The ORPHEK LED Light REVIEW
Model being reviewed: Orphek Atlantik V1
Guys I’d like to offer my comments on this light unit as an aquarist from my personal experience so please view it just as that.
For years I watched LED build up as a formidable opponent to halide and T5 lighting, I have entered into and adjudicated many a debate over whether LED have arrived and are possible to fully sustain a reef from start to finish as such, I watched as many an aquarist switched from a working T5 or halide to a substandard LED hoping that it would provide energy relief and longer lifespan in terms of bulb replacement costs and sadly I’ve seen many a reef wither away under substandard lighting through this expectation!
I have owned many a unit, from entry level no name brands to high priced top of the range with all the fancy features, to give you some idea of the units I’ve owned to allow you to properly assess my experience here is a list
Eshine Aquabeauty 35/70/105w
Vertex SR260 900mm
Eshine Aquamaster Hybrid T5/LED
Orphek V1 Atlantik
And a number of others I can’t even pronounce or remember,
So this brings me to the last unit on my list, Orphek
How did I come about these units?
Well after watching Adrian Fynn's reef be transformed from a highly sunlit reef to an Orphek lit one I wondered if these units were the answer to LED. After all Adrian is an exceptional Aquarist with numerous international awards for his systems under his belt, was it just him or did the lights have something to do with it? He had after all won his 1st award without LED? I was still sceptical given this achievement that LED weren’t really the way to go from the start until my friend @Adee decided to sell his system and parted with the lights he had... I purchased his 4 x Orphek Atlantik V1 units and USB controller and have never looked back!
I had finally started a reef from start to date running the same units with no change in-between to cast doubt on LED. And all I can say is I will never revert to another Brand of LED again, I have received exceptional growth in a short space of time and admittedly as the system matured so did my colours and growth levels.
Why Orphek ?
Well put simply this unit checks all the boxes and keep in mind I have the V1, currently the V3 is available with wifi controllability via android device. and After seeing @Adee 's tank how could you not want that kind of growth???
- It’s controllable
- Easily adjusted
- It’s robust in design
- It has lenses which are interchangeable for wide or narrow deep tanks
- It’s easy to assemble
- No exterior rusting as the body is machined plexiglass/Perspex.
- It’s modern and sleek in appearance
- It’s cooled by 4 fans which allows massive airflow evenly through the unit drawing over the inner heatsink
- The lenses and diodes are protected against salt spray and splashing with a gasket seal around all the electrics allowing only the top of the heatsink to be exposed to the airflow.
- It is a 4 channel unit which allows finer manipulation of spectral changes through the day.
Even my V1 version for a fee can be upgraded to be compatable with an android device by simply purchasing the new motherboards,
You can see how to do this here:
I have put these units to the test and have had to replace my drivers due to moisture and age of the unit (my fish room is extremely humid) and the parts were easy to obtain locally and quick to fit,
I have even taken these units totally apart and washed them in sunlight liquid, allowed them to dry properly using a hairdryer and sprayed them with a spanyard electrode spray in order to repell moisture to ensure maximum lifespan of the units, and they have not skipped a beat. I now incorporate this into my yearly maintenance schedule.
The settings are vast and they offer a variety of incremental and delicate adjustments but im a fan of the simple on and off with a slight dim, fancy lightning storms and cloud cover is not really my forte (call me old school).
First impression within 20 minutes of operation.
1) Opening the box to uncover an acrylic white casing
2) Flip the unit over and the lenses and number of them wow you immediately!
3) Unravel the power supply cable and plug in the driver to the unit and into the plug and POW!!!
4) This light is amazing!!!
5) Now how to use the controller?? A little confusing (keep in mind it’s the older USB controller)
6) Ok it’s not so bad! Just takes a little getting used to
7) Nice 4 different channels blue, violet, red and whites
8) Light spread is good at least 80 x 80
Sizing to tanks
How do I know which light will cover my tank correctly? Well the guys at Orphek have tried to make this as simple as possible given the variety of products they offer,
By visiting this light unit coverage illustration guide you will get a good understanding of what size or model unit is needed to properly illuminate your aquarium: https://orphek.com/led-light-chose-aquarium/
Is there support: YES!
Older units make use of a plug in USB cable and a controller
Newer units uitilise an Android device such as smartphone or tablet For quick setting:
Would I buy another one?
I don’t really need to, all I need to do is buy the upgrade mother board and download the app and barring the appearance I will have a fully programmable unit via android smartphone or tablet.