Cerebra Prima Aquarium Controller Package (beta) - Vertex

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Cerebra Prima Aquarium Controller Package (beta) - Vertex

67% Recommend this to a friend (10 of 15)

SKU: 210234

Out of Stock


1-3 day service on orders over $249

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Quick Overview

Vertex is pleased to announce, after years of refinement, it is finally here; the Vertex Cerebra Prima Aquarium Controller. Running through an Android based processing system the need to have tribal knowledge of coding is no longer needed. The Android operating system allows the Cerebra Controller to run smooth, and quick. We have yet to get our hands on another controller that is this feature packed, that is this easy to program.

  • Exclusive access to Cerebra Club

  • Touch Screen Display (works with wet fingers)

  • WiFi Connectivity

  • Six relay controlled outlets

  • LED status indicators

  • Android OS

  • Includes Smart-Temp sensor

  • Easy to program

  • Standard USB connections


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Product Questions

hi, its in 220 volts?? or 110 ??

Question by: Jean on Jun 28, 2016 12:22:00 PM
Great question!
All items are sold for us in the US and Canada with 110 volt. Feel free to let us know if you have any further questions!
Answer by: Connor (Admin) on Jun 28, 2016 6:26:00 PM
When will it be available to purchase?
Question by: Awais Sheikh on Jul 1, 2016 2:56:00 AM
The Date will still be determined in works with Vertex. We hope to bring into inventory when more options are available for the product and support.
Answer by: Connor (Admin) on Jul 1, 2016 9:27:00 AM
will the Cerebra Prima Aquarium Controller Package (BETA) - Vertex system work with my Red Sea Max Aquarium? I have two of the Red Sea Max Aquarium I would like to setup monitoring capability.
Question by: Rafael Rivera on Jun 16, 2016 6:17:00 PM
Hey there,
This can control the outlets and by plugging in different outlets to the cerebra it will be able to turn on or off certain items.
Answer by: Connor (Admin) on Jun 21, 2016 2:07:00 PM
Why android? They need to make it iPhone.
Question by: Tom Lewis on Jun 17, 2016 12:25:00 PM
Great question!
The actual controller itself uses a variation of android software. potentially in the future it will have control from more devices.
Answer by: Connor (Admin) on Jun 17, 2016 3:26:00 PM
I have never owned a reef monitoring system before so I'm new to this whole thing. Are you able to connect a titanium heater to it without a controller and just controller the temp through the system?
Question by: Ramsey on Aug 1, 2016 7:58:00 PM
Hi there,
With an aquarium controller, there are many different options and it pretty much all comes down to allowing it to monitor your tank, and control the outlets that are associated with certain items like heaters.
If you do choose to use the titanium heating tubes, you would simply just plug them into an outlet of the Multi-Bar on a Cerebra controller then program that outlet to turn on when the temperature falls below a certain point. We do recommend using a basic heater controller ontop of the aquarium controller for redundancy when using heating tubes though.
Normally we like using the Eheim Jager, or the Finnex HPX heaters since they have their own included temp controlling device, that can be used in conjunction with an aquarium controller creating a very safe controlling system.
Answer by: Charlie (Admin) on Aug 2, 2016 8:17:00 AM
The powerbars and multi bars are rated at 10A, yet you show 15A. Why the discrepancy ??
Question by: Ken on Aug 26, 2016 2:13:00 PM
Thanks for reaching out to us. The Power Bars are definitely 15A. :-)
Answer by: Admin (Admin) on Aug 26, 2016 2:18:00 PM
Will this have a salinity port or sensor?
Question by: Eric on Jun 21, 2016 3:35:00 AM
Great question!
This will include a port however the probe for salinity has yet to be released. Feel free to let us know if you have any further questions!
Answer by: Connor (Admin) on Jun 21, 2016 12:36:00 PM

Full Details

Monitor and control your aquarium with the much-awaited Vertex Cerebra Aquarium Controller. From dosing, pump control, lighting and much more, you can do everything with the Android-based aquarium controller. The Cerebra is expandable and will have other modules that will allow you to control leaks, monitor necessary tank parameters, and even more outlets.


What's Included?

Cerebra Controller Head Unit

Cerebra Multi-Bar (6 outlets)

Smart-Temp Sensor

USB A-B Cable

Cloud Registration code

Black Stylus

Power supply for head unit


Cerebra Controller Head Unit

Dimensions - 7.25" L x 5.25" W x 4.875" H

The full color 5.5" display has a touch screen display that lets you quickly jump between menu functions, programming, and your favorite apps. The home page of the display unit can be fully customized from what is displayed and where along with the icons size. Programming outlets and switches are now easier than ever, with the simple to follow "rules" programming procedure. At a glance, you can now view your aquariums Temperature, pH, outlet status, sensor status, and much more. Even if you want to change an outlet rule or float switch, that can be done super quickly with one finger right through the head unit.


Multi-Bar Powerbar

Dimensions - 20" L x 4" W x 2.5" H

Six fully controlled outlets are controlled by relays that are 80A inrush compliant. Each outlet is individually controlled via HAL sensors with LED Status indicators letting you know the status of each outlet at a glance. Each Multi-Bar powerbar has multiple probe and expansion ports letting you make your Cerebra controller truly limitless, no more modules.


