Figured I'd Put This Out There - I'm Developing An Led Fitting For Potential Sale.

Discussion in 'Equipment / DIY / Reviews' started by KoNP, Dec 30, 2016.

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  1. Sam Parker

    Sam Parker Moderator

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    30?!
  2. Adam_w

    Adam_w Member

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    Bit late to the party but interested to see what you come up with. My next tank will be bigger than what I have so I'll be needing bigger lights. I'd do the DIY myself and be pretty confident with it all aside from the coding and controller side of things.

    How would your model compare to the coralbox moon led? as they're pretty cheap and come with most of the bells and whistles (just in the cheap chinese way)
  3. newbiereef

    newbiereef Member

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    YUP on my 4x2x2 can never have enough light ;-)


    meant 2 gen 3 pros ;-)
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  4. KoNP

    KoNP Member

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    More output power, adjustable single lens (which theoretically will make it behave more like a single light source, instead of multiple spread out which can cause the "disco effect"). Controller is integrated, no smartphone app required (some would view this as a con, others as a pro). I haven't bothered with amber, "deep blue", or "UV" because (in order): there's no point if you have red LEDs, there's no point if you have blue and royal blue LEDs, and the jury is still out on whether TRUE UV LEDs are good for corals and 390-400nm are only "fringe" UV, so it's a pointless expense.

    I've gone with more whites, more royal blues, and some supplemental colours - I've got high efficiency photosynthetic red to take care of the pigments down that end, royal blue and normal blue to hit those peaks, cyan and green to hit the supplemental peaks and to enhance the tank inhabitants for our eyes, and 4 410nm true violets for additional colour enhancement.

    So IMHO you're getting far more usable light, far less LEDs that are just fluff, and a higher overall output.

    But the CoralBox light does have a pretty housing. Mine will be more... rugged? I guess.
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2017
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  5. Adam_w

    Adam_w Member

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    Haha sounds good to me! My lights are all tucked away so doesn't matter what they look like and as long as they work who cares anyway :)

    If you end up doing this I'll be on board for my next tank or if anything happens to my lights
  6. KoNP

    KoNP Member

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    Custom MCPCBs for the LEDs turned up today - these things are smaller than a credit card. I managed to fit 28 XPE-2 sized emitters on a board 43mmx50mm big. Board itself is actually solid aluminium for heat dissipation. I also made sure to "common" all the thermal pads under the LEDs to maximise heat transfer.

    Now I just gotta wait for the emitters to show up and I can get to soldering. Still ironing out the kinks with getting the housing printed, but rapidly making headway.
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  7. KoNP

    KoNP Member

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    LEDs showed up yesterday. Got them soldered onto the board in about 20 minutes. Reflow soldering on metal PCBs is so easy.

    Here's some shots of the completed array:

    aimgur.com_rI4sWKz.jpg
    aimgur.com_o2ZtbLN.jpg
    aimgur.com_SHzWEfG.jpg
    aimgur.com_oa3zwEP.jpg
    aimgur.com_N4I5i7O.jpg

    It's interesting to note that the camera could barely distinguish between violet @ 420nm and royal blue @450-ish nm, but to the human eye they are very distinct colours. The violet is VERY visibly purple.
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  8. Sam Parker

    Sam Parker Moderator

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  9. VaultBoy

    VaultBoy Member

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    This is really cool. I am currently not reefing but will be again one day. The cost of lights being one of the reasons that I stopped reefing and am taking so long to get back into it. Ill be following this with interest, this might be the year I come back to saltwater...
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  10. KoNP

    KoNP Member

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    No updates to speak of yet, just waiting on connectors to arrive and new fans for my larger printer - it's undergoing a rebuild, some issues came to light when I tried to make it print what I needed.

    VaultBoy - well, I certainly hope I make something that convinces you to return. And also give me some money :p
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  11. KoNP

    KoNP Member

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    Minor update - printing the control box and getting the electronics put together and tested. Considering making a kickstarter with my prototype so I can make a V2 that has like, resin-molded (or possibly injection molded if a DIY machine can handle that) electronics enclosure and a few refinements and whatnot. Still looking into that.

    My main 3D printer is going beautifully after a stepper driver upgrade and upgrading to magnetic joints instead of mechanical. Took a little while to dial it in but the quality of the prints has gone way up.
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  12. KoNP

    KoNP Member

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    An update with a picture (yayyyyy!)

    So the enclosure for the electronics has been printed, next step is to sand it and spray-fill the surface imperfections so it'll be nice and smooth to make a mold out of. I'm then going to cast the final product in epoxy resin.

    The electronics MOSTLY work - for some reason it won't allow me to set the time, not sure why. I'm debugging as we speak, hopefully it won't be too difficult.

    ai.imgur.com_PypvoYB.jpg

    Ignore the "roughness", this isn't the final product.
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  13. Sam Parker

    Sam Parker Moderator

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    looking good!! Keen to see how the epoxy resin comes out
  14. MagicJ

    MagicJ Moderator

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  15. KoNP

    KoNP Member

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    I'm trying to go as custom as possible. Also, being able to 3d print the enclosure means I can modify it as needed and reprint if I screw something up. With commercial enclosures you have to work with what you get which can be limiting.
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  16. mcclown

    mcclown Member

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    Are you only planning to sell them complete, or are you thinking of selling the boards separately as well?

    What you've got on that board roughly matches up with what I'm hoping to do for a mod to my AquaOne 620. I wondered why you've isolated the blues and whites on their own areas like that. Are you not going to end up wth the front of your tank looking blue and the back looking white? Would it not make more sense to jumble them up?
  17. KoNP

    KoNP Member

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    The spacing is tight enough so that after passing through the lens, there won't be any appreciable colour separation.

    I am looking at further compacting the PCB for a v2.0 though. Remember, this is still just a prototype. Ideally I'd find a way to replicate what the Kessil has with numerous emitters densely packed on one chip, but I think there might be legal issues down that road.
  18. KoNP

    KoNP Member

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    Got a design update. The shell of the light fixture prototype is pretty much done. Got the lens securely fitted in the threaded holder, got the thread height dialed in. Check it out:

    aimgur.com_2pIopBS.jpg

    aimgur.com_CLjF3qI.jpg

    aimgur.com_8eOZVhT.jpg

    aimgur.com_L6eFdvq.jpg

    aimgur.com_IR3qHIr.jpg

    Any questions, ask away!
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  19. MagicJ

    MagicJ Moderator

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  20. KoNP

    KoNP Member

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    It's about 115mm tall, not counting the bulge of the lens. I may work at further miniaturising and compacting it if I can find a solution that still allows it to function correctly, and not melt down or otherwise stop working.

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