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Old 06-05-2006, 05:40 PM   #1
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Best filter type?

In my 10 gallon, and my dad's 29 gallon, we have the filters that hang on the back. But I'm reading about canister filters for bigger tanks. I'm planning on a 55 gallon cichlid tank, so is a canister filter something I should consider? Convince me!
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Old 06-05-2006, 05:51 PM   #2
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For a 55G cichlid tank, you might want 2 filters, a cannister and an HOB like the Emperor 400. Cichlids are usually pretty messy. You could even do 2 cannisters, but would cost you a little more. The emperor 400's at bigalsonline are pretty cheap compared to the lfs's.
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Old 06-05-2006, 07:58 PM   #3
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A proper size HOB filter can be just as effective as a cannister on tanks 55 gallons and smaller.
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Old 06-05-2006, 08:29 PM   #4
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I'm currently running 2 Emperor 400's on my 55G, and it's doing a great job. When I was running just 1, I had to stick in a powerhead because the water on the other end of the tank was pretty still, and the crud buildup was bad. Now I don't have the crud buildup, and plenty of circulation on both ends of the tank, and no powerhead.

Also, another benefit of having a cannister is you can have the intake on one end and the output on the other, and have a nice even flow through the tank. Wouldn't really need an HOB.
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Old 06-06-2006, 12:49 AM   #5
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I'd go with a canister over a hob any day for a 55 gal tank. IMO, anything 55 gal or larger should have one.
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Old 06-06-2006, 02:41 AM   #6
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I have to agree, cannisters for larger tanks are the way to go!
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Old 06-06-2006, 02:56 AM   #7
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Definately cannister for a larger tank. I am a huge fan of the Eheims (Don't worry about the professional series though) you could go a 2213 or 2215. They are brilliant filters and I swear by them. I have heard alot about the rena xp? filters and a lot of people swear by them as well.

Unlike many things in the aquarium hobby, filters are one thing that are probably worth spending a bit of money on - shop around for price though.
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Old 06-06-2006, 03:46 PM   #8
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Thanks, I'll look at all of the above. So I could use an Eheim canister without a HOB? Anyone have any other recommendations for canisters??
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Old 06-06-2006, 07:20 PM   #9
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Just to play Devil's Advocate-- I notice many members here are seriously pro-cannisters. I've been keeping fish for over twenty years now and have never owned one (never felt the need, I suppose). Although I understand the advantages of having one on large tanks- say 75 gallons and up- I'm really curious what advantages they hold over a properly rated/sized HOB for smaller tanks, say 55 gallons and less?
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Old 06-06-2006, 08:24 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Voodoo Chilli
Just to play Devil's Advocate-- I notice many members here are seriously pro-cannisters. I've been keeping fish for over twenty years now and have never owned one (never felt the need, I suppose). Although I understand the advantages of having one on large tanks- say 75 gallons and up- I'm really curious what advantages they hold over a properly rated/sized HOB for smaller tanks, say 55 gallons and less?
As a recent canister convert, here is my opinion on the advantages offered by canisters (I use them on my 25 and 46 gallon planted tanks):

1) They are extremely quiet.
2) They look nicer (i.e. less visible equipment equals a more professional look).
3) You can push the tank up much closer to the wall.
4) Most models are easier to access and maintain. Although it is "easy" for me to unplug my Aqua Clear HOB, pull out the basket, and take it the sink (dripping all the way, of course), that just doesn't compare to flipping the valves on my canisters, picking it up by the handle, and carrying it to the sink. And if you consider that you have to remove the entire unit to maintain an HOB motor and impeller, that is obviously more difficult than canisters, wherein the tubing and inlets/outlets will stay in place during maintenance.
5) Canisters are more efficient at both mechanical and biological filtration (most models offer more room for media and less bypass than HOB's).
6) You have more control over water flow in your aquarium, as you can place the inlet and outlet wherever you want. With an HOB, you're stuck with the intake tube and the water output being right next to each other. By the same token, many canister models offer you a choice of spray bar or standard "tube" outlets.

Obviously, I am no longer objective on this issue, but having used both, I would recommend a canister on any tank 30 gallons or larger.
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Old 06-06-2006, 11:48 PM   #11
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Wow you just convinced me that I need a canister for my 50g tank, thnx ya'll!!!
The 350 Emperor is great but oscars need maids, thus the canister addition...
Any recommended brands?
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Old 06-07-2006, 12:59 AM   #12
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Fluval, Eheim, Filstar, Cascade, all good brands.
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Old 06-07-2006, 01:27 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fishyfanatic
Fluval, Eheim, Filstar, Cascade, all good brands.
Exactly.....
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Old 06-07-2006, 06:39 AM   #14
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Personally I go Eheim - Eheim - Eheim!!! But that is just the opinion of one guy. Here's why -

Mine has been running four years - No problems. The substrat that comes with them is brilliant for breeding bacteria it has a massivie surface area so when things go wrong or your setting up a tank your filter will respond much faster. They do not use trays which can lead to uneven flow, and the only place for water to enter the media is at the bottom so 100% of the water flows through all the media.

I originally bought an eheim cause the guy at the LFS had set up an eheim and a fluval and had sealed of the bottom the basket in each with plastic. The eheim wouldn't run but the fluval still ran very well. That being said that was four years ago and the fluval models may have been improved.

If you go eheim, just get a classic, the pro models aren't worth the extra money IMHO. Spend the extra cash on lighting instead.
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Old 06-07-2006, 10:01 AM   #15
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One more question! I'm a little confused about the flow rates. For example, the Eheim 2213 is listed as being for a 55 gallon, but should I opt for the next one, the 2215 which goes up to (I think) 90 gallons? In other words, what kind of flow rate do I REALLY need for a 55 gallon tank of cichlids? I figure you experienced people can tell me more than what's printed on the box!
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Old 06-07-2006, 10:24 AM   #16
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Go by the rated gph versus what size tank they say it is adequate for. For hobs I try to keep it around a 10x turnover rate. With the canisters I run about 4 or 5x turnover.
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Old 06-07-2006, 01:44 PM   #17
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Okay, I'm leaning towards a Rena Filstar XP2. Comments?
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Old 06-07-2006, 02:37 PM   #18
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i have the XP3 and its A M A Z I N G, would never go back to a HOB
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