Neptune Systems Controller … GO ALL IN?

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Beez

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I’m SOOOOO excited about my IM Fusion pro 2 AIO 50 to arrive … Plus, I believe the size is perfect for my living room … I didn’t want something too overwhelming— with that said … everyone tells me down the road I will want bigger (I guess everyone does) lol.

I’m researching Neptune systems controller along with plenty of additional options and am considering going ALL IN with Apex, Trident, Sky lighting, DoS and Auto-top-off …. AM I CRAZY !!??
 
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SuncrestReef

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I did the same when I set up my Reefer XL 425 back in 2018. It's not crazy if you like automation and monitoring. Just be sure you think through exactly how you intend to utilize the Apex rather than buying everything and then trying to figure out what you want to do with each module.

Be sure to look at my series of Apex tutorials to get a feel for what it can do, and how to properly program it:
 
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Lavey29

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I’m SOOOOO excited about my IM Fusion pro 2 AIO 50 to arrive … Plus, I believe the size is perfect for my living room … I didn’t want something too overwhelming— with that said … everyone tells me down the road I will want bigger (I guess everyone does) lol.

I’m researching Neptune systems controller along with plenty of additional options and am considering going ALL IN with Apex, Trident, Sky lighting, DoS and Auto-top-off …. AM I CRAZY !!??
Congrats on your new tank. Paul at IM is terrific to deal with and info source. You should contact him for the best upgrade options for your new tank.
 

NotoriousDMC

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All I can say is that I’m a fan. Apex EL, Trident, AFS, ATK and a separate PMUP. I also have (had) a Gro but it got wet and, well, doesn’t work anymore. As someone who is approx. 1 year into the hobby with a successful mixed reef, I am certain the Trident in particular boosted my confidence to experiment with different (and pricier) corals.

Good luck!!!
 
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TheWB

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It’s a big chunk of money to drop but sure seems ultra nice and handy
I have an older version of your tank and I have an Apex. I’m nowhere near as advanced a user as @SuncrestReef is but I’ve found having the Apex to be very helpful. If it’s within your reefing budget I say go for it, you won’t be sorry. It will also grow with you if you eventually decide to go bigger.
 
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Dburr1014

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My Apex has defiantly boosted how my tank works. I can see how constant it is.
And when I go on vacation I never worry. I have so much auto automation the tank can be on auto - pilot for a while.
 

ariellemermaid

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I’m SOOOOO excited about my IM Fusion pro 2 AIO 50 to arrive … Plus, I believe the size is perfect for my living room … I didn’t want something too overwhelming— with that said … everyone tells me down the road I will want bigger (I guess everyone does) lol.

I’m researching Neptune systems controller along with plenty of additional options and am considering going ALL IN with Apex, Trident, Sky lighting, DoS and Auto-top-off …. AM I CRAZY !!??
Yeah I’d say it depends how comfortable you are paying way too much for what boils down to pretty inexpensive technology. Look at what reefpi and robotank are doing for an example of what a lot of the tech actually costs, and that’s still retail. I mean $330 for a 2 head DOS pump?! I paid like $40 for my 4 head jebao.

That said, Neptune really is the Apple of the controller world IMO. The most polished, adaptable, and user friendly. The app is great, the level of control and customization is awesome.

What I would say is that just because you use an apex controller doesn’t mean you have to go all in. There are just some things you’re going to get dialed in, set, and forget like lights, wave pumps, auto top off, etc. So if you think Neptune offers the best price:quality ratios in those categories, sure, go for it. Otherwise I highly support the Apex and Trident stand-alone. Full disclosure I did opt for 2 DOS pumps because I just love automation that much and needed auto water change (bought one used though). I also went with the ATK because adapting my Tunze for a separated fish room was too much. I also think the Apex is great for a separated fish room because you only have to run 1 cable to communicate with all the fish room modules.
 

HuduVudu

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I’m SOOOOO excited about my IM Fusion pro 2 AIO 50 to arrive … Plus, I believe the size is perfect for my living room … I didn’t want something too overwhelming— with that said … everyone tells me down the road I will want bigger (I guess everyone does) lol.

I’m researching Neptune systems controller along with plenty of additional options and am considering going ALL IN with Apex, Trident, Sky lighting, DoS and Auto-top-off …. AM I CRAZY !!??
Yes.
 

HuduVudu

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The most polished, adaptable, and user friendly.
And that is all.

I went for all of the shiny and it just turned out to be more of a headache than it is worth. If you go down one path you are going to get locked in, this is by design. You will end up buying their stuff good or bad. The little spat with EcoTech says everything about Apex as a company. They are indeed like Apple or Microsoft or whatever. You will buy their stuff whether you like it or not.

