Sera Flore 500 = Ista Turbo Reactor? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-29-2017, 03:32 PM Thread Starter
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Question Sera Flore 500 = Ista Turbo Reactor?

Hello PlantedTank

Does any one know if the Sera Flore 500 reactor is the same as the Ista Turbo reactor?
I did a quick google search but nothing came up on this topic. Possibly they come from the same supplier and just rebranded?

Visually they look very similar / identical, but their price points arent. See below:





I am fully aware of the DIY options available (RG etc etc). If the ISTA version is the same, it would be hard to build one for the same price.

Thanks for any input.
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-29-2017, 05:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by changaroo View Post
Hello PlantedTank

Does any one know if the Sera Flore 500 reactor is the same as the Ista Turbo reactor?
I did a quick google search but nothing came up on this topic. Possibly they come from the same supplier and just rebranded?

Visually they look very similar / identical, but their price points arent. See below:





I am fully aware of the DIY options available (RG etc etc). If the ISTA version is the same, it would be hard to build one for the same price.

Thanks for any input.


I have the sera flore 500 and love it. Have been using it for 8 months now and has worked as good as it has since day 1. As far as if itís the same I am not 100% sure as I do not own the ista but to me it looks identical and I would totally own one if I needed another. As far as the price I would go for it if I needed.


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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-29-2017, 05:53 PM
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I have the ishta. I agree they look the same. I would buy it again. I have been using it for about a year. GSM


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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-29-2017, 06:47 PM
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I also have the Ista - this looks to be the exact same thing, except for color.

Mine required a light sanding of the inside of the impellers to make them rotate smoothly - but beyond that, it's been great.
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-29-2017, 07:19 PM Thread Starter
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thanks guys.

I wouldnt mind spending the extra $$ for the sera, but if its the same I will get the ista.
Just wasnt sure if one was a copy and the lower price point was achieved with using thinner material or cut corners.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-29-2017, 07:47 PM
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I own a sera 1000 and agree they look the same. I picked mine up from e bay from a shop in california for 30$ brand new. I have not installed it yet. I have read that some of the bits can easily brake with either model not sure which reactor was first but a difference could be in durability of the type of plastic used. I would buy which ever one is cheaper.


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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 10-29-2017, 07:50 PM
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All of the ones I looked into (this one included) had such grim reviews about quality that I went with NilocG Aquatics instead. The one I got from him was not terribly expensive.


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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-17-2019, 03:36 PM
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I was wondering the same thing. Bought the Sera on Amazon before I even saw the Ista. Probably too late to return now... I've got it up and running and it took some fine tuning as well. I find it has trouble keeping up with the CO2 demand in the tank though, because if I bubble enough CO2 into it, gas collects in the top of the reactor and stops the blades from turning. So I am using it in concert with the in tank diffuser it was to replace. This is working fine. Guess I just shelled out $20 bucks extra for the Sera.

Another note: I have noticed some equipment is cheaper at places like BigAl's than on Amazon, enough so so that even paying for shipping one comes out ahead. I guess it pays to shop around.

29 gallon, pH controlled CO2, Current USA + Pro LED, Eco-complete, Eheim Classic.

20L gallon, same configuration with HOB filter, suffering from tank size envy.


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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-28-2020, 02:34 AM
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I know this is an old thread, but I currently have both of these installed and can state some differences and similarities. I am running each on its own Marineland C-220 canister filter. I put a 5/8" to 1/2" barbed adapter on each side of the ISTA to put it inline with my 5/8" tubing.

Similarities: These definitely work on the same principal, are extremely similar design and are made of the same type of plastic. The inside of the upper "impeller" (the slotted one) is rough. I sanded mine to make it run smoother. Air bubbles will cause more noise and the "impellers" to slow and/or stop.

Differences: The ISTA is blackish and the Sera is brownish. The ISTA takes 12 mm ID hose, which is slightly small for 1/2" hose, although it does work, it can be a little loose. The Sera takes 5/8" ID hose very well. Standard CO2 line fits the ISTA better than it does the Sera.

I observed something on the Sera which I fixed before I installed the ISTA: decreased outflow will cause the impellers to slow and/or stop. I had a DIY inline heater which was stepped down to 1/2" hose on the Sera. The impellers stopped. I increased the size of the heater barb and the impellers have been running fine ever since. I have not observed this on the ISTA, but I can only imagine that the same holds true.
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