DIY themed aquarium - LED SOLAR CONTROL in expert mode

After the first two posts in the myJBL blog on the topic  JBL LED SOLAR CONTROL , which you can read under LED control unit for the automatic regulation of the aquarium lighting and  Manual mode for unlimited freedom – JBL LED SOLAR CONTROL , we received a lot of requests asking for the settings of the popular themed aquariums found in the automatic mode of the app. The light settings are popular - but we need to say a word about some of these special requests. We have deliberately prevented the feature that enables an automatic programme of the themed aquariums to be copied and modified. You may ask yourself: Why? Not only have we modelled these settings on the various biotopes of the earth and tested them extensively, but we also have tuned them so that no unwanted algae growth occurs when you use this light setup and enter via the acclimatisation mode.

Of course, it requires the nutrient balance to be in equilibrium (more on this under Fertilization is not just fertilization Part 1 ) and it requires that all the plant growth elements are provided. For this, CO2 is also an important element that should definitely be used in a strong light like the JBL LED SOLAR Natur . You can read more about this in the following post:  Why plants grow better with CO2 .

Themed aquariums in manual mode

Having consulted the developer concerned, we have put together in one article all the help and data you’ll need to recreate and adapt our popular JBL themed aquariums. Please note that these data are only approximate values, because in the automatic programmes every day is different, with 365 settings a year, adapted to the seasons.

In addition, the settings differ minimally depending on the LED variant due to the wattage per cm2 strip light. We have already made this adjustment for you in the automatic programmes. So consider the following values as a guideline only to be adjusted to suit your requirements and those of the plant stock.

Light colour Warm white Cool white Red Green Blue
Community aquarium 4500K* 112 145 255 51 77
JBL Dreamscape ® 5000K* 92 217 255 255 255
JBL Rio Pantanal® 4000K* 140 140 204 128 128
JBL Malawi Rocks® 6000K* 64 250 255 255 255
JBL Goldfish Paradise® 3500K* 204 59 255 77

(In the app, the light values are defined from 0 to 255)

The daily sequence in manual mode

In automatic mode, the maximum duration of the day is limited to ten hours and includes 30 minutes each of sunrise and sunset. Each sun phase shines for at least two hours at a time before a cloud phase or thunderstorm occurs. Thunderstorms occur only once during the day for a defined period of time and then emit a fixed number of lightning bolts. The frequency of lightning increases towards the end of the period. For a smooth transition we recommend you let each alternation run for at least 5-10 minutes. Please refer to the following tables for the duration of the thunderstorm phase per day and that of the cloud phase.

Community aquarium

parameters min (h) max (h) average (h)
hours of sunshine 7.0 9.0 7.9
cloud phases 1.0 3.0 2.1
thunderstorms 0.2 0.5 0.4

JBL Dreamscape®

parameters min (h) max (h) average (h)
hours of sunshine 8.0 9.0 8.4
cloud phases 1.0 2.0 1.6
thunderstorms 0.2 0.5 0.3

JBL Rio Pantanal®

parameters min (h) max (h) average (h)
hours of sunshine 4.5 8.0 5.9
cloud phases 2.0 5.5 4.1
thunderstorms 0.5 1.9 1.0

JBL Malawi Rocks®

parameters min (h) max (h) average (h)
hours of sunshine 5.0 10.0 6.9
cloud phases 5.0 3.1
thunderstorms 1.5 0.6

JBL Goldfish Paradise®

parameters min (h) max (h) average (h)
hours of sunshine 4.0 8.5 5.9
cloud phases 1.5 6.0 4.1
thunderstorms 1.0 3.0 2.0

Setting cloud phases and thunderstorms correctly in the manual mode

Once you have decided on your ideal daily sequence and the distribution of effects, you need to set the cloud phases and flashes correctly. To help you with this, we have defined some exemplary colour values that you can adapt to your light setting as you wish. It is advisable to start with these values and then change them according to your wishes.  

Warm white Cool white Red Green Blue
Clouds start 26 38 128 102
Clouds end 51 90 128 128 26

The colours of the flashes are stored in the app and are displayed in three different colours. This simulates an effect that is as natural as possible and looks deceptively real both during the day and at night.

Select as a number between 2 and 5.

Sunrise & sunset in manual mode

Last but not least, the start and end of a day in the aquarium - the sunrise and the sunset. The settings are quite easy to define. They only differ between use with or without JBL LED SOLAR EFFECT . If you have not installed the effect lighting, select warm white at level 3 instead of 0. 

Warm white Cool white Red Green Blue
Sunrise start 13
Sunrise end 128 128 255 255 255
Sunset start 128 128 255 255 255
Sunset end 13

Your individual light setup

Once you’ve tried some of these settings, we hope you’ll find these guidelines have helped you on your way to your perfect light setup in the aquarium with the JBL LED SOLAR CONTROL . Keep in mind, however, that an incorrect setting can be unfavourable for your plants due to too long lighting durations or inappropriate colour matching. Your plants need to adjust to every change you make, so make your changes little and often. A one-off large change can be applied without problems by using the acclimatisation mode, which runs at 50 % of the setting and then slowly increases. This also prevents algae growth from becoming a problem. 

Tell us your light setup in the comments and share it with the other readers of this post.

© 23.06.2021

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Matthias Wiesensee
Matthias Wiesensee
M.Sc. Wirtschaftsinformatik

Social Media, Online Marketing, Homepage, Kundenservice, Problemlöser, Fotografie, Blogger, Tauchen, Inlineskating, Aquaristik, Gartenteich, Reisen, Technik, Elektronische Musik

Quién soy: Seit Teenagerzeiten mit Aquarien in Kontakt. Klassische Fischaquarien, reine Pflanzenaquarien bis hin zum Aquascape. Aber auch ein Gartenteich und Riffaquarien begleiten mich privat im Hobby. Als Wirtschaftsinformatiker, M.Sc. bin ich als Online Marketing Manager bei JBL für die Bereiche Social Media, Webentwicklung und der Kommunikation mit dem Anwender der JBL Produkte zuständig und kenne die JBL Produkte im Detail.

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