I finally broke the spell by reminding myself this hobby always has been and always will be DIY. I just saw a post complaining about Red Sea tanks. You just can't make a "standard". People struggle with so many things in this hobby and they want to try all of the other fancy shinies, to deal with the uncomfortable learning curve that owning a salt water aquarium brings. In this hobby you always DIY always. If your equipment doesn't reflect that, you are going to get frustrated because soon enough it will constrain you with it's inflexibility.

To note I have played the Apex full on game. I have played the GHL full on game. I sold all of the equipment, at a significant loss because they are a waste of time and money. I have finally settled on RoboTank for my controller. I want to say that I am happy, but I remember saying that on both my Apex and my GHL. I ate my words. So for now I am happy enough with my RoboTank, because it matches the DIY attitude that need to solve problems in my tank.

FWIW
 
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ariellemermaid

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I have finally settled on RoboTank for my controller.
Woah!! I did not see that ending coming! I’m fairly comfortable with coding, soldering, and DIY electronics with good documentation. Robotank does do a lot of the work, but I still just wasn’t sure I wanted to jump into it and wasn’t wowed by the web interface vs. the Apex app. I had bought my Apex for a dream build but put it on my nano reef/QT tank and after 2 years just can’t imagine my life without it. So I bought a second for the dream build :D.

Curious, what kind of headaches did you have? I can imagine things like probes going bad and I’d like them to revamp the coding language to be a little more intuitive; otherwise the system has been flawless for me. Even on the language quibble though, everything I’ve needed I found @SuncrestReef.

But you’re right. In for a penny, in for a pound. Robotank is the only truly open source controller. But, it also doesn’t work with any of the auto testing systems that I’m aware of (yet) and I really value that. I have a busy life and I’m bad about regimented testing. Note: robotank guy is toying with building his own but that would be a long ways off. Anyway, that’s why my suggestion was to consider the components you want/need, and look elsewhere for better values on things that can be controlled other ways.
 

HuduVudu

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@ariellemermaid

I switched away from Windows about 5 years ago. I have been on Windows since Windows 2.0. It never really evolved away from that. I loathe that OS beyond all imagining. I don't have words for how much I hate it, but they kept making it really hard for me to switch. Games was the last bastion and when I saw that Steam allowed quite a few games I was like Ok I am done. I haven't looked back and it is the best thing I have ever done. I wished I would have switched sooner. I chose an easy path and got Linux Mint. I didn't fool myself that I could handle a difficult build, and even today I would struggle with some of the OS's but I have learned slowly.

This has has been the epiphany for me in the aquariums, and automation in general. I cared too much about the pretty factor. Now I just want to set it up and ignore it. Does the interface really matter if you never really use it. Really that is they way good automation should work. I don't want to have to fiddle, and in this hobby fiddling is anathema. Sure the interface for Reef Pi isn't the prettiest (I haven't upgraded yet, it is on my list) but it works and works and it works. I think RoboTank is better because I could hook any crazy piece of crap to it. It doesn't have to be from any particular manufacture. It doesn't even have to be from the aquarium hobby. It is simple. Also Raspberry Pi is really stable and it works. The hardware is solid and the OS is rock solid.

GHL is a joke in the networking, lighting and programming but their hardware is good. Apex's hardware is garbage, but the software is pretty easy to work with. I was so infuriated at GHL there is a huge bug in their networking, what a clown show.

At the end of the day I want just want to be able to do stuff, every OS has their unique way to do things. There is always a learning curve. The thing I have found is open source stuff is that they don't change things to change things. It is the same today as 10 years ago. People would say ohhmergawd that's backwards because change. I worked in software for too long, and changing the name of the thing and it's interface names is so common. Seriously how much can you really do with a word processor. Does it really make sense to "upgrade" it year after year and add more and more useless features in just to justify the cost you pay. I have re-bought the same crap for too long and I am tired of it.

FWIW
 

jphilip813

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I’m SOOOOO excited about my IM Fusion pro 2 AIO 50 to arrive … Plus, I believe the size is perfect for my living room … I didn’t want something too overwhelming— with that said … everyone tells me down the road I will want bigger (I guess everyone does) lol.

I’m researching Neptune systems controller along with plenty of additional options and am considering going ALL IN with Apex, Trident, Sky lighting, DoS and Auto-top-off …. AM I CRAZY !!??
Congrats bro...You are crazy like the rest of us...it is EASY to get sucked in...I justify to myself every time I throw a couple of hundred dollars towards the tank...its either the tank or bill collectors will be satisfied...lol:)
 
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Neptune

How much of your saltwater reef tank is automated?

  • Nothing is automated

    Votes: 70 14.1%
  • 25% or so

    Votes: 154 30.9%
  • 50% or so

    Votes: 110 22.1%
  • 75% or so

    Votes: 110 22.1%
  • Close to 100%

    Votes: 51 10.2%
  • Totally Automated (we need proof)

    Votes: 3 0.6%
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