated Controls
Controller Ready
Linkable to Other Kessil LED’s
Proven Kessil Pedigree & Quality

CON’s

Small Coverage Area
Not Suitable For Deeper Tanks
Limited Mounting Options
Tank Mount Needs To Be Purchased Separately
Needs Separate Controller For Full Utilization
SPS Only In Shallow Frag Tanks

Why This Light Made The List:

The A80 from Kessil is a great light from a very reputable manufacturer. The high-quality design, materials, and PAR output from this light make it a great light for a beginner nano tank. The single light source shimmer and color control make this light a perfect match for those of you wanting a beautiful tank full of color when you take your first steps in keeping coral.

Product Manuals:

A80 Tuna Blue – Kessil Website Page
A80 Tuna Sun – Kessil Website Page
H80 Tuna Flora – Kessil Website Page

Kessil A80, H80 & Spectral Controller X Manuals

You May Also Like:

Similar great LED products from Kessil:


Current USA Orbit LED Light Series

Perfect For:

All Aquariums up to 72″ Long
Soft Corals and LPS Corals
Fish Only Aquariums
Frag Tanks

18W Fixture – Aquariums 18″ – 24″ Long
23W Fixture – Aquariums 24″ – 36″ Long
36W Fixture – Aquariums 36″ – 48″ Long
46W Fixture – Aquariums 48″ – 60″ Long
63W Fixture – Aquariums 72″ Long

You can find all the fixtures Here at Amazon.com

Information:

The Orbit series LED light fixtures from Current USA are a great beginner light fixture for longer tanks enabling you to easily keep softies and LPS coral.

The sleek design of the lights utilizes the body of the fixture as the heatsink to keep the LED diodes cool and eliminating the need for any cooling fans. This makes the Orbit series completely silent, even when running at full intensity.

The fixtures use a combination of 0.25W 6500K & 8000K White LED’s, 445NM & 460NM Blue LED’s and RGB LED’s with 120° dispersion lenses to ensure a smooth, uniform color blending.

The Orbit series is easily and conveniently programmed using the included Infa-Red Remote Control making this great for those owners without convenient access to a computer or Wifi.

From the Spectrum graph above you can easily see the PAR ratings depending on the depth of the water. Due to the 1/4W LED diodes used you don’t get the deep penetrating power of the more expensive LED fixtures, but as a beginner level LED fixture, the Orbits are a great option.

This Fixture Series took the BETTER spot because of the sleek, slim form factor, dual-channel control, accessible IR Remote programming, and multiple mounting options.

Mounting Options:

Included:
The Orbit Marine LED fixtures each come with integrated adjustable slides that accommodate every size aquarium in each fixures size range.

The fixtures will just sit on the rim on any aquarium, whether it is rimeless, euro braced or has a manufacturer-installed plastic trim.

Rear Mount Kit:

Available as an optional extra is a stylish rear tank mounting bracket. This bracket allows you to install one or two LED fixtures for increased PAR on wider aquariums.

1 Bracket Rqd for 18″, 24″ & 36″ Fixtures
2 Brackets Rqd for 48″ & 72″ Fixtures

You can find them Here at Amazon.com

Control:

Current USA has designed an IR remote to enable easy and quick setup and control of the Orbit series lights. This makes it especially beneficial for those owners without easy access to a computer or Wifi system to get the light up and running.

Simple presets will help the user get the color temperature set right with easy adjustment if fine-tuning is required. Sunrise, sunsets, clouds, lunar mode and thunderstorm modes all add interesting features to this great light.

Preset Lighting Schedules

The Orbit comes included with 4 factory preset lighting schedules:

  • 12 Hour Full Intensity Program
  • 10 Hour Full Intensity Program
  • Coral Acclimation Program – 60% Intensity
  • Coral Acclimation Program – 80% Intensity

As well as the 4 preset lighting schedules you also get 4 additional memory locations for you to custom program your own lighting schedules, effects, and colors. Are you having a house party and want the moonlights on for longer than normal? – Create a custom schedule.

An included screen unit displays all the current settings and parameters to make this light even simpler to set up and use. The remote and screen unit comes included with each sized light fixture.

Specifications:

Dimensions0.44″ x 3.5″ x 16.8″, 22.8″, 34.8″ or 46.8″ (H x D x L)
1.1cm x 8.9cm x 42.6cm, 57.9cm, 88.4cm or 118.9cm (H x D x L)
Spectrum8000K White, 12000K White, 445NM Blue, 460NM Blue
# of Channels2 (White & Blue)
Power Supply100-240V AC
Power Consumption18W, 23W, 36W or 46W
Stocking CapabilitiesSoft Coral, LPS Coral, Fish-Only

PRO’s

Inexpensive
Silent-Running
IR Remote Control
Elegant Display Screen
Multiple Sizes In Series
Ultra-Slim Design
Multiple Mounting Options
120 Degree Optics Lens

CON’s

Not Suitable For Deeper Tanks
Wattage Spread Over Entire Fixture
Not Linkable To Aquarium Controllers
Not Linkable To Other Orbit LED’s
Not Enough Power For SPS Coral

Why This Light Made The List:

For those aquarium owners that have a long tank but a tight budget, this is your light. The multiple length options along with the simple setup and control from the remote make this light a great option for beginner corals.

It packs enough punch for you to start to stock your tank with Zoas, Mushrooms, Frogspawn, Torches and more. Adjustable color and intensity will be sure to let your tank become a showpiece in your room.

Product Manuals:

Current USA Orbit Marine LED Fixtures – Current USA Website
Serene Freshwater LED Fixtures – Current USA Website
TrueLumen Retrofit LED Strips – Current USA Website

Orbit Series Product Manual

You May Also Like:

Similar great LED products from Current USA:


AquaMaxx Prism LED Light Series

Perfect For:

All Aquariums up to 60″ Long
Soft Corals and LPS Corals
Fish Only Aquariums
Frag Tanks

24W Fixture – Aquariums 13″ – 20″ Long
48W Fixture – Aquariums 24″ – 36″ Long
72W Fixture – Aquariums 36″ – 48″ Long
96W Fixture – Aquariums 48″ – 60″ Long

Information:

The Prism series of LED lights from AquaMaxx is their latest innovation. Building on the super popular Nemo series, the Prism packs in even more power, control, and design.

