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75 gal budget? possible?


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I am looking to set up a 75 gal aquarium.

I was wondering if anyone here with experience, or people with 75 reef tanks, could tell me if I could get a complete set up, (tank, stand, skimmer, filter, heater, LR, LS, salt, and a decent MH lighting fixture that I could keep softies, sps and lps under, or any other equipment that i would absolutely NEED) for around $1,000-$1,200. This price does not include fish or corals. Thanks to anyone who helps :)

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The first rule of saltwater fish keeping...dont set yourself a budget. Trust me. No matter what price you set, you will ALWAYS exceed it!


My 15gal. nano reef has already cost me over $1000 and my 200gal. FOLWR tank has exceeded $8000.


You need to get the best equipment you can afford...which may or may not run you over your "$1000-$1200" budget. With a 75 gal. tank, though, I can almost promise you that you'll be way over that set number before you're done.

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First, buy used equipment if possible. DIY stand and hood will cut a big chunk out of the cost as well. Do things “right” the first time; a big waist of money is doing it wrong or getting equipment you will have to replace later. So, where to start; get a tank. Bow fronts add cost, so unless you can find one really cheap then avoid them. Next, get your tank drilled by someone; it cuts down on overflow cost. You can forgo this if you get a reef ready tank, but again this adds at least 20 percent more to cost. An all glass aquarium in the 75 gallon range is around 180 bucks, but you can get a no name brand for around 150 or less. TEST a no name brand the day you get it. Look in the want adds for people getting rid of old tanks or put an add in the paper and see what happens. Try papers that are targeted at aquarium keeping like older peoples news papers (RVing and such). A 75 gallon RR w/ stand and sump can easily cost you 600-800 so do a lot of shopping. It might take a few months to find one that is cheap but it is well worth the wait.


Equipment: An AquaC Remora hang on with MaxiJet is around 150 bucks I believe and is all you need for serious filtration. A HOB filter can help too for water polishing and running carbon. Look for sales, they happen all the time. Also look for cheap shipping (that’s where they get you). DIYREEF.Com has a sale going right now on a 250W retrofit for around 149 with mogul, ballast, spider reflector, wires and 14000k bulb (bulb and ballast are CoralVues and have a pretty good rep). Cheap base rock can be found here, http://www.hirocks.com (80/20 is a good mix).


Really, the only way you will be able to do in on 1000 is if you manage to find an aquarium, stand and hood for little to nothing – but it is possible if you look hard enough. In my area there was a guy selling an Oceanic RR 65gwith cheery oak stand & good, sump, refugium, ETSS skimmer, and a bunch of other stuff for 250 bucks. If you would like to know anything specific just ask (models sales and so on).

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55 and 29 gallon tanks are good starters (I did a 29 gallon with everything but lights for around 400). Add a MH 250w and that brings it up to 550. However, you'll wish you went bigger :) Look into a 55, they are much cheaper than 75's (glass thickness) and a 55 is only slightly more expensive than 29's. Oceanic 55E (e is for economy) for aroud 100 bucks and it is really well made. Good luck.

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yea, i'm still setting up but here is what i have,

20L tank $40, had it laying around though

AC300 $30

stainless steel heater $30

MH pendant $250

stand $20, already had it


and that is before i get #16 or LR so it really adds up, but buying used really helps and like they said buy used if you can, i'm getting my skimemr used and the overflow box too well let us know how it turns out.

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I bought a used tank + stand but in great condition. It came with 90+ lb of live rocks for 200 bucks. After put corals fish skimmer sump halide .... add up about 3K or more. I can't count any more ... So prepare.

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buy a highbay MH and turn the balast sideways... (save around 100$ there...) im at like 900 with my MH now... 50 lbs lr... ect...

oh and i bouhgt a visi-jet protein skimmer and modded it by cutting the tube for air intake or whatever its called.. this way more air gets in and more bubles... :)

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holly cow 1g for a 15gal nano..

i got a lot of my stuff used here is a list

150lb figi lr/ 100 lb ls

90gal used tank/stand/canopy 1 year old

40gal sump 1 years old

250watt mh 1.5 years old/ bulb 6 montsh

2-96watt pc 2 years old bulb 6 months

via aqua skimmer (very large) new

50 mangroves

1/5ph aquamedic chiller 9 months old

1500gph 1 year old return pump

300gph chiller pump new

120 nassarius vibx snails/ 15 turbo/ 20 hermits

about $900 or so with out corals

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I hate 55 gal tanks as they are so shallow front to back. Personally I would get something with a bigger foot print, at least 18" deep. Remember that a MH bulb will only cover a 2' x 2' square. Just keep that in mind.

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If you go smaller I would look at a 45 gal bredder...otherwise get the 75. I have a 75 and its a good size tank, allthough I am upgrading to a 125 or 180 in the near future. The 125 rr is about 350 and the 180rr is avout 650....thats quite a difference in price for only another 55 gallons. I've just scrathed the surface with research as those are LFS prices.

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Aqua-Medic 90, 75 Gallons, Skimmer, 150W Metal Halide. Trickle filtration, 3 pumps, downfall no heater, but there is plenty of room for one. I run one with 0ppm nitrite,nitrate and it is always pretty stable. Value for £890.00

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