Nathan Hill loves this latest internal filter from Eden, but warns that it's not a product for lazy fishkeepers.
The last time I held anything this nice, security guards were on to me in seconds. After years of disdainfully seeing the 'Henry Ford' approach to cheapening canister filters and the slight decline in build qualities (and not to mention innovation), a filter I’ve never handled before has come along and moved all the goalposts.
The Eden 328 reminds me of the golden age of filter innovations, when the likes of VisiJet were tossing the competition aside with funky details that nobody had asked for but everyone wanted. It looks different, it behaves different, and it is different to pretty much all other canisters.
First impressions were that I thought I’d broken the thing in seconds. I got it out of the box, went to twist the outflow, heard a ping and then it all went limp. I had to open it up, which revealed layer upon layer of well-sealed, snugly-fitting parts. Then I found my 'broken' piece — a tiny metal pin that had pinged out as a failsafe against heavy-handed thugs like me.
The impeller is solid, and spins like a well-trained ballerina. Tiny rubber rings keep it in place, making it quiet when running.
The outlet has the most ingenious yet simple swivelling nozzle. Gears and pinions inside mean that as the unit flows, the nozzle swings back and forth across a 120° field. A wheel-type controller on the flank allows you to adjust flow up and down. You can ping the included venturi kit on the spout, too, if you’re the kind of aquarist who likes fine bubbles and a filter that sounds like a pig with a sinus infection.
The filter chamber is an exercise in basic innovation, some so obvious that it’s amazing it has taken this long. The flow of water is channelled through grilles on either side of the unit, up and over and into the filter body proper. Inside it is not just a single large foam, but two close foams, each sat on an individual strainer. It means you get lashings of extra mechanical surface area for no extra physical presence.
Directly behind the strainers, in a darkened compartment, is space for your carbon (included), which feeds to another darkened chamber into which you can place your sintered glass biomedia (like mini biomax, also included).
There are downsides. The main downside is that a lot of aquarists are lazy when it comes to filter maintenance. If that’s you, then you won’t like it. There are lots of parts to clean, and regularly if you want it running optimally. The clear casing for the foams will get grubby fast, undermining the aesthetic quality of it all.
The 328 has a flow rate of 200 lph set at its lowest, and 1000 lph at full pelt. It’s rated by the manufacturers for a tank up to 300 l/66 gal, which I feel might be stretching it, based on how many fish I know people will cram into a typical Rio 300. I reckon 200 l/44 gal myself, but I could be surprised.
Outrageously good. I love this, and think you will too. You get a lot for your loot, and the whole thing looks and feels quality.
Ease of use:
Value for money:
RRP £75.99, but most stores selling it at around £37.99.
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