  • 2x pH Ports*
  • 1x ORP (redox) Port*
  • 1x Conductivity Port*
  • 1x Dissolved Oxygen Port*
  • 1x Par Sensor Port*
  • 2x Optical or mechanical Level Sensor Ports*
  • 2x 0-10v Channels
  • 6 Ft Power Cord
  • 6 Relayed Controlled Outlets
  • 15A Power Rating
  • Individual LED Status Indicators
  • Predefined Backup Emergency Power State


*Note: pH, ORP, Conductivity, DO, Par, and Float sensors not included


Smart-Temp Probe

Vertex is revolutionizing the probe industry, with their Smart-Temp probe. The probe is built from the highest quality parts that Vertex could source allowing the probe to last a long time giving stable and reliable readings. The probe had built-in LED status indicators that will let you know when the temperature is normal or out of range.


Blinking Red - Out of Range

Solid Green - Within Range


Exclusive Cerebra Club

By purchasing a Cerebra Prima Package, you are automatically eligible for entrance into the Cerebra Club website, and forum. That will give you direct access to programming tips, exclusive insight on new products, interact with other Cerebra owners only and support directly from Vertex. The exclusivity of the Cerebra Club allows you to know you are getting valuable information from other Cerebra owners and Vertex staff.


Android OS

Vertex undertook the challenge of making an aquarium controller on an open source platform. The Android-based operating system lets you fully customize your controller for your needs without having to learn any coding or proprietary software. If you have a smartphone today, you will know how to use the Cerebra. You can now have an internet browser, streaming videos, and instructional manuals right on your controller. If you need to convert alkalinity readings from PPM to DKH, you can bookmark your favorite conversion chart, or if you are looking for a new skimmer, you can watch and read product reviews directly from the Cerebra. With an open source controller, it is just a matter of time before many useful apps come to the market, making reef keeping fun and easy.



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  • Patience still hasn't paid off By John S. on 12/19/2016

    I think I made the wrong choice. I was all gung ho to be part of a beta. I expected some real advances to be made (over the last 5 months) but it still doesn't work rite (resets itself, hangs), and still has none of the grate features of the main competing product. All I heer on the private forum are promisses promisses. Sure if all I want to do is watch my temp when Im home or have it do simple timmers, it can do that (when it is not hung) - but if you are looking to have your aquarium status easily in the palm of your hand like the pretty screens from your friends controler - forget it - its still just an unmet promisse. Oh, and it is absolutely as bulky as it looks - don't believe that previus post - this thing is huge. At this point I think I will just rite it off and move on to what my friend has and not look back - I am just happy I got in at the cheaper price and the experience did not cost me that much cash.
  • Great Product By mike on 12/4/2016

    This controller is the best out of the Apex and reefkeeper. I have all three on different tanks and this by far is the easiest to use I am sure it was rough in the beta time but as I downloaded the newest OS and flash this thing is a beast no more buying specific expensive brands I can buy any brand and connect with full control. The unit itself just looks elegant and nice and is not as bulky as it is portrayed. and the ability to surf the internet for any issue you are having right there at the tank is amazing I watched you black friday sales right at my aquarium if you have another controller you need this one if you dont have an aquarium controller you need this one...
  • Easy as cake By Littleman on 12/3/2016

    I was one of the first 12 to buy a cerebra controller from BRS.ialready had a apex but i wanted to see how the cerebra was compared to the apex.Man was i surprised. The cerebra was a cake walk to setup compared to the apex.i had it up and running within a hour. Now i want the cerebra doser.
  • Testing Exp. By John VB on 10/18/2016

    Finally got my new tank in and up and running, so I pulled the Cerebra out of the box dusted it off and set it up, as far a putting things together not a problem. Also naming the power outlets, setting there default states (off/on) and there alert (power uses i.e. working state) was rather straight forward and easy to do. From a programming standard (and I'm a programmer at work) I had to spend several minutes reading some of the club forums postings, and watching several YouTube videos to figure out the first rule (temperature probe - power outlet setup for heater)but one I got the first one done setting up the second heater rule and the chiller was very straight forward.

    My suggestions to any one buying this is to sign up on the forums and start out with some of the configurations examples, that and don't toss out the box.
  • Don't waste you time. By Waterdoc on 10/8/2016

    Packaging was great but it stops there. For $400 I thought i would give it a try. Crashed 4 times just getting it configured and 5 times doing a pH calibration. It has never operated more than a couple of hours and I can't even get it to show the display screen. I'll stick with apex.
  • Excellent build quality By Mongrel on 9/19/2016

    Received the beta version of this and loved it... couple of kinks in the software but its a beta right? I was considering the new Neptune system but the Fisher Price plastic toy look does not work for me.
  • Cerebra is going to be a great addition to maintaining a stable reef tank. By Mark on 9/14/2016