Using 7 color diodes of 0.5W each linked into 3 controllable channels this light allows you to select any color spectrum from 10K, 14K, 20K or any other color you desire.

The light controller allows 6 setpoints to be configured throughout the day to allow for gradual intensity control, dimming and lighting schedule. Additional control features include Moonlights and Thunderstorms, all easily controlled with the integrated 2-button controller.

The slim design (Less than 1/2″ thick!) makes this light series fixture look modern and stylish over today’s aesthetically minded aquarists and with various mounting options, this light will look awesome over any aquarium.
By using the sleek fixture as the heatsink no fans are required therefore this fixture runs in absolute silence.

This light series, unfortunately, does not pack the power required for light-loving SPS coral but softies and higher-mounted LPS will thrive under this fixture.

This Fixture Series took the BEST spot because of the higher-powered LED diodes used, the additional color diodes used, its variable mounting options and its ultra-slim design.

Mounting Options:

Included:
The AquaMaxx Prism comes included with a tank mounting system that adjusts in width to cover the aquarium dimensions for that size light. Simple thumbscrews secure the light in place to any aquarium.

Hanging Kit:
For those owners who prefer to hang their light fixture this simple, easy to install hanging kit is the perfect option.

Stylish and inexpensive, this kit is a great alternative.

Control:

The control for this light is provided by an intuitive 2 button control unit mounted on the cable. To keep the light as slimline and sleek as possible the designers came up with this great solution.

The Prism light has 3 color channels that can be individually controlled allowing you to set the desired color temperature, 6 setpoints throughout the day for light schedule programming with a Moon Light Mode.

For those of you that like something a little different, the Prism Series light also has a ‘Thunderstorm’ mode for you to simulate lightning storms throughout the day.

The controller button can be locked to prevent any unwanted fingers or accidental button presses altering the settings.

This light series CANNOT be controlled by an external aquarium controller like the Neptune Systems Apex.

Specifications:

Dimensions0.43″ x 5″ x 11″, 22″, 34″ or 46″ (H x D x L)
1.1cm x 12.7cm x 28cm, 56cm, 86cm or 117cm (H x D x L)
Unit Weights3.3 lb, 4.4 lb, 4.4 lb or 6.6 lb
1.5 kg, 2.0 kg, 2.0 kg or 30 kg
SpectrumWhite, Warm White, Blue, Royal Blue, Red, Green, UV
# of Channels3
Power Supply100-240V AC
Power Consumption24W, 48W, 72W or 96W
Stocking CapabilitiesSoft Coral, LPS Coral, Fish-Only

PRO’s

Inexpensive
Silent-Running
Integrated Controls
Multiple Sizes In Series
Ultra-Slim Design
Multiple Mounting Options

CON’s

Not Suitable For Deeper Tanks
Wattage Spread Over Entire Fixture
No Lens To Increase PAR
Not Linkable To Aquarium Controllers
Not Linkable To Other Prism LED’s
Not Enough Power For SPS Coral

Why This Light Made The List:

This has to be one of the slimmest and most stylish LED fixtures I have ever seen. For the aquarist who wants a beautiful setup and a beautiful reef, this light is perfect for you. With a variety of fixtures to suit every length of the aquarium, this light will allow you to begin your coral journey with ease.

Good color spectrum, good PAR and a great price tag this light had to be top of the entry-level LED fixtures. It is stunning!

Product Manuals:

AquaMaxx Prism LED Series – AquaMaxx Website Page
AquaMaxx Nemo LED Series – AquaMaxx Website Page
AquaMaxx Prism CC LED Series – AquaMaxx Website Page

AquaMaxx Prism Product Manual

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Similar great LED products from AquaMaxx:


Light Fixtures In Detail Under $500


Aqua Illumination Prime 16HD

Perfect For:

Nano, Small & Medium-Sized Aquariums up to 24″ wide
Soft Corals, LPS Corals, SPS Corals, Anemones & Clams
Fish Only Aquariums
Frag Tanks

Information:

The Prime 16HD is the latest small to medium tank LED light from Aqua Illumination. Building on the super popular Prime HD this light has improved optics, more LED diodes, more power, better cooling and all for the same price!

The 16HD has 16 high-power LEDs broken down into 7 fully controllable channels and an additional Moonlight LED which is now controlled by its own channel.

The 16HD has a new control function that dynamically adjusts the power to each LED diode and draws power from unused or lower-powered diodes to help deliver a more vivid spectrum not seen before on Primes. Because of the dynamic power adjustment and the improved heat dissipation technology, the silent-running fan comes on even less or at a lower speed, helping to keep the running noise to an absolute minimum.

A new optic lens has also been developed for the 16HD to help blend the separate colors more seamlessly while focusing the light energy to help give greater PAR further into the water.

The Prime 16HD, along with the other LED lights from Aqua Illumination is available in Black or White housings making them ideal for the aesthetically minded aquarist who is looking to creating a piece of art not just inside the aquarium, but in the installation too.

For around $200 this is one of the best Par per Dollar lights money can buy. If you have a longer aquarium, buy several and seamlessly and wirelessly link them together to create one super controllable, super-capable LED array.

Use Aqua Illuminations Product Comparison Feature to see how the AI Prime 16HD compares against its competitors:
You can find the Comparison Feature HERE

Mounting Options:

Tank Mount:
The Tank Mount for the AI Prime is very easy to install and adjusts for height, width and has a ball joint for angling the light if required.

A simple thumbscrew secures the light in place to rimmed or rimless aquariums

Available in Silver or Black

Around $35.00ea
Available Here at Marine Depot

Flexible Arm:
A black silicone-covered flexible arm is available to give you the ultimate in personal positioning.

A simple clamp allows it to be fixed to any aquarium while clips attach the cable to the arm for a neat installation.

Available in 12″ or 18″ Lengths

Available Here at Amazon.com

Hanging Kit:
For those owners who prefer to hang their light fixture this simple, easy to install hanging kit is the perfect option. A ball joint allows for the light to be angled in any direction if required.

Stylish and inexpensive, this kit is a great alternative.

Available Here at Amazon.com

Control:

Each AI Prime 16HD has built-in Wifi to be able to connect to the available Aqua Illumination ‘myAI’ IOS or Android app. A simple setup wizard gets you connected, setup, adjusted and scheduled within minutes of powering up the light.

myAI App Lighting Schedule

myAI App Acclimation Mode

Control through the myAI app allows you to set the color temperature, intensity, lighting schedules, moonlight, clouds, and thunderstorm functions through intuitive, easy to follow programming. Each color channel is fully controllable for intensity including a dedicated channel just for Moonlight intensity and schedule.

