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Let's talk about powerheads

Discussion in 'General Reefkeeping Discussion' started by TheRealChrisBrown, Apr 28, 2019.

  1. TheRealChrisBrown

    TheRealChrisBrown Tuna Staff Member M.A.S.C Club Member M.A.S.C. B.O.D. B.O.D. Member-at-Large

    I have an Apex, but wasn't necessarily planning to add them to it. I run the 2 Gyres just through their basic controller (XF150), and they just run about 50% power 24/7. One of these days I should emerge from the dark ages and put stuff on fancy schedules, makes a lot of sense! At this point I am sold on the Tunze's, I might do things a little backwards though...I'll explain in my next post.
  2. TheRealChrisBrown

    TheRealChrisBrown Tuna Staff Member M.A.S.C Club Member M.A.S.C. B.O.D. B.O.D. Member-at-Large

    So at the urging of @zombie and @Andrew_bram I took both gyers out yesterday, completely disassembled them, cleaned them, and carefully put them back together. As Andrew pointed out to me I took care with the bearings in the ends and that seems to have helped. Both gyers are quieter now than they were and back to moving a good bit of water. However the hum is still present! So I started systematically turning things on and off, and the sound is coming from my Reeflo Barracuda in the basement. Interestingly, when standing next to the pump, or even with my ears 3in. from the pump I can't hear this high pitched sound. It's only from upstairs that I can hear it! In talking to Reeflo their suspicion is motor bearings since I recently replaced the pump seal not that long ago and it's not leaking. Since I didn't have a true plug and play backup I went ahead and ordered a new Gold Hammerhead/Barracuda through their Loyalty program, which saved $180 of the regular price! Then I can send the old pump in for a full refurbish and in the end I should have 2 new pumps, one being a direct plug and play option should I ever need it.

    But back to my powerheads, with the gyres seemingly working...I think I am going to try the Tunze Comline 6214 or maybe the smaller 6208. Then, as I think about it more, maybe make some times when just the wave maker is running and just the gyers are running, and then everything runs. Something like that.
  3. flagg37

    flagg37 Copepod M.A.S.C Club Member

    I’m usually in the minority but I like the WAV’s. People bring up the longevity of them, and it might be a real problem but they haven’t been for me. Plus, they are so much cheaper than either the Tunze or Ecotech options (about 2:1).

    The thing I like most about the Ecotechs is their flow pattern. It’s very broad and dispersed. I think the only better flow pattern is with a gyre, but their shortcomings have already been discussed. The WAV is not that far behind the Ecotech though; and with its ability to be directed (opppsed to needing to be perpendicular to the glass), I would edge the WAV put ahead.

    BRS did a video comparing powerheads for the BRS 160. Correct me if I’m wrong but the Tunze flow pattern was very narrow and direct.

    Just sharing my opinion. I’ve never owned a Tunze, only WAVs and an mp10.

    In my next build I’m planning on having either all WAV’s (6 of them) or possibly 3 or 4 WAV’s with a couple mp60’s for their extra power.
    TheRealChrisBrown likes this.
  4. TheRealChrisBrown

    TheRealChrisBrown Tuna Staff Member M.A.S.C Club Member M.A.S.C. B.O.D. B.O.D. Member-at-Large

    I looked at the WAV's too, but their customer reviews are terrible on BRS. I take that with a grain of salt since the most likely people to leave feedback are people who are upset, but I'm pretty sure I know a MASC member who had them who also didn't like them (I don't want to name names, since I'm not 100% sure he had them and didn't like them). But it would be so awesome if they were great pumps just because they would seamlessly integrate with the Apex, especially at their price point.

    I haven't owned a Tunze either, but from looking at them over the last few days is seems like they have 2 different flow patterns. Anything with the word nanostream in it has a tight flow pattern, which is funny because when I see nano anything I just assume they are intending it for nano cubes or small tanks. The powerheads that are just "streams" have a wide flow pattern...that is if I am reading things correctly. Again never owned one.
  5. MuralReef

    MuralReef Shark Staff Member M.A.S.C Club Member M.A.S.C. B.O.D. MASC Vice-President

    Chris if you wanted to stop by and check out pumps sometime when you're in town let me know. Right now I am running Tunzes, Vortechs, Jebaos, Rossmonts, and WAVs on the two tanks at school.
  6. Balz3352

    Balz3352 Marlin M.A.S.C Club Member

    I currently run 2 gyre 250s with 2 tunze 6095s. I (fortunately or unfortunately) have really good hearing especially when it comes to pump noise apparently. I can hear both the gyre and the tunze. I think the tunze is more cord vibration where it hits my netting but gyre definitely is loud by my standpoint. It drives me nuts some days others I can ignore it.

    Im happy with the current configuration because of how much water these gyres move with some cross flow support form the tunze. Id recommend the gyres with a caveat of noise and cleaning is more involved but the tunze id recommend hands down. I actually run 2 more tunze pumps In my frag tank which was neglected for a while and got overrun with algae (still a consistent battle) and the lower pump will get clogged with algae. I tuen it off do a 2 minute tooth brush clean and presto turns on like it's new.
    TheRealChrisBrown likes this.
  7. zombie

    zombie Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    The WAVs are actually pretty nice. My only two complaints with them is if you aren't good about keeping your module firmware matching your apex firmware they can be a pain to reconnect when you clean them. The magnet on the impeller is also incredibly powerful, so you have to be careful during assembly/disassembly so it doesn't smack against something and crack the impeller.

