Mindstream

JosephRyan

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As a R2R staff member, and a user of the MS unit, can you please give us readers here a synopsis of your experiences with your MS unit? Is it accurate, etc? Also, can you please share your thoughts as to why MS has gone silent?
If you do a "Mindstream" search, there has been a few threads where users have described their experiences. As far as going silent, no one knows but you can also follow what we have all been thru so far before the silence.

If the company has bugged out, which we can only make our own educated guess on, we can only hope that some one will see the amazing potential in the unit itself and continue to tweak the technology for mass production.
 
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saf1

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I called them because I was thinking of going the GHL route but after hearing everything I kind of backed off. For a typical person your talking about $1600+ for both the Kh and Ion Director and that gives you only Seven values instead of Ten on the MS. Then as @MnFish1 noted you have Peristaltic pumps and hoses and then reagents for the Alk and all of that is going to require calibration and servicing. The other down side is the sheer bulk of all of these items together. I think it would be a good option if your already in the GHL ecosphere but for the rest of us it's a lot more money and hastle for less tests.
I think if you are in either ecosystem be it GHL or Neptune their respected automation testing unit makes sense. At least it should get the first look for cost savings, etc.

Service - I wouldn't worry about that just yet. On any of the products. Each will have it. If they don't that should be a warning flag. I only raise this because of the environment it will be running in. Saltwater.

Number of tests - jury is still out but I believe it will come down to the hobbyist and what they want. Some may be duplicate, some may be new and unique only to, and others may go back to ecosystem, entry cost, monthly cost, service cost, and if they can get those tests elsewhere (DNA, ICP).

Size - its a wash. However, you do need space to stack, rack, or place in your sump. Valid point but I tend to toss it aside.

I thought GHL said February as they are still working on some probes. Maybe that was the official release vs. preorder. If I was GHL I would seriously look at dates, what is said, availability quantity, etc. They should be able to learn from Neptune and MS for sure on their launch. I don't think any of them so far have been smooth.

GHL is more up your ally I think Robbyg but could be wrong.
 

chicago

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Delayed a few weeks what ? I ordered on July 8 th and was promised every week stating at week 8 it was going to happen and then asked for updates and complete silence for the past 3 weeks. Where are you getting your info they are only delayed a few weeks. They don’t answer calls or posts here or face book
 

robbyg

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I think if you are in either ecosystem be it GHL or Neptune their respected automation testing unit makes sense. At least it should get the first look for cost savings, etc.

Service - I wouldn't worry about that just yet. On any of the products. Each will have it. If they don't that should be a warning flag. I only raise this because of the environment it will be running in. Saltwater.

Number of tests - jury is still out but I believe it will come down to the hobbyist and what they want. Some may be duplicate, some may be new and unique only to, and others may go back to ecosystem, entry cost, monthly cost, service cost, and if they can get those tests elsewhere (DNA, ICP).

Size - its a wash. However, you do need space to stack, rack, or place in your sump. Valid point but I tend to toss it aside.

I thought GHL said February as they are still working on some probes. Maybe that was the official release vs. preorder. If I was GHL I would seriously look at dates, what is said, availability quantity, etc. They should be able to learn from Neptune and MS for sure on their launch. I don't think any of them so far have been smooth.

GHL is more up your ally I think Robbyg but could be wrong.

GHL is more up my ally mainly because I have a lot more faith in their products working properly over the long term. My problem with GHL has mostly to do with the kind of system it is and the upfront cost. It makes the MindStreams $995 look like a bargain. And yes I am counting in the disk costs.
I would rather pay more on a monthly basis so long as I am getting a set and forget system that can provide real time data. At this point I am just dying for the SAI CEO to deliver some news so that I can plan accordingly. I think the best news would be if some reputable company buys the whole thing and just continues on right away with delivering the same product under a different name and distributor. Anything else will mean waiting years or worst never seeing a product like this again.
 
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fcmatt

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I agree with Rob. Mindstream concept wise is the holy grail of what I think we all dreamed of. The rest are just doing old fashioned testing, more or less, in a plastic box with pumps and etc.. the kind of thing I would invent due to a lack of technical skills to take it to the next level.

There are really good reasons to hold off major controller and testing purchases for months and maybe a year before sinking 2k plus into a new setup that you expect to run for 3 to 7 years.

