That is a towel. Yes, I will add that thick craft paper, forgot the name of it as a background. I used it on my 58g and it works SO well. Probably black for now but I might try different things in the future since it so easy to change.I like the last 1. Is that Oil-Dri? It's darker than I'd thought. Will you have a background to cover wires & filter?
(I forgot to mention that oil-dri picture does have some eco-complete and flourite black sand mixed into it.) The red bits are a bit annoying for me too but they are supposed to help with iron, any red clay is "supposed" to, pfft. The oil-dri does look pretty natural though and on the dark side at least. The colorquartz S grade looks killer with red shrimp or green plants or anything really but completely unnatural. PFS has only been a consideration for this tank cause some many aquascapes I see that I like surprisingly have that natural tan sand. I think I have something in the basement that looks a lot like peace river but bigger. Found a picture of it, it's much bigger, never mind. I know what you mean, I hate how much they charge for substrates!Oh I see you posted more pics while I was typing & goofing around. Red shrimp look very nice on black, I like colorquartz but couldn't find it when I wanted it. To me Tahitian moon looks a bit too shiny sometimes. Not a huge fan of stark white, pool sand, meh, not for cherry shrimp. I wish I lived somewhere where it was darker, yours isn't bad, mine's lighter I think. I love the Peace River look but hard to justify the cost for another inert substrate.
The Oil Dri isn't bad but to be super picky I don't like the red bits, almost shrimp color.
Hmm, crystal shrimp prefer the opposite side of the spectrum though and Amanos are know to be too aggressive of eaters and starve out the cherries. I can confirm their appetites for sure, things would take a whole algae wafer and run off with it! Pretty funny actually but my pleco didn't think so.I was thinking you could add crystal shrimp. Black crystal shrimp are awesome, reds are cool too. And maybe some Amanos, only just for a variety.