Metal Halide Lighting - Need Advice

dshuld

Chameleon Enthusiast
#21
Well, the Zoo Med fixture arrived. It's currently resting directly on the top screen with the basking spot about 8" below. I am still working out options for mounting it above the screen.The ballast is built into the top of the fixture. It's a very nice unit. The bulb is noticeably brighter and everything is more live-like. Really a beautiful, bright light. The only downside is that it's definitely a floodlight. Relatively concentrated, so that's the only negative.

I've already noticed some changes in behavior. He is more active. Basks directly under the lamp but for shorter amount of time. Then he is in the foliage and on the floor exploring. He's apatite picked up. Although that could just be a coincidence. His colors picked up a lot, too. He's always dark during the day and ofter just a few hours, he seems to be brighter now. Basking temp is around 90 degrees. He seems happy. I am monitoring him closely to see how he is doing.

On Monday the Exo Terra unit should arrive. We'll see how it compares.

Edit to add that the heat output was surprisingly lower than expected. It's not super hot. In fact, less heat than the previous halogen bulb at 75W.
Any luck on the meter? One thing I read on them was https://www.beardeddragon.org/forums/viewtopic.php?p=1783078 . I read some where else the zoo med degraded pretty quickly too which I was sad to see since it can be hung unlike the exo version.
 
#22
Any luck on the meter? One thing I read on them was https://www.beardeddragon.org/forums/viewtopic.php?p=1783078 . I read some where else the zoo med degraded pretty quickly too which I was sad to see since it can be hung unlike the exo version.
No meter yet, but that is also a concern I have. I am thinking about supplementing it Just in case with a T5 for now. Will let you know when I can take some measurements.
 

jamest0o0

Chameleon Enthusiast
#23
Not trying to hijack, but I have been looking into these for my panther's free range. Would like to hear anyone's experiences with each of these bulbs as well.
 
#24
An update. So, the Zoo Med model rocks. Still waiting for a meter but he seems to fully self-regulate his exposure. No problems thus far and he seems active and happy.

USPS seems to have some major delays. I have three different shipments, including the one with the Exo Terra model, stuck in transit.

Will update when the second unit arrives, but I am sold on metal halide. Great lighting options and it seems perfect for a densely planted bioactive setup.
 
#26
Glad to hear everything looks good so far, keep an eye on vegitation close to the bulb, the top of my ficus dries up if I don’t keep it pruned.
 
#27
Today I got the Exo Terra model. It's the 50W version. Because it mounts permanently to the glass, it will go straight to the bearded dragon. Besides, the Zoo Med is fantastic and Rio loves it. He's growing like crazy still. Shedding non-stop it seems and his appetite is quite ferocious. So, it's hard to attribute the changes he's going through to the new lighting system. He's picking up colors very nicely but that could also be because of his age. He's probably around 7-8 months old now which is when they pick up adult colors.

Either way... everything is going great and I love the new light. It's compact, warm enough, bright as can be and esthetically looks great as a single fixture. At this point, I would highly recommend it.

I should be getting a meter after everyone settles back in from CNY. Will post results.
 

dshuld

Chameleon Enthusiast
#28
Today I got the Exo Terra model. It's the 50W version. Because it mounts permanently to the glass, it will go straight to the bearded dragon. Besides, the Zoo Med is fantastic and Rio loves it. He's growing like crazy still. Shedding non-stop it seems and his appetite is quite ferocious. So, it's hard to attribute the changes he's going through to the new lighting system. He's picking up colors very nicely but that could also be because of his age. He's probably around 7-8 months old now which is when they pick up adult colors.

Either way... everything is going great and I love the new light. It's compact, warm enough, bright as can be and esthetically looks great as a single fixture. At this point, I would highly recommend it.

I should be getting a meter after everyone settles back in from CNY. Will post results.
I'm curious now that you have the exo, what base does the bulb have? Will it screw into a standard socket? I know it won't turn on since there is no ballast but curious if it'll screw in.
 