I do not want buyers remorse 4 months from now. That would truly suck.
 

robbyg

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I agree with Rob. Mindstream concept wise is the holy grail of what I think we all dreamed of. The rest are just doing old fashioned testing, more or less, in a plastic box with pumps and etc.. the kind of thing I would invent due to a lack of technical skills to take it to the next level.

There are really good reasons to hold off major controller and testing purchases for months and maybe a year before sinking 2k plus into a new setup that you expect to run for 3 to 7 years.

I do not want buyers remorse 4 months from now. That would truly suck.
I could not have said it better.
Thanks:)
 

Ardeus

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They were very ambitious for a 1st implementation of the concept.

I think Seneye is on the same path but they decided to take smaller steps and a more modular approach.

They have a subscription model but they don't make the device useless without the slides. I am very curious about their next step, the Coral.
 

saf1

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They were very ambitious for a 1st implementation of the concept.

I think Seneye is on the same path but they decided to take smaller steps and a more modular approach.

They have a subscription model but they don't make the device useless without the slides. I am very curious about their next step, the Coral.
Seneye is a nice little product. Interesting you should mention that because I'd wager the Mindstream is running into similar issues that they are seeing. How to address the slide and/or disc cleanliness. I'm looking at my Seneye as it sits in my sump and I clearly see sponges on it :) Then again I only use it for the PAR meter and out of water alerts :D
 

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As a R2R staff member, and a user of the MS unit, can you please give us readers here a synopsis of your experiences with your MS unit? Is it accurate, etc? Also, can you please share your thoughts as to why MS has gone silent?
My thoughts on MS are that it was super easy to setup, maintenance is also super easy (pop the old disc out and pop the new disc in...it needs to be done with tank lights off and no sunlight to avoid messing up the disc which is extremely photosensitive), the unit has been very consistent. I haven't done much by way of comparisons of tests other than salinity and temp (simply because I have other means to monitor temp and salinity, but it seems to be in line with what I'd expect for the other parameters (and I've heard enough feedback from others who've had them since beta testing to trust that it's accurate). As to why SAI hasn't posted more communication, anything I'd post would be speculation, and I'd prefer not to do that. I will say that every interaction I've had with them had been professional and helpful. They seem to be a great group of people, and they're trying to correct the issues they ran into after initial launch with production.
 

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In short, I like mine a lot, and I hope that things get worked out. I do believe they're trying.
 

Ardeus

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I can't remember how many times I thought about getting a tank controller and always ended up not getting any.

The 2 main options (Neptune and GHL) seem to carry lots of baggage from a couple of decades ago and they have no real competitors.

When I heard about Mindstream, it seemed like a dream product and although it doesn't aim to replace those 2, I really wanted one.

But I'm on the other side of the pond and it soon became obvious that it wasn't going to appear around here any time soon.

Other interesting products are popping up and I figured I could get the things I wanted if I combined them.

I wanted alarms and "modern" monitoring of a few parameters.

So, Seneye and an Alk controller like the Xepta (or the Coral from Seneye when it comes out) seems like a good cheap combination.

The Seneye doesn't monitor 10 paramerers but it's easy and cheap to get a 2nd hand unit that monitors pH, ammonia, temperature, PAR and water level and sends you sms and emails.

Until now it's been running very smoothly and it seems easy to clean.

The monitoring of a few things adds another level of interest to the tank while adding security.

I really hope that Mindstream solves whatever issues they are having because they have something that is light years ahead of anybody else.
 

robbyg

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They were very ambitious for a 1st implementation of the concept.
This was not there first attempt. From what I understand they had made numerous versions over the years including a much more expensive out of the Tank model. The final two end products were based on long periods of in house testing and then Beta testing.

I think Seneye is on the same path but they decided to take smaller steps and a more modular approach.
Seneye is not even remotely the same. It is more like a better version of those stick on Ammonia and pH testers that they sell for aquariums. They just took one of those and stuck it in a low cost colorometer to digitize the changes in color. Basically it is using a solid reagent and following the same technical path of simplicity like the Trident. I think the Seneye is great as a light meter and worth it on that alone. The testing is a different ball game and if you read any of the reviews on it's pH and Ammonia testing you will soon realize its not all that good. The mindstream on the other hand is using dye luminescence. This is a much more complicated approach and is used by blood testing labs to automate the testing of thousands of blood samples everyday. It is a proven technology that is designed for precision.

