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hfernelius

Has anyone had any experience with the aquatop recife eco series 24 gallon cube?

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I have a plan in the works for my first reef tank but while I was at my lfs I was browsing some tanks and one of the guys that work there pointed me towards the aquatop recife eco series all-in-one. I can't find much information at all about it online. The kit comes with sand, liverock, skimmer, light, tank, built in filtration and stand for 599.99. The guy said he would hook me up with a hydor koralia powerhead and a heater for the same price. The tank also had the words "perfect for saltwater begginers" on it. I have a pretty tight budget so this seemed good to me.

However, this deal seems too good to be true, and when it seems that way it usually is. 

 

Anyway, does anyone have any information?

 

P.S. here is a picture

 

 

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Seems more than slighly off brand.  I wouldn’t let a close friend or family member buy that tank is the best way to put it, i guess.

 

Another way to put it would be...dont be the first guy online experimenting with the latest, budget glass box filled with water in your house, fresh off the Chinese shipping container....

 

Hovering that price range I think I’d rather have an IM Nuvo 20 or Lagoon 25, one of the newer IM stands? and an AI Prime HD.  That’s a reasonable setup...reasonably proven and known glass boxes from the Chinese shipping container.  Well worth saving towards i’d think....

 

Just my 2 cents

 

also, keep reading here and on other forums, you won’t be a ‘beginner’ for long.  

 

Also.  Please know that 600 dollars is not chump change.  

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My budget for everything minus the livestock is around 800 dollars. There just seems to be so many components to a reef tank that it really adds up so quickly. 600 dollars really is starting to look like chump change for getting any sort of aquarium going. Oh well, I’m sure I’ll figure it out. The store also offered a 29 gallon Biocube and stand they were trying to get rid of for 420 dollars with similar deals for a powerhead, heater, and liverock. I might try that. 

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18 minutes ago, hfernelius said:

My budget for everything minus the livestock is around 800 dollars. There just seems to be so many components to a reef tank that it really adds up so quickly. 600 dollars really is starting to look like chump change for getting any sort of aquarium going. Oh well, I’m sure I’ll figure it out. The store also offered a 29 gallon Biocube and stand they were trying to get rid of for 420 dollars with similar deals for a powerhead, heater, and liverock. I might try that. 

I’d advise emphatically that you slow down and not setting when it comes to equipment.  Buy slowly and delay start up if necessary.  

 

Yes its expenive and you’re still likely forgetting a lot of stuff....test kits, water or salt, RO/DI?, ATO?, Heater controller...

 

For the cost of a few corals up front you’re not going to be kicking yourself down the line.  

 

600 towards a modern tank with a a top of the line light sounds very smart. Tossing it at a biocube or some no name LFS stuff....again, wouldn’t do it, wouldn’t allow a friend to do it.  Nor would I be dazzled by a junk heater and freebee live rock.

 

Just my 2 cents....good luck with your purchase, whatever u decide.  I may be being a tad dramatic, but I really do say what I say from direct experience and regrets.

 

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Thanks for the advice! I have a couple of previous posts about my plan for a Fluval evo 13.5. People just freaked me out about the small water volume. Maybe could you look at that plan and see if it looks ok? 

 

Thanks again.

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31 minutes ago, hfernelius said:

Thanks for the advice! I have a couple of previous posts about my plan for a Fluval evo 13.5. People just freaked me out about the small water volume. Maybe could you look at that plan and see if it looks ok? 

 

Thanks again.

I would not buy these kits either.

 

13.5 is fine for a beginner as long as you don't plan on Acro's I would not even sweat it. My first reef tank was 12 gallons and it was no problem! Get easier livestock to start and go slow and you can get any size you would like. There are first time reefers with this exact tank and threads on here.

 

There are many proven cheaper lights, ect if that what fits your budget. 

 

What fish do you want? I ask this because I feel like as a beginner we buy something then realize we can't keep the fish we want and have to upgrade or choose to keep them anyways which isn't always in the best interest of the tank.

 

One thing to keep in mind is small tanks fill up FAST! So if you can afford it, I would go to the 20g range... this hobby is addicting and you will want to upgrade soon.

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19 minutes ago, hfernelius said:

Thanks for the advice! I have a couple of previous posts about my plan for a Fluval evo 13.5. People just freaked me out about the small water volume. Maybe could you look at that plan and see if it looks ok? 

 

Thanks again.

I’d focus on a Nuvo 20 or IM 25 Lagoon stocked with softies and LPS and put the 13.5 on the far back burner. 

 

Just start collecting equipment.  Start it when u ready.

 

others may have valid differences of opinion.  Keep reading and asking questions.

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You have to decide what's best for you.

 

You could easily use a standard tank, hang on filter, heater, powerhead, and light.

Many run simple tanks.

 

In the end that's what you need tank wise.

 

Then refractometer, salt, sand (or bare bottom), liverock, test kits.

 

Rodi or distilled water.

 

 

Many are using the fluval and they are nice tanks and well priced. 

 

You have to work with your budget and eith what you plan on keeping.

