The masters of marketing over at Waterbox aquariums launched their new Marine X range of aquariums last week. With all the hype of the covered-up aquariums and countdown, we hoped for a reinvention of the wheel. What we got instead were a few subtle changes and new pricepoint to a now very familiar rimless, reef-ready tank-sump-cabinet design.
The X comes in four model sizes – an 18” cube, 24x20x20”, 36x20x22” and 48x20x22” named the 35.1, 60.2, 90.3 and 110.4 respectively. They have all the standard WB features including low iron glass, laser etched logo, foam levelling mat, black vinyl wrap and black glass weir. New to the weir design however is a removable front weir comb for ease of maintenance and all but the 35.1 come with twin return nozzles via a T piece inside the weir and standard, three pipe, Herbie-style drain plumbing.
Four chamber sump design
Sump-side, all models come with two filter socks for first-line mechanical filtration in the sump and what looks like a Spears precision gate valve. The other three of the four sump chambers feature a skimmer/reactor chamber, a pump chamber with a bubble trap, and an ATO reservoir. An actual ATO is not supplied.
The Marine X sump doesn’t feature the manifold or macroalgae refugium comb of the Reef Pro models although manifolds have their own issues and with the switch over to macro algae reactors, the loss of an actual refugium chamber is no big deal. I would like to see more provision for easy removal of the sock chamber and retro-fitting roller filters, however.
These tanks all come with cabinets as standard and are all available in either Oak, Black, or White. The silicone-covered door hinges are a nice feature to try and repel rust from the off.
The marine market is not short on rimless reef-ready marine tanks and to be fair to Red Sea, since they launched the Reefer, everyone has wanted a piece of their action with virtually all rival tanks since baring more than a passing resemblance to the Reefer’s design.
The Waterbox Marine X is clearly built to go head-to-head with the Reefer with similar sizes, features, and price points. The winner will be the reef keeping hobbyists themselves who stand to benefit from more choice, refined features, and aggressive promo and pricing from all of the industry’s largest tank manufacturers as they jostle for position as the market leader.