If you use more than one AI Prime 16HD you can have them linked together to work as one array. You can even link to other AI LED lights on the same tank or different tanks and control them all through the single app.

Another fantastic feature of the myAI app is that if you have a Nest Webcam (Link to Webcam at Amazon.com) looking at your tank, you can view the live video stream through the app too!

For more information on how to easily set up an Aquarium WebCam please read my article:
Aquarium WiFi Camera – Simple Setup For <$30

Specifications:

Dimensions1.34″ x 4.88″ x 4.88″ (H x L x W)
3.4cm x 12.4cm x 12.4cm (H x L x W)
Unit Weight0.95 lb
0.43 kg
Spectrum4x Cool White, 4x Blue, 4x Royal Blue, 1x Photo Red, 1x Green, 1x Violet, 1x UV, 1x Moonlight
# of Channels8
Power Supply100-240V AC
Power Consumption59W
Stocking CapabilitiesSoft Coral, LPS Coral, SPS Coral, Anemones, Clams & Fish-Only

PRO’s

Inexpensive
Super Powerful PAR per Dollar
Integrated WiFi
Easy To Use myAPP
Linkable To Other AI LED’s
Controllable By Aquarium Controllers
Ultra-Slim Design
Multiple Mounting Options
Multiple Color Options
Upgrade Aquarium Size = Add More Prime’s

CON’s

Not Suitable For Wider Tanks
Not Suitable for Deep Tanks
Cooling Fan Noise

Why This Light Made The List:

I have to be honest and say the Prime series lights have been one of my favorites since they were first released. The price tag for the power these lights put out cannot be beaten. For small or shallow aquariums the Prime 16HD allows you to own any coral you wish and the control you have over it for around $200 is fantastic.

There is a reason why the bigger light fixtures from AI just use more of the Prime LED clusters and lenses, is because they work! Buying a Prime will give you the best start to your first SPS corals if you are still int the nano/small aquarium stage of your reefing journey!

Product Manuals:

AI Prime 16HD LED Series – Aqua Illumination Website Page

Aqua Illumination Product Manuals
Aqua Illumination myAI App Website Page

You May Also Like:

Similar great LED products from Aqua Illumination:


Kessil A360 Series LED Lights

Kessil A360WE & A360NE
Kessil A360X

Perfect For:

All Aquariums
Deep Aquariums using A360X
Soft Corals, LPS Corals, SPS Corals, Anemones & Clams
Fish Only Aquariums
Frag Tanks

Information:

The A360 Tuna Blue series is a saltwater dedicated LED light that comes in several forms depending on your needs:

  • A360WE – Wide = Covers a surface area up to 24″ with 90W of Power
  • A360NE – Narrow = Covers a surface area up to 18″ with 90W of Power
  • A360X – Wide = Covers a surface area up to 24″ with 90W of Power but with Greater Penetrating Power
  • A360X With Narrow Lens Kit = Covers a surface area up to 20″ and to 5ft Deep

Using Kessil’s patented Dense-Matrix LED technology the LED diodes are mounted in very close proximity to each other to form a single point light source that creates incredible photon power and a beautifully blended light spectrum. The Kessil lights are synonymous with the shimmer on the corals and sandbed that only single-point source lights can deliver and this adds a magnificent realism to an aquarium.

The optical lenses on these lights can spread the light between 130° for wider coverage or down to 55° for deep aquariums using the Narrow Lens Adapter for the A360X.
You can find the Lens Kit Here at Amazon.com

All the models in the A360 series can be set using the integrated dials on the top but these lights really need to be used with a controller of some form to get the most benefit from their technology.

Multiple lights can be linked together to form one array and if you find you need higher PAR or better coverage, the purchase of an additional light and connecting it to the system is as simple as it gets.

This Fixture Series took the BETTER spot because of the PAR generating power of the A360’s, the shimmer effect, the coverage selection, and multiple mounting options for every aquarium.

The Kessil A360 series are a fantastic LED light that will allow you to grow any coral you wish, even on the deeper tanks, and it is hard to compete with the shimmer effect they create!

Mounting Options:

Tank Mount:
This sleek, unobtrusive mounting arm system allows you to easily mount your A360 to any rimless aquarium. A nice feature is the cord enters the pipe so remains hidden.

The mount is adjustable for heights up to 17″ above the water surface and for placing the A360 center between 18-24″ from the back glass. For wider tanks, you need the Extension Arm to place the light center between 25″-32″.

The maximum wall thickness for the Tank Mount Arm is 1.25″ and this will not fit on eurobraced tanks or aquariums with a plastic trim around the top.

For Eurobraced or Trimmed Aquariums a Rear Mount Kit is available for the Tank Mount Arms. 2 Tubes incl, 90° Mount Arms NOT incl.

Tank Mount Available Here at Amazon.com

Rear Mount Kit Available Here at Amazon.com

Extension Arm For Wider Tanks
Rear Mount Kit

Flexible Arm:
A 24″ black silicone-covered flexible arm is available to give you the ultimate in personal positioning.

A simple clamp allows it to be fixed to any aquarium up to 1.25″ wide with simple thumbscrews.

Additional adapters are available to position the light at 90° to the gooseneck to increase the range or improve the look.

Gooseneck Available Here at Amazon.com

90° Adapter Available Here at Amazon.com

Low-Profile 90° Adapter Here at Amazon.com

90° Adapter
Low-Profile 90° Adapter

Control:

On-Light Control
Just like the A80 Series from Kessil, each A360 light comes with 2 dials on the top face. One dial allows you to manually tune the color of the light and the other tunes the intensity (power) of the light.

Each time the light is powered on the settings of the dials will be automatically applied each time. This type of control can be done using any plug-in timer to control when the light is ON/OFF.

No dimming, ramping, varying intensity or scheduling features will be controlled. Just set & forget. For these features, you will need to connect the light to an additional controller.

Kessil Control
Kessil has its own light controller dedicated to providing the ultimate features from all of its lights. The Spectral Controller X will allow many options of control to allow you to set up the lights exactly how you want them to run.

