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Muffin87

Help me decide on salt mix

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Salt mixes I've been considering

  • Aqua forest Probiotic Reef Salt
  • Aqua Forest Reef Salt
  • Tropic Marin Bio-Actif (no probiotic bacteria inside, but similar effects to carbon dosing?)
  • Tropic Marin Pro Reef
  • Royal Nature Salt Ion Balanced Pro Reef  (ready for WC in just 30 mins)
  • Prodibio Pure Ocean

 

So far I've used Aqua Ocean Sps Premium, because it was cheap and has amino acids and vitamins, but people have had terrible inconsistencies across batches in terms of magnesium and calcium levels.

 

People on here suggested to me and others that we steer away from Aquaforest Probiotics system, except for the probiotic reef salt possibly.

Both Tropic Marin Bio-Actif and AQ Probiotic Reef Salt have been praised, especially TM, but both can cause dangerous bacterial blooms with large water changes, over 50% apparently?

Is that a rare occurrence or something to be wary of?

 

Tropic Marin salts have Alk around 7 or 8, and some complained about that.

What's the issue with low Alk, if it's maintained above 6?

Apparently, Tropic Marin mixed water can be stored for a rather long time, without any issues like precipitation.

Any chance someone knows more about it? It'd be great if I could just mix water and use it for throughout a month.

 

Thanks a lot everyone!

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Just wanted to state that my personal experience shows that Tropic Marin mixes at ~10 ALK with a 0.025 salinity level.

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Instant Ocean and Reef Crystals can both be completely mixed and ready to go in the tank in 5 minutes.

 

Just to be sure I wasn't wrong about this, I did almost 200 daily water changes this way, posted online about it too, and included posted a pair of videos to YouTube showing the two best mixing methods I found.   :-)  (vid 1; vid 2)

 

I haven't used other salts as intensively....and no other salts at home.

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The best salt I have used is Red Sea Blue bucket, reviews on it are excellent. I would still use it if it didn't cost so much. I found it very consistent. 

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The issue with probiotic salts is they can't be stored longer than 5 days, they have specific mixing requirements as well amongst some other possible issues 

 

 

My favourite salt is red sea blue bucket. Very consistent, great params.

 

There is no real issue with alk being 7 other than the definitive need to dose if you even have small drops because then the tank ends up below normal levels.

 

I like my salt at least 8.

 

Regular aquaforest non probiotics was nice but expensive for the qty and I didn't like my salt at 7.2 alk. 

 

 

Probiotic salt or RSCP often have high alk which can become an issue if you have low nutrients and sps.

 

 

Everyone has their preferences, you will not get a definitive answer on this subject.

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I always used RSCP but the alk does run high I also tried AF Reef Salt and hated it so much. I think I'm going to try RSBB on my new tank but also looking at TM or BWA salt. 

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4 minutes ago, Reefkid88 said:

hated it so much

what do you hate about it?

It seems people are very divided about AF Reef salt. Some people love it, some people just really really hate it.

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I used Instant Ocean for years because it was cheap and readily available. I usually had a bit of unmixed residue, though, which I did not like. I tried Aqua Forest sea salt and have used it ever since. It mixes clean with no precipitate and I've stored it for weeks without issue, though it eventually gets a sort of tan residue. I haven't tried the other Aqua Forest salts due to the price. If I were to try another salt, it'd probably be Red Sea blue bucket. I don't really test so I can't tell you about levels. 

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Levels were all over the place and everything browned out once I switched. Acan's,Zoa's and Sps all browned out within a few weeks. 

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1 hour ago, Lula_Mae said:

Aqua Forest sea salt

Isn't that the one for softies only? Do you keep LPS / SPS with that salt?

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Is it ?! Idk lol. Regardless if that was the case my Zoa's should have been amazing lol that was not the case. 

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3 hours ago, Muffin87 said:

Isn't that the one for softies only? Do you keep LPS / SPS with that salt?

Aquaforest sea salt is non lps/spa

 

Aquaforest reef salt is for mixed reef

 

Aquaforest probiotic is for sps dominated

 

 

I also had the residue in a bucket of saved water which has occurred with 

 

IO, RC, RSBB, and Aquaforest. Its apparently caused from a binding agent in the salt.

 

 

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4 hours ago, Muffin87 said:

Isn't that the one for softies only? Do you keep LPS / SPS with that salt?

I do have some LPS.  I haven't had great growth lately but it's hard to say if it's related to the salt or if it's because of having other issues (cyano, dino, etc.) or switching tanks. :rolleyes: I did previously experience some growth with it and would like to see how it'd play out if I could keep things stable long term for everything lol.

