04-10-2013, 09:38 PM
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Before anyone can give you proper advice we really need to know where you stand with stocking, substrate, lighting, and planting. Doing so gives us an idea of what type of system is best for your future tank.
I can give you some general advice based on my experience with larger tanks, and my 6 foot long 150 gallon.
If you have sand as your substrate you have to question "What will my fish be?". Once you know that ask yourself are these fish that can kick up sand? Bichirs, Rope Fish, Eels, Corydora, Loaches, etc are all fish that hang about the bottom and can uproot plants that are not well rooted, and kick up an enormous amount of sand. Other fish such as Gourami, Rainbowfish, Tetra, Bala Sharks, etc (upper to mid level) are fish that tend to not mess around with the bottom too much.
This is important. If you have fish that kick up sand you want filters that can deal with it. All HOB's and some Canisters pull water through a tube, into the motor, through the media and then back into the tank. This is fine if you don't have sand being kicked up. It is not if you do. So plan accordingly. You can use HOB's in this situation if you cover the intakes with something to filter the sand out and hope it doesn't burn out, and hope you don't end up with a clogged pre-filter while you are out which then burns your motor.
Yes I am hinting at something here. Hint Hint.
Moving on, you must also take plants into consideration. If you want to run a fully planted tank having current is important. Moving those plants around helps fight against algae overtaking the leaves. It also ensures even distribution of nutrients. Fully planted tanks when balanced correctly should not need heavy filtration. You still need current though. That's all I can offer as per advice.
I personally run a 150 gallon tank that is 6 feet long. I run two heaters and two filters. Both filters are Canisters. This works for me. The tank is planted though, with root heavy plants and things grow very well.
EDIT: One other thing. When you have larger tanks going into the 150 range and up there there is always the possibility of layering when it comes to water. This happens when you have heavier water that is loaded with nutrients/organics hanging around the mid to lower range of the tank. The cleaner lighter water sits at the top. This happens when you don't have a system forcing the water to mix or if you have your filters set up so that they are only effectively filtering the mid to top range. I had to fight this at some point until I finally realized was going on. When you set up filtration make sure you are pushing water around properly so you don't face this problem.
Last edited by Sanguinefox; 04-10-2013 at 09:43 PM..