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Review of the ATI LED Powermodule

Unsolicited review of the ATI LED Powermodule from Translated using Google Translate.

The new LED/T5 hybrid lighting from ATI in the test.

By Benedikt Funk on July 11, 2013

Hi there,

in the 90 years it was the first time the successful maintenance and propagation of corals in reef tanks by the use of metal halide lamps (HQI) enabled. Nearly 10 years later appeared the first T5 tubes and caused a stir. A combination of the two lighting units (HQI/T5 hybrid) presented high pool (60 cm water level) for a long time the benchmark dar. Now LED lights capture the market. It's a real hype broken LED lamps seem like mushrooms can shoot from the ground. But makes a pure LED lighting really make sense? I would like to present a different lighting scheme, explain why this currently seems best suited me and then test it for 6 months you! For this I would like to first take you into the world of light.

PAR and PUR:

As PAR (P hotosynthetisch A ctive radiation (English adiation R)) is the spectrum of light with a wavelength between 400 (blue, energetic) and 700 nm (red, low energy). PAR is usually measured in micromol photons / m / s and is a light on the illumination intensity in the above spectral range. The PCP complex (peridinin chlorophyll protein) of zooxanthellae is responsible for the absorption of light energy for photosynthesis. This utilizes the light in the wavelength range of 430-500 nm, the most effective. In simpler terms, this means that the zooxanthellae of corals do not use the entire spectrum of visible light, but especially the blue component. This is not limited to a narrow blue region, but ranges from purple to turquoise. Corals from shallow water zones can share the deep red spectrum of light in addition, from 5 meters deep but it loses its meaning completely. The radiation composition is referred to as PUR. A combination of suitable PUR (roughly: 430-500 nm) and PAR provides FPAR, the photon flux density, dar.

Light in the coral reef:

The entire reef lighting conditions are rather diffuse. This phenomenon is caused by the refraction of the water (but also by the reflection of light on the ground). Here, the condition of the surface of the water plays a role as the shaft movement, the light is still irregular broken. Of course, have the lichhungrigen corals adapted thereto (visible on the habitus, which is significantly different from plants) and diffuse light cover by a large proportion of their needs. In the reef aquarium can be realized as something only by a flat, unbundled lighting. The easiest way to do this is to this day still the T5 tube dar. Take a look what kind of lighting of the most serious traders and coral breeders is preferred.

The zooxanthellae of corals have a photosyntetischen saturation point as in some Acropora from a photon flux density (FPAR) 330-410 micromol photons / m / s is achieved. Higher light intensities, as can occur on top of the reef, look no further positive effect on the photosynthetic performance of, they may even be inhibitory (inhibitory) effect. In coral reefs enough light penetrates for maximum photosynthesis at depths up to 15 m ago. But also in deeper regions of live coral. In some cases even the same species as in the shallow water zone (eg Stylophora pistillata comes at depths 1-68 m before). Corals that live at great depths, show an increased density of zooxanthellae and the other an altered morphological structure compared to the animals of the shallow water zone. In order as much as possible be absorbed by the incoming light in the depth, similar to that a solar collector (plate-like or spherical shape).

Have you ever been swimming or diving in clear water? Have you noticed that the floor of a bright, flickering and constantly changing network seemed covered? Or they have ever seen in an aquarium that was illuminated with a metal halide torch or a powerful LED spot? In these aquariums the light also seems to flicker slightly. Good! I can now explain another phenomenon that affects the light conditions in coral reef you. The water surface is as smooth as in the rarest of cases, usually it is wavy. Waves have a so-called lens effect. If the light from a point-light (like the sun, the HQI burner or a LED spot it is) on a wave, then the light can be focused like a lens and increase its intensity. For lenses, the point at which the light is focused referred to as focal length, how do the photographers among you safe. The focal length is determined by the shape of the lens or wave. Since the shape of the wave changes constantly, also its focal length changes. For us, this looks like a flicker of light, and hiking. Corals of shallow water zone have learned to make this short, but recurrently higher intensity lighting advantage. However, the lensing effect is only an additional light supply of coral and loses with increasing water depth completely insignificant.

