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Penguin 150 & Water Flow

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  • Regular Member

I recently bought a Penguin 150 to replace our Whisper 20 which seems to be dying (background: we have the Whisper 20 HOB & a Whisper 10 In-tank on a 20 gallon). Well, even though the Whisper 20 hang on back seems to be dying, it was actually the in-tank filter that died first, so I set up the new Penguin to get us back to two filters.

But the current on that thing! The bio-wheel was neat, but the current the filter produced was substantial. The water drops a couple inches before shooting out forwards and it was visibly disturbing the water surface all the way to the front of the tank. Where the outflow hit the water was also visibly depressed a good fraction of an inch.

Our little guy - who I readily admit is very picky & a bit wussy - sat in the bottom corner and even down there was being pushed around a little when trying to stay still.

Has anyone else experienced this with the new Penguin models?

I suppose for most people this wouldn't be a problem, but if it is, you should know the Penguin 150 produces some relatively significant current in a 20 gallon, if you have older or pickier fish. Worse, they decided not to include any option for flow control other than their suggestions to use mesh bags or something to partially block the intake.

I think I'm tempted to try the AquaClears to replace our still-working, but still-dying Whisper 20 HOB - they have flow control, to at least slowly adjust him to a faster current (meanwhile, we picked up a new Whisper 10i to replace our old Whisper internal).

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  • 5 weeks later...
  • Regular Member

Update: we replaced it with a Hagen Aquaclear 30 (formerly known as: 150), the same flow rate as the Penguin, but its much gentler and more acceptable to him, even at full flow... though the reduced flow is nice for feeding time. So far the Aquaclear has been nice (its only been installed for a few days). It seemed a bit noisy at first, but seemed to quiet down within hours.

Pros of the Hagen:

- reasonable current w/ adjustible flow

- true 3 stage filtration allows it to be easy to take out just one stage (as in taking out the carbon if you need to medicate), and allows you to customize each stage if you like

- see-through canister allows you to see how dirty the filter foam is

- pretty quiet, at least after it was running for a few hours. I think the Whisper was quieter, but this pretty good.

- reasonably priced


- the only one I've seen so far is that it does not self-prime. You need to add a cup or two of water to the back first. However, if you pull the plug, but don't touch it, such that the pipe stays full of water, it *will* start up on its own again. I've waited 5 or 10 minutes and the pipe stays full of water. So it *should* start up again fine after a power outage, just not after you pull it apart to clean it

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  • Regular Member

I just got a Penguin 200 for my 18 gallon and found the current pretty strong as well. After the filter was running I topped the tank water up to the bottom of the out flow and it significantly reduced the current. I am looking at getting a tera-cota pot for my guy to hide in though so he can find a place to chill :)

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