  • Easy Programming Features
  • Intuitive Setup Controls
  • Daily Lighting Schedules
  • Intensity ramping schedules
  • Acclimation Mode
  • Lunar Cycle Mode
  • And many more…

The Spectral Controller X comes with all the brackets, cables and hardware to instantly connect to your light and be up and running. When more than just the Dial Control is required, this is a great, inexpensive way to step up your controlling needs. It is also compatible with all of Kessil’s LED lights so if you add on or upgrade this controller will continue to control your newest additions.

For more information, you can find it Here at Amazon.com

For more details on the Spectral X Controller, you can visit the Kessil Website HERE

Apex Control
ONLY the A360WE and A360NE Series are Neptune Systems ‘Apex Controller Ready‘. This means it can be controlled in two ways by any aquarium controller, but this part will concentrate on the Apex Controller as it is the most popular in the hobby.

To control the simple ON/OFF functions the power to the light can be plugged directly into an Apex Energy Bar. This will allow the controller to control the 110v power to the light.

Neptune Systems Apex Energy Bar

To control the dimming, color, and intensity of the A360 series you will need a few accessories. The Kessil A360 series uses a 0-10v signal and the Apex uses a different control protocol.:

Neptune Systems Apex VDM Module

This converts the Apex communication signal into the 0-10v signal required by both the A80 and A360WE/NE series lights.

This module allows 4 items to be independently controlled using the full suite of features offered by the Apex Controller.

Available Here at Amazon.com

Kessil Type 1 Control Cable

This 6ft cable allows the A Serises light to be connected to the Apex VDM Module.

If running multiple A Series lights on an aquarium only one of these cables is required to allow all the A360WE/NE’s to be controlled as one unit.

Available Here at Bulk Reef Supply

The A360X is NOT controllable by Apex. It can only be controlled via the Kessil Spectrum X controller or via the Kessil IOS & Android App with a Kessil WiFi Adapter Dongle. To connect multiple A360X’s together you will need additional K-Link cables.

WiFi Dongle Around $99.99
Available Here at Marine Depot.

10ft K-Link Cable Around $25.00
Available Here at Marine Depot

Specifications:

Dimensions
A360WE
A360NE
A360X

3.6″ x 4.0″ / 9.1cm x 10.2cm (H x D)
4.5″ x 4.0″ / 11.4cm x 10.2cm (H x D)
2.1″ x 4.3″ / 5.3cm x 10.9cm (H x D)
Unit Weights
A360WE
A360NE
A360X

0.95lb / 0.43kg
1.15lb / 0.52kg
0.80lb / 0.37kg
SpectrumDeep Ocean Blue to Sky Blue
Power Supply100-240V AC
Power Consumption90W
Stocking CapabilitiesSoft Coral, LPS Coral, SPS Coral, Anemones, Clams & Fish-Only

PRO’s

Reasonably Priced
Powerful Penetrating PAR
Linkable To Other Kessil LED’s
NE/WE LEDS’s Controllable By Apex Incredile Shimmer
Endless Color Selection
Multiple Mounting Options
Dense Matrix LED Technology
Decades of Optic Techonolgy Pedigree

CON’s

Cooling Fan Noise
X Series Not Linkable To Apex
Expensive X-Link Cables
Mounting Options Can Get Expensive

Why This Light Made The List:

Two Words – Power & Shimmer! Some of the most beautiful aquariums I have ever seen were lit by Metal Halide bulbs and the shimmer they created made the reef look so natural. That shimmer disappeared when LED’s began, but then Kessil joined the game!

Several of these fixtures over your aquarium will keep your most light-hungry Acroporas happy while giving your glass box the most vivid, natural color you will ever see.

Product Manuals:

A360X Series – Kessil Website Page
A360WE/NE Series – Kessil Website Page

A360X User Manual
A360WE/NE User Manual
Mounting Options Manuals

You May Also Like:

Similar great LED products from Kessil:


EcoTech Radion XR15W G4 Pro

From $419.99ea Here at Marine Depot

Perfect For:

All Aquariums up 24″ Wide & Deep
Soft Corals, LPS Corals, SPS Corals, Anemones & Clams
Fish Only Aquariums
Frag Tanks

Information:

Where do I even begin with the EcoTech Radion!!? EcoTech mass-produced one of the first and most popular High-PAR LED aquarium lights and have been building on that pedigree ever since.

This forth Generation Radion may be expensive for a single cluster LED, but the power, color, and depth the PAR penetrates allows you to keep any coral you wish and have it thrive.

The features added to the G4 Radions are a new LED cluster design and the addition of a Warm White diode to give better coloration. A new heatsink and thermal dissipation system have been redesigned to improve the life of the diode cluster and allow the cooling fan to run at lower speeds and thus run quieter.

But, by far the main improvement on the G4 range is the newly designed optical lens. The HEI (Hemispherical Edge Illumination) lens is designed to give improved color blending and refocus the PAR over a wider footprint, rather than one hotspot directly under the lens. Because of this, you get higher PAR over a larger footprint.

This Fixture Series took the BEST spot because the control and PAR power is second to none. EcoTech’s pedigree just improves every time they release a new light and this is a light that can easily be added to other Radions on a bigger aquarium when you next upgrade.

The high price tag will deter most aquarists but the benefits it provides will pay for itself in the coral you may lose using less powerful LED’s.

Mounting Options:

Tank Mount:
The tank mount system allows you to mount any sized Radion 9″ over the water.

The mount will attach to rimless aquariums up to 1 3/8″ thick or rimmed aquariums up to 1″ thick.

Included in the kit are rails to be able to center the light on aquariums from 12″-24″ deep. For deeper (Front to Back) aquariums where the light will not center over the tank, the RMS system may need to be used. See below for more details.

Tank Mount Around $93.00ea
Available Here at Marine Depot

Rail Mount System:
The EcoTech RMS (Rail Mount System) is a modular rail system used to position your Radion or Radions over the tank. When the tank mount above is unable to move the Radion far enough forward because you have a deep aquarium, the RMS system comes into its own.

With 8 lengths of rail from 20″ to 90″ you will find a rail to fit most aquariums. For those with even longer aquariums, then the Top Mount Rail System will enable you to accomplish your task.

