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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I am debating on switching my salt mix. I currently use reef crystals but I hear it is not a good brand to use. Anybody have any suggestions on salt mix and please tell my why you are reffering the mix.

Also, other than salt mix, should I add any trace elements or strontium/ iodide? I have mainly Lps, few sps but not growing too well. Lps are growing slow. I do weekly water changes at 10%. Nitrates/phosphates undetectable, Calcium 520, mag 1050, dkh 10,. I have a 65gallon tank with refugium and Skimmer. Macroalgae in refugium.
 

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A lot of reefers love and sware by Reef Crystals. I used to use it as well and only switched to Aqua Virto Salinity becuause I wanted to try something new. I like the Aqua Vitro line and the salt seem like a well thought out and blended mix. So far, I love it and have no complaints. As for dosing. There isn't much that needs to be dosed other then a quality 2 part, Kalwaser and a carbon source depending on how your system is set up and what you are trying to do.
I woulld look to lower you Cal to the 420-460 range and boost your Mag to the 1200-1500 range. You may see some better results with your coral health and growth.
 

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There is nothing wrong with reef crystals. I personally don't use it because of the high levels of alk, and the low levels of mag. Just doesn't match the target parameters for my tank very well. I use the regular red sea salt and have been happy with the levels on that.

Last new batch of mix I tested (beginning of this month)

Salinity--1.026
Alk--8.5 dKh
Calcium--460
Mag--1320

And no, I would not dose any other trace elements. Dose a two part if your calcium and alkalinity levels start dropping, but other than that I don't dose any other minerals.
 

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I use reef crystals and it works good for me I'm mainly lps &sps. With a weekly water change of 10% with good coral growth, I never have to dose. you need to drop your calcium, and raise your mag your corals will appreciate it. :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Well, my concern was my high end calcium and low magnesium due to the salt mix. I do not dose calcium but need to dose magnesium if I keep using reef crystals. I'm on my last mix with reef crystals and thank you all for your advice.

I am going to change my mix and retest in 1week.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I do RO water changes, would it make a difference if I added a DI? My Ph is also 8.3 by the way. I forgot to add it in my thread.
 

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The DI would take out all remaining Ca, Mg, and other metals getting you to 0ppm water. Which is what I believe the reef crystal box says to add the salt to. Do you know the gh and kh of your RO water you are adding?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I may have to pick up a DI. Since using my RO, I have been near zero phosphates and nitrates but at times my phosphates may raise a little due to coral feeding. When using RO, I hear that it may remove the good out of the water and may need to use supplement....any word on this??
 

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I may have to pick up a DI. Since using my RO, I have been near zero phosphates and nitrates but at times my phosphates may raise a little due to coral feeding. When using RO, I hear that it may remove the good out of the water and may need to use supplement....any word on this??
That is true but you add back a great deal of Ca, Mg and Alk as it's contained in the salt mix. When added to RO/DI you may end up right in the ball park. I'm not sure though as I have never mixed SW before. I'm totally new to this and plan on setting up my tank in the fall once I get the new house fixed up and get moved in.
 

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The vast majority of suppliments are a major rip off. Any minor or trace elements are best replaced by doing regular water changes or if you are really intensly growing corals a Ca Reactor (should be called and ALK reactor).

Adjusting the major elements in a salt mix can be done very easily with a little knowledge. Calcium hydroxide, Calcium chloride, Magnesium chloride, magnesium sulfate, and sodium bicarbonate (or possibly Calcium carbonate/sodium carbonate) are all readily available if you know where to look. And they cost pennies. You can buy any of them in pure enough to dose with grade for under or around $.50 a pound.... granted, you have to buy a lot more than a pound to get that price, but you get the idea. Any salt mix that you use can be easily adjusted to match your Mg or Ca or Alk needs. The question you have to ask is do I trust this salt manufacture to provide a consistant quality product. I have used a lot of brands of salt and have been stuck using instant ocean for a while based soley on price and availability. The adjustments are easy enough to make if you are already doing the testing. Google reef chemistry and you will find a mad pile of information.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Adjusting the major elements in a salt mix can be done very easily with a little knowledge. Calcium hydroxide, Calcium chloride, Magnesium chloride, magnesium sulfate, and sodium bicarbonate (or possibly Calcium carbonate/sodium carbonate) are all readily available if you know where to look. And they cost pennies. You can buy any of them in pure enough to dose with grade for under or around $.50 a pound.... I have used a lot of brands of salt and have been stuck using instacean for a while based soley on price and availability. The adjustments are easy enough to make if you are already doing the testing. Google reef chemistry and you will find a mad pile of information.
Where do you buy your supplement for pennies? I will look into this.
 
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