What You Missed at MACNA 2022: New Products and Inventions
30 Sep, 2022
Manufacturers often time the release of a new product with a tradeshow or convention, and MACNA continues to be the premier event where marine-aquarium-related companies debut and showcase their latest innovations. The recent 2022 Conference in Milwaukee was no different; several manufacturers and distributors saved their best for introduction at MACNA, just as the aquarium retail sector starts to ramp up for the normally busy fall season.
What follows is a quick rundown of some of the new products seen at MACNA. No doubt some got missed; for example, it was hard to get near the always-crowded Neptune Systems booth to see what they were up to (although
we already shared their new A3 product line, which was officially introduced back in August 2022). If this sampling doesn’t include something that really deserves attention, tell us about it in the comments! Roger Vitko of TUNZE USA was showing a very interesting prototype for a futuristic new aquarium cooling fan from Tunze. Here’s another look at the design for the Tunze cooling fan, which will help pull down aquarium water temperatures through evaporative cooling. Sparing no detail, Vitko also had an attention grabber in a new high-end faux wood handled Care Magnet line from Tunze. Don’t like this particular look? The faux wood, ergonomic handles are entirely interchangeable. Marine fish breeder Todd Gardner poses with Julian Sprung, excited to be among the first to receive Martin “Skip” Moe’s newest book, the Diadema Culture Manual. Moe’s new book wasn’t the only exciting thing at the Two Little Fishies display. Julian was eager to show off a new line of algae scrapers. The new AlgaEraser and LittleScraper had the feeling of fine surgical tools, perhaps inspired by the types of equipment that the modern aquascaping community is adopting on the freshwater side of the hobby? Julian demonstrates the easy replacement of the scraper blade. Talk about attention to detail. The LittleScrape is truly a thing of beauty. Everything about Two Little Fishies new algae scrapers seems to be perfectly executed, including the eye-grabbing packaging that will stand out on a retailer’s displays. One more small innovation from Two Little Fishies comes in the form of adjustable-height filter plates for the classic PhosBan Reactors. When I asked Dr. Tim Hovanec (of Dr. Tim’s fame) what was new, he was quick to point me to an entirely new line of water pumps from Aquarium Systems France (ASF). ASF also has a new line of extremely energy-efficient internal water circulation pumps, as demonstrated in this real-time display (no surprise, the ASF models are the ones with the lower power consumption readings). Steve Bashi always puts together a beautiful, eye-catching hot-red display of Bashsea aquarium filtration systems, and he was excited to share his newest models. The focus of the new Bashsea Pro-Series line of sumps focused on accommodating the hobby’s shift towards rollermat or rolled fleece filters for mechanical filtration. As seen here, there are still many ways to bring water into the sump, and filter socks can still be used, but the Pro Series is designed to put the modern floss filters right where they need to be. At Champion Lighting & Supply, Mussel Polymers CFO David Schmidt spent the weekend at MACNA offering hands-on demonstrations of a new, remarkably strong underwater adhesive. This new product offers “strong underwater bonding”; Schmidt remarked that the material was stronger than the rocks themselves. This amazing new product, SEATAK, was truly sticky and tacky right out of the tube. Seatak has a long cure time, and reportedly the only byproduct is CO2 that is released as it cures. This was the new top-of-the-line Afishionado Special, a RO/DI configuration created specifically to meet the demands of aquarist Richard Back, who says “I was frustrated with overcoming obstacle after obstacle, so I went to engineers (they are actual civil engineers for water treatments) to design a unit that is built to withstand every problem imaginable for every type of hobbyist.” Back documented the process of creating this unit on his YouTube channel. Francios Nollet, CEO & President of ELOS America, was eager to demonstrate the latest Elos invention: a prototype of the new Elos MaRe Reef Manager, a departure from the normal method of measuring dosing.
Nolle and Carlotta Gandini of Elos demonstrating the MaRe Reef Manager to a MACNA attendee. Instead of volumetric or time-based dosing, the Reef Manager incorporates pressure-sensitive plates to constantly weigh the material being dosed. When combined with the Reef Manager’s software, and some basic testing for the trinity of reef water chemistry (Alkalinity, Calcium, and Magnesium), the system automatically adjusts the amount being dosed. The initial system is configured to work with Elos’ dry-mix supplements (Gandini noted that shipping dry supplements is much more efficient and conscientious than shipping heavy, liquid solutions). While initially configured to utilize the Elos suite of tests and supplements, it is conceivable that the MaRe Reef Manager could see a much wider range of applications. With hurricanes in the news, many people talking were about an entirely new way to approach battery backups for reef aquarium systems. Carlos Chacon of Coralvue explained what all the buzz was about: the new Kracken for the Hydros aquarium controller system. A closer look at the new Control X10. And the new Control XD. The entire Hydros Control product suite adds the Control XD and X10, plus the new interference-blocking probe-vessel called the HYDROS iV (seen at lower left). Check out the full product release on the Coralvue website. Coralvue distributes a large family of brands, and Chacon was clearly excited about the latest Kamoer KH Carer. Chacon reveals the inner-workings of the KH Carer, noting easy maintenance access and a thoughtful overall design. Chacon was also eager to showcase the new VarioS high-pressure-rated water pumps from Reef Octopus. Acrylic wizard Harley Finberg used MACNA to debut his new PNW Custom 4-Gallon Lagoon Frag Tank, which he noted can be used for coral medicating & quarantine, as well as a small frag tank for swaps/shows. It’s also an interesting size suitable for a small mangrove display.
That’s a wrap for this sampling of new products. DId we overlook or miss something? Tell us about it in the comments.
About the author
Matt Pedersen is a Sr. Editor and Associate Publisher with Reef To Rainforest Media, LLC & CORAL Magazines, and is a Sr. Editor and Publishing Partner with Aquatic Media Press, LLC & AMAZONAS Magazine. Matt has kept aquariums for 38 years, has worked in most facets of the aquarium trade, is an active aquarist and fish breeder (both marine and freshwater), and was recognized with the 2009 MASNA Award as the MASNA Aquarist of the Year.
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