Fish rely on a regular day/night cycle for optimum health, however brightness is less important and too much light can cause algae growth. Live plants, on the other hand, need strong light (which is different than brightness level) and a broader spectrum for photosynthesis. Certain fluorescent lamps and LED bars can enhance the colors in fish and the overall appearance of your aquarium.
All lighting can be used along with an automatic timer, which fish will appreciate. Overall, strip lights and light fixtures are meant for use with glass tops in order to provide full coverage over the top of the aquarium. Coverage greatly reduces water evaporating from the aquarium. A full hood light fixture will also provide the necessary full coverage.
Incandescent lighting is still used in some aquariums, but more economical and visually pleasing options like fluorescent and LED are the norm. Fluorescent lighting is cooler, brighter and uses less electricity than incandescent. It is a common type of aquarium lighting, although LED is surpassing it in popularity. For peak performance, replace incandescent and fluorescent lamps annually. LED lights are the most economical and energy efficient and offer a wider range of lighting options.