Thinking of apex or other... Hydro maybe...

Neptune

EuphylliaAddict

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I've been thinking of either the apex or the hydro for a few months now, I wasn't sure if I even wanted a controller at all to be honest, but I'm trying to link my lights/pumps/testing into one app or at least put as much into an app as possible but I'm clueless on how an apex works, let alone what all I need... I looked into the hydro and had everything in the cart but I have a feeling I'll later regret spending $800 on the hydro when I can get the apex el and a breakout box... I'm not sure what else I would need tho for the equipment I'm trying to run and monitor.

My equipment is as follows:
2x mp40
2x gyre fx330
3x ai hydra 26hd
1x ai hydra 32
Hybrid fixture (2 t5 fixture plugs)
1x heater which has a controller
1x jebao DCP-3000 return pump
1x feed pump to calcium reactor
2x ph probes
2x refugium lights
1x ATO
1x skimz skimmer
1x stand lights
1x calcium reactor pump


Probably forgot something but the main point is I want to clean up the 1000 wires I have and link everything to one system, preferably with an app and live readings.

Is at least 90% of this gear compatible with either? Does only the apex allow for ai hydra light control? Also could I put both the gyres and mp40s onto one mode linked to each other on the apex? I'm not 100% if I even want a controller because my coral is doing fine, any input I would appreciate. Basically which controller would run my gear better is what I'm after.

My total for the hydros was around $700-750 to do what I'm after besides controlling the lights basically. The lights aren't a huge deal though because ai has an app, but if I could control them through a controller that would be a plus.

Thanks for any input.
 
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dank reefer

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I will give you my take with what I know from your list will work/not work and if you need any other module to control.

AI Hydra 26HD - Can be controlled from the APEX using IOTA. No module needed, but some functionality will be lost (acclimation mode, Moon phase setting). Hydra 32-64 cannot be controlled via APEX.
MP40 - Can be controlled via APEX by using a WXM module.
Maxspect Gyres - I know the older models can be controlled via APEX purchasing the IceCap Module, not too sure about the newer FX series.
Hybrid Fixture - if it has a 0-10v port, then it can be controlled via APEX. If not, you'll just have on/off controllability
Jebao DCP - if it has a 0-10v port, then it can be controlled via APEX. If not, you'll just have on/off controllability
 

Mical

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I will give you my take with what I know from your list will work/not work and if you need any other module to control.

AI Hydra 26HD - Can be controlled from the APEX using IOTA. No module needed, but some functionality will be lost (acclimation mode, Moon phase setting). Hydra 32-64 cannot be controlled via APEX.
MP40 - Can be controlled via APEX by using a WXM module.
Maxspect Gyres - I know the older models can be controlled via APEX purchasing the IceCap Module, not too sure about the newer FX series.
Hybrid Fixture - if it has a 0-10v port, then it can be controlled via APEX. If not, you'll just have on/off controllability
Jebao DCP - if it has a 0-10v port, then it can be controlled via APEX. If not, you'll just have on/off controllability
Only problem, OP is looking at Apex EL which doesn't have 0-10v ports.
 
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EuphylliaAddict

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I will give you my take with what I know from your list will work/not work and if you need any other module to control.

AI Hydra 26HD - Can be controlled from the APEX using IOTA. No module needed, but some functionality will be lost (acclimation mode, Moon phase setting). Hydra 32-64 cannot be controlled via APEX.
MP40 - Can be controlled via APEX by using a WXM module.
Maxspect Gyres - I know the older models can be controlled via APEX purchasing the IceCap Module, not too sure about the newer FX series.
Hybrid Fixture - if it has a 0-10v port, then it can be controlled via APEX. If not, you'll just have on/off controllability
Jebao DCP - if it has a 0-10v port, then it can be controlled via APEX. If not, you'll just have on/off controllability
Thanks for input, I'm leaning towards the hydros now that you say that about the hydra 32s not connecting to apex... I know with the plugs, I can get the hydros to synch my mp40s and gyres to the same flow pattern, also I really only want the t5 on a schedule and not dimmed or anything. I can do that with the hydros. So I'll probably just go with the hydros because the apex seems a little intimidating to someone that just wants to make it easier. (because the apex looks complicated)
 
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dank reefer

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Thanks for input, I'm leaning towards the hydros now that you say that about the hydra 32s not connecting to apex... I know with the plugs, I can get the hydros to synch my mp40s and gyres to the same flow pattern, also I really only want the t5 on a schedule and not dimmed or anything. I can do that with the hydros. So I'll probably just go with the hydros because the apex seems a little intimidating to someone that just wants to make it easier. (because the apex looks complicated)
The Apex is not that complicated with simple controls, but you can make it do many wonderful things, just not brush your teeth and wipe your bum.

And if other companies do not adopt the Neptune IOTA standard, then its pretty much a goner since the only device that I am aware of that works with IOTA are the hydra HD series.
 

Mical

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I agree w/ @dank reefer - Apex is not difficult. As with any controller there is a slight learning curve. I started with a basic Apex Classic and have upgraded and added modules over the last couple of years noting what folks had issues with and used what I found that worked. I control/monitor 2 tanks off 1 Apex and it controls lights, powerheads (Vortechs), heaters, ATOs, skimmers and the only real issues I've had was ATO sensors & Apex cured that with new versions. I wouldn't have a tank without one.
 

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ReeferMadness01

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I’ve been looking into doing the hydros setup also...same reason...get all those wires cleaned up. And another factor for me is price...APEX seems to need a bunch of different modules while Hydros doesn’t.
 
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I’m dealing with this same delima right now...trying to decide between the hydros and the APEX. There seems to be pros and cons of both. I don’t have a large tank and one big benefit of the hydros is if you have compatible hardware, you can buy custom power cords to plug directly into the hydros. I wasn’t impressed with the current Hydros probe selection at this time though. It’s seems like all that is really available is a temp probe and PH probe. They advertise that the hydros 4 can have a ORP probe as well but I couldn’t find it sold anywhere. As far as the APEX they have an ORP probe for sure and I like the look and mounting of their power strip much better than the 4 outlet hydros (I’m sure you can add an additional 4 outlet strip but it won’t really have the clean look I’m going for). I like the plug and play simplicity of the hydros but won’t be running MP40s or Gyre power heads, I want to run the Redsea reef wave which is not compatible with the hydros. I think the overall look of the hydros looks modern and techy compared to the APEX and I like the look of magnetic temp sensor and water level sensor of the hydros as well. Since I’m running a simple system I will probably go with the hydros and hope they release the ORP probe soon (unless they already have and I just can’t seem to find it). Most LEDS have nice WiFi or Bluetooth programs built in these days so unless your running lights that don’t, I personally don’t see the point in having the controller take care of this - for on/off lights like T5s...sure it’s great for that.
 

reefiniteasy

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Since I’m running a simple system I will probably go with the hydros and hope they release the ORP probe soon (unless they already have and I just can’t seem to find it).

I am almost certain it uses the PinPoint probe from American Marine.

Edit: after receiving clarification, any ORP probe with a BNC connector will work.

 
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KellyCorals

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I am almost certain it uses the PinPoint probe from American Marine.

Edit: after clarification, any ORP probe with a BNC connector will work.

Ok good looking out! I saw that one but wasn’t sure it was compatible. I look into it but if that’s the case I’m leaning even more toward the hydros.
 
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