#29
I'm curious now that you have the exo, what base does the bulb have? Will it screw into a standard socket? I know it won't turn on since there is no ballast but curious if it'll screw in.
Right, so it's a standard socket like you'd find on a regular household bulb A19 or A20 type.

The differences between the two models are:

Ballast -- Integrated on the Zoo Med and free standing on the Exo Terra. The good news is that both models come with a sufficiently long power cord.
Light Bulb -- Both use standard socket, but the Zoo Med sports a physically larger dome. The entire bulb is larger. The Zoo Med creates a more focused "flood light" effect, at least as far as heat and brightness is concerned. However, I am comparing the 50W model to 70W model. Keep that in mind. The Exo Terra seems to actually run hotter...
Mounting -- Zoo Med comes with an integrated hook and you need to find a way to suspend it, if desired. Exo Terra comes with a mounting bracket that uses 3M type tape and can be adjusted height-wise by a few inches.

Both are really neat. I can't tell what ballast brand is the Exo Terra. I know someone asked before. It just says made by Hagen.

Sorry... Not the best pictures. I stink at it.

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dshuld

Chameleon Enthusiast
#30
Right, so it's a standard socket like you'd find on a regular household bulb A19 or A20 type.

The differences between the two models are:

Ballast -- Integrated on the Zoo Med and free standing on the Exo Terra. The good news is that both models come with a sufficiently long power cord.
Light Bulb -- Both use standard socket, but the Zoo Med sports a physically larger dome. The entire bulb is larger. The Zoo Med creates a more focused "flood light" effect, at least as far as heat and brightness is concerned. However, I am comparing the 50W model to 70W model. Keep that in mind. The Exo Terra seems to actually run hotter...
Mounting -- Zoo Med comes with an integrated hook and you need to find a way to suspend it, if desired. Exo Terra comes with a mounting bracket that uses 3M type tape and can be adjusted height-wise by a few inches.

Both are really neat. I can't tell what ballast brand is the Exo Terra. I know someone asked before. It just says made by Hagen.

Sorry... Not the best pictures. I stink at it.

View attachment 223003 View attachment 223004 View attachment 223006 View attachment 223007
You my friend rock!! It was me asking about the ballast. A pic on here from 12 years ago showed the fulham high horse being used. Looks like the "dome" is about the size of a zoomed mini deep dome?
 
#31
You my friend rock!! It was me asking about the ballast. A pic on here from 12 years ago showed the fulham high horse being used. Looks like the "dome" is about the size of a zoomed mini deep dome?
I don’t know the size of the mini dome you mentioned, but I measured this one and it’s about 4.25” in diameter and about 6” in height, with maybe 4” or so from socket to the edge of the fixture. Hope this helps.
 

dshuld

Chameleon Enthusiast
#32
I don’t know the size of the mini dome you mentioned, but I measured this one and it’s about 4.25” in diameter and about 6” in height, with maybe 4” or so from socket to the edge of the fixture. Hope this helps.
So a tad smaller then the mini deep dome. The reason I asked was this video. I like the fact it keeps the smaller profile and hanging ability with lower wattage bulbs.

 
#33
So a tad smaller then the mini deep dome. The reason I asked was this video. I like the fact it keeps the smaller profile and hanging ability with lower wattage bulbs.

Yeah, you could get the fixture only. Like the second one in the picture. I paid $35 for it. It’s for extra light only.

The Zoo Med does have hanging ability but is much larger in size. I am surprised there are so few choices out there. Building your own could be a good option, too.
 

dshuld

Chameleon Enthusiast
#36
Yeah, you could get the fixture only. Like the second one in the picture. I paid $35 for it. It’s for extra light only.

The Zoo Med does have hanging ability but is much larger in size. I am surprised there are so few choices out there. Building your own could be a good option, too.
Yeah the zoomed is huge, Ive seen those in person at pcr. I don't mind the diy part to get what I'm after either so I may try it since the exo has a ton of red spectrum for the flowering plants.
 
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