The idea of retrofitting a “competing” product into your own line of reef aquarium lights is preposterous to some, but that’s exactly what Aqua Medic of North America has done. Since setting up shop to import and wholesale live corals, Aqua Medic decided to blend the best of both worlds with specially configured OceanLights and Kessil LED spotlights.
If you’ve been to a coral aquarium conference or any frag swap, you’ve no doubt noticed that nearly all coral vendors display their prize coral colonies and frags under very flattering blue lighting. The advent of blue LED lighting is making corals pop more than ever before and the blend of blue colors in the Kessil is one of the most popular for this purpose.
To that end Aqua Medic decided to retrofit Kessil A150 LEDs into their Ocean Lights for a quite remarkable result. Almost as surprising as the DIY project itself is the fact that Aqua Medic’s owner Thomas Plocher personally undertook this DIY project by disassembling the metal halide fixtures, drilling and grometting them accordingly, and the look of the corals and the whole fixtures is naturally beautiful.
On a daily light cycle, the Kessils are on for most of the day while the metal halides fire up for between two and six hours per day, depending on the coral tank that is being lit up. With this uneven division of labor, it’s hard to tell whether the LEDs or the halides are the supplements in this partnership. What was pretty clear is that their corals look exceptionally full and beautiful.
Don’t expect Aqua Medic to start selling these LED spotlight-modified Ocean Lights to the public anytime soon, or ever. It would be cool for the primary branch of Aqua Medic in Germany to take notice and apply the concept to their still very beautiful and functional fixtures with double-ended metal halides, but it is quite easy to DIY. Big props to Thomas and Aqua Medic North America for prioritizing the needs of their corals over the needs of the brand, this actually makes us want to see more of this cross-polination of products in the aquarium world.