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Discussion Starter #1
Hi guys,

I am in the process of setting up a new 75 gallon tank that will have some fry & shrimp in, and I am trying to figure out what pre-filter I need for my Rena XP4 XL filter to avoid losing any that way. I see there are the nice foam ones, and I see some nice looking stainless mesh ones. Is one better than the other?

Thanks,
Matt
 

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Welcome to the forum. That is some crazy filtration on a 75 gal. I have the XP3 on my 55 gal and that's because I have goldfish. I have just basic sponge pre-filters and they work fine. Sponge pre-filters seem to work fine on my tanks with shrimp. Some of my filters come with them pre-formed, but for the others I have just cut into an Aquaclear sponge. Haven't lost a shrimp to them, yet.
 

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i second the AquaClear sponge
 

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I have the same filter for my 75.
The metal ones really look nice but the truth is shrimp like being able to pic at a sponge right there. Metal take the fun out of it for them.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the replies, everyone.

Bear with me, but I assume from what I see, that the AquaClears are just bascially slip-on sponges that go over the existing filter pickup? I am having a little trouble finding one that would fit the XP4, which I think has 5/8" hose. They also appear to be the coarse foam, is that better than the finer foam & won't impede flow? I see the ATI Hydromax & Filter Max sponges look more readily available. How are those?

Also, Agent13.......
While I am thinking of it & since you have a similar tank, should I get a a circulation pump to help push back across the front of the tank? Would that be a problem with fry getting sucked in as well?

I've been able to sort out most of what I need from researching & reading, but these ones seem to be tougher to find answers for.

~Matt
 

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The AC sponge is in the middle between fine and coarse. The AC20 sponge may not be large enough, but the rest are for sure. And they are readily available.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
wait a minute.... I think I may have been thinking wrong here... are we talking a block sponge from an AquaClear, or is it actually a nice looking cylindrical sponge piece?
 

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wait a minute.... I think I may have been thinking wrong here... are we talking a block sponge from an AquaClear, or is it actually a nice looking cylindrical sponge piece?
They look like a block and come in many sizes. But I'm getting confused too lol. I use the one that looks like a block (My shrimp are in a 16g so have a different sized sponge but they come in much bigger).

I wouldn't use a circulation pump with shrimplets in there. I ordered the spray bar for my output and that would probably be fine for yours too. What else is in your tank? Or is it 75 gallons of shrimp heaven?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Hmm. Ok. Well that explains why I could not find what I was picturing. I think I will end up with a Filter Max III, as it looks like it will block fry & shrimp, and says it should be good for over 200gph (the XP4 is rated at 190gph). I'm being picky about the appearance of things, so I'd prefer not a random looking block. I was going to get a Hydor inline heater for the same reason, but saw too many mixed reviews on them.

I will avoid the circulation pump, as I figured it wouldn't end well. And I guess I need to see what all comes with the XP4, as I thought the spraybar was included. It was my initial intention to use the spraybar at one end & the circualtion pump at the opposite corner.

As far as tank mates for the spattering of shrimp, I will have nerites, guppies, mollies, some loaches, dwarf rasboras, maybe small tetras and possibly some other of the peacefull small varieties. There will be a decent amount of planting, rocks & wood as well. I'd like a splash of Gardneri Clown Killifish, as they supposedly are shrimp-friendly, but I have my doubts about that one. No matter what, I am researching the death out of fish traits.
 

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Hmm. Ok. Well that explains why I could not find what I was picturing. I think I will end up with a Filter Max III, as it looks like it will block fry & shrimp, and says it should be good for over 200gph (the XP4 is rated at 190gph). I'm being picky about the appearance of things, so I'd prefer not a random looking block. I was going to get a Hydor inline heater for the same reason, but saw too many mixed reviews on them.

I will avoid the circulation pump, as I figured it wouldn't end well. And I guess I need to see what all comes with the XP4, as I thought the spraybar was included. It was my initial intention to use the spraybar at one end & the circualtion pump at the opposite corner.
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Can't blame you for being picky! I am pretty picky myself.. Now I guess it's me with the ridiculous filtration .. I know for sure I have the XP XL and it's rated at 450gph.. So I'm not sure which one you're getting. I thought mine would come with a spray bar..was disappointed to find it didn't!

I have a hydor heater on another tank(my 72g) and love it but it's the regular hydor submersible heater. Hydor is a pretty good brand to go with I just think those reviews are pretty scary for the inline one. There are plenty of better ways to hide your heater.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Well, the 450gph rating is one the ratings they give, but I was going off of their 190gph rating "with filtration media & accessories" since that is closer to actual flow. I think I will have to make another order once I get my stuff in & realize what I need yet, so I can get the pre-filter & spraybar then.

I agree about the heaters. I ended up with a pair of Jager 200w for each end of the tank. Everything is on sale really cheap between Dr. Foster Smith & Pet Mountain right now, and who knows what other holiday sale will be popping up. I was going to get a 3D background too, but that's too much for the budget right now.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Agent13-
Again since we have a similar setup, what filter media quantities are you using in your XL? There are more available slots than there are different types of media, so what are you doubling up on?
 

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In my XP4 I have fluval ceramic prefilters in the bottom tray - 2 boxes, all the mechanical media in the next tray, and then biomax in the other 2 trays - 3 boxes in each.
 

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In my XP4 I have fluval ceramic prefilters in the bottom tray .
I never thought to do that. Sounds more like how my eheims are set up.
I have the mechanical at the bottom.. 20ppi and 30ppi pads. Then I have eheim bio balls in one box and those api bio stars in the next ..then on top whatever carbon pack it came with(don't remember the name they gave it as I never changed it) and the micro filtration pad.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Interesting. I was going to follow the instructions & fill in the extra slots with ammonia/nitrate pads for extra help.
 

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Interesting. I was going to follow the instructions & fill in the extra slots with ammonia/nitrate pads for extra help.
There's absolutely no need for ammonia reducing media. That's why the bacteria is there.
 

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Discussion Starter #17

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jaysee-
So you are saying that you run these in tray 1:
Hagen Fluval Pre-Filter Media 750 grams Aquarium Filter Bio Media

Standard Rena foams in tray 2

Then these Bio-Max guys in tray 3 & 4:
Hagen Fluval Biomax Media Rings Aquarium Filter Bio Media

No filter packs for anything else? No carbon, etc? Even from a brand-new tank?
Yup, you got it right.

That's it - no carbon or anything else. Brand new tank has no impact on the media choices.

they sure would love for you to buy all that filter stuff, and replace it every month. I don't ever replace any of my media.
 

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Interesting. I was going to follow the instructions & fill in the extra slots with ammonia/nitrate pads for extra help.
wow.. good grief just glancing at the instruction you put up makes me happy I never like to read instructions. I am now a little more certain that never made it out of the box lol.
You definitely should NOT follow those instructions. Get some biological media of your preference to put in the baskets.. I simply put that one packet of carbon in since it was with it..I always do when setting up filters but then I leave it after it's not active as just another BB growing surface.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Since you both are saying just to use a ton of bio media, I will go that route. I assume that those are just to be rinsed in cool water at X time intervals? Sounds like I will order some boxes of the Fluval tonight, and probably get some of those media bags to keep it all together.
 
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