AI prime HD vs other light options in the ~R4000 range


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Hi Everyone. I have a small cube and I'm looking to upgrade my lighting. https://www.marineaquariumsa.com/threads/brents-cube.81150/page-6#post-1103145

It's a small cube, only 40L x 30W x 30D, but is heavily stocked with a variety of LPS, SPS, and a BTA. All are surviving (6 months so far), but I suspect I am at the lower end of the PAR required. My idea is to change out my current light so to increase PAR and gain a better spread and colour blending from my current light; the ZE1201wifi. I can then use my ZE1201 as the light to go onto my future frag/mangrove tank.


I have around 4K to spend. I have been looking at either the Zetlight UFO8600, or the AI Prime HD. I have three main questions:
1. What is the best option in terms of PAR, light spread, and viual light aesthetics?
2. What is the difference between the ZE8300 and the new ZE8600?
3. Are there any other options in this price range (R3000-R5000) that genuinely compete with these two lights (excl. the higher priced hydra 26, XR15, RS reef LED, etc.)?


I am looking for hard facts and specs that could give me an idea, but I find personal insights to be just as useful. So all your views would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks everyone.
 
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I did some research on this comparison as well, so no actual usage from my side or actual experience.
From what I saw the Prime was far better in PAR, Spread, etc.
AI also has an interesting comparison chart on their website:
It was interesting cause it was very unbiased
I used this to compare these two lights but I looked now and it seems they have taken the Zetlight out of the comparison option, not sure why
 
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I did some research on this comparison as well, so no actual usage from my side or actual experience.
From what I saw the Prime was far better in PAR, Spread, etc.
AI also has an interesting comparison chart on their website:
It was interesting cause it was very unbiased
I used this to compare these two lights but I looked now and it seems they have taken the Zetlight out of the comparison option, not sure why
Thanks for the input! That website is great! I can't get a PAR spread for the UFO, so it's difficult to compare. I'll carry on doing some digging. The fact that AI posts the Prime's performance seem like they are quite confident in its ability (and possibly superiority)...
 
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Thanks for the input! That website is great! I can't get a PAR spread for the UFO, so it's difficult to compare. I'll carry on doing some digging. The fact that AI posts the Prime's performance seem like they are quite confident in its ability (and possibly superiority)...
Yes and if the Prime doesn't match the other lights PAR it is clearly stated, so they don't try and BS.
Also another factor is that a lot of people complained about the Zetlight giving troubles
 
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Yes and if the Prime doesn't match the other lights PAR it is clearly stated, so they don't try and BS.
Also another factor is that a lot of people complained about the Zetlight giving troubles
That would make sense, considering the UFO has come out in a few different models over the past few years (8000, 8200, 8300, and now the 8600?)...
 
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@Duran1 I got myself a hydra 26HD. For my specific tank a prime would have more than sufficed, but I was planning on upgrading one day, and a good deal on a new hydra came up that I couldn't refuse.

The PAR, spread and blending on more expensive LED brands like ecotech, AI, Orphek, redsea, and kessil are amazing. They have done extensive RnD into ensuring their lights are not just a stack of LEDS that put out 1000PAR under the light, but 50 PAR 40cm out.

I am more than happy with my hydra, and have experience with the qmaven and qmavenII but personally do not like them. If there's one thing I'd rather spend more money on, it's a light (unless it's a t5 unit).
 
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May I ask why you never went for the zetlight ufo? Any issues with that light? I have a 58x58x44 cube I am planning to put a new light over. Am the moment I have a maxspect Razer R420r .
 
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