View Full Version : AC500 or Emperor 400

11-16-2004, 07:10 PM
Which would you guys recommend for a 55g. Im having trouble deciding on 2 filters for it. Ive read good things about emperor and AC both. I know its probably my own opinion or choice, but I was just wanting to hear your thoughts on it. By the way someone tryed selling me a Tetratec PF500 today, and Ive real to many complaints on here, so I said no way. Thanks.

11-16-2004, 09:04 PM
I personally like the Emperor 400. Great media storage space available and is very quiet for a filter.

11-16-2004, 09:16 PM
I like both of them. The AC is economical and gets the job done, but the Emperors are easier to start when they've been turned off. We have quite a few power outages in my part of the country. Sometimes for a moment, and sometimes for hours, and the Emperors always start right up. I usually have to prime the AC's. I do believe the AC's are quieter than the Emperors though. And I've never had to replace the impellar on the AC's, but I have on all 3 of my Emperors at one point or another. They still worked fine with the old impellars, they just got noisy.

So what I'm saying is "If money is a problem, get the AC, if it's not, buy an Emperor". Both are good.:ok:

11-16-2004, 09:19 PM
And oh yeah, this should be in the equipment forum.

11-17-2004, 03:32 AM
both are great filters, i thing the Emp 400 will handle a larger load then the ac 500 because of abilit to add more chemical/bio/mechanical media to the trays, and i think the bio wheels do a great job of both oxigenation and nitrite/nitrate removal, but i could be wrong on the last part.

just my 2 cents

11-17-2004, 07:28 AM
I think you'll find the Emperors are superior. Their bio-wheel allows them to be mote efficient than the AC's, and the media container makes them very adaptable.

11-17-2004, 09:52 AM
LUV my Emperor 400 !!

11-17-2004, 10:03 AM
I too like both... I use more ACs though due to the economy with the sponges they have... but I do use cut up AC sponges in my emp as well :)

11-17-2004, 11:06 AM
Thanks for the opinions. What all do you guys fill the trays with?

11-17-2004, 11:38 AM
And also would you guys still recommend using air pumps/bars/stones, if I had 2 filters running.

11-17-2004, 12:30 PM
I almost always use air stones in my tanks to increase water circulation as well as oxygen transfer... probably isn't necessary, but its personal preference. Also, IMO, unless you have a big sump or something 2 filters on a 55 is minimum. I'm getting amother AC300 to throw on my 55 so that I have an extra seeded filter in case something bad happens or if I need to set up another tank, and to better handle the crazy bioload a tank full of mbuna generates... Can never have too much filtration! Now I'll have around 1100 gph on my 55!! :D :dance:

11-17-2004, 05:17 PM
I cut 10 micron pad material ... to the shape of the inside of tray and put it after the regular filter tray.... kinda like a final polisher... it gets brown every week so it must be catching the last little bits before they go back in to the tank... my water is crystal clear, though!

11-18-2004, 07:11 AM
I do the same, but I also fill the containers with crushed coral or PolyFilter. Fabric store batting on the upstream side with a rubber band for a completely DIY alternative that's cheap!

11-18-2004, 02:47 PM
I'd say to go with both, I like to run back up filters. Alternate cleaning the media between the two. If you went with a Emperor 400, I would go with a AC300 for a back up. For a AC500, backup of a Penguin 330 or something.

They both have their pros and cons, which are probably in 100 threads to sift through.

11-20-2004, 12:08 AM
Thanks for the help guys, I think im gonna go with both of them 1 AC500 and an Emperor 400. With black moon sand and some limestone piles. Should look nice, hopefully I wont regret the black sand. Anyone used it?

fish speaker
11-20-2004, 10:11 AM
I use Tahitian Moon black sand in my 90-gallon, and absolutely love it (the fish love it, too). I find it easy to clean, and it does a good job of hiding the debris on the bottom between cleanings :). I have a few less-than-professional pictures in my gallery, if you want to get an idea of what it will look like:
http://www.cichlidgallery.com/fishspeakerpics (note that my 37-gallon tank has a different product, which is grey).


11-21-2004, 08:38 PM
Nice looking tank, how many pounds of the black sand did you use for the 55g.