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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all. I am planning on setting up a 75 gallon mbuna tank. 20-25 fish

I am looking for something easy to maintain and for my tank to be visually pleasing if possible. Most important to me is ease of care though.

For filters I am thinking of fx4 or two fluval 407s. Having two filters would cause the tank to have more stuff though and another filter to maintain. I like the fx4 with just being one system to worry about. Are there other canisters that are easier to maintain? Both setups would give me the 8x-10x gph output for filtration.

Also another thought would be the heater. Submersible versus inline heater setup. The tank would be in my finished basement. In the summer it gets 65 degrees down in the basement and in winter it gets as low as 60 degrees. Would a inline heater be ideal or submersible? Also the inline heaters seem to not work well with some canister filters due to hosing size. I would imagine this would change the reliability of the filter system.

What is everyone else doing? I have read the product reviews but to be honest they are old and not sure how reliable it is since things change.
 

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Always go with in-line heating if you can. That method is MUCH more efficient than plain submersible. Reason is, the discharge water flow from the canister exposes the heating element to a huge amount more water volume that a traditional submersible will (some older in-line heating systems actually used submersible heaters mounted down in plastic/PVC container).
So, for your 75 gallon Mbuna setup, I recommend a single FX4 canister set up with an in-line heater on the discharge line. Augment the canister with a Tidal 110 Hang-On-Back filter (Surface skimming capability gives it an edge over other HOB types), and you should be good-to-go. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the quick response. I'm hoping that my basement will be ok for maintaining fish and electrical bill won't be high. Canister fx4 filter with a hydro 300 inline heater seems good. Then the tidal 110 for extra filtration and water movement and ease of maintainence compared to the fx4. I'm trying to keep evaporation low also by getting a glass lid ( less cutouts the better for piping) to help Maintain temperature. The highest temperature my basement gets to is 68 degrees and I have seen get to as low as 56-58 degrees. In the summer it gets to about 64 degrees and feels cold.
 

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Your basement IS a little on the cool side. :?
So, if you're concerned about heat retention for the aquarium, you could place the bottom of the tank on a cut-to-size sheet of pink/blue insulation foam. Placing another piece of that insulation foam on the back of the tank over the background (and possibly even the sides) will also help a bit to retain heat.
And, if you REALLY wanna get serious about the whole heat insulation thing, you could also cover the vinyl tubing runs on the FX4 with this stuff,



But, typically aquariums will lose most their heat through evaporation from the top. If you have a fairly tight fitting glass top for your tank, heat loss might prove to not be much a big deal. :)
 

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Hope you don't mind me jumping in on your thread. I've got a 65 gallon tank and currently have an FX6 running. When I bought the tank second hand it had a Betta 2000 external which I continued to run until the FX6 media was cycled.

Upon then stripping the Betta all the sponges looked absolutely wrecked so took it off line. I've been toying with putting it back on as even with a tank of my size wasn't sure if the FX6 was enough. I'm pretty sure it is, and would need to take into account other variable such as number of fish.

Not keen to clutter tank with another inlet and outlet if it can be helped.

For you I guess if running two 407s you have a "back up" if one fails but I would be tempted by an FX4 or 6 in that size tank.
 
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