If you've shopped for a media reactor, you probably noticed they all seem to share the same basic design.

Innovative Marine recently broke the mold when they introduced the MiniMax, an all-in-one media reactor that is easy to set up, easy to clean and easy to swap swap media out of.

If you've owned a media reactor before and found them to be messy or difficult to maintain, let me assure you that Innovative Marine's one-of-a-kind design puts all your worries to rest.

Media reactors maximize the use of any loose pellet or granular media. Their purpose is simple: pump water through the media (BioPellets, GFO or Carbon) confined inside the reactor chamber. This process puts every drop of water pumped through the reactor into contact with your media, optimizing chemical and biological filtration, thereby improving the water quality inside your aquarium.

The patent-pending design of Innovative Marine's MiniMax gives hobbyists a truly innovative media reactor to consider.

The primary difference between the MiniMax and other reactors on the market is its use of dual chambers. There is an internal chamber that acts as a removable cartridge which slides up and out of the outer chamber with ease. The pump is attached below the outer chamber and pumps water upward through the internal chamber. Water drains through four holes in the top of the inner chamber down in-between chambers, then back into the aquarium through four holes in the bottom of the outer chamber.

The connection between the two chambers houses the MiniMax's unique water flow adjustment feature. There are two slits where the inside and outside chamber slide into one another; simply turning the inside chamber will cause the two openings to cross paths and adjust the amount of water flowing through the reactor. Since different media need varying levels of water flow, this process makes it possible for the media reactor to work at the highest efficiency no matter which media is used.

With only three separate parts in the package, there really is no need to read instructions or piece anything together—you can go straight to installing it in your aquarium.

After a quick rinse in RO water to remove any dust or residue left from manufacturingtake off the top of the internal chamber and pull out both top sponge filters. Pour your desired media inside and place the sponges back into the top of the chamber and push the top back in. Finally, slide that internal chamber into the outside tube and attach the pump to the bottom. You can now place it in most all-in-one aquariums and sumps!

I personally use ROWAphos for my media so I wanted to run the reactor in a bucket of RO water to give the media a quick rinse before placing it into my tank. This also gave me the ability to adjust the reactor to my desired flow which was helpful because when I place the reactor in the back of my 38-gallon Innovative Marine Nuvo, I cannot see the media react to the different flow rates.

Maintenance has never been easier. There isn't unnecessary clutter, turning screws or tools. The internal chamber simply slides out of the outer chamber like a cartridge and automatically drains all the water left inside. Dump and replenish your desired media and slide the inner cartridge back into the outer chamber and you are ready to go.

Even if you wanted to rinse your media, taking the entire reactor out of the tank isn't a difficult process at all. The water drains out as you pull it out of the tank. Then you just place the whole reactor into a quarter full bucket of RO water and pull the internal chamber out to continue the maintenance process. This also gives you an opportunity to clean the entire product of build-up.

The Innovative Marine MiniMax Media Reactor has really changed the face of media reactors. With three different sizes available for tanks ranging from 10 to 250 gallons, there aren't many aquariums that couldn't use this product.

With the simplicity, durability, uniqueness and high functionality of this media reactor, I can't see myself using any other reactor in any of my future tanks.