Eco-Complete Vs Aquasoil?? JUSTIFY PRICE PREMIUM

scorpio19

Junior Poster
Aug 5, 2008
2
0
1
I recently bought a 75gal bow front aquarium. I'm planning to have a heavily planted setup with Co2 injection and good light. I'm really torn between Eco-complete and ADA Aquasoil for the substrate.

Please help me justify the price difference between these two.

ADA Aquasoil: ADA recommends 4 x 9 liter bags of Aquasoil + 3 x 2 liter bags of Power Sand for 75 gal setup. That costs around $217 shipped. That's a lot.

If I choose to buy just the 4 x 9 liter bags of Aquasoil, that'd be $150 shipped. (I'm not sure if that'd be enough for 75gal, please correct me)

Eco-Complete: I guess I have to use 5 x 20 lb bags (please correct me if I'm wrong) for 75gal. It costs less than $130 (Cheap price of $105 shipped at petsolutions.com. Can someone vouch for them?)

As you can clearly see, the price difference is a lot. Would you justify the price premium of ADA Aquasoil? Is it going to make a huge difference if I use Aquasoil over Eco-complete??

Please ENLIGHTEN me, Planted Tank GURUS :)
 

ccLansman

Guru Class Expert
Jan 22, 2008
375
0
16
Vista, Ca
im in the boat with you, however i already went with the second choice a while back. Seems like a lot of people use the ada stuff, must be "special"? i m not sure, as for the eco-complete i think it works fine and for over $100 cheaper dont you think you could dose the tank with whatever it may or may not be lacking?

edit::scorpio19 please only post the same topic in one forum.
thanks.
 

Gerryd

Plant Guru Team
Lifetime Member
Sep 23, 2007
5,623
20
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South Florida
Hi,

Both products are good substrates.

I am pretty sure that the ADA AS has slightly more nutrients than the eco-complete, but am unsure...

So, this could be important if you forget to dose the water column or go away for a bit..........

Please note that the ADA will have a lot of ammonia issues when cycling.

If you do a search on any tank that Tom has done recently, he uses ADA a lot and speaks of these things.

The dry start method (DSM) is also worthwhile with ADA.. Do a search and you will what this is is.

Amount is based on how deep a layer you add. Deeper the layer, the more bags.

Can you not get it locally so that if you order 1 or 2 extra that they can be easily returned?
 

Panda

Guru Class Expert
Jun 14, 2008
123
0
16
Puerto Rico
Same boat here. Where I live theres no ADA shop. Shipping costs are a fortune since they only ship UPS or FedEx. I have been using EcoComplete for the last few years with good results.
 

ccLansman

Guru Class Expert
Jan 22, 2008
375
0
16
Vista, Ca
going off what gerryd said, you want 3-4 inches for the plants to root out, in my 60 gal it took 5+ bags to get that depth, you may be looking at 7+ bags, so i would order something that allows you to return the excess bags without any hassel.
 

captain_bu

Prolific Poster
Nov 7, 2007
55
0
6
SF Bay Area
Panda;27523 said:
Same boat here. Where I live theres no ADA shop. Shipping costs are a fortune since they only ship UPS or FedEx.

The price would be pretty much the same even if you lived near an ADA shop. They charge less for the Aquasoil online to offset the shipping costs. Aqua Forest sells the 9 liter bags in-store for $36, they are $28 online.
 

Panda

Guru Class Expert
Jun 14, 2008
123
0
16
Puerto Rico
I understand but last time I tried to order 10 or 20 lb of rocks and the shipping alone was over $130 !!!! with USPS would be around 30 or 40 ! thats why I use EcoComplete.
 

aquabillpers

Lifetime Charter Member
Lifetime Member
Jan 24, 2005
639
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You don't have to spend hundreds of dollars on stuff to put at the bottom of your tank. If you do, you will still have to dose nutrients, so what's the point?

Plain topsoil will grow plants just as well as the expensive substrates.

I'm posting this because a lot of people would like to grow aquatic plants but are put off by the cost. Boutique substrates are not needed.

Bill
 

VaughnH

Lifetime Charter Member
Lifetime Member
Jan 24, 2005
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Sacramento, CA
Boutique substrates, like ADA tanks, and T5 lights are nice to have if that is what you want to spend money on, but you can grow plants very well with T12 lights, sand or SMS on river silt substrate, in a PetSmart tank. The latter leaves you money for a good canister filter, lots of plants, fertilizers, Excel, and a pressurized CO2 system, if you want to go with high light intensity.
 

Mooner

Lifetime Charter Member
Lifetime Member
Jun 9, 2006
311
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Colorado
Logistically,

Are you going to scape once or do you like to move plants around? ADA AS vs Eco.

Single layer substrates work well in the long run, multiple layers tend to mix over time.

Agreed that fancy subs aren't needed(3 tanks running on chick grit alone, no under layer) I do see a slight advantage in Fluorite and Eco as less compacting and easier plant uprooting. I have ADA AS but haven't used it yet.

No matter, shipping is high on heavy items and won't come down soon.
 

mujacko2002

Prolific Poster
Aug 22, 2007
52
0
6
Philippines
Mabuhay!

For me, if money is not a problem i would go for the top most or the most expensive substrate to check if it will deliver what it says it will deliver. :D

Godbless everyone