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Exodus

Macna 2018 (Off The Beaten Path)

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So for those that didn't attend Macna this year, I'm sure you have been caught up with the latest news from Neptune, EcoTech, etc. As it has been broadcasted everywhere. I just figured I would make a few honorable mentions for things I found to be interesting at the show, that others might have liked to see.  

JBJ
Many of you are already familiar with this company, for their AIO tanks and a few other miscellaneous products. JBJ is actually a decent brand for what they are but has been a bit behind lately as the last thing that caught attention was the RL series of tanks. In the upcoming months they will be releasing 2 new DC Pumps (A smaller & larger one) So whats the big deal there? Well the smaller one looked to be of excellent quality and best of all it fits into the back of the AIO tanks! So those of you relying on Cobalt's Mj1200 pumps and such wanting DC  with no options, the possibility is on the Horizon. The other big news is a new 65G Tank by JBJ that appears to have the same tank & Stand Design as the RSR & Cad-lights, very sleek looking, and you know it will have a lower price point.

Nyos
Currently being distributed by EcoTech in the US, the last big thing Nyos brought us was the Quantum Skimmers, things have been quite since then. If you were wondering what was next; it is a Reactor known as "TORQ". Opposed to most reactors on the market being a simple chamber with an input, outputs, and a pump of your choosing to regulate the flow, this Reactor includes a Dock that keeps that flow consistent that either of the 3 sizes of chambers easily slide into and can quickly be removed for maintenance. So will it be all that revolutionary? I have no clue, but As many know Nyos is a solid well built product, I thought it was worth a mention. The other big news from Nyos was their debut of a new System, you can see a photo of this @R-3 post at the end of the Macna 2018 post (It is the white Stand Rimless tank that Has a purple Nyos bag sitting on the ground next to it) Dubbed the "OPUS"

Torq_2L_Komplett_grau_freigestellt_680x8

 

ekoral
A new controller company based out of Taiwan is entering the market of controllers. This controller still has a long road ahead if they plan to compete with the likes of Neptune, and with a questionable starting price tag of $900, the odds are most likely stacked against them. Though it's not the controller itself that interested me but rather 1 particular component of the controller. This particular component is known as the "eK Level Sensor", So when we think of ATO we think of float valves, Optical Sensors, Temp Sensors, or Pressure Sensors but unlike most styles on the market this new eK sensor uses "Sonar!" while it just may just be my inner nerd and love of robots that has me excited for the re purposing for this dated technology, I also can see the awesome benefits of no moving parts, no need to clean or worry about snails, calcium deposits or other crap as it won't even be in the water.  Though regardless it will be cool to see if Sonar takes a foothold in the industry with ATO and begin getting an idea of pros and cons when people start using them.

eKoral_Pro08_0314_1024x1024@2x.jpg?v=152

Reef Kinetics
So another project that has been around for a couple years slated to release in November is is the Reef Kinetics Automated Tester. This particular product starting out with an Arduino and Raspberry Pi had my inner nerd redlining, its obviously home grown, tech, automated, DIY turned into a refined product. The idea is to add your own test kit titrations to the bottles provided, program what bottles contain what, and what test kits are being used, and how often you want the tests performed. You can then check the results via smartphone app keeping track of your parameters and alarmed when things go south. The final product drops the arduino in favor of their own board but keeps the pi 3 for obvious pricing reasons. The price tag is a steep $900 giving little incentive over Neptune's Triton  and has several cons that simply position it less than practical for many.  Those cons include
- Only liquid based titration tests (No Powder form such as Salifert Magnesium)
- $900 is more than Triton and similar products on the market
- Need an intake of Water from the Tank, RODI Water from a Reservoir (For Cleaning) and a Waste Output making the placement of this particular device difficult for those with limited space, don't forget the extra reservoir for additional mixed salt! Taking tests all day will throw off your salinity if your not replacing it.

Though if the price were to come down quite a bit, I can see the product being worth it.


reef_bot_1-1024x682.jpg
 

MindStream
Continuing the topic of testing, many here already know of the 5 year long mindtream project as it has even been brought up on the forums a few times in the past. To those wanting to know whats currently going on, I spotted 2 working demos at Macna this year 1 being on the Demo tank fully loaded with the software running real time, and another on a tank in the CoralVue booth. The project is currently on Beta 4 and slated to release this "Fall" (Heard that before right?) If my memory serves me right the device is an initial $300, the "test cartridges" have slightly changed since the last time we saw an internal cartridge, as to date the cartridge is just the circular face of the mindstream that pops off for easy replacement. They are set on a subscription service in which you will start off with 2 cartridges, 1 to shelve and one to use, every month a new cartridge will be sent to put back on the shelf after you replace your current one. The subscription service is $20/month. With this type of pricing it will be less than 3 years before you have spent over $1k on testing, how many people have spent that on salifert test? Then on the other hand more macro elements are provided for a smaller cost than the triton.