Seneye is a nice little product. Interesting you should mention that because I'd wager the Mindstream is running into similar issues that they are seeing. How to address the slide and/or disc cleanliness. I'm looking at my Seneye as it sits in my sump and I clearly see sponges on it :) Then again I only use it for the PAR meter and out of water alerts :D
No the only issue they had with keeping the unit clean was when the brushes started falling off.
They used a different method to hold them on and added a second row of cleaning bristles. This pretty much solved the last problem. The continually spinning disk and the special plastic was designed to make sure that no animal life could live on or get into the disk area.
 
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OLDREEFER44

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I am going the GHL route so will let you know how it goes. I am installing the KH Director this week. My thoughts so far is that I am pleased with the quality and the technology overall. I have had an issue with connectivity and find the US support lacking.
Anyone else thinking of going that route might want to PM me for cost saving advice.
 

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I know the technology is different, but the way to use both is similar: you put in a new disc/slide every month and it monitors certain parameters. I know they were working on adding nitrate monitoring.

The most useful part of the unit is the alarms it sends when any of the parameters gets out of acceptable ranges and that covers many common problems that can happen in a tank. For me the light meter is a secondary functionality.
 

saf1

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No the only issue they had with keeping the unit clean was when the brushes started falling off.
They used a different method to hold them on and added a second row of cleaning bristles. This pretty much solved the last problem. The continually spinning disk and the special plastic was designed to make sure that no animal life could live on or get into the disk area.
I've not followed their issues so do not pretend to know. I do know though that life will find a way to get into the disk area. Just like I believe it will find a way to clog the reagent pull line in the tridents. I could be wrong on both counts but believe this will be one of those maintenance things be it a kit, turn in, or task similar to cleaning power heads and pumps.

Thanks for the info though because I was not aware of what they have done like I said. Makes sense.
 
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OLDREEFER44

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Asterinas were a problem for me. Almost seemed to be attracted to it. I had very few in the tank overall yet would almost always find one or two in it when I cleaned of the sensors.
 

saf1

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Asterinas were a problem for me. Almost seemed to be attracted to it. I had very few in the tank overall yet would almost always find one or two in it when I cleaned of the sensors.
Yeah. I'm thinking spaghetti worms, limpets, and of course pods hanging out. Life finds a way. But I'm sure their engineers and beta testers have provided this information. It may also be something as simple as when you do a disc replacement you do a quick wipe of the area.

Of course there is also algae or the encrusted types of algae but that could also be what Robby was talking about above. Interesting nut to crack.
 

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I've not followed their issues so do not pretend to know. I do know though that life will find a way to get into the disk area. Just like I believe it will find a way to clog the reagent pull line in the tridents. I could be wrong on both counts but believe this will be one of those maintenance things be it a kit, turn in, or task similar to cleaning power heads and pumps.

Thanks for the info though because I was not aware of what they have done like I said. Makes sense.
I 100% agree that overtime life will get into anything, so you just have to design the system to suppress most of the stuff until you can service it. That is why I loved the idea that you could just change the disk every 30 days and get rid of whatever might be slowly growing. That is also why the other systems are probably going to have issues. As you said stuff will start to grow and accumulate and create problems. I have already heard of Trident issue where the rollers on the Peristaltic pumps are not closing tight due to grit in the line and this causes the system to give an inconsistent reading as the samples get diluted during testing.
 
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OLDREEFER44

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Problem was that only a slight amount of algae would throw off readings. I didn't want to pay $700 for something that had to be cleaned daily to get correct readings: especially if located in the sump. I had a large bristleworm get into it which caused the readings to go crazy. Asterinas on the disk or a sensor also caused the disc to stick and the sensors to give false readings. Also sometimes stopped the disc from spinning. When I brought this up to them they ignored it only suggesting that I move it to a higher flow area.
 

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Problem was that only a slight amount of algae would throw off readings. I didn't want to pay $700 for something that had to be cleaned daily to get correct readings: especially if located in the sump. I had a large bristleworm get into it which caused the readings to go crazy. Asterinas on the disk or a sensor also caused the disc to stick and the sensors to give false readings. Also sometimes stopped the disc from spinning. When I brought this up to them they ignored it only suggesting that I move it to a higher flow area.
I would have just made a cover to go over the inside part. Probably just epoxy together some thin plastic rods and covered it with plastic mosquito mesh. If the MS was sucessful I am sure all sorts of third party systems would have come out. Most likely even an out of tank MS holding tank system. Something that had a dosing pump filing and emptying a little 7" tank cube with filtered SW every 15 minutes from the sump and restarted the process again.
 
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