Aqua Soil VS Eco?? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-11-2007, 09:27 PM Thread Starter
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Aqua Soil VS Eco??

Ok Guys,

I am stuck. I like both products but am a loss as to what to get. Keep in mind I am looking at a long term set up. It is about a wash for me to go one way or the other. I am new to the whole planted tank thing and just want to start out on the right foot.

Curt
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-11-2007, 10:32 PM
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wow, someone new to this hobby picking the top 2 substrates.
talk about beginners luck well, assuming cost is not an issue,
choosing between the two probably has more to do with what
kinds of fish and plants you hope to host. Eco is a heavier, so
if you plan on lots of bottom dwellers disturbing your substrate
that would be a better choice than AS, however if your focus
is on very small fine plant growing, and will stear clear of more
active bottom dwellers, then AS may be the better investment.
I assume you don't care about color, as many choose Eco over
AS simply because they prefer the unnatural high contrast black.


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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-11-2007, 10:50 PM
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I've used both and AS grows plants better and easier to plant on compared to Eco.

Eco is a darker black, and with a black background you put all the focus of the tank to the plants and fish.

And just like spypet said, if you have bottom dwellers, ECO is better as disturbed AS will make the tank cloudy.
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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-11-2007, 11:33 PM
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what size tank are you doing? I have noticed that aquasoil also tends to cloud my water and if you ever try moving it from one tank to another its really going to get messy.
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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-11-2007, 11:42 PM Thread Starter
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55 Gal, Fish Are going to be various coradaris species, Bolivian Rams and Tetras, With a few oto cats for algee control.
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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-13-2007, 12:36 PM
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Aquasoil.....no comparison to it.

FUNction over form

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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-13-2007, 02:54 PM
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well i haven't used eco before, but i could offer you some info on aquasoil.

firstly, aquasoil is a complete substrate, meaning that you dont have to mix in a nutrient base or other addictives to grow plants well. however, for long term growth, its still best to couple AS with a nutrient base. i wouldn't recommend power sand though, its considerably more expensive than any other nutrient bases (at least in singapore) and i dont think it provides as much either.

secondly, you'll have to choose which of the three you would like to use. theres Amazonia, Africana and Malaya. note that some people say that amazonia is the strongest AS and malaya the weakest, and to a small extent, that is true for amazonia contains the most organic material of all the three. other than that its just a color difference, amazonia's dark-grey/black, africana brown, malaya creamy? (nv used malaya before so i'm not sure)

thirdly, AS does make your water cloudy when disturbed. but it usually settles within and hour or two so long as your filter's don't keep churning them about.

lastly, note that AS comes in "powder" form or normal. powder form is actually the same thing, just smaller in grain size (~1mm) compared to the normal (~1-3mmm) grains. Oh and theres the type 2 AS, it looks identical (to the naked eye at least), but claims that it doesnt cloud the water as much. havent been able to test this claim but i guess ADA has a name to live up too. haha

Hope that helps you decide between AS and eco. =)
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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-14-2007, 12:51 AM
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I haven't used AS, but I do use Eco. Eco is good, but I haven't heard near the amount of praise as I have from AS. One thing that I have had a problem with Eco is that it will scratch the crap out of glass. I recently got a little caught in the glass cleaner and it did a real number on the front of my glass. I don't think AS will do this, but I can't speak from experience.
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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-14-2007, 02:25 AM
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AquaSoil turns to dust/mud when crushed in the water.

Rena Filtstar #137!
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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-14-2007, 04:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tropicalfish View Post
AquaSoil turns to dust/mud when crushed in the water.
Maybe you shouldn't crush it then

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post #11 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-14-2007, 05:01 PM
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I have both Aquasoil and Flourite. Definately Aquasoil will give you the best growth! However, the only thing I don't like about it is when you disturb it, you will get a big cloud. Otherwise, I love Aquasoil!
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post #12 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-14-2007, 05:47 PM
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Eco-Complete is better than ADA Aquasoil for *MOST* Hobbyists

Ok, I have now done a tank with BOTH AS (29g link in sig) and ECO (55g link in sig). And I *DEFINITELY* WITHOUT A DOUBT recommend Eco to just about every hobbyist! Yes, my AS grows plants EXCEPTIONALLY well but its the other factors that make the decision easy:


I recommend Eco to *any* and *every* rookie or sophomore hobbyist *instead* of Aquasoil!! Its a) the easiest to plant in! (not too light like AS) b) it doesn't make your tank murky for a few weeks w/ daily water changes, c) and perhaps most importantly, you can rearrange your scape without angering the gods of silty water and crushed soil....which, for *MOST* of us is what we are going to end up doing with our tanks, rearranging things as time goes on (since we are new, you won't know how plants grow out, or how your scape preferences mature...its nice to not have to fear rearranging your scape) AS I think is for people who know ahead of time *what* they want their scape to be, which usually means you have a few years of experience w/ scaping, and know how the plants grow out, and you aren't going to be re-arranging your scape. Eco is easier to plant in as well, it has a nice weight to it. I have seen some amazing growth from my AS in my low-tech tank, HOWEVER I doubt Eco is going to be 'that' much worse, and its benefits far outweigh the growth advantage I believe (being able to rearrange w/o murky water and crushed soil, and its easy to plant in).

If your name is Amano, and you know exactly how your plants will turn out after 6 months to a year and know that you won't need to rearrange anything...go w/ AS for the better growth. But, if you are a mere mortal go w/ Eco it is much more forgiving...AS makes you realize your planting "skills" are lacking, while Eco makes you feel like a pro (and its growth is still going to be better than gravel, and I would imagine better than just flourite, plus it looks nice)

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post #13 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-17-2007, 03:33 PM Thread Starter
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Ok The jury is in. I am going to use AS when I redo my 20 but for the 55 and to get started I am going to be Using 1- Bag of Florite red For a little color), 3 20 Lbs Bags of Eco, and around 1-20-50 lbs bag of Sand. The Tank is going to be an amazon style river/ Acid pool Tank. I am going to start out low tech but moving to Co2 injection as soon as I can afford it. I currently have to wood soaking and it will be doing that for about the next 3.5 weeks. The PH I am going to start with hopefully is going to be around 6.5 to 7.

Curt

P.s. follow my thread on building the tank!!
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post #14 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-18-2007, 02:16 AM
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curt if you are planning a month ahead grow a carpet using the no-water technique in the general discussion area! just put a plant light or two on it if its too cold to leave out in the sun....skip the algae stage...

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post #15 of 20 (permalink) Old 10-18-2007, 06:33 PM
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Neat trick for your sand - go to 3m's website, look up Colorquartz sand, and find a local dealer - you can get several colors, it has a much more uniform size to it (get T grade), and it also holds a slope pretty well should you do some scaping with it.

Last edited by ingg; 10-18-2007 at 06:33 PM. Reason: spellin
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