I think my 29g BioCube has turned out nicely. I guess you'd call it a mixed reef. It has stock lighting, with the edition of 3 more LED
lunar bars. I did add an addition PH for more erratic and powerful flow.
When I first started the tank, I used the middle chamber as a refugium with chaeto and live rock rubble. After using algaefix for a hair algae problem, most of the chaeto died off, so I removed what remained and the rubble. Replaced all this chemipure elite, ceramic rings and a nitrate reducing pad and purigen. Also added a Corallife skimmer to chamber 1.
Here's what's happening:
Zoas and palys grow very fast. Mushrooms split rapidly, in fact, just sold the last mushroom out of my tank last night, finally. I have a yuma that doubled in size, but hasn't split. I had a devil's hand that looked like a SPS
frag when I got it, 8 months later it was 7 inches across and 8 high. Rics always detatch and get lost in my tank, only softy that hasn't taken off in the tank.
I have frogspawns and hammers putting out heads, but a torch was going gangbusters for 6 months, then dies from brown jelly in 3 days. Duncans grow like weeds, as do candy canes. Cyphastrea and favias have noticeable growth. Lobos on the bed have amazing color, but I've not had them long enough to notice any growth, other than amount of 'puffyness'. Acans don't do well, nor have plates, but all other LPS
have done well.
Ponape and green polyp birdsnest are doing great, green slimer has put out 2 nubs/stalks in 3 weeks, monti caps and a monti setosa growing well. ORA mint pavona and a cactus coral sending out plates constantly. These are the only SPS
I've tried to keep, but all have done well.
And amazingly, the stock lights are great for NPS, I have a chili coral that looks amazing, bright red with starck white polyps. My sun coral isn't looking great, but to be honest, I probably need to target feed it more.
Also, when I had an issue, ELEVEN MONTHS after purchase, Corallife went above and beyond fixing the problem, to the extent of sending me an entire new hood, as well as an extra set of cooling fans. This was knowing that most people would never buy a 2nd biocube, as everyone wants bigger and more LOL. Still, I received a few hundred dollars worth of freebies, not by being 'that guy', just being polite and honest. Their customer service is top notch.
IME and IMO
, these AIOs are doing exactly what they say they will, just accept the inherent limitations of stock. The nice thing is they are also easily customizable, rimless, LED
, seperate sumps, media racks, anything can be changed.