    Sent from my SM-G965U using MASC mobile app
  8. flagg37

    flagg37 Copepod M.A.S.C Club Member

    That’s true. That magnet is very strong. As well as the magnet to keep it on the glass. I had it on 1/2” glass and it still could squeeze a finger good.
  9. scmountain

    scmountain Copepod

    I have an AI Nero 5. and I don't know I f I will ever go back. Brushless motor runs smooth as silk and you cant hear it with you ear against the tank at lower flow rates! even when ran at 100% a small whir (and too much kick up in my 65g)
    Yes running a cord that goes into the tank is a con but those are easy to hide.
    clean ability has yet to be an issue but my guess is a complete rebuild will be time consuming. TBD
    I love the app, straight forward easy to use, has really helped my tank water quality.
    I also am a huge fan of the lower profile design, and knock on wood no critters have bee chopped by it.
    that's my .02
    TheRealChrisBrown likes this.
  10. Andrew_bram

    Andrew_bram Shark M.A.S.C Club Member

    I agree with all you said but mine has been loud. Emailed support and apparently they are tested with a type of lubricant which clogs the holes making it scream loud enough to wake me up on the second story of my house. Time will tell if cleaning fixes issue. I have done cleaning process 4 times now. If it does remain quiet after latest cleaning they are seriously pretty nice pumps.

    Sent from my SM-G965U using Tapatalk
    TheRealChrisBrown likes this.
  11. Shaunv

    Shaunv Sardine M.A.S.C Club Member

    I have been doing research on getting power heads for my new 160g build. Here is what I have learned so far. If you are doing SPS dominate tank with bare bottom, you should be running about 50 x -100x tank volume per hour when all powerheads are running or 25x-50x tank volume for actual movement. This is because not all pumps are running at max at once. Also, depending on what corals you keep, you may want powerheads that do a more broad flow, like gyre, or a more direct flow. I am going to be running a barebottom sps dominate tank, so I will need a lot of flow. If I was running lps corals with sand, I would want less flow. That being said, I decided on 2 gyre xf350 on the sides and 2 vortech mp40 on the back. The xf350’s are supposedly quieter and easier to clean while also pumping about 5280 gph. The mp40’s do about 4500 gph. Depending on how the flow works around the aquascape, I may or may not need additional flow to help keep detritus off the bottom of the tank and ensure my sps gets enough flow around them. Check out the video by BRS

    I don’t know about the noise yet as the tank is still not wet yet. Hopefully I will have water in it in the next 2 weeks.
  12. Andrew_bram

    Andrew_bram Shark M.A.S.C Club Member

    Nice flow.

    Sent from my SM-G965U using Tapatalk
    Shaunv likes this.
  13. jda123

    jda123 Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    Gyre made some of my acropora "lean" with the flow... not dynamic at all. I now run them way less than I did. They do move a lot of water, but it is very static.
  14. TheRealChrisBrown

    TheRealChrisBrown Tuna Staff Member M.A.S.C Club Member M.A.S.C. B.O.D. B.O.D. Member-at-Large

    I was just reading reviews on BRS and the chopped fish complaint comes up more than once.

    After a few months @Andrew_bram did nero quiet down? I'm thinking about them to work in conjunction with my 2 gyers. Maybe gyres on top of back wall, and 2 nero's on either end? I still feel like my gyres are loud, but when I am sitting next to the tank my head is about 2 ft. from one of the gyres, so maybe I'm too close.
  15. Andrew_bram

    Andrew_bram Shark M.A.S.C Club Member

    The nero seems like a good pump. I think that the magnet is a little weak. The pump just had to have grease cleaned off from factory and it was instantly quiet.

    Sent from my SM-G965U using Tapatalk
    TheRealChrisBrown likes this.
  16. MuralReef

    MuralReef Shark Staff Member M.A.S.C Club Member M.A.S.C. B.O.D. MASC Vice-President

    Just an update on these. I cleaned one yesterday and put on the flow head for a long tank and now it’s kicking up the sand at the front of the tank. I don’t know why I didn’t try that sooner but the different head really made a difference.
    TheRealChrisBrown likes this.
  17. scmountain

    scmountain Copepod

    Now that my Nero is on the bowfront, there is a tiny bit more noise due to running at 70-100% vs 30%. and that is with head 4ft away no ambient music/sound. noone hears it but me as I listen for it. (also the "cabinet" nature of my setup adds to the volume)

    As far as fish blending, knock on wood, I am still fine. Even when the nem was strolling around my tank he never was close to it, the eductor however did more damage.

    I am looking at adding a 2nd Nero for more flow. the lack of compatibility with my Apex is the only downside, but its cheaper to add another Nero than switch to MP40 setup
    TheRealChrisBrown likes this.

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