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Atomic

Home Theater Fish Tank. Options and opintions

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Atomic    25

Im in the planning stages of a new home and Im at a bit of a crossroad with my basement layout. Im hoping that someone might help me out.

 

Im planning a 10' long, 4' deep, 30" tall In-wall Tank. There is only one really good spot for the tank to go in my basement Living room/Theater room/Man cave. It also happens to be the best place for the theater screen to go. My Idea is to have a retractable screen that comes down over the display of the tank. I love the idea cause it makes the tank and the TV both the focal point of the room.

https://www.amazon.com/Elite-Screens-Spectrum-120-inch-ELECTRIC120V/dp/B000MX5XPM/ref=cm_cr_arp_d_product_top?ie=UTF8

 

 

I know nothing about theater screens but my concern is light behind the screen. Im wondering if the screens are thick enough to use the projector while the tank lights are on. If not then I will need a way to turn off the lights while the projector is on. I am just concerned that having kids, they wont turn the tank lights back on.

 

Here is my solution but im open for suggestions.

I dont plan on running a Apex or controller of any sort. I just dont see the point and I use the Mr DJ powerstrips. So im going to have all my lights setup on a digital timer that is accessible from the theater room.

https://www.amazon.com/Enerlites-HET01-C-Programmable-Programs-REQUIRED/dp/B01KG712PI/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1494513354&sr=8-2&keywords=light+timer+switch+programmable

Then use a spring wound timer switch as a override for the digital timer.

https://www.grainger.com/product/INTERMATIC-Spring-Wound-Timer-38D063

I think this will allow kids to turn off the lights, but only for 4 hours at a time. This should be enough time to watch a movie.

 

 

By doing this Im able to rearrange the basement and it really opens everything up.

 

Any thoughts? Ideas?

 

Thanks

Ross

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splix    54

Why would you NOT run an aquarium controller? They are much much more than just flipping switches.

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Atomic    25

Apon Doing some research on Home theaters. Ive found that if I go with a 10' wide screen, the recommended seating is 18' back from the screen. I dont have that space in the theater room. I might need to go down to a 8' screen and that might mean a 8' viewing panel for the tank. :blush:

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Atomic    25

Why would you NOT run an aquarium controller? They are much much more than just flipping switches.

I dont see a need for one. I dont have one on my 500g system now. Ive had one before and didnt see it added a lot. I could be convinced though if I can see an advantage.

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Budman    216

Could you add a second screen behind the main one maybe in black. Or have a cutain to block light from tank

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Atomic    25

Well I showed this plan to my wife and she didn't like it. I guess we are gonna go the big tv option rather than the projector option. So I'm back to the bigger tank but no theater. Gotta give a little to get a big tank like this...

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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lrood    47

Could you add a second screen behind the main one maybe in black. Or have a cutain to block light from tank

Agree - seems like a simple solution would be to add a light-blocking back layer to the screen (similar to room darkening curtains). That way your livestock doesn't suffer from variable lighting schedules.

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Kent12456    38

Apex sales pitch...... we left town a few weeks ago and of course as soon as we reach Fla. I start getting emails from the Apex saying the tank temp was high. My heaters showed "off" but the graph showed the temperature was slowly rising. ??!!?!!??!!

It Turned out the problem was when we left Indiana it was cool outside so the air conditioner was off. It warmed up outside after we left and the interior of the home went to over 80 degrees. The water temp was creeping toward 85 degrees. (Lights on) When I realized what I thought was going on, I turned my lights off using the apex and my daughter in law went to the house and turned on the air conditioner for us.

I hated spending the money when I bought the Apex, but I think they are money well spent when you consider all of the money and time we have invested in our tanks. Good luck with your new build, sounds like a good one. I wish I had room for a tank that size.

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Atomic    25

Apex sales pitch...... we left town a few weeks ago and of course as soon as we reach Fla. I start getting emails from the Apex saying the tank temp was high. My heaters showed "off" but the graph showed the temperature was slowly rising. ??!!?!!??!!

It Turned out the problem was when we left Indiana it was cool outside so the air conditioner was off. It warmed up outside after we left and the interior of the home went to over 80 degrees. The water temp was creeping toward 85 degrees. (Lights on) When I realized what I thought was going on, I turned my lights off using the apex and my daughter in law went to the house and turned on the air conditioner for us.

