Best $100-$150 Protein Skimmer

duberii

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I'm looking for a protein skimmer for my 70 gallon system (40 gallon display, 30ish gallon sump). It only has 2 fish, but has a full spread of corals I feed regularly (some even daily like my dendro and a northern star coral). Does anybody have any recommendations?
 
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James77

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It's $180, but I would suggest AquaMaxx FC-80. Sign up with a new email on marine depot and they give you 10% off, or wait for likely 4th of July sales.

Was running this on my 40 breeder setup that I just broke down. I bought a larger Aquamaxx for the 120g (Q2 model) I am going back to because they are great skimmers.

On the FC-80, I have no complaints. It was very quiet and pulled dark skimmate consistently and was easily adjustable.
 

andrewey

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My vote would be a used RO 110 or 150, BM Curve 7, or Tunze 9012 for skimmers you're likely to regularly encounter being sold. If you can play around with craigslist and find some older skimmers, that list expands to include some really fun models including the asm series, Aqua C, etc.
 
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duberii

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It's $180, but I would suggest AquaMaxx FC-80. Sign up with a new email on marine depot and they give you 10% off, or wait for likely 4th of July sales.

Was running this on my 40 breeder setup that I just broke down. I bought a larger Aquamaxx for the 120g (Q2 model) I am going back to because they are great skimmers.

On the FC-80, I have no complaints. It was very quiet and pulled dark skimmate consistently and was easily adjustable.
I didn't even think of sales- I'll definitely try to shop around this weekend to see if I can snag a deal on it.
My vote would be a used RO 110 or 150, BM Curve 7, or Tunze 9012 for skimmers you're likely to regularly encounter being sold. If you can play around with craigslist and find some older skimmers, that list expands to include some really fun models including the asm series, Aqua C, etc.
Old skimmers are what I'm avoiding to an extent. I'm upgrading from a current fission skimmer (which was quickly discontinued because the nano version was garbage) that i inherited from a retired hobbyist. The skimmer literally came out when I was 5- I think I can splurge on an upgrade. The "old" you're talking about is probably 2015+, which I am absolutely fine with. Thank you for all the models though!
 
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duberii

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My vote would be a used RO 110 or 150, BM Curve 7, or Tunze 9012 for skimmers you're likely to regularly encounter being sold. If you can play around with craigslist and find some older skimmers, that list expands to include some really fun models including the asm series, Aqua C, etc.
I found a RO 110 EXT skimmer- could you give me an idea of what the difference between a HOB and external skimmer is? I have no idea how I'd set up an external skimmer...
 

Gernader

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I found a RO 110 EXT skimmer- could you give me an idea of what the difference between a HOB and external skimmer is? I have no idea how I'd set up an external skimmer...
Here is a video of setting up an external skimmer!

 

Gernader

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This appears to be for internal skimmers- did you link the wrong video? Still a good watch though!
Oops! Yes, that was my mistake :p. If you search hob skimmer/external skimmers on the forum or google, I’m sure you will find plenty of resources
 
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duberii

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Oops! Yes, that was my mistake :p. If you search hob skimmer/external skimmers on the forum or google, I’m sure you will find plenty of resources
This is probably a stupid question, but what about an external skimmer makes it so that I can't use it in-sump? I'd rather have an in sump skimmer but the one I found is external
 

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This is probably a stupid question, but what about an external skimmer makes it so that I can't use it in-sump? I'd rather have an in sump skimmer but the one I found is external
I honestly don’t have any experience with external skimmers, only internal ones. I would guess the difference between in sump and external is that you would need to plumb the external to the tank.
 

James77

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This is probably a stupid question, but what about an external skimmer makes it so that I can't use it in-sump? I'd rather have an in sump skimmer but the one I found is external
They can be run in sumP, but you would need an additional pump to feed water into the skimmer. An internal skimmer pulls water from the sump and foams it. An external skimmer has an attached pump that foams the water, but water from the tank needs to be pumped in.
 
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duberii

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They can be run in sumP, but you would need an additional pump to feed water into the skimmer. An internal skimmer pulls water from the sump and foams it. An external skimmer has an attached pump that foams the water, but water from the tank needs to be pumped in.
So the foaming pump can be submerged?

Edit: I looked up the pump and it seems like it can be altered for in-sump usage...
 
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thatsruff

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I ran the SC Aquariums SCA-301 on my 40-gallon system a while back and thought it did a solid job for the price. It might be a touch small for you (rated for 65-gal) but for the price you could give it a shot.



Being cheap, and as the reviews suggest, the pump tends to crap out. If that happens, which mine did but only after being in storage for a few years without proper cleaning, you can easily replace it with the somewhat better Bubble Magus SP1000 pump (I just did this).
 

Huff747

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I had a BM Curve 5 on a similar sized tank and have no complaints. I now have a RO 110SSS on a different tank which if you shop around for may fall into that price range that I am also pleased with.
 
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duberii

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That RO 110 skimmer would've cost me $80 for shipping, even though the guy was offering $100 for the skimmer which was a steal. I could get a new one for $200 so I had to decline. Now I'm leaning towards new so I don't have to deal with shipping costs that high (or I can try to find something closer to me)
 
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duberii

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I run the sc301 on my 40b with a 30g sump. It does good. Can beat it for the price.
Only thing I'm worried about is if the pump is gonna crap out and die and I'll have to buy another $70 pump, I'd rather get a $150 protein skimmer in the first place... if you haven't experienced the pump dying then I'm more inclined to settle on it.
 
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