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Old 02-09-2004, 01:20 AM   #1
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68gal Filtration

i'm really new to the world of cannister filters. on my 29g, i have a UFG and a HOB and they do a great job at keep the water clear, so i've never paid much attention to cannisters. now that i'm going to have this 68g, i've gone ahead read a couple articles and FAQs about them. i have a few questions though. my tank is going to be a decently planted 68g with CO2, and a reasonable bioload (about 50-75% fish capacity) so i'd just like to get some suggestions on filters, how to hook them up in the tank, and what kind of media to use.

right now, i'm most interested in the Rena Filstar XP-3 or the Eheim 2226. both sound like great filters, but i'm wondering, do i need another form of filtration? i just have this gut feeling like i need something else, or that one cannister just isn't going to cut it. it's also my understanding that activated carbon isn't recommended for planted tanks, so i was wondering if something is needed for chemical filtration, unless my weekly water changes and the plants take care of that...

i'm also trying to figure out how you hook these things up, and if it's possible to have the input split to two different locations in the tank - one at about the 1/3 and 2/3 tank length marks. any suggestions/tricks for plumbing are appreciated.

lastly, how quiet/loud are cannister filters? the aquarium is in my bedroom so this is something i need to consider.

hmm..i can't think of anything else.

TIA!
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Old 02-09-2004, 01:37 AM   #2
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You can trick out your plumbing at a local hardware store. I have not used those two filers, but I am a HUGE Fluval 404 fan, and you can get them for 80 dollars ( Print off petsmart.com's website price and take it to their store for a price match ) They are super easy to set up and maintain, and you can run any kind of media in them.

1 Filter will give you 5.14 turnovers per hour, which is decent by any means. You might get that and a HOT Magnum for polishing, that would give you close to 9 turnovers, which will house just about anything. The fluval is silent, I am not sure about the HOT, I know the Magnum 350 cannister is silent as well. You can have the filters on the other ends of the tank and get great flow.

Hope this helps
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Old 02-09-2004, 01:47 AM   #3
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very helpful, TN, thanks. when you say "polishing," what do you mean by that and how does the HOT Magnum work (i just checked it out at big al's)? i was originally going to get an emperor 400 and a UGF, but then I got into the plants thang and had to scrap those two. the activated carbon takes out the trace elements and other nutrients that plants need, so that's why i have to stay away from that...or at least use it sparingly.
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Old 02-09-2004, 04:42 PM   #4
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i've read a few things about the HOT and i understand it might be a bit more noisy than i would want. I'm still going back and forth between the Filstar XP-3, and the Eheim Pro II 2026 or Pro 2226. Reviews for all three have been great so far, although the Eheims are double the cost, and a few people have said the XP-3 is hard to prime. due to my lack of cannister knowledge, how much of a problem is that? I shouldn't need a whole lot of the biological filtration either because this is slowly turning into a medium-dense planted tank...so that makes me wonder what i should put into the cannister. any ideas?
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Old 02-09-2004, 04:55 PM   #5
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Everything I know about cannisters: I have a Filstar XP-3. That's it. All I know

Ok, more seriously. Beyond the price difference between Rena and Eheim, I have CONSTANTLY read of people complaining that the Eheim is a major pain in the butt to clean and work with. I've heard nothing but praise for the Rena XP-3, and as such, bought one.

The only difficulty I've had with the XP-3 was during setup, and putting the rubber hoses 5mm (cm? Can't remember) onto the hard plastic input/output connections. After that it was a breeze. Four quick snaps, primed it (Very very simple and easy) and its ran fine since.

Despite unplugging my XP-3 several times to readjust the power strip underneath the cabinet, it has not needed to be primed a second time.

Its a very simple powerful design. Its meant for up to 175 gallon tanks (or so they advertise), so its probably all you really need.
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Old 02-09-2004, 07:25 PM   #6
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i'm sold. i only needed one of two negatives from the eheim to take them out b/c there is no reason to pay almost twice as much for something that is of equal or lesser value. what kind of media are your running ferret, and how much does it cost?

i'm a bit baffled with plumbing, so that's still open for suggestions. i'd like to have two inputs and two outputs, but i'm not sure if this is necessary or even a good idea. i would like two outputs (branched off of the main return line) to be near the opposite ends of the tank so i can get the co2 dispearsed somewhat evenly through the tank. do i have to drill holes through the tank (it's plywood) to set these lines up, like a bulkhead in a marine/reef tank? am i making this too complicated?
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Old 02-09-2004, 07:28 PM   #7
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Er. The Rena comes with one intake, and one output. It comes with hose and basic plumbing. It basicly has an intake tube like a HOB filter, you put that in, connect the hose to it, and run it to the cannister. Then you run output hose up to another big of plastic plumbing to put it back in the tank. They include suction cups and all the usual bits. You can have the water put back in by a nozzle (Powerhead-ish) or a spray bar (My preference.. That thing really moves from water. The nozzle would probably kill fish :P)

It comes with the basic filtration media. You can then, at your own expense, add various bio-media (Bioballs, lava rock, ceramic rings, etc) to the middle of three media compartments. It comes with stuff for the bottom and top boxes.

I have lava rock and ceramic rings in the middle. Cost like, $10.
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Old 02-09-2004, 07:33 PM   #8
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"Ok, more seriously. Beyond the price difference between Rena and Eheim, I have CONSTANTLY read of people complaining that the Eheim is a major pain in the butt to clean and work with."

The ONLY Eheims that are difficult to clean are the Classic series, because there is no media baskets. You just load up the canister and water flow from the bottom of the canister to the top and goes through what you put in it. Some people actually view this as a benefit, but people can blame themselves to buying an Eheim Classic if they did not want to deal with it. The ECCO and Pro/Pro II are very easy to clean.

I would not go with multiple inlet and outlet tubes on one filter. Get two filters instead, more filtration is almost always a good thing and in a large tank, if one filter dies you can lose a lot of fish.
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Old 02-09-2004, 08:07 PM   #9
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so it might be worth getting two XP1s? that would put me at ~500gph for only slightly more money than the xp-3 at ~350gph, which is a good thing. the reason i wanted two i/o is because this is a long tank..not the longest at 55", but i just had a gut feeling like i would need two. as long as i can run the co2 line into the return of each, i'd be fine with two xp-1.
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Old 02-09-2004, 09:58 PM   #10
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Im still a strong Fluval fan, much cheeper, reliable, and very effective. 90 or less dollars from petsmarts website, and they typically match their store price to their website price.
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