• Brief summary

    Good lighting is among the most important items of basic equipment in an aquarium. In the case of aquarium combinations and complete sets, one or more fluorescent tubes will usually be integrated in the cover or hood.

Before deciding on your lighting

What does aquarium lighting have to do?
Good aquarium lighting will offer light adjusted to maximum effect. Particularly important are colour coordination, luminous efficacy and efficiency. In freshwater aquariums plants need a balance of blue and red spectrum for healthy growth. In a marinewater aquarium, on the other hand, the blue element will predominate (from 10000 Kelvin). The light must also be stronger in this case, so that it can penetrate into the tissue of the corals.  

What should I look out for in particular?
There are many suppliers of lighting for aquariums and just as much different information about levels of performance. There is also a lot of superficial knowledge in circulation and you should, therefore, be sceptical when wonderful properties are mentioned or colourful diagrams seem to promise fantastic levels of performance.

The following are of particular importance:
• Luminous efficacy and/or energy efficiency (lumen per Watt – lm/W)
• Colour temperature and/or light colour (Kelvin – K)
• The balance of the colour spectrum (for plants or corals)
• Light penetration (also, if appropriate, for aquariums measuring over 50 centimetres in height)
• Natural, genuine colour reproduction (in the case of daylight lamps)
• Lifespan (average lifespan according to DIN at 3 cycles of operation a day)

Changing to LEDs
If you change your lighting to LEDs, it is particularly advisable in a marine environment that sensitive corals should be allowed to accustom themselves slowly and gradually to the greater intensity of LED lighting. Sensitive corals should, therefore, be moved to a lower position for a period of 3 - 4 weeks and the daily period of lighting reduced to 5 - 6 hours. This will help prevent your corals from fading.