    I wish more instructions came with the Cerebra. I have programmed a few outlets. I am ordering a ph probe so I can program more. I hope they come out with a power bar that has the receptacles rotated with the ground on the bottom instead of the side. I have existing equipment I want to use like my Avast Marine ATO or even my Milwaukee controllers. As it is now, if I plug them in they take up the space of 2 outlets. If they were turned this wouldn't happen.
  • Endless options/great support By Justin on 9/13/2016

    Packaging was very impressive. Very basic programming, had it up and running with control quickly. Hardware is solid, software is definitely still in beta but once updated it has been flawless. Both control and cloud connectivity/monitoring are awesome. Support from vertex is great, Cerebra forum is very helpful and they are taking suggestions very seriously. Couldn't be happier.
  • Six years in the making, really - barely alpha at this point By John C. on 9/6/2016

    It was only $400 so I thought, why not? I was expecting some rough edges, but nothing like this. Save yourself some time and hassle and stick with one of the guys that have been doing this a while like GHL or Neptune - they have a lot of catching up to do and if it took them 6 years to get to this point, you might have something capable by the next olympics.
  • NOWHERE close to an Apex By Dan on 9/3/2016

    I thought I would give this a try on my new frag tank. I already have an Apex but for $400 I thought, why not?

    The easiest way to put this is that it is not even close to being beta right now - maybe more like alpha.

    Sure, configuring an outlet was easy. But it stops there. It has crashed at least twice a day. Software updates required constantly (again not what a beta is). Others on the private forum have had similar experience. And there wasn't much else you could do with it - no email alerts, no graphs, and no mobile support. And I don't even want to start on that touch screen. Oy Vey, what a nightmare!

    I will set it aside and maybe in another couple of years they will have this controller stuff all figured out and I will come back to it.

    Anyone who is spreading praise has never seen what a controller should be - as in Apex - or their expectations would be much higher.
  • A Solid Controller By Jeremy on 9/1/2016

    At the time of this review, the cloud aspects of the Cerebra were not yet live so I cannot speak to any functionality there.

    I picked up my Cerebra and extra power bar the day that BRS received them in stock. I brought them home and unboxed to verify that everything survived shipping - nothing was broken, the units were packaged very securely. Components were bagged separately and snuggly placed in compartments in the packaging foam. BRS had opened my Cerebra to verify that everything was in the box and threw in a free Vertex Probe holder - more on that later.

    Setup was easy, placement was difficult. The power bars and display unit are very large and heavy. I had room in my stand for a controller like the RKE or Apex, but would not have room for the Cerebra. I'm currently building a cabinet to place next to my stand which will house the power components and other additional storage for dosing containers, so I wasn't too upset at this prospect. If you were to plan a build with this controller in mind, make sure you have adequate space. Mounting hardware is included with the controller and sensor/power bar.

    Having temporarily set the power bars on the ground next to my stand, I started plugging components into the power strips. Configuring each outlet is a breeze; click the outlet icon on the display, configure name, the default state (OFF or ON, if you lose power this is how the outlet will operate until the controller takes back over), rules, feed states, etc. You can also configure alerts for the outlet; the outlet will tell you how many milliamps or amps it is currently drawing from the strip, which updates about once a second. This is great because you can set up to be alerted for something like when a heater breaks, my heaters draw about 1.1A while on, a simple alert lets me know when it rises above 1.2 or below 1.0 while the outlet is active. You can also extend the life of your heaters greatly by allowing your controller to operate them, simply set the heaters to a value a degree above what you desire (for instance, 80F in a 79F tank) and allow the Cerebra to turn off the outlets when the temperature is above 79.0F. The relays in the heaters will always stay on. Though this does just moves the strain to your power bar's relays.... food for thought.

    I think the best thing about this controller is that I haven't had to play with it for hours to set it up. Everything is a few clicks and menu settings away from being configured. I didn't have to write any code or scripts to control my outlets or send alerts. I was completely set up and good to go in about an hour; I didn't even need to resort to the forums or included manual to find out how to do some task or configuration. That, to me, is the biggest selling point of this controller - it is just intuitive.

    Now, for my negatives. The temperature probe is larger than standard probes already in use by other controllers and ones sold by BRS. What does this mean? It won't fit in any probe holders currently out there. As I said above, Bulk Reef Supply gave me a free probe holder made by Vertex - it was branded the same as the Cerebra so I can only assume it was made to be an add on for this product. Surprisingly, their own probe holder is too small for the included temperature probe. I tried drilling one of the holes larger so it would accomidate the temperature probe, but the holder shattered. C'est la vie. I'm really surprised that they released a probe holder that won't hold their temperature probe, it seems very... lazy. Because the probe holder broke, I haven't had the chance to set up my other probes to monitor pH and ORP. I wasn't able to order a salinity probe before BRS went out of stock on the Vertex models, so I can't comment on that either. I'll update my review when I get my a probe holder and set them up.
  • Cerebra beta tester experience By Jerry on 8/31/2016

    After 6 weeks of beta testing I am very happy with being able to be part of the beta group. Super fast support with willingness to apply suggestions to website and hardware. Cloud service not available but we are getting screen shots of what it can and will do. Overall a great controller.