The most well-known phenomenon of light in water is that shifts the spectrum of light with increasing depth towards blue. This is because the water the less energy spectra first "swallows". At 5 m water depth of the red portion of the light is already filtered out. After 20 m which is almost only blue light. Therefore, in and of itself appears colorless blue water at great depths.

Conclusion over the light:

For the care of zooxanthellae corals blue light is best. But this should not be limited to a narrow range, but cover the range between 430-500 nm wide as possible. Furthermore, it depends on the illumination intensity. This should be sufficiently high, but not too high. This is an illumination flächenddeckende most sense, since corals can own shade by a single light source.

Modern LED lights:

Most on the market at the time LED lights have only one or more LED spots. Compare this arrangement of the light source with the old HQI lamps. They represent, in my view, a step backwards in the evolution of aquarium lighting dar. While surpass blue and white (and only this!) LEDs Effiziens HQI burner and T5 fluorescent tubes, but prevent their arrangement a nationwide coverage. Not infrequently I read as a moderator of a forum of problems when keeping SPS corals. The reason is often the LED used. A strong LED light above a basin with an area of ​​60 x 60 cm is usually not enough. The SPS coral shade under such lights off too. In the long run this leads to tissue loss in corals and the outcry of the aquarists in the forum. Experienced aquarists often then change back to your tried and true T5 lamp or HQI/T5-Kombi because they were used to these lights better results. Sorry for the animals and shame about the lack of money invested.

Many of the modern LED lights carry the light focused like a laser beam (please excuse the slight exaggeration) in depth. The high light intensity can not be fully utilized by most corals (remember the limits of photosynthesis in a FPAR of 410 mol / m / s). In the edge regions of the radiation intensity is, however, too low. Do you think that such lighting is efficient? Good LED lights, are characterized by a reduced spot effect from the lost depth increases further. Despite these weaknesses show in the illumination of aquariums upper range.

There are few LED lights on the market that actually illuminate coverage and outstanding. In such lamps the amount of LEDs are installed on a large area. LEDs are unfortunately very expensive to purchase and this of course affects the price of purchase. These are not bargain lights from the Internet for 400 euros, here are several thousand Euros, depending on the size of aquarium due.

Why do I test the new LED/T5 hybrid lighting from ATI:

A fellow aquarists had his scubacube two LED lights a famous company. These lights were a total of 12 LED spots (but close together) and were his pride and joy. He has never let what come on his lights until he installed a video unboxing an ATI Hybrid light on his pelvis. Since then, the hybrid light hangs over his pelvis and then hyped LED lights gathering dust in the corner. Coincidence? Certainly not!

Why then was probably a HQI/T5-Kombi as the measure of all things? Quite simply, the HQI burner provided a strong lighting, which penetrated into the depth and T5 tube made for a more uniform, nationwide coverage. The advantages of both lighting concepts were therefore combined to remove the disadvantages of the various types of lighting. A perfect synergy.

Although I (2 x 54 W T5 and 2 x 175 W HQI) was very happy with my RIGA, I could not say no when it was offered to me for testing the hybrid light from ATI. I had seen you on the basin of my friend already in action and was impressed by their illumination. So I can compare the hybrid light with the RIGA, I have decided on a light with the same power consumption, although it is designed for slightly smaller pool. Therefore, I test the 3 x 75 watt LED + 4 x 54 watt T5 combination. Since I also want to know how well proven the hybrid in everyday life, I will test it for you for 6 months. I'm going to the growth and development of the coral color document using images. Since I use the Triton method, I will be able to measure the growth and indirectly on the basis of Elementz consumption.


Handycam HQI + T5Handycam HQI + T5
Handycam LED + T5Handycam LED + T5
LED + T5LED + T5
PAR MeasurementPAR Measurement

PAR measurement: distance light to the surface 23cm.

First impression:

The ATI lamp has been equipped with efficient LED modules. These modules offer all the benefits of LED technology, such as the dimming of the entire module or individual color channels. Using a sophisticated reflector technology of spot effect of the LED modules is reduced to a minimum and distributes the light very uniformly with increasing depth on becoming an increasingly larger area. It blue, royal blue, red and white LEDs were used. The range is rounded off by the extra T5 tubes. These also improve the illumination of the top aquariums range greatly. This affects to the ground positive, as can be observed in the softer shadows.

