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w3bbo

Review: Coralbox D500 (Jebao)

Coralbox D500 Skimmer

 

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I bought this from the UK warehouse (Fish-street) although it arrived a little later than the return pump ordered from the same warehouse at the same time which was odd. Regardless, for £115 it was worth a punt. There are very few reviews online but it looks from what I can tell to be a clone of the BM Curve series (Curve 5?)

 

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The packaging was excellent throughout meaning it should arrive in perfect condition. I was wary that the plastics might not be up to scratch given the cost (excuse the pun) but the acrylic was very thick and well protected.

 

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There's lots of bits to put together and the instructions (to be generous) are very short with no diagrams. They make Ikea instructions look like an encyclopedia so don't expect them to be of much use even if they are printed in English (of sorts).

 

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Nevertheless, it was fairly straightforward if you know how a skimmer works but if not then you may struggle a little.

 

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Overall, so far I am very impressed by the D500. There are some nice little features such as a media holder (read carbon) for cleaning the air before it goes to the venturi and a very usefull (if my sump wasn't so high) drain tube for the skimmer collection cup. Fitting it together wasn't rocket science and pretty striaghtforward but better, clearer instructions would be useful, especially as there is little to no info on how to tune it once it is assembled.

 

The skimmer comes complete with an electronically adjustable jebao d2000 pump which is rated for 250-600L tanks and an attachment that adjusts the water/air ratio although unlike a BM skimmer, it is simply a case of rotating the uncle bob +/- which is free moving and not numbered/incremental.

 

Buying this skimmer was a bit of a gamble because they are pretty much unknown. However as most things from this shop are quality copies or variants of existing equipment and re-badged I thought it was worth a go.

 

I wasn't disappointed.

 

It took a few days to bed in and a few more to fine tune but it is now regularly pulling out some real stinky skimmate. In terms of tuning it in there is a simple +/- uncle bob which adjusts the amount of water going into the skimmer and thus the air/water ratio. To you and me this is wetter or dryer skimmate. I found this a little difficult to judge as the instructions aren't great so I just set the bubbles to the skimmers 'neck' and left it for 5 days. It was very 'up and down' during this period. One day it would flood the skimmer cup with water and others it would not produce any skimmate at all. Eventually it bedded in though and I started to get consistent results. A light tea colour was being produced every couple of days but I prefer a darker skim mate with heavier chunks of 'crap' for want of a better word. The +/- thing was adjusted to more '+' but this gave the opposite effect. IT was only then I realised that '+' equates to more water not more skinmate. So now I have the opening about half closed with the pump set to two notches off full power.

 

The pump itself is very quiet but it is audible, Well not so much the pump but the 'vibration'. I have the skimmer in 7.5" of water (recommended is between 7-9") so if you have a deeper amount of water then I guess you could place it on some foam which would lower the noise a little but with the doors closed on the cabinet I don't notice it other than a light hum.

 

So the results now its bedded in?

 

3 days worth of skimmate.

 

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I'm currently dosing vodka in combination with Biopearls and I am feeding fairly heavily but this isn't an issue for the Coralbox D500!

 

After cleaning it I took this 2 minutes after putting the cup back on:

 

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+ Very powerful

+ Cheap as chips

+ Decent looking

+ Adjustable pump

+ Packaging

 

- Air/Water ratio difficult to judge

- Not silent but very quiet

- Poor setup Instructions

- Drain hole on cup is useless in a tall sump but would be very usefull in a sump 15" or less.

 

Overall thoughts are that if you are after a cheap skimmer that is both powerful and easy to maintain this is a great option. The amount of crud it is pulling from my tank is unbelieveable. While I only have an external Deltec MCE400 for comparison, this is SO much better (and quieter). For £100 you really cannot go wrong for what is in effect a copy of the BM Curve series.

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Belting review @@w3bbo and thanks for doing it. It's a great skimmer by the sounds of things and one to definitely give the competition a run for their money at a great price.

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@@w3bbo super write up giving the people a choice :icon_thumleft:   

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Nice bit of kit that. Shows you don't have to pay big fir a good skimmer.

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I was going to but one of these but opted for a curve 5as there wasn't any info available on them

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looks like a great skimmer

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Forgot to mention that as with most Jebao items, there is a 'feed mode; which cuts the pump for 10 minutes before restarting. Ideal for when you supplementing with items such as reef energy/acropower etc.

Edited by w3bbo

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This looks like an almost identical copy of the brand new TMC Reef Skim 500.

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great review might look at getting one of these

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This looks like an almost identical copy of the brand new TMC Reef Skim 500.

I agree but then alot of tmc's new products are re badged fish street gear

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I've been looking at these skimmers for my new tank think I'm going to give them a try

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Its a great unit mate. One thing I have noticed though is that when I clean it down it is hard to dial back in but the fact the pump can be controlled is very useful.

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