 

There are many ways to run a system.

You can keep it really simple or get all the bells and whistles.

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I have a lot of experience with freshwater planted tanks and so I wanted to create a reef tank with some macro algae along with some fairly low maintenance soft corals and some lps.

 

As for fish, I want to have one of these three fish in whatever tank I get: bicolor blenny, yellowheaded jawfish, or Midas blenny. I don’t want to make this overly hard on myself so I will be very conservative with my stocking.

 

I might get a 40 breeder and put a Seachem tidal filter and a hang on slimmer on it in order to keep costs manageable. But who knows. I might go for the Nuvo 20 just as well.

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If the tank is smaller like the 20g and your plans are macro algae and lps.... You may not even want or need a skimmer. I just turned mine off for a few months because I badly need some nitrate. 

 

Water changes are really effective in smaller tanks. 

 

Midas and bicolor need at least 20g tank. 

 

 

 

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20 minutes ago, hfernelius said:

I have a lot of experience with freshwater planted tanks and so I wanted to create a reef tank with some macro algae along with some fairly low maintenance soft corals and some lps.

 

As for fish, I want to have one of these three fish in whatever tank I get: bicolor blenny, yellowheaded jawfish, or Midas blenny. I don’t want to make this overly hard on myself so I will be very conservative with my stocking.

 

I might get a 40 breeder and put a Seachem tidal filter and a hang on slimmer on it in order to keep costs manageable. But who knows. I might go for the Nuvo 20 just as well.

The Jawfish needs a deep sand bed and lower temps. Deep sand beds need specific care.

 

Do lots of research before deciding on that.

 

You can easily have a bicolor, macro, and some corals in a 15g-25g with an hob. You Don't need a skimmer on a nano, especially with macro. 

The blenny is a really cool fish, lots of fun!

 

You can get any tank you want.  

People used regular tanks forever and still do. It's not about if it will work, a regular rimmed tank will work.

it's really about what you want. What you like.

 

Go through various aquarium journals, it's great for ideas.

 

 

You can get an inkbird controller for the heater because heaters are the one piece of equipment that can go bad.

 

 

 

The tidal filters are great. My favourite out of all the hob's I've used.

 

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There's nothing wrong with Aquatop tanks. I have a few of their rimless low iron tanks. They are made by the same manufacturer as the ADA tanks and side by side you can't tell the difference. I can't speak for this kit that you are looking at.

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I was thinking that a 29 gallon standard aquarium might be a happy medium. Maybe I should get two sea chem tidal 55's (one a refugium and one a reactor) and 2 Hydor Koralia Nano 425's. That could support the fish I wish to keep.

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That sounds like a plan. Spend your money on quality live rock, lighting, and circulation.

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If you have enough macro in the display you don't need a fudge for the fish you want. They are easy keepers. You can surely get one or add one later if you would like. Just thinking minimalistic here. 

 

More money for lights or for a rodi unit of you get sick of hauling water. 

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Cool! I might just start off with 1 seachem tidal 75 in that case. As for lights would 1 current usa orbit led do the trick? Any other options? As with the aqua illuminations hd I would have to buy two to cover a 29 gallon tank. And I do want to invest in an rodi system at some point but my city uses chloramines so I would have to buy a significantly more expensive 6 stage model. But I think this tank idea seems to get me some good bang for my buck.

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With the HOB filter and two powerheads does that seem like enough flow? I might want to invest in some higher quality power heads as they are going to be doing my primary means of filtration.

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2 minutes ago, hfernelius said:

Cool! I might just start off with 1 seachem tidal 75 in that case. As for lights would 1 current usa orbit led do the trick? Any other options? As with the aqua illuminations hd I would have to buy two to cover a 29 gallon tank. And I do want to invest in an rodi system at some point but my city uses chloramines so I would have to buy a significantly more expensive 6 stage model. But I think this tank idea seems to get me some good bang for my buck.

I use a 5 stage rodi. My water is treated with chloramines and chlorines. Tds going in 400+. It's also very hard water.

 

I use sediment filter, reg. Carbon, chloramines carbon, membrane, and di. 

It's important to use a carbon block that removes chloramines. 

You can get refurbished 4 stage by spectrapure and add an additional chamber.

 

The orbit will work for your plans.

 

Chinese boxes like the Mars aqua are another option

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55 minutes ago, hfernelius said:

With the HOB filter and two powerheads does that seem like enough flow? I might want to invest in some higher quality power heads as they are going to be doing my primary means of filtration.

That should be fine. Koralia or Jebao are popular for a budget. 

 

Here is some inspiration, a 29g ran with a hang on back filter and waterchanges! It's from 2012 but can't argue with is keep it simple success. 

 

 

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Thanks clown79 for the Rodi suggestions. And tamberav, that tank Journal you found is super helpful. My main concern with this type of setup was that is would take to much time in maintenance to be worth it, but that journal reassured me.

 

Right now I’m making a spreadsheet of everything I’ll need then I’ll refine it down. 

 

Thanks again everyone for the help!

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