Top 5 LED Aquarium Lighting Systems

Kate Barrington
by Kate Barrington
Light up your tank with LED lighting. But which system do you choose? Here are our top five picks for LED aquarium lighting systems.

When it comes to choosing a lighting system for your aquarium, there are a number of different options. Fluorescent lights are some of the most inexpensive and they come in a variety of sizes and wattages. If you need a higher output or a larger spectrum, VHO or metal halide fixtures are a good option. One of the newest options in tank lighting is LED – light emitting diode. This type of lighting offers excellent energy efficiency, it comes in different colors, and it can be used for a variety of different tank types.

Things to Consider When Choosing Tank Lighting

Choosing the right lighting system for your aquarium is very important and there are a number of factors to consider. If you are cultivating a freshwater tank with fish only, the lighting will primarily serve an aesthetic purpose. On the other hand, if you want to stock live plants as well as fish in your tank, the lighting system you choose needs to be strong enough to support plant life.

Related: Understanding the Basics of Freshwater Aquarium Lighting

The lighting needs for saltwater tanks are completely different. Fish- and invertebrate-only tanks have lower lighting requirements, but corals have specific needs. There are, however, both low-light and high-light corals, so be sure to do your research before you buy.

The Best LED Lighting Systems for Aquariums

Again, you’ll have to consider the type of tank you choose to cultivate and the needs of your tank inhabitants in order to make the right choice. To give you a taste of what options are available, here is an overview of some of the best LED lighting systems available for home aquariums:

  1. Current USA Satellite Freshwater LED Plus: For a freshwater aquarium, one of the top options is the Current USA Satellite Freshwater LED Plus lighting system. This system produces full-spectrum 6500K ultra-bright light and it is incredibly energy-efficient. It is also low-profile so it won’t distract from the appearance of your tank.

Related: What Aquarium Plants Need to Thrive

  1. Finnex Planted+ 24/7 Fully Automated Aquarium LED: For heavily planted freshwater tanks, you can’t do better than the Finnex Planted+ 24/7 Fully Automated Aquarium LED system. This LED system is fully automated and it adjusts to different stages of plant growth to produce the ideal temperature and output for your lighting.
  2. Euphotica Dimmable LED Aquarium Light Fixture: One of the best options for saltwater and coral tanks is the Euphotica Dimmable LED Aquarium Light Fixture. This fixture comes in a 16-inch and 32-inch length and you can adjust the intensity according to the needs of the corals you plan to keep. You can also adjust the color temperature and the spectrum.
  3. VIPARSPECTRA Timer Control LED Light: If you are looking for a unique LED lighting system, the VIPARSPECTRA Timer Control LED Light is a great choice. This LED lighting system features different color LEDs arranged in a criss-cross pattern mixed with white bulbs to maximize the growth of aquatic plants and corals. The LEDs can also be grouped into channels and individually programmed.
  4. KOVAL 156 LED Aquarium Light: If you are looking for a multipurpose aquarium LED lighting system, the KOVAL 156 LED Aquarium Light is a great choice. This LED system offers a long, narrow fixture shape that is easy to install and it has an extendable bracket for larger tanks. It offers full spectrum lighting with three control options – all lights on, only blue lights on, and all lights off.

Remember, LED lighting is not necessarily the best choice for every aquarium. If your tank parameters can be supported by an LED lighting system, however, you would do well to consider one of the top-rated models discussed above.

Kate Barrington
Kate Barrington

Kate Barrington is the loving owner of two cats (Bagel and Munchkin) and a noisy herd of guinea pigs. Having grown up with golden retrievers, Kate has a great deal of experience with dogs but labels herself a lover of all pets. Having received a Bachelor's degree in English, Kate has combined her love for pets and her passion for writing to create her own freelance writing business, specializing in the pet niche.

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