Unboxed: Nyos Quantum 220 Protein Skimmer

Officially unveiled at Interzoo earlier this year, and available to European hobbyists for a few months now, we thought it would be great to take a closer look at this immediately eye-catching and attractive range of skimmers from Germany-based experts in ‘high level reefing’ Nyos® Aquatics. Actually, sales were so successful on the first production run, we’ve had to bide our time for a second run to take place before we could even get hold of our unit! So now it has finally arrived, let’s get it out of the box and see if it really is ‘Built to Perform’.

Receiving the largest unit in the range, the Quantum 220, we are immediately struck by the cavernous volume of this futuristic-looking skimmer. Measuring approx. 22cm at the base (hence the model number), the body exhibits a subtle curve which, as well as enhancing the aesthetics of the unit, contributes to this massive internal volume. This is critical actually as this is an internal pump model, and this format means that the footprint stays relatively small at 23.5x31cm, despite the large internal volume. Of course, there’s the possibility that accessing the pump for maintenance isn’t going to be as straightforward with the pump inside the unit, but take note that there are only 4 titanium screws here to undo to remove the base. It’s also nice to see them spaced-out from the body a little so that it should be easy to get the screwdriver properly seated. With minimal assemble required out of the box, this is effectively a ‘plug-and-play’ unit and this simplicity also bodes well for cleaning. It looks entirely possible to reach all the internals on this model with sufficient ease to remove even hard coralline deposits without getting arm ache! Overall construction is fantastic and the body is solid and heavy. Zirconia elements have been used in the design to this skimmer is pretty much bulletproof… seriously!

Rumoured to have been 3 years in testing, this skimmer also exhibits interesting design features that you won’t see on generic, ‘rebadged’ skimmers. Firstly, the capacious collection cup features a twist lock mechanism and O-ring to ensure there’s no leakage. The curved lines of the cup also reflect those of the body thus enhancing those elegant lines. At a similar level to the cup we also have independent controls for setting the water level and a micro air adjustment screw to fine tune the performance (the silencer is also transparent so you’ll know if it needs a clean). At the base of the unit, the power plant in our 220 is a Quantum 5.0 pump which is rated to draw 2200lph air, while only requiring 22 watts – in short, remarkably efficient! To maximise the pumps potential, it is also fitted with a novel, clear volute. With a relatively large volume this custom volute provides an effective reaction space in which incoming air is minced into a creamy mix by the hybrid, lightweight lattice/needlewheel impeller. The fact that this chamber is clear also means you can keep an eye on this critical part of the skimmer to monitor its ongoing efficiency. It doesn’t end there either indeed fixed pinwheel blades, gently flared diffuser plate nozzle and Nyos Twister saw-blade design all combine to effectively spin the air/water mix in the main body thus increasing contact time. Actually there’s more than meets the eye to the shape of the body too. It’s actually ergonomically designed as a double S form (which Nyos dub the ‘Sinus’ design). Basically this form eliminates any sharp corners thus maximising circulation and efficiency of the air/water blend within the body. Combine this with the vortex generated, the tiny bubble size etc etc and you have one potent mix!

All-in all we can’t wait to get this skimmer broken-in, as if it comes even close to the performance promised we’ll be highly impressed. With a recommended operating water depth of 22cm and an overall height of 60.5 cm, this unit fits in our standard sump and cabinet like a glove. Oh and before we forget, it’s also Ozone compatible! This 220 model is rated for aquariums up to 2000litres and retails for £649. Other models available are the Quantum 120 (rated for aquariums up to 500l) at £349 and the 160 (rated for aquariums up to 1000l) at £449 (all prices accurate at the time of this review). Available from numerous specialist marine outlets in the UK, all units are backed up by a full 2yr UK warranty. Click HERE to take a look at Nyos’ website for more information, and don’t forget to keep an eye here for our full operational review coming soon!

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