product_monitor_disc_offset.png

 

Kolar Labs
This company is new to me , and had me excited for additional options at a good price point for filter and reactor media, opposed to just BRS. Kolar provides their own brand of GFO, Bio Pellets, DI Resin, and their most popular product Carbon. What stood out to me the most was the representatives interest in our local reef club. They stated they were extremely interested in sponsoring active reef clubs and would love to contribute to club raffles and promotions.  The media looks to be of great quality and any additional opportunities for the club is always a positive.

s-l1200.jpg

Hanna
Hanna brought in their "Copper" Checker, promoting that it does in fact work with Marine Tanks, this may not in fact be the news to many but for those not aware of the fact, it may provide to be a valuable tool to those treating fish. In other news I did in fact ask the Representative about the "Magnesium checker" who's development was announced a few years back, and the short answer is "They have no idea as to when or if that will happen" So sorry to all those who are still waiting for it, I'm a bit disappointed myself.

hi747-checkerhc-front.jpg

Ming Trading
You can't have a trade show without the Chinese Imports now can you? Ming Trading most well known for bringing us the Waterproof Zetlight LED, had a wide variety of cheaper Chinese import products. What stood out to me though was an interesting little product branded by Coral Box called the "Magnet Clean Explorer" While obviously not cutting edge by any sense, for those of us with tanks too high of the ground to float a coral viewer or overhead fixtures hanging in the way it makes for great viewing of corals from the side of the tank. I wouldn't put too much hope in the "Cleaning" aspect as its just strong magnets with an inner Velcro side like a mag-float, but the magnifying window actually gives a nice view of your corals.

20180221_101939.jpg

 

Maintaining Alkalinity
Throughout the vendor floor, and within conferences and workshops ICP testing was a big topic (easily understandably so) but also maintaining alkalinity levels consistently at all times. This lead to many criticisms towards Neptunes trident  for not having the ability to dose based on regular calculations with the expectation that it also act as an alkalinity monitor. Regardless how individuals may feel about this aspect of reefing, it appears to be headed in that direction. Many of you probably know of if not have heard of GHL a company that has been over seas providing high end controllers for a number of years now but has recently arrived state side. This year at Macna along with their newest controller set they brought with them what they call "KH Director" a fully programmable Alkalinity controller. The product looks well built, is already on the market, and has similar pricing for refills as the trident. If you are in the market for one it certainly starts out at much lower cost than other alternatives out there.

KH-Director-Doser-Set-black.png

 

As mentioned at the beginning this list does not represent a review on Macna or all the products coming to the market, nor even a quarter but rather a few things that stood out to me personally. If your interested in seeing what else happened at the show including video taped Speeches, there is an abundance of information on youtube, these were just a few of the lesser mentioned things going on.

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Best macna summary I have read (althought i haven't ready many), THANKS, quite interesting.

Pretty cool you got to go, thanks for sharing.

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Thanks for the write up!  Great stuff for those of us who couldn't make it - much appreciated.

This tidbit was interesting...

Kolar Labs
This company is new to me , and had me excited for additional options at a good price point for filter and reactor media, opposed to just BRS. Kolar provides their own brand of GFO, Bio Pellets, DI Resin, and their most popular product Carbon. What stood out to me the most was the representatives interest in our local reef club. They stated they were extremely interested in sponsoring active reef clubs and would love to contribute to club raffles and promotions.  The media looks to be of great quality and any additional opportunities for the club is always a positive.

Maybe Andy or one of the officers could follow up with them to see if they want to become a sponsor?  @Lexinverts

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22 hours ago, albertareef said:

Thanks for the write up!  Great stuff for those of us who couldn't make it - much appreciated.

This tidbit was interesting...

Kolar Labs
This company is new to me , and had me excited for additional options at a good price point for filter and reactor media, opposed to just BRS. Kolar provides their own brand of GFO, Bio Pellets, DI Resin, and their most popular product Carbon. What stood out to me the most was the representatives interest in our local reef club. They stated they were extremely interested in sponsoring active reef clubs and would love to contribute to club raffles and promotions.  The media looks to be of great quality and any additional opportunities for the club is always a positive.

Maybe Andy or one of the officers could follow up with them to see if they want to become a sponsor?  @Lexinverts

I was in fact given a business card with the offer to reach out to them, if any of the board members are interested, just have them PM me for details. I have the card and their brochure.

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12 hours ago, Exodus said:

I was in fact given a business card with the offer to reach out to them, if any of the board members are interested, just have them PM me for details. I have the card and their brochure.

Shot you a PM!

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