Choosing A Tank

Tyler9704g

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Hello,
New member here. After a few years of being out of the aquarium game(experience with freshwater tanks) we’ve decided it’s time to start the hobby up again. We are mainly exploring the idea of a 75 gallon freshwater tank, but the idea of getting into saltwater (with something smaller like a 32 gallon Biocube) was brought up today and we are seeking some suggestions. If we go with a 75 gallon freshwater tank we are planning on making it a community tank. The idea of venturing into saltwater with something smaller is also very appealing. Our budget is flexible. We were planning on spending at least $650 with a max of around $1000. Advice welcome! Thanks.
 

Quinn_Lamb98

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Never done saltwater ($$$$$) however I did research into it quite a bit when I thought I could afford the $$$$$.

If you do want to go saltwater the most common piece of advice is to start with a larger tank (55 is usually recommended) as it will help to stabilize the parameters. In the same sense as with freshwater, however there are so many other things you need to worry about as far as water parameters goes with saltwater, like nitrates and salinity. Even a small amount of nitrates will cause a nasty algae bloom. Not fun as far as freshwater goes, a nightmare in salt.
 

Salem

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While I don't have any specific suggestions in terms of which you should go with or what to stock it with I do have some advice in general;

If you're in the USA Petco has 2-3 sales a year where you can buy a tank $1 per gallon.
Using sand as substrate is more affordable considering you can buy 20-50lbs bags of play sand at most hardware stores. Just make sure to rinse the heck out of and expect it to be cloudy when you first put it in. It will settle and you can siphon out the layer it forms.
A python siphon is likely the best option as you can attach it directly to your tap- however you may need to buy an extra attachment to fit it.
Whether you get a HOB filter or a canister or even a sump there are lots of media you can get for significantly less. Instead of filter floss buy 100% polyester stuffing, cartridges are usually a scam to make you buy more. You won't have to replace media unless it is falling apart or contains carbon.
Invest in a good heater with an adjustable temperature gauge. Also buy at least 2 thermometers just in case one breaks or isn't reading accurately.
Terracotta pots make really good decor/hides and are extremely cheap. You can break them and sand them down, use them as caves, anchor plants to them, etc.
Lights- especially if you want to have a lot of plants- can get extremely expensive. Normal grow lights will work just as well and are usually cheaper, just know that most are either purple/blue or yellow.
If you want a background black usually looks great in any aquarium. I'm also partial to simply using glass-frosting. If you want a 3D background and a fun project there are lots of tutorials like these ones. I like to use those as inspiration rather than exact tutorials.
 
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Tyler9704g

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We have decided to go with the 75 gallon freshwater tank. I definitely think this would give us the most options and would be easier to maintain in the long run.
 

Skavatar

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you'll need to decided if you want planted or not. if you want planted you need to get the plants in first. you'll need to decide what plants, if they need CO2 or not, what substrate, lights, fertilizers, etc.
 
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Tyler9704g

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you'll need to decided if you want planted or not. if you want planted you need to get the plants in first. you'll need to decide what plants, if they need CO2 or not, what substrate, lights, fertilizers, etc.
We were thinking of sand for the substrate. I’ve also been looking at lights that can support plant growth. Mainly looking at easy to grow plants. I was hoping to be able to avoid a CO2 setup if possible, but will do what’s necessary. Any plant suggestions?
 

max h

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As far as plants go start of simple with low light plants, they don't require CO2 injection systems. Some good ones you can start with is Amazon Sword, Anubias, Java Fern, Water Wisteria, and Cryps. With plants like Anubias and Java fern they need to be tied to rocks, driftwood, or other decorations since the have a rhizome. If the rhizome gets buried in the substrate the plant can die.
 
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