Thoughts on Spec V and other nano kits? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-07-2019, 02:22 PM Thread Starter
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Thoughts on Spec V and other nano kits?

I'm going to be working on a new nano scape and have been drawn to the Spec V. Not a fan of cubes or tall tanks, and the Spec V looks like it would be great to scape with. It would definitely be for low-light plants, and stocked with either a betta or neons and endlers.

I skimmed through the Spec V thread here, but have also read a few reviews that the pump is too strong and has killed fish. Looking to get some of your takes on the pros and cons of the Spec V. If you've had the Spec V and moved on to something else, what other kit would you recommend?
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-07-2019, 03:19 PM
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Mine never 'killed fish'?
I have had the spec III, Spec V, the fluval edge, and randomly built tanks of all sorts. I think it depends on your scape requirements. Then determine what tank will best fit your needs.
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-07-2019, 08:11 PM
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Some have noted the pump flow is too strong for bettas, particularly the long-finned varieties. This can be mitigated by putting a filter sponge over the outflow.

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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-07-2019, 09:32 PM
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I've got a Spec V that's housed two reasonably long-tailed bettas (not at the same time, obviously). I cut about 6 notches in the hose leading from the pump back into the tank to slow down the flow a bit and provide more water circulation for the heater I've got in the pump chamber and I aim the outflow nozzle up. It's got good circulation and the bettas get around fine. Both of them spend a good bit of time chilling against the filter intake or in the plants, but they did that even when I had a sponge on the filter outflow that really cut down on water circulation. When I had a sponge on, I got horrendous algae issues due to lack of circulation and I suspect I'd have had water quality issues if I had more than a single betta in there and I hadn't taken the sponge off the next day (other people use the sponge with no issues, so I don't know what was different about my tank - even with the pump on its highest setting, I couldn't get enough flow with the sponge on). Sometimes my current betta will go swimming wildly after some food and get buffeted about a bit by the current (he normally avoids the area with the strongest current or swims calmly through it). He's fine, though - I just tell him his butt is too pretty for such shenanigans.

I really like the look of the tank and highly recommend getting a heater that fits in the pump chamber to keep the clean look. The lack of front-to-back distance is quite limiting for aquascaping, but if you're prepared to work with it, I think you can get some really nice setups, and I love the length of the tank.

I only use the light it came with and I've got plants coming out my ears (mini dwarf hairgrass and cryptocoryne undulata "red" mostly - the crypt isn't the reddest of red plants I've seen, but it's decently red for a non-plant-specialized light).

Oh, and the filter/pump is *suuuuuuper* quiet - I have pretty significant noise issues and I can sleep with it in my bedroom. When I had it in my kitchen, if you were standing right next to the tank, the refrigerator across the room was louder than the tank!
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-09-2019, 04:26 PM
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I also have a fluval spec V, and haven't run into many problems. The pump is strong and can blow micro fish varieties around, but usually the fish just avoid it or move below the outflow. (if the outflow is pointed straight and forward, there is a good amount of space with low/no flow for these fish). I also have a crown tail betta in the tank, who struggled with the current at first but is now used to it. Initially, I just pointed the flow upward and sort of blocked it with my mag float. Recently, I've been noticing that he is less affected by the current and swims through it without the obstructions. I think it's still critical to have a stone or some type of stem plant that he can rest in (as my betta does this often). I would be (and was) reluctant to make permanent changes, because the flow of the pump really cleans the tank well and ensures that there aren't too many stagnant spaces for algae to grow.

As Snapdragon said, the only issue with the spec tank is that it's the depth is somewhat shallow (front-back), so you have to be creative when aquascaping to get the illusion of depth. The light on the new spec is quite bright and I've been able to get good growth and colouration using thrive and excel as supplements.

I would say the tank will work with bettas or neons or both, but with the neons you may need to divert the flow (by pointing the nozzle up or potentially using a sponge baffle).

**Also, in my initial setup I placed hornwort right in front of the outflow and I found that it did have an effect in dispersing/weakening the flow, so you could use a plant (that's stronger, and sheds less) to go about weakening the flow.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-09-2019, 05:59 PM
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I have had 2 Spec V's for several years and like these tanks a lot. I haven't had a betta but currently have ruby tetras in one with a single left over chili rasbora, and 3 habrous cories and single tiger endler in the other (just lost the female - hope to get another). They're clean looking, easy to maintain and for the fish I've had - including some sparkling gouramis in the past - flow didn't seem to be an issue.

I'm also looking at the Spec 16 for a potential upgrade of one of my standard 5.5 tanks but just not ready to spend the extra $$$ yet. If I were just starting out with a nano tank, I think I'd start there.
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-09-2019, 07:28 PM
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If you are going for smaller tanks- I would say that a Spec V is good; But I personally dont like the side of it (black bar).
However I hate the top on the edge for building/maintenance! (but aesthetically its better). Its personal preference.
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-09-2019, 08:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tornado View Post
I'm going to be working on a new nano scape and have been drawn to the Spec V. Not a fan of cubes or tall tanks, and the Spec V looks like it would be great to scape with. It would definitely be for low-light plants, and stocked with either a betta or neons and endlers.

I skimmed through the Spec V thread here, but have also read a few reviews that the pump is too strong and has killed fish. Looking to get some of your takes on the pros and cons of the Spec V. If you've had the Spec V and moved on to something else, what other kit would you recommend?
I love my Spec V, I have an older version of it with the weaker LED lights, so I upgraded those to an 18" Beamswork. I had a regular veil tail betta initially with normal flow, no adjustments and he did fine. In the beginning I had pointed the outflow towards the back wall, after a while I adjusted it so there was flow through the tank, betta didn't seem to mind at all.


Like others have stated, the I wish it had a bit more depth, 1-2 more inches would be nice.


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Fluval EDGE slightly modded, low tech
3+ gallon (40 x 16 x 20.5 cm) aquatic soil, low-tech
Fluval spec V (sitting in a box)
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-10-2019, 08:16 PM Thread Starter
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Appreciate the responses everyone!
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