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Been using red sea blue bucket forever and never had any issues with sps or lps. My acros love this salt it is by far the best salt ive used and ive used a good bit of salt brands when I started.

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13 minutes ago, Lula_Mae said:

I do have some LPS.  I haven't had great growth lately but it's hard to say if it's related to the salt or if it's because of having other issues (cyano, dino, etc.) or switching tanks. :rolleyes: I did previously experience some growth with it and would like to see how it'd play out if I could keep things stable long term for everything lol.

Probably not the salt. 

People have used IO for yrs which has basic parameters. 

 

 

If we look at all the salts and all the users, we have ppl who love/hate each brand.

 

We have people who have equal success with salts that mix high params to those which I honestly mix normal levels.

 

2 people can use the same salt and have different experiences.

 

 

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I started off with RS blue bucket.  Got a decent amount of white precipitation with it.   It even had a slight brown tinge.  

    Cleaned my mixing station and switched to Tropic Marin and it mixes super fast and clean.  No sediment at all. None even after sitting a good while.   My alk in my tank is easily maintained at 8.5. 

 

 

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2 minutes ago, Jeff Hood said:

switched to Tropic Marin

Do you use Pro Reef or Bio-Activ?

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6 minutes ago, Jeff Hood said:

I started off with RS blue bucket.  Got a decent amount of white precipitation with it.   It even had a slight brown tinge.  

    Cleaned my mixing station and switched to Tropic Marin and it mixes super fast and clean.  No sediment at all. None even after sitting a good while.   My alk in my tank is easily maintained at 8.5. 

 

 

Pro reef

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Just now, Jeff Hood said:

None even after sitting a good while.

How long do you let it sit generally?

 

It's interesting because it seems a lot of people who want to store pre-mixed water prefer Tropic Marin.

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I make 20 gallons at a time.  I have an auto water changer that holds 5 gallons and it last about 10 days.  Some mixes I’ll have on hand for a few weeks and some I go through quick if I’m setting up a QT tank. 

    Longest I’ve gone is probably a month.   I’ve gone through three mixes so far with Tropic Marin and really like it.  

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I used IO for years without an issue. I enjoyed the Aquaforest salt until I started to get a biofilm from the mix. 

 

Currently my favorite is the NeoMarine from Brightwell. Works well, mixes quick and no residue. 

 

-Dave

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39 minutes ago, DaveFason said:

I used IO for years without an issue. I enjoyed the Aquaforest salt until I started to get a biofilm from the mix. 

 

Currently my favorite is the NeoMarine from Brightwell. Works well, mixes quick and no residue. 

 

-Dave

IO gets a bad rap.  Of course in any hobby the big name/discount brands get that sort of treatment.  It's amazing how easily we can be convinced that something is better simply because it is more expensive 🙂

 

I'm currently using the Live Aquaria Professional and have been pleased.  Would say I "love" it, but can't honestly say I've ever had really strong feelings about any salt mix.  Does mix clean and leaves no residue, which would be my biggest complaint about IO. 

 

 

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26 minutes ago, specore said:

IO gets a bad rap.  Of course in any hobby the big name/discount brands get that sort of treatment.  It's amazing how easily we can be convinced that something is better simply because it is more expensive 🙂

 

I'm currently using the Live Aquaria Professional and have been pleased.  Would say I "love" it, but can't honestly say I've ever had really strong feelings about any salt mix.  Does mix clean and leaves no residue, which would be my biggest complaint about IO. 

 

 

I feel the same way. People often believe more $$$ means better results....

 

I personally didn't like my experience with io or rc. Low parameters, mixing time, and hardening.

 

Aquaforest cost a lot for a small bucket, i liked some things about it but there were things I didn't like too. Cost, lower params, I had weird brown algae develop during use, the same brown on the mixing bucket was in my tank.

 

Each persons experience with salt is different. 

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Just now, Clown79 said:

I feel the same way. People often believe more $$$ means better results....

 

I personally didn't like my experience with io or rc. Low parameters, mixing time, and hardening.

 

Aquaforest cost a lot for a small bucket, i liked some things about it but there were things I didn't like too. Cost, lower params, I had weird brown algae develop during use, the same brown on the mixing bucket was in my tank.

 

Each persons experience with salt is different. 

I agree.  Didn't necessarily mean there aren't better salts at higher prices, just more that some people tend to be prejudiced simply because one is less/more expensive than another. 

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