Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Apple Valley, MN
The Zoo Med 501 is pretty slick. I just got one and did tons of testing, and it's nowhere near it's rating, but that's perfect for the 3 gallon tank I'm using it on. With the provided media and sponge in it and an additional filter sponge on top of the media, plus 40" of 3/8" hose on the input and output, mine moves 36 GPH. That's low for a 10 gallon, but for your purposes it'd work fine. It's also pretty darn quiet (but it's still brand new).
Tonight I tested locating it below the tank and it pumps exactly the same 36 GPH flow when I lowered it 30" below the tank as it did sitting right next to it, so you can hide it nicely if you want and there is no flow penalty for putting the pump lower than the tank.