RMS Components from $21.00ea
Available Here at Marine Depot

Top Mount Rail Components from $36.75ea
Available Here at Marine Depot

RMS System Components
Top Mount Rail System

Hanging Kit:
A stylish stainless steel wire hanging kit is available for positioning your Radion in a clean, modern look.

When multiple Radions are used over the aquarium with the Rail Mount System, the same stylish hanging kit has been engineered to hold the Radions securely and perfectly.

Single Radion Hanging Kit Around $47.25ea
Available Here at Marine Depot

Rail Mount Hanging Kit Around $40.95ea
Available Here at Marine Depot

Single Radion Hanging Kit
Rail Mount Hanging Kit

Control:

On-Light Control
The Radion will work in Basic Mode straight out of the box. The Radion has three input buttons on the light fixture for you to set up the light without access to the EcoTech App or an aquarium controller.

Simple, Easy To Use Buttons

The three buttons are Raise, Cycle & Lower. These buttons allow you to scroll through the functions and adjust the color and intensity manually by following the setup guide.

Each time the light is powered on the previous settings will be automatically applied each time. This type of control can be done using any plug-in timer to control when the light is ON/OFF.

No dimming, ramping, varying intensity or scheduling features will be controlled. Just set & forget. For these features, you will need to connect the light to an additional controller.

EcoTechEcoSmart Live’ Control
By plugging in your Radion to a computer you can access the Free EcoSmart Live website to use its controls to setup every feature of the Radion. Once the programming has been completed, disconnect the light from the computer and it will work as programmed until you need to alter a setting again.

Just like most LED Light User Interfaces, EcoSmart Live will allow you to adjust the following:

  • Easy Programming Features
  • Intuitive Setup Controls
  • Daily Lighting Schedules
  • Intensity ramping schedules
  • Acclimation Mode
  • Lunar Cycle Mode
  • And many more…

For more information on EcoSMart Live CLICK HERE to go to EcoTech’s Website

EcoTech ReefLink WiFi Module
Having to plug in your Radion into the computer just to change a setting can become irritable. To overcome this, Ecotech has developed the ReefLink module that allows all of your EcoTech Radions & Vortech pumps to wirelessly communicate with your home WiFi network.

ReefLink User Interfaces

This additional module then allows you to connect to your Ecotech products via the Android, IOS Apps or any web browser, no matter your location and update and change setting in real-time.

Around $99.99
Click Here for more information at Marine Depot

Apex Control
The Radion series of LED lights are Neptune Systems ‘Apex Controller Ready‘. This means it can be controlled in two ways by the aquarium controller.

To control the simple ON/OFF functions the power to the light can be plugged directly into an Apex Energy Bar. This will allow the controller to control the 110v power to the light.

Neptune Systems Apex Energy Bar

To control the dimming, color, and intensity of the Radion series you will need an accessory. The Radion communicates wirelessly so to connect it to your Apex controller you will need the following module:

Neptune Systems Apex WXM Module

This module connects to the Apex Control system to allow you full control of EcoTechs Radion Lights or Vortech Pumps via Apex.

This module comes with all the cables and hardware needed to connect to the Apex, then it wirelessly connects to your Radions to integrate your entire lighting system into the Apex User Interface.

Around $124.95ea Here at Marine Depot

Wireless Expansion Module for EcoTech

Specifications:

Dimensions7.0″ x 7.0″x 1.5″ / 18.0cm x 18.0cm x 3.9cm (LxWxH)
Unit Weight 3.5lb / 1.5kg
Spectrum4x Cool White, 4x Deep Blue, 4x Blue, 2x Green, 2x Photo Red, 4x UV, 2x Violet, 1x Warm White
Power Supply100-240V AC
Power Consumption95W
Stocking CapabilitiesSoft Coral, LPS Coral, SPS Coral, Anemones, Clams & Fish-Only

PRO’s

Powerful Penetrating PAR
HEI Optic Lenses
Linkable To Other Radion LED’s
Controllable By Apex
Endless Color Selection
Multiple Mounting Options
Tried & Tested EcoTech Pedigree

CON’s

Expensive Single Cluster LED
Cooling Fan Noise
No Built-In Wifi or User Interface
Additional Mount Needed with Light Purchase
Additional Mounting Options Can Get Expensive

Why This Light Made The List:

This was such a tough decision between this light and the AI Hydra 32HD but it really came down to the HEI Lenses giving a more consistent spread of PAR.

To be honest, as I write this I would have a really hard decision choosing between the two. The AI Hydra 32 has built-in Wifi so it makes control easier, but to be honest, once you have set up your lights you very rarely need to alter them.

Either the Hydra 32 or the Radion XR15W G4 Pro will make a superb light for anyone with a 24″ aquarium. Once you begin to get into the longer aquariums you will need to look at the costs for either adding additional LED fixtures or moving into the next category of lights. Over $500.


To learn more about the Aqua Illumination Hydra 32 LED fixtures CLICK HERE to go to them at Marine Depot.


Product Manuals:

Radion Series – EcoTech Website Page
ReefLink Command Center – EcoTech Website Page

Radion Setup Guide
RMS (Rail Mount System) Instructions
RMS Multi-Light Instructions
ReefLink Setup Guide

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Similar great LED products from EcoTech:


Light Fixtures In Detail Over $500


Maxspect Razor X Series LED Lights

From $449.99ea Here at Marine Depot

Perfect For:

All Aquariums up 60″ Long
Soft Corals, LPS Corals, SPS Corals, Anemones & Clams
Fish Only Aquariums
Frag Tanks

Razor X RS100 – 115W For Aquariums 17.7″-27.6″ Long – $449.99
Razor X RS150 – 160W For Aquariums 27.6″-37.4″ Long – $529.99
Razor X RS200 – 195W For Aquariums 33.5″-47.2″ Long – $599.99
Razor X RS300 – 310W For Aquariums 47.2″-59.0″ Long – $899.99

Information:

The Maxpsect Razor X series has been designed to give a beautiful light source to your reef while staying out of sight. There is nothing worse than seeing a bulky, ugly light fixture hanging above a stunning aquarium!

The Razor X series uses LED diodes from the world’s best manufacturers in an array of clusters that are repeated down the length of each fixture. The clusters are designed to give maximum spectrum, color blending with high PAR. Each cluster is encased in an engineered reflector with ultra-clear acrylic lenses.

To control the lights to give you the color and spectrum you wish Maxspect has arranged the diodes onto 4 controllable channels that can be setup up using the onboard screen and dial or linked to Maxspect’s Syna-G app.

