ATB skimmers will, starting this week, begin being shipped with controllable Airstar DC pumps. This is a big deal for ATB skimmer performance, but to the progress of the industry as whole this news is even more significant. DC pumps long seem to have been going through the same progression as LEDs. They are the future of larger aquarium pumps, and whether you like it not they will take over much the aquarium pump market in the future.
DC pumps have been around for a while now, with a few high end skimmers rocking controllable pumps (Rssl, Skimz, and Royal Exclusiv to name a few), so ATB Airstar DC pumps are nothing exceptionally new to the DC pump game. It is only now however that a company with an already solid main stream status in the hobby, such as ATB, is jumping on the DC pump bandwagon with their Airstar pumps. As insignificant (or not) a company simply changing AC skimmer pumps to Airstar DC might seem, in a few years we’ll be able to look back and point at ATB is one of the first tipping points to pump controllability.
All ATB skimmer receiving the DC upgrade, including the smaller nano skimmers, will be featuring Airstar DC pumps. Looking very familiar to the Waveline DC pumps seen first on RLSS skimmers, it appears ATB’s Airstar DC pump uses the same pump with a modified volute. Great news, as we’d imagine that universal pumps across different skimmer brands would make third part controller integration a whole lot easier. Not to mention that the Waveline DC pumps offer some serious performance.
Airstar DC pumps will come with ATB Nano B Size skimmers, ATB Small Size skimmers, ATB E200 skimmers, ATB E200 Pro skimmers, ATB Medium Size skimmers, and the ATB Normal Size skimmers. The new Aistar pumps will be available in red or white, and skimmers with upgraded pumps will be available through your favorite retailer carrying ATB products soon. Now if we could only get a close look at what impeller ATB is using . . .