If you caught our recent unboxing review you’ll know that we installed this interesting skimmer on the test tank back in Autumn 2014. This is certainly a great looking skimmer and now that it’s been running for a good while we are in a position to give you more detail on how it stacks-up operationally (for technical details on the design of the skimmer, please read the unboxing review).
OK, so installing the Quantum was a piece-of-cake. With the pump held internally there’s no need to assemble it once it’s inside the sump and it’s easy to handle (although we did take the cup off until it was in place). In operation this unit is very quiet… it’s not silent but is barely audible, especially once cabinet doors are shut. The noise produced is more a product of the water movement inside the unit rather than the pump. We’d give it an 8/10 for quiet operation overall. We don’t know whether it was the quick rinse in dilute vinegar we gave our unit but it started skimming immediately and took just a couple of days to get it dialled-in. We are very impressed with the skimming performance and the water and air inputs are both very easy to adjust and control with the fine tuning dials. The movement of bubbles in the reaction chamber seems fairly chaotic given the ‘Twister’ design but skimmate is still produced.
We do have a few notes on the design of this skimmer. Firstly, the cup (on our unit anyway) needs to be twisted-on tightly to keep a water-tight seal. In our experience this makes it a little tricky to unscrew when it comes time to clean the cup given that the skimmer is in a cabinet under the tank and the leverage one can exert isn’t huge in that situation. The incorporation of a larger, possibly elbowed cup drain which is further away from the neck of the skimmer, could really help here both in facilitating the draining of the cup into a separate vessel, and in giving a leverage point to help unscrew the cup. There is no O-Ring on the neck/cup joint which could possibly alleviate the whole issue. Once the cup is off though, the flared design makes it nice and easy to clean. The inside of the lid isn’t so easy though and the acute angle presented at the back of the shield makes it impossible to clean completely. This doesn’t interfere with the performance or appearance of the unit but if you’ve got ‘reefing OCD’ this may bother you. Take note that the outlet is not directional and instead pushes water out underneath skimmer. To be honest we would prefer a directional output. The short intake pipe that threads through the outer body onto the volute is fairly loose on our model but this allows us to remove it easily and, using a baster, blow away any detritus that settles on the base. In the presence of light, we notice the clear components do require occasional cleaning but thankfully, given the wide neck, it is easy to get an arm into the main chamber to brush away light diatom growth with an old toothbrush. Finally, the only way to really gauge the setting of the skimmer is too observe the positions of the adjustment dial screws, or water-line in the riser tube, and memorise them. The incorporation of some kind of scale into these parts could be useful. Take note that it has not been possible to verify the manufacturers claimed air draw or power consumption figures on this unit.
Minor design-niggles aside, this skimmer really impressed us with its compact size but large internal volume. Measuring 23.5 x 31 x 60.5cm it offers enhanced performance over several competitor models that are only slightly smaller. It is also extremely robust and looks fabulous. Rated for tanks ranging from 500 – 2000litres, the Quantum 220 is available from all good stockists and retails (at time of review) for £649.
US readers, take note that EcoTech will be distributing Nyos’ innovative range of products starting from around February, as recently reported by Reefbuilders.