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There is a slight difference. It has to do with backpressure. If you reduce the inlet side, that is to close the valve so that less water can get into the filter pressure will drop, maybe cavatate and possibly the impellor/motor could heat up. If you restrict the outlet line the pressure in the filter will increase as the motor is pumping and water cannot escape of outward pressure is increased on the walls of the filter/ piping. Would an atomiser do this, probably not. but if i put one on I would use a by pass with a two way valve to controll the flow through it.
check out LS6 Tommy's here:http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/showthread.php?t=163977&page=3
that's what id do when adding anything in-line.
 
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