I hated spending the money when I bought the Apex, but I think they are money well spent when you consider all of the money and time we have invested in our tanks. Good luck with your new build, sounds like a good one. I wish I had room for a tank that size.

 

 

Great thought on the apex and using it for safety reason and its REALLY tempting. The main reason i might not go that route (still considering it and your argument is very tempting) is because im going to have the whole house setup with a samsung smartthings hub. Basically it does alot that a apex can do, but on a whole house system. HVAC, Lights, Plugs, Switches, Cameras, Doorbells, Water sensors, Door locks, Sprinker systems, Garage doors, and so much more. The only thing i dont think it will have is a temperature gauge for the tank itself. I will have a camera that i can manually check the tank temp myself, but we all know that they automated emails would be awesome to have. Im still thinking about it though, if money were no object.....maybe save up my Christmas/Birthday gifts for the next 10 years and get one.

 

I would still like to hear from others though about the apex.

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Dustin1300    373

I like the Apex for the automation, monitoring, and safety routines written into my programs. (i.e. cutting off solenoid to CR if PH is out of whack, turning off CL pumps if heat is above threadshold, etc...) In future if we see a good test controller come on the market they could either dethrone Apex or integrate through an API and would make programmer irreplaceable with keeping dosing optimal. Serves as a good logging app too for maintenance, parameters, livestock additions, etc.

 

As far as SmartThings, it's nice but I would not put it on a tank to automate anything. Remote switches and sensors sometimes get disconnected or are erratic from time to time. The whole platform had major stability problems for a while but they've got their bad scalability problems resolved in past year. Don't get me wrong, it's an awesome system but I'd not trust it on my tank!

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splix    54

Apex's are free after a year or two once they save your tank and pay for themselves. It will happen.

 

I run biopellets and ozone into my skimmer. If you know these, they rely on your skimmer. I have a float switch on my skimmer skimmate container so if it blows up, float switch automatically kills skimmer. Once the skimmer is off, ozone and biopellets are automatically shut off as well. I get an alert to empty my skimmer cup.

Thats just 1 example.

 

Leak sensors around that will kill pumps if they detect water instantly, etc etc.

 

The big difference between using an apex and using a camera and doing things yourself is that apex is instant and automated. Yeah you can log in and check temp on your tank but what if you get busy and forget for a day and your heater failed on that day and by the time you check your tank is 90'. What if it happens while you're sleeping. THAT right there is the point of apex, instant automation.

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Reefer82    187

The problem with smart things is there's no logic to it. It does what it's defined to do, nothing more. Sure you can see a room temp or manually check in on a temp with a camera and thermometer but what can you do? Turn a heater off is about it unless you want to buy $150 worth of outlet modules to control every single piece of equipment. Better off buying a used apex Jr or something at that point. It could then intervene on your behalf. If you're away you may not have cell service or may miss the notification all together.

 

And I just read through Splix's last post finally. Lol. You get the picture though

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dmits41    8

I really wish I would've checked this earlier, I setup home theaters for a living and we're starting to get into smart home tech as well. I only have a 30g and use an Apex. I love the Apex even on my little tank since I use it to auto feed, ramp light & color up and down through the day, real time monitor temp, ph, and eventually alk (if that ever releases and is a decent price), and input all test results so I can use the graphs to see trends. I plan on building a 6' or 8' tank into my wall on the right side of my theater and I'm currently thinking through the design and some challenges. I would keep the smart things plans you already have but add an Apex specifically for the tank. PM me if you ever have home theater questions.

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Transplant    10

Nicely done. At first glance the window made it look like most of the aquarium is outside. Do you have a fish room on the other side?

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Atomic    25

I appreciate all the info everyone.  The house keeps getting tweaked and unfortunately the tank gets tweaked also.  I think im convinced on the apex and for now its going in the budget for the build.  I had to scrap the idea of the screen coming down over the tank because my wife doesnt like the idea of a 10' tank covering a whole wall.  Also I dont have room for a 10' screen without sitting way too close to it.  Instead im going to do 2 6' tanks side by side with 4ft in between.  Things could change, but thats the plan as of now.   

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