Best Tank Choices!

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Registered Member
Feb 14, 2022
Hi Everyone!

I have been keeping fish since I was in grade school, so I am not new to the hobby.

What I am new to (and wish to acquire) is a larger tank (I am ideally looking for a 55/75/90 gallon aquarium.) I do understand the time commitment of water changes, filtering RO/DI water etc... so I am not concerned about that and everyone says larger tanks are "easier" although I usually take that to mean water quality is easier to maintain, not necessarily the work it takes to maintain.

In the past, I have kept smaller "nano" tanks of 29 gallons and have successfully kept a FOWLR tank with some clowns and a royal gramma etc. The only reason I chose smaller tanks was because my parents would not let me kept a big tank, but now I am grown up where I make the rules (expect where my fiance says no!) The setup was just a HOB Aquaclear, powerhead and HOB protein skimmer.

The world of sumps and large protein skimmers are new to me and I am interested in seeing what people recommend for setting up larger FOWLR (and eventually reef) tanks.

I have been doing some rudimentary research and have stumbled across the all in one Red Sea tanks. While expensive, it appears to be that these would be good options for exploring sumps (love the auto-top off feature as I always found this to be a pain.) I don't like that these don't have tops, but I have seen several options for tops from other companies online.

I am just wondering if this is what someone would recommend to a "newbie" to larger tanks who does not have experience with sumps/ larger filtration systems.

My end goal is a reef tank and I REALLY want to be able to have some smaller (or one) tangs like a tomini tang. So i'd be looking more for a 75+ gallon tank.

Thanks in advance!



AC Members
Jun 7, 2019
I think you have arrived at a good decision (75g versus 55g).
The extra width will be very handy for either a reef tank, or a freshwater setup. 55's are nice, but the 13 inch front-to-back becomes limiting quite often.
Congrats and good luck!

Lalo J.

AC Members
Mar 8, 2020
I have always liked to custom make tanks and not buy tanks that are already assembled no matter what brand it's so if you have the opportunity to custom make a tank as well as the sump then go for it you can take measurements on the space you have available and build the largest tank you can, you will have no problem keeping any Ctenochaetus species in tanks over 75 or even 65 gallons. Designing a sump is a task that requires mechanical, biological and chemical filtration in that order, if you are only going to keep fish, worry about a good skimmer and water circulation, there are many designs and you can choose to do it as is most comfortable for your needs.


AC Members
Jan 28, 2019
In deciding the tank size you have to take into account how you will stock it (including plants). For example if you will have angelfishes then a 40B is too short. If you will have guppies than a 120 is too large. If you are going to have a heaviliy planted tank then you probably want something shorter than 24 inches. If you will keep an oscar you probably want something longer than 4 ft. If you want to keep borelli apistogramma with a few pencil fishes then I would recommend a 20 long.