The Red Sea MAX S has been the flagship of the Red Sea MAX line of all in one aquariums since it was introduced way back in summer of 2011. With five more years of research and development under their belt since the MAX S was released, today Red Sea formally introduced the new and improved Red Sea MAX S which borrows refinements from all of Red Sea’s tanks.
Red Sea has made great innovations in the line of Red Sea aquariums including the award-wining Red Sea Reefer and the new Red Sea MAX E Series. These two aquarium series will be lending some of their advancements and improvements to the 2016 edition Red Sea MAX S.
The most obvious new feature about the Red Sea MAX S is the use of Hydra 26 HyperDrive LEDs that Red Sea uses in the Red Sea MAX E Series. However unlike the MAX E which is equipped with simple yet elegant mounting arms, the MAX S will be using a a customized chassis that matches the tank’s trim and stand.
The lighting chassis for the MAX S can a large number of Hydra 26 HD LED lighting units with the MAX S 400, 500 and 650 coming standard with 2, 3 and 4 lights respectively. The MAS S lighting chassis can slide forwards and backwards in the grooves of the rim of the MAX S aquarium, and it will be available as an upgrade for existing MAX S tanks and users.
The MAX S lighting chassis looks like a big beautiful car spoiler above the aquarium and interestingly, the chassis is designed to hold the Hydra 26 HD perpendicular to the aquarium. Although it is custom to the Red Sea MAX S aquarium, the lighting chassis for it is one of the most attractive mounting solutions we’ve seen to hold LED lighting over the aquarium, while neatly hiding both the light fixtures and their cords.
More importantly, the use of Hydra 26 HD LED lighting drastically cuts down the overall power requirements of the lighting system for the Red Sea MAX S. Whereas previously the Red Sea MAX S used 390, 540 and 800 watts for the MAX S 400, 500 and 650, the new arrangement reduces that to 180, 270 and 360 watts respectively. This is less than half the power consumed by the previous multi-lamp T5 fluorescent set up, without the need to periodically replace bulbs, reducing the long term owning cost of this light.
Besides the obvious new mounting chassis, the first feature change to trickle down from this lighting choice is the ‘dumbing down’ of this aquariums controller system. Since the Hydra 26 HD has built in wireless programming, gone are the built-in mechanical timers seen in the previous Red Sea MAX power center.
With smart LED lighting and by leaning on the built in control of heaters and chillers, the Red Sea MAX can bypass the need for a full-on controller – the only thing left to automate in the Red Sea MAX S is the top off system. To this end Red Sea has incorporated the same automatic top off reservoir that was first seen in the Red Sea Reefer sumps; this top off solution tops out at 10 gallons for the MX S 650, but it’s quite sufficient for cool or humid climates where evaporation is a minor concern.
The only other notable change to the new Red Sea MAX S is a slight reduction in overall flowrate throughout the aquarium. The flow rating for the return pump has decreased from 6000, 7500 and 9000 lph in the MAX S 400, 500 and 650 respectively and the total flowrate in the new tanks is now 7000 liters per hour (1850 gph) across the board. The recirculating pumps are also slightly lower in output with each of these now rated at 2,150 liters per hour compared to the older pumps rated for 2,700 gph. [Red Sea MAX S]