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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
It is many years now since I fully immersed myself in the technical aspects of planted tanks. I started my 2 tanks when I was at university and funds were limited so I have ordinary high-street tanks - a 40L with an eheim compact filter, and a juwel 100L (ish) (with black silicon!) with an eheim professional 3 filter and inline heater. I played with CO2 for a bit but it was pretty expensive and getting refills was tough so I just dose liquid co2. My job is all over the place with hours so my plants are all fairly low tech/low light and I don’t foresee that changing.

I am thinking of upgrading my larger tank. I wanted to get a much bigger one, but I don’t have the space. I remember reading in the past that corner tanks were not ideal due to flow and dead spots, and internal filters are not as good, but it seems that a corner tank maybe the only way to significantly increase my volume from what I currently have.

I dreamed of low iron, rimless glass, but the sizes are basically the same or too long.

What should I be aspiring to?
 

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It is many years now since I fully immersed myself in the technical aspects of planted tanks. I started my 2 tanks when I was at university and funds were limited so I have ordinary high-street tanks - a 40L with an eheim compact filter, and a juwel 100L (ish) (with black silicon!) with an eheim professional 3 filter and inline heater. I played with CO2 for a bit but it was pretty expensive and getting refills was tough so I just dose liquid co2. My job is all over the place with hours so my plants are all fairly low tech/low light and I don’t foresee that changing.

I am thinking of upgrading my larger tank. I wanted to get a much bigger one, but I don’t have the space. I remember reading in the past that corner tanks were not ideal due to flow and dead spots, and internal filters are not as good, but it seems that a corner tank maybe the only way to significantly increase my volume from what I currently have.

I dreamed of low iron, rimless glass, but the sizes are basically the same or too long.

What should I be aspiring to?
Personally I'd wait till you can get the tank you really want, or make a tank work in the space you have. Instead of a corner tank get a regular rectangular tank and turn it diagonally to the corner. For bigger tanks, 120cm tanks are the way to go. Dimensions really help with aquascaping.
 

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Thanks for your reply. 100cm is about the max I can get in the space between the wall and window unfortunately. I’ve looked at so many tanks that my head is spinning!

I mainly wanted to check a few things in case things have changed in the last 8 years since I last researched this!

  • I assume I still want to have external filters (not internal that comes with most aquarium kits), and aim for huge turnover of water/hr.
  • Rectangular is better than corner tanks for flow/dead spots and therefore algae/ plant growth.
  • tall tanks are not ideal for planted tanks (I.e. a tall tank would give me more volume, but I’d have issues with light, and surface area/filtration is what gives me more fish inches?)
  • would I be better buying a separate tank, stand, filter, light unit etc than buying something like a fluval/juwel kit or can I make these sort of things work for me?
 

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I would do maybe a 40 breeder (36x18x18) it’s about 200 liters and can hold a lot of fish and is good for scraping. Also you could do a rectangle Tank tilted sideways so it looks like it’s in the corner and scape with lots of depth
 

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I think the answer to the filter part of your question is canister filter. All the rimless low iron tanks I've seen run on canister filters with glass lily valves. I want a low iron tank but I don't know if I want to deal with a canister filter. I had one once and didn't handle it very well. Oase makes a nice one with a big prefilter. You don't have to clean it out so much when you have a prefilter according to George Farmer. I think once you get this set up you're really going to like it. My tank is sideways in the corner. It makes it more viewable from anywhere in the room.
 

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I think the answer to the filter part of your question is canister filter. All the rimless low iron tanks I've seen run on canister filters with glass lily valves. I want a low iron tank but I don't know if I want to deal with a canister filter. I had one once and didn't handle it very well. Oase makes a nice one with a big prefilter. You don't have to clean it out so much when you have a prefilter according to George Farmer. I think once you get this set up you're really going to like it. My tank is sideways in the corner. It makes it more viewable from anywhere in the room.
You could try a sponge or a matten filter they are easy to hide or anaerobic filter
 

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Thanks for your reply. 100cm is about the max I can get in the space between the wall and window unfortunately. I’ve looked at so many tanks that my head is spinning!

I mainly wanted to check a few things in case things have changed in the last 8 years since I last researched this!

  • I assume I still want to have external filters (not internal that comes with most aquarium kits), and aim for huge turnover of water/hr.
  • Rectangular is better than corner tanks for flow/dead spots and therefore algae/ plant growth.
  • tall tanks are not ideal for planted tanks (I.e. a tall tank would give me more volume, but I’d have issues with light, and surface area/filtration is what gives me more fish inches?)
  • would I be better buying a separate tank, stand, filter, light unit etc than buying something like a fluval/juwel kit or can I make these sort of things work for me?
Yes external filter (canister or sump) is typical for medium to large tanks. 4 to 8 actual turn over per hour is recommended. (Not just the wacky advertised numbers that are usually half the actual output on a canister filter)

Rectangular is better because it gives you more options for tanks.

Tall tanks do have lighting concerns but they are definitely ones that can be overcome. Creating aquascapes for tall tanks can be challenging when there is not the horizontal space. Also most fish use the horizontal space far more than the vertical.

Buying separate components gives you greater freedom to choose the parts that work best for you and allow you to reuse them on future tanks.
 

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Ive been in the hobby myself for years and I’ve had a change in thinking on filter turnover. I used to think more is better. Aside from river tanks or monster fish I have a more moderate view now on flow. The bacteria does grow on everything in the tank so I don’t consider the media as important. I’m always using plants now as well that supplement the filtration.

What is a corner tank? L shape?
 

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I'm gonna make myself the odd one out and say this corner tank with an internal corner filter with a spray bar could actually work decently. I've done this in older residential turned commercial buildings successfully. The other thing that could be done with a corner tank like that is a walstad with just a powerhead in the back corner, but that would need to be a pretty permanent fixture and a bit of research. I'm not trying to sway you into this decision or deter you from it, just giving you examples of what I've done with corner tanks. As far as truly functional/ easy tanks you're going to want length vs height for best versatility and maintenance ease/ stocking ability. Good luck!!
 
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