To best match your aquascape to your lights, Maxspect has issued PAR data maps to each fitting so you can plan the perfect coral layout to give each piece the perfect light requirements. You can view each Par map in the Razor Webpage link at the end of this section.

Mounting Options:

Included Tank Mount:
The included tank mount system allows you to mount the fixture over any aquarium. The rails slide to adjust to suit any edge or rim.

Control:

On-Light Control
The Razor X has a built-in screen and dial to allow you to easily adjust all the settings within the light’s functions. By scrolling through each parameter and adjusting as you wish it makes getting this light set to your preferences a doddle.

Each time the light is powered on the stored settings will be automatically applied each time. This type of control can be done using any plug-in timer to control when the light is ON/OFF.

Wireless Control
Every high-end light on the market today needs to have wireless control and the Razor X is no different. Masxpect has developed an app for Android and IOS devices called ‘Syna-G’ that allows full, wireless control of all the features of this light series.

To connect the Razor X light to the WiFi network in your home you need to purchase the Masxpect Connect ICV6 Controller.

This controller will allow you to control not only the Razor X series of lights but also the Ethereal series of lights and the Turbine Duo Pumps all from the Syna-G app.

You can find more information on the following Maxspect products by following the links to Marine Depot:

Maxspect Connect ICV6 Controller – Around $49.99
Maxspect Ethereal LED Light Series – Around $499.99
Maxspect Turbine Duo Pumps – Around $239.99

Apex Ready:
The Razor X series of light are UNABLE to be controlled by Apex Aquarium Controllers.

Specifications:

Dimensions
RSX-100
RSX-150
RSX-200
RSX-300

18.4″×10.2″×1.2″ / 46.8cm×26.0cm×3.1cm (LxWxH)
27.6″×10.2″×1.2″ / 70.0cm×26.0cm×3.1cm
33.0″×10.2″×1.2″ / 83.9cm×26.0cm×3.1cm
47.6″×10.2″×1.2″ / 121.0cm×26.0cm×3.1cm
Unit Weights
RSX-100
RSX-150
RSX-200
RSX-300

4.6lb / 2.1kg
6.8lb / 3.1Kg
8.8lb / 4.0kg
12.1lb / 5.5Kg
SpectrumCool White, Warm White, Deep Blue, Royal Blue, Cool Blule, Cyan, Deep Red, Violet
Power Supply100-240V AC
Power Consumption
RSX-100
RSX-150
RSX-200
RSX-300

115W
160W
195W
305W
Stocking CapabilitiesSoft Coral, LPS Coral, SPS Coral, Anemones, Clams & Fish-Only

PRO’s

Ultra-Slim, Stylish Design
Mulitple LED Clusters To Spread PAR
Various Fixture Lengths
Great For Single Fixture Purchase
Included Mounts
Built-In Screen Display
Smart Phone Control
High Quality LED Diodes
Great Price For Longer Aquariums

CON’s

Cooling Fan Noise
No Built-In Wifi
Not for Deep Aquariums
Not ‘Apex Ready’
PAR Not as High As Competitors

Why This Light Made The List:

For the budget-conscious aquarist who wants to keep all corals including light hungry SPS, this is a great choice compared to other models in this price bracket. When comparing this light on a 60″ long aquarium you can buy one fixture to do the job. It comes with included mounting and is ready to go out of the box.

To cover the same area with a competitors fixture you would need multiple fixtures to cover the area, then need multiple mounting brackets to support those fixtures and before you know it you are at double or triple the cost.

Providing you are not requiring to install this over a deep aquarium this light is a great choice for those with a longer aquarium but on a budget. If you have a wide aquarium then running two of these fixtures in parallel will ensure you have great coverage!

Product Manuals:

Razor X Series – Maxspect Website Page

Razor X Series Owners Manual
Connect ICV6 Controller Setup Guide

You May Also Like:

Similar great LED products from Maxspect:


EcoTech Radion XR30W G4 Pro

From $839.99ea Here at Marine Depot

Perfect For:

All Aquariums up 36″ Wide & 24″Deep.
Soft Corals, LPS Corals, SPS Corals, Anemones & Clams
Fish Only Aquariums
Frag Tanks

Information:

The XR30W G4 is a doubled-up cluster of the XR15W G4 with a custom-designed heat dissipation system to remove the immense heat these two clusters can produce at full power.

The features added to the G4 Radions are a new LED cluster design and the addition of a Warm White diode to give better coloration. A new heatsink and thermal dissipation system have been redesigned to improve the life of the diode cluster and allow the cooling fan to run at lower speeds and thus run quieter.

But, by far the main improvement on the G4 range is the newly designed optical lens. The HEI (Hemispherical Edge Illumination) lens is designed to give improved color blending and refocus the PAR over a wider footprint, rather than one hotspot directly under the lens. Because of this, you get higher PAR over a larger footprint.

This Fixture Series took the BETTER spot because it has a great PAR spread which can penetrate, making this light perfect for deeper aquariums or wide aquariums over 24″ that are likely to have a large aquascape with lots of SPS.

This is the most expensive light in the high-end range and it has its place on the right aquariums. The additional cost required for mounting and WiFi connectivity jump this fixture close to the $1000 mark, which can make it out of reach for many aquarists.

Mounting Options:

Tank Mount:
The tank mount system allows you to mount any sized Radion 9″ over the water.

The mount will attach to rimless aquariums up to 1 3/8″ thick or rimmed aquariums up to 1″ thick.

Included in the kit are rails to be able to center the light on aquariums from 12″-24″ deep. For deeper (Front to Back) aquariums where the light will not center over the tank, the RMS system may need to be used. See below for more details.

Tank Mount Around $103.00ea
Available Here at Marine Depot

Rail Mount System:
The EcoTech RMS (Rail Mount System) is a modular rail system used to position your Radion or Radions over the tank. When the tank mount above is unable to move the Radion far enough forward because you have a deep aquarium, the RMS system comes into its own.

With 8 lengths of rail from 20″ to 90″ you will find a rail to fit most aquariums. For those with even longer aquariums, then the Top Mount Rail System will enable you to accomplish your task.

