Best test kit versus cost

Discussion in 'Water Parameters and Additives' started by Raven, 23 Mar 2008.

  1. Raven

    Raven

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    Hi guys,
    I would like to know what is the best test kit for the value of ones money.
    For example I could buy a test kit x for R 500, but test kit y for R 600. Then lets say further that both test kits can do the same amount of tests and can test the same parameters.
    Now the assumptions that i can make out of this is:
    1. Test kit Y is a beter testkit to buy, because it's more accurate,
    or 2 - testkit y is a "named brand", and thus we pay more for it.

    Of all the test kits out there, are there any that one should stay away from?

    I know this is all a bit vague and there is a lot of questions/statements , but i really hope that you understand my question, and we can start some discussions on the different test kits.

    What i would like to get out of this is, is to know what to buy, what not even to look at ext.

    Is it also possible to get a poll running with the different test kits? (keeping in mind that there are different price categories as well)
     
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  3. LikesFish

    LikesFish

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    Well I have been using Tropic Marine test kits - unfortunately I cannot really make any claims to their accuracy however they do seem to be reasonably priced and professionally packaged - in terms of having good instructions, expiry dates clearly marked and well defined colour changes.
     
  4. irie ivan

    irie ivan MASA Contributor

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    You get what you pay for.............

    Stay away from: Hagen, sera, tetra, Red sea, Azoo, waterlife. Sure there is more, but only those come to mind right now.Before making decisions on test kits, you should determine what exactly you are looking for......
    Do you merely want to monitor parameter trends in your system or do you want exact and accurate figures for tweaking growth, colour, etc.
    If merely observing trends in your system, the more reputable hobby grade kits are fine. (Salifert, Seachem, Elos, Tropic Marin, API)
    For accurate and precise measurements, I would only recommend lab grade kits, scientific probes, Photometers, etc. (Hach, Hanna, La Motte, Merck, Martini)
    For certain parameters its worth forking out hundreds (even thousands of rands), whereas certain parameters only require indications of their general level.
     
  5. Raven

    Raven Thread Starter

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    Damn, and i've just ordered red sea's phosphate and calcium test kits....
    Is it really that unrealiable - it's half the price of tropic marine....
     
  6. LikesFish

    LikesFish

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    There is a reason why some test kits are cheaper than other...
     
  7. irie ivan

    irie ivan MASA Contributor

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    Red Sea makes two Calcium kits, the calcium and the calcium PRO. The calcium kit measures in 50ppm increments, which is does give ypou some indication whether your levels are low, high or acceptable, BUT nowhere near good enough. The red sea PRO works well enough to give an aproximate level, safe enough to use for dosing purposes. (mesures in 10 or 5ppm increments if memory serves me well) I used the PRO for years, so you will get by on it.
    The red sea PO4 kit is utterly useless IMHO. It does not measure down to the levels which you want to run a reef tank at (0.06 maximum) Before you detect PO4 on the kit, you should have loads of algae as an indicator..............
     
  8. LikesFish

    LikesFish

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    PS irie - I dig your signature. So true.
     
  9. aslam

    aslam

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    I guess quality costs,from personal experience,I had a Hagen phosphate test kit that read zero phosphates,but i had cyno growing in my sump.
     
  10. sunburst

    sunburst

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    Ivan...For alkalinity; how would you rate Nutrafin.
     
  11. seank

    seank

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    Maybe this is one of the reasons for my problems as I only use the red sea kits ( as it is the only stuff available at our Local Lfs)

    Thank you for the Info:wave2:
     
  12. irie ivan

    irie ivan MASA Contributor

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    I have not used it, so not familiar with it. I would assume its fine, but dropping bothers me personally. A syringe like with the LaMotte is more suited for a parameter obsessed junkie like me...
     
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