New Tank Shopping List - Controllers & Monitors
An Aquarium Monitor does exactly that-- it monitors your aquarium. Some monitors are dedicated to a single water parameter like the Pinpoint Marine pH Monitor. Others, like the Neptune Systems Apex Jr., cover a wide range of parameters such as temperature, pH, water level, and leak detection. The Apex Jr. can even send you notifications when these parameters are out of range so that you can do something about it before it's too late.
One step above monitoring is the Aquarium Controller. Aquarium controllers have all the monitoring features, but with one huge benefit...Control! When something isn't quite right with a certain water parameter, a controller allows you to do something about it remotely or automatically until you have time to go and solve the problem. For example, if your aquarium's water temperature is climbing, your can have your controller automatically cut power to your heaters to prevent a catastrophe.
Many aquarium controllers, like the Neptune Systems Apex, have the ability to not only monitor and control based on certain water parameters, but they can also control a vast array of equipment. By integrating your pumps, lights, heaters, and more into your aquarium controller, you give yourself an immense amount of flexibility. Dimming your lighting, triggering automatic feeders, automatic water changes, controlling heaters & fans, scheduling dosing pumps, the list goes on.
In recent years, automatic water testing has taken the saltwater aquarium hobby by storm. Devices like the Trident can monitor for critical parameters like Calcium, Alkalinity, & Magnesium, which are vitally important to healthy coral growth. Other automatic testing devices like the Mastertronic are also available for testing just about everything from nitrate to phosphate and more. Some of these devices can even automatically modify any dosing associated with that water parameter so that you can keep your reef aquarium as stable as possible.