RMS Components from $21.00ea
Available Here at Marine Depot

Top Mount Rail Components from $36.75ea
Available Here at Marine Depot

RMS System Components
Top Mount Rail System

Hanging Kit:
A stylish stainless steel wire hanging kit is available for positioning your Radion in a clean, modern look.

When multiple Radions are used over the aquarium with the Rail Mount System, the same stylish hanging kit has been engineered to hold the Radions securely and perfectly.

Single Radion Hanging Kit Around $47.25ea
Available Here at Marine Depot

Rail Mount Hanging Kit Around $40.95ea
Available Here at Marine Depot

Single Radion Hanging Kit
Rail Mount Hanging Kit

Control:

On-Light Control
Just like the XR15W, the Radion XR30W will work in Basic Mode straight out of the box. The Radions have three input buttons on the light fixture for you to set up the light without access to the EcoTech App or an aquarium controller.

The three buttons are Raise, Cycle & Lower. These buttons allow you to scroll through the functions and adjust the color and intensity manually by following the setup guide.

Each time the light is powered on the previous settings will be automatically applied each time. This type of control can be done using any plug-in timer to control when the light is ON/OFF.

No dimming, ramping, varying intensity or scheduling features will be controlled. Just set & forget. For these features, you will need to connect the light to an additional controller.

EcoTechEcoSmart Live’ Control
By plugging in your Radion to a computer you can access the Free EcoSmart Live website to use its controls to setup every feature of the Radion. Once the programming has been completed, disconnect the light from the computer and it will work as programmed until you need to alter a setting again.

Just like most LED Light User Interfaces, EcoSmart Live will allow you to adjust the following:

  • Easy Programming Features
  • Intuitive Setup Controls
  • Daily Lighting Schedules
  • Intensity ramping schedules
  • Acclimation Mode
  • Lunar Cycle Mode
  • And many more…

For more information on EcoSMart Live CLICK HERE to go to EcoTech’s Website

EcoTech ReefLink WiFi Module
Having to plug in your Radion into the computer just to change a setting can become irritable. To overcome this, Ecotech has developed the ReefLink module that allows all of your EcoTech Radions & Vortech pumps to wirelessly communicate with your home WiFi network.

ReefLink User Interfaces

This additional module then allows you to connect to your Ecotech products via the Android, IOS Apps or any web browser, no matter your location and update and change setting in real-time.

Around $99.99
Click Here for more information at Marine Depot

Apex Control
The Radion series of LED lights are Neptune Systems ‘Apex Controller Ready‘. This means it can be controlled in two ways by the aquarium controller.

To control the simple ON/OFF functions the power to the light can be plugged directly into an Apex Energy Bar. This will allow the controller to control the 110v power to the light.

Neptune Systems Apex Energy Bar

To control the dimming, color, and intensity of the Radion series you will need an accessory. The Radion communicates wirelessly so to connect it to your Apex controller you will need the following module:

Neptune Systems Apex WXM Module

This module connects to the Apex Control system to allow you full control of EcoTechs Radion Lights or Vortech Pumps via Apex.

This module comes with all the cables and hardware needed to connect to the Apex, then it wirelessly connects to your Radions to integrate your entire lighting system into the Apex User Interface.

Around $124.95ea Here at Marine Depot

Wireless Expansion Module for EcoTech

Specifications:

Dimensions11.8″ x 7.0″x 1.5″ (LxWxH)
30.0cm x 18.0cm x 3.9cm
Unit Weight 4.5lb
2.0kg
Spectrum4x Cool White, 4x Deep Blue, 4x Blue, 2x Green, 2x Photo Red, 4x UV, 2x Violet, 1x Warm White
Power Supply100-240V AC
Power Consumption190W
Stocking CapabilitiesSoft Coral, LPS Coral, SPS Coral, Anemones, Clams & Fish-Only

PRO’s

Powerful Penetrating PAR
HEI Optic Lenses
Linkable To Other Radion LED’s
Controllable By Apex
Endless Color Selection
Multiple Mounting Options
Tried & Tested EcoTech Pedigree

CON’s

Most Expensive LED Fixture
Cooling Fan Noise
No Built-In Wifi or User Interface
Additional Mount Needed with Light Purchase
Additional Mounting Options Can Get Expensive

Why This Light Made The List:

There was no doubt that this was going to be in the top two positions of this comparison article, in fact, it was in first place until I really took the XR30 and Hydra 64 head to head. If it had been against the older AI Hydra 52, then the Radion would have come out on top.

The Radion XR30W G4 is a top quality LED light that is the benchmark for many manufacturers to reach, let alone beat. I’m sure the G5 is on its way and yet again that will raise the bar in aquarium LED optical technology once again.

The XR30W G4 is an awesome light but your bank balance best have budgeted for it!

Product Manuals:

Radion Series – EcoTech Website Page
ReefLink Command Center – EcoTech Website Page

Radion Setup Guide
RMS (Rail Mount System) Instructions
RMS Multi-Light Instructions
ReefLink Setup Guide

You May Also Like:

Similar great LED products from EcoTech:


Aqua Illumination Hydra 64HD

Around $629.99ea Here at Marine Depot

Perfect For:

All Aquariums up 36″ Wide & 24″Deep.
Soft Corals, LPS Corals, SPS Corals, Anemones & Clams
Fish Only Aquariums
Frag Tanks

Information:

The Hydra 64HD is the latest HIgh-End aquarium LED light from Aqua Illumination. Building on the pedigree of the Hydra 52 this light has improved optics, more LED diodes, more power, better cooling and all for the same price!

The Hydra 64HD has 64 Spectrum creating high-power LEDs broken down into 7 fully controllable channels and an additional 4 Moonlight LEDs which are now controlled by its own channel.

The Hydra 64HD, just like the Prime 16HD and Hydra 32HD has a new control function that dynamically adjusts the power to each LED diode and draws power from unused or lower-powered diodes to help deliver a more vivid spectrum not seen before on an AI fixture.

Because of the dynamic power adjustment and the improved heat dissipation technology, the silent-running fan comes on even less or at a lower speed, helping to keep the running noise to an absolute minimum.

A new optic lens has also been developed for the Hydra to help blend the separate colors more seamlessly while focusing the light energy to help give greater PAR further into the water.

The Hydra 64HD, along with the other LED lights from Aqua Illumination is available in Black or White housings making them ideal for the aesthetically minded aquarist who is looking to creating a piece of art not just inside the aquarium, but in the installation too.

