I'm pleased to see this idea making a comeback in the hobby, says Nathan Hill. It's a boosting canister that sits inline before your existing canister — and the possibilities seem endless!
In its official role this unit will help reduce the burden on any filters already in place. It comes filled with three stages of mechanical filter foams, to my eye all seeming to be about the same gauge but they are, in fact, coarse, medium and fine.
With a 16mm inlet and outlet it’ll go inline with plenty of popular filter models and notably, when running straight out of the box, it has little to no impact on flow rates.
Of course, like any device of this nature, it’ll eventually slow things down if starting to get clogged, but until then all is good.
On the plus side, it means you’ll have less solid waste smothering that all-important biological media in the main filter and that’s fine by me.
Does it reduce the need for water changes? No, but it’s a lot easier to open and clean frequently than an entire heavy and bulky external.
This filter offers the opportunity to tinker. It doesn’t really matter which way the water flows through it, so you can get truly experimental with floating media.
There’s a grille at the top and bottom and with a little tweaking you should be able to find a way to keep them in place in the absence of the supplied foams.
At that point let the games begin! I’d be inclined to fill one up with something like biomotion or K1 and push water from the top down, but I’m sure there’ll be better innovations out there.
The model tested has a 1.2 litre capacity, so there’s scope for a fair belt of media. There’s a 2.3 litre model in the pipeline too.
As for build quality the unit is sturdy, the clips fasten and unfasten easily and the taps do what they’re supposed to do.
For what it’s worth it’s a pretty smart looking little 'dustbin' accessory too. I’d happily have mine on show.
This is well worth the money for anyone with messy fish, or who feels their existing filter struggles to cope with their tank’s solid waste.
On top of that it’s also good value for anyone who fancies upping his or her filtration and getting creative with new media. I utterly love it.
Price: £19.99; available from All Pond Solutions.