Aquarium Lighting Review: Current USA Nova Extreme Pro T5

The Current USA Nova Extreme Pro is a T5 high output lighting fixture for saltwater aquariums. I added one of these to my 75 gallon aquarium setup a little over a year ago, and it was such a great upgrade over my original aquarium lights that I just couldn’t possibly imagine going back to my original setup.

48 inch Current USA 6x54W Nova Extreme Pro T5HO 3-10k/3-460nm Actinics
buy 48 inch Current USA 6x54W Nova Extreme Pro T5HO 3-10k/3-460nm Actinics

This lighting is intense

This thing puts out a lot of light, and it comes with a combination of 10k and actinics. The lighting quality is excellent.

When I first hooked this up to my aquarium, I was blown away by how much light that this emitted as compared to the single bulb fluorescent light that I originally had in the aquarium.

Huge difference. How does the Nova Extreme Pro do it?

  • There are individual;y curved reflection surfaces for each lamp
  • The Nova Extreme Pro utilizes SlimPaq high output lamps

Used on my 75 gallon saltwater aquarium

I bought the 48″ Nova Extreme Pro, as I have a 75 gallon aquarium. This thing sits atop the aquarium in a pretty stout manner.

I had to ditch my original aquarium hood after implementing this light, as the manual says that it shouldn’t be covered by a hood. I guess that makes sense, considering how warm it can get at full capacity.

It at first felt like a greenhouse in my office after I hooked this thing up. There was a radiating glow of intense new light mixed with some fan noise and heat coming off the unit. I could immediately tell that this lighting was a lot more serious than what I had previously been using.

The controls, options and features

These features are what I would consider the core of this lighting system:

  1. Independent controls for full day/night cycle lighting applications
  2. The T5 SlimPaq lights mounted in individually contoured surfaces
  3. Fan cooled ballasts

Now I’ll go into a little more detail…

There are two switches, each control a certain portion of the lamps. In the model that was delivered to me, one switch turned on the actinics, and one switch turned on the 10k lamps, but you could rearrange the lamps to switch this up if needed.

The split switches allowed me to hook it up to a timer that cycled the lights by turning on the actinics first, then the main lamps shortly after. The same could be done in reverse when turning the lamps off, also with a timer.

There are also moonlights that can be triggered separately from the other lamps, they have their own power source. This offers some good flexibility for 24 hour lighting with one unit and a few timers.

This type of control was exactly what I had needed for my setup, so I was happy that this was fairly controllable aquarium lighting.

The fan cooling is also quite nice.

It keeps the whole unit from overheating, and if you have your aquarium located in a part of your home where it gets good air movement, you probably won’t have to worry about this thing heating up much anyways.

Overall opinion

I’m pretty happy that I picked up this particular lighting option for my aquarium.

The Current USA Nova Extreme Pro is a pretty solid unit and it’s been working flawlessly ever since I added it to my aquarium at least a year ago. Nothing has burned out, nothing has overheated, and nothing has broken.

The hardware stays cool, can be controlled easily with the 2 separate switches and separate moon light power, and is flexible in that you can remove or add different lamps as needed to get the lighting set accurately for your aquarium.

You can’t go wrong with this lighting, in my opinion.

For more information or to buy: Current USA Nova Extreme Pro

About Luke

the owner and caretaker of a 75 gallon aquarium in his home studio. Good times.

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