LED ShadeLED Shade
LED + T5 ShadowLED + T5 Shadow

Qualitative impression:

The lamp makes a quality impression. The body of the lamp and the housing of the power supply are made entirely of aluminum. Power supply and lamp are connected by a solid cord. Each LED spot is cooled by its own fan, which if necessary (active, permanent temperature monitoring) will be automatically turned on and then runs almost silently. Also there is a permanently running fan in each case with the two T5 double bar. The suspension of the luminaire is well resolved, as you can see in the pictures themselves. The lamps are optimally positioned in their reflectors. Therefore, there is no blinding and annoying stray light, no matter from which angle you look into the aquarium.

The only thing I personally do not like is the control on the power supply. Here, the buttons are too small in my opinion. Fortunately, the light can also be operated via a PC. This lies with a special USB cable that, while not overly long, but served its purpose. Mr. Pritzel (ATI), for the record: for the future would be a wireless solution here desirable.

Lamp TopLamp Top
Power SupplyPower Supply
Lamps from belowLamps from Below
lampsLamps from Below


The lamp can be operated in two ways: either directly through the AC adapter or PC software.

On the power supply, a two-line LCD display with five buttons is installed. All basic settings (time. ..) must be adjusted over here. The LED spots and T5 twin beams can also be configured over here. For this purpose, you can enter start times, end times and dimming, as one is used to from other lamps. Unfortunately, the whole thing is not very intuitive, but after looking at the instructions, you can make friends with the operation. A video recorder was definitely harder to use.

Who wants it more comfortable, serving the light of a free software. These can be downloaded in the latest version on the website under Support from ATI. The download and installation of the software went very quickly. The user interface is modern and simple. In contrast to the control panel of the power supply, the software is very intuitive to use. Each channel (LED-spot and / or T5 double beam) can be controlled separately. If you want to configure as all LED spots equal, we can see a channel as desired and does this for the other channels. The light color of each LED spots can also be changed manually. In real time the effects of the settings on the spot are visible. For those who have a favorite T5 tube from the company ATI, presets are appropriate for the configuration of the LEDs. Start and end times, as well as dimming and color changes are per lighting unit 10 points available. The planned daily schedule you can watch in real time also. The speed of the simulation can be varied. As usual with LED lights, a moon light phase can be implemented here.

Who wants groovy weather simulations nowhere to be found, this would, in my opinion anyway only stress the fish.

User InterfaceUser Interface

Change of Bulb:

The change of T5 tubes is easy. Through the clever suspension of light can be directed to the operator. Without a screw needs to be resolved, the splashguard can be pulled to the side and then allows easy access to the T5 tubes. Top!

A fact which is totally thrilled me that the LED modules can be changed. Since LEDs over time lose power, albeit less strongly than other light sources, has been thought along well here. So the owner of a hybrid luminaire can also benefit of the future developments in the LED market. Because LEDs are probably more efficient. The price of an LED module to be cheaper than a HQI burner, I was told by the company ATI. Thumbs up!

Impact on the aquarium inhabitants:

Pictures say a thousand words :-) Even if the Handycam weakened here :-(

After 2 weeksAfter 2 Weeks
After 4 weeksAfter 4 Weeks
After 2 weeksAfter 2 Weeks
After 4 weeksAfter 4 Weeks
After 2 weeksAfter 2 Weeks
After 4 weeksAfter 4 Weeks

Conclusion after four weeks of operation:

The hybrid light by ATI made a very good impression in the first four weeks of testing. The SPS corals show a stronger growth and improved color development. The other corals seem to welcome the new light and open nice and wide. The Elementzverbrauch (Triton method) has increased by 10 ml, thus confirming an increased growth and indirectly. The lamp was made almost entirely in Germany, one sees not only the good processing and other performance parameters (eg no blinding stray light from outside the basin). Anyone looking for a professional lighting by you, is well advised with the hybrid. By comparing with other lamps I would argue that the hybrid is a leader in its price range. For pure LED lights with similarly good properties must lie far more money, which pays off by the slightly lower power consumption and the lack of tube replacement only after a long time.

With regards salty,

Benedikt Funk

This article was published on 07/11/2013

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