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Old 12-29-2004, 07:26 AM   #1
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What's the deal with the Emperor 400...should I get one?

Ok, I've been a longtime supporter and fan of Tetra's Whisper filter line. I've owned 3 aquariums and all 3 have used Tetra Whisper filters and have had zero problems.

I have since sold the other two tanks and am just running my 55gal with a Whisper 60 which has the 3 way filtration but no biowheel (of course).

I've heard so many people rant and rave about Emperor filters and now I'm wondering if it'd be worth buying one even though I've already got a perfect running filter, no probs, very clear water...what do you guys think? Will there be a noticeable difference in what I've got now compared to what the biowheel will give me?

Thanks in advance

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Old 12-29-2004, 09:50 AM   #2
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I would not replace the Whisper, but might consider adding to it. Depending on your fish load this filter (though rated to up to a 60 gallon tank) is likely not moving the water as much as might be desirable.

However, just to answer your question, in an established tank there is biofilm all over the place, in the filter, on the glass, on the rocks, decorations, etc and the biowheel is not going to add any particular benefit, especially if your fish load remains the same. I find them handy to toss into new tanks to help seed it, but otherwise I don't think they are "required" for any tank.

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Old 12-29-2004, 04:42 PM   #3
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Love my Emporer and it is my only filter on a 72 gal planted.
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Old 12-29-2004, 09:08 PM   #4
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If you aren't having any problems with your current tank, and you don't anticipate making any changes, then I would not change a perfectly good filter. I'm assuming (perhaps incorrectly) that you test your water for nitrate levels to make sure that your tank is in good shape. You can always add a powerhead to give you more water movement if you need to.
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Old 01-02-2005, 08:46 PM   #5
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Yeah, last week I bought my first full blown "got all the bells and whistles" water testing kit (previously I just tested pH but after joining here I realized that aquarium water care is a whole ball of wax bigger than just pH) and I've been testing every day since changing out my substrate, probably in a couple weeks I'll just start checking every other day or every few days. I'm sure it's a standard issue test kit; pH, High pH, Nitrites, Nitrates, and Ammonia...seems like that's the big 5.
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Old 01-02-2005, 08:57 PM   #6
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I'll tell you the main problems I had wioth the Whisper filters. The media itself.
In smaller tanks, I could not change the filter media without causing a mini cycle. The filter media just seemed to be home to so much beneficial bacteria that replacing it caused a ruckus. Later on, Whisper came out with a seperate open-celled foam piece that sits in the filter in front of the filter bag. That would host bacteria nicely over time, but it got to the point where even that would clog up so bad I couldnt use it. Cleaning it would also cause a mini cycle.
The bio-wheel filters you can replace the filter media all day long and the bio wheel supports your bacteria colony and you never have to worry about replacing it. Of course, you can replace it if it gets terribly filthy, and it does get dirty, but far less often than a filter bag. Buy an extra and float it in the tank for a month before you change it. That will do the job. I've tried to float a filter bag in the water for a few weeks so as to lessen the effects of changing the bag....it got so dirty I couldnt use it when the time came.
I never had a mechanical problem with my Whisper filter, like some have, but now I use the AquaClear filters. They have so much internal room to put a lot of media....or none, your choice. I can place a nice piece of open celled foam for bacteria colonization in addition to a filter bag. When the time comes to change both of them, I still have room to put another piece of foam in, a few weeks prior, to seed it before I throw the old one away. With the bigger tanks changing the filter bag has much less impact, if any at all, due to the amount of substrate, I guess.

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