Definitely male It's hard to say what he is as far as color though, he could vary so wildly in the next 12+ months he has left to finish coloring up. He could start red bar and change to blue (or purple!) so guessing at this point is like taking a shot in the dark.
The recommended schedule is 12h on and 12h off. I match mine closely to what the sun is doing, so if the sun is up at 7 my lights are on at 7 and off when the sun goes down.
I've never heard of a purple bar? That would be rad! Do you think it's ambilobe for sure. I'm super paranoid about the sex after being fooled once before I got this little guy. Drive an hour away to find out I got a female veiled instead of male. But if that didn't happen I wouldn't have gotten an awesome deal on this panther ( my favorite chams of all)