Mounting Options:

Tank Mount:
The Tank Mount for the AI Hydras is very easy to install and adjust for height and width. The Hydra can sit as shown or turned 90° parallel to the outreach arm.

A simple thumbscrew secures the light in place to Rimless Aquariums Only and an RMS Bracket is required for each Hydra fixture.

Max Wall Thickness 1.2″
Max Height 13″
Max Outreach 14.3″

Tank Mount Around $78.75ea
Available Here at Marine Depot

RMS Mounting Bracket Around $21.00ea
Available Here at Marine Depot

Tank Mount
RMS Mounting Bracket

Rail Mount:
The Rail Mount System (RMS) uses two Tank Mounts then a horizontal rail to stretch the length of the aquarium allowing you to provide coverage to wide aquariums where the Tank Mount will not reach the centerline of the tank.

Several Components are needed:
* RMS Double Arm Kit
* Horiztonal Rail – 24″, 36″, 48″, 60″, 72″
* RMS Mount Bracket/s

RMS Double Arm Kit Around $78.75ea
Available Here at Marine Depot

RMS Horizontal Rails From $47.25ea
Available Here at Marine Depot

RMS Mounting Brackets Around $21.00ea
Available Here at Marine Depot

RMS Tank Mount Kit
RMS Horizontal Rails
RMS Mounting Bracket

Flexible Arm:
An 18″ black silicone-covered flexible arm that attaches to the Hydra from the rear gives you the most invisible mount system yet.

A simple clamp allows it to be fixed to any aquarium while clips attach the cable to the arm for a neat installation.

From $68.25ea
Available Here at Marine Depot

Hanging Kit:
The Hydra Hanging Kit is a perfect option for those who have aquariums where the Tank Mounts do not fit or prefer the aesthetic look.

Several Components are needed:
* Hydra Hanging Kit
* Horiztonal Rail – 24″, 36″, 48″, 60″, 72″
* RMS Mount Bracket/s

Hydra Hanging Kit Around $36.75ea
Available Here at Marine Depot

RMS Horizontal Rails From $47.25ea
Available Here at Marine Depot

RMS Mounting Brackets Around $21.00ea
Available Here at Marine Depot

Hydra Hanging Kit
RMS Horizontal Rails
RMS Mounting Bracket

Control:

Each AI Hydra 64HD has built-in Wifi to be able to connect to the available Aqua Illumination ‘myAI’ IOS or Android app. A simple setup wizard gets you connected, setup, adjusted and scheduled within minutes of powering up the light.

myAI App Lighting Schedule

myAI App Acclimation Mode

Control through the myAI app allows you to set the color temperature, intensity, lighting schedules, moonlight, clouds, and thunderstorm functions through intuitive, easy to follow programming. Each color channel is fully controllable for intensity including a dedicated channel just for Moonlight intensity and schedule.

If you use more than one AI Hydra 64HD you can have them linked together to work as one array. You can even link to other AI LED lights on the same tank or different tanks and control them all through the single app.

Another fantastic feature of the myAI app is that if you have a Nest Webcam (Link to Webcam at Amazon.com) looking at your tank, you can view the live video stream through the app too!

For more information on how to easily set up an Aquarium WebCam please read my article:
Aquarium WiFi Camera – Simple Setup For <$30

Specifications:

Dimensions1.42″ x 11.88″ x 5.38″ (H x L x W)
3.6cm x 30.2cm x 13.7cm (H x L x W)
Unit Weight3.4 lb
1.54 kg
Spectrum16x Cool White, 16x Blue, 16x Royal Blue, 4x Photo Red, 4x Green, 4x Violet, 4x UV, 4x Moonlight
# of Channels8
Power Supply100-240V AC
Power Consumption135W
Stocking CapabilitiesSoft Coral, LPS Coral, SPS Coral, Anemones, Clams & Fish-Only

PRO’s

Lower Price Than Radions
Integrated WiFi
Easy To Use myAPP
Linkable To Other AI LED’s
Controllable By Aquarium Controllers
Ultra-Slim Design
Multiple Mounting Options
Multiple Color Options

CON’s

Mounting Options Can Get Expensive

Why This Light Made The List:

In my opinion, the new Hyrda series from Aqua Illumination is the best all-round LED light for a saltwater aquarium. Mounting this light parallel or perpendicular to your aquarium will allow you to get the coverage and PAR required to keep any coral you wish, with a fairly reasonable price tag.

The built-in WiFi connectivity makes this like set up simple and also has the added benefit of seeing the aquarium through a Nest webcam is pretty awesome too.
I like the flexible arm mount that attaches from the back as this really helps to keep the sight profile of this light to a minimum and help it disappear to allow the full beauty of the inhabitants to take center stage.

If your aquarium is around the 4ft long type, then the Hydra 64 HD may not have long enough coverage, in that case, look at purchasing 2 Hydra 32HD’s instead.

AI really has covered all the installation bases with the Prime 16HD, the Hydra32HD, and the Hydra 64HD. This is why these lights are the best all round solution, at a great price for most aquarists.

Product Manuals:

Hydra HD LED Series – Aqua Illumination Website Page

Aqua Illumination Product Manuals
Aqua Illumination myAI App Website Page

You May Also Like:

Similar great LED products from Aqua Illumination:

To Finish

With so many LED lighting options available on today’s market knowing where to spend your hard-earned money can be a nervous time. For many, the sheer cost of these fixtures will make them unobtainable, but if you can save a little more you will get a fixture that will last, will allow your corals to thrive and give you the visual showpiece your home deserves.

Below is a brief overview of what I recommended for the type of aquarium you may be looking to illuminate:

Budget Nano or Small AquariumsAI Prime 16HD
No Budget Nano or Small AquariumsEcotech Radion XR15W G4 Pro
Budget Longer AquariumsAquaMaxx Prism
No Budget Longer AquariumsMaxspect Razor X
Tall AquariumsKessil A360X w Narrow Lens
or
EcoTech Radion XR30W G4 Pro
SPS Heavy Aquariums Ecotech Radion Series
or
AI Hydra Series

Richard

Hi, I'm Richard and I have been an avid aquarist for over 30 years with a passion for Saltwater Aquariums. I love to pass on my knowledge to help others get the same amount a pleasure out of this hobby as I do. View my About Me page to find out more about me & my mixed reef aquarium.

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