I must look at your tank 2-3 times a day Lol! I had a good group of Amanos in every planted tank I've had. They did fine with large Angels, Rainbows, Rams, and Kribs. I also maintained a large colony of RCS. granted I got them going as culls from my PFR tank... but if you lifted a piece of driftwood it would look like an army of fire ants. As long as you add them at night and plan to lose a couple you will be pleased.. they are feisty. I'm going to add them along with RCS to my new 75 a little while before I stock it. They gave a huge margin of error in terms of algae issues.
I didn't see it mentioned but what regulator are you using? Are you using a reactor?
Nevermind... you did a great job explaining all of it on page 2 (if anyone else is wondering). I REALLY don't like messing with canister filters... I don't like cleaning them as they always give me issues starting back up. I was thinking of maybe splitting the output to a Hagen Mini on either end of the tank? Pretty simple and not alot to screw up? I assume you have been very happy with your GLA regulator?
First of all, your first sentence made my day, and thanks for the nice compliment.
Good to hear you had Amano's with Rainbows and Rams, as I have both. I'm hoping with the all the places to hide, at least a decent potion of the 30 will make it. The ones I'm getting are supposed to be about 1", so that should help.
Now on to the equipment. I now use a Cerges reactor that I built. It's somewhere here in this thread. Should have done it first thing. It's easy to build, and works perfectly. I split the outflow so that the CO2 enriched water is being directed to each end of the tank. Canister filters? I've never had a problem starting mine back up, and I have three to take care of. But to each to his own, and whatever works out best for you is what's important.
As to the GLA regulator, I have been very happy with mine. My feeling is that with all the costs associated with running a high tech planted tank, the few dollars you might save on something as important as a good regulator is not much in the scheme of things. Years later you won't miss the few extra dollars you spent, but if you have trouble with a cheap one, you will be wondering why you didn't just get a better one to start with. Again, just my opinion.
And looking forward to seeing what you do with the new 75G.