The new Penguin Pro and Emperor Pro power filters from Marineland are long deserved updates to two very popular and successful aquarium filter lines. With their patented, and never duplicated bio-wheel design, the wet-dry biological filtration afforded by the Penguin and Emperor filters are legendary.
With the new Pro refresh of the Penguin and Emperor filters, Marineland is attempting to reassert their claim to be king of the power filter hill, but are the new improvements enough to keep them at the top? The long answer will take years for the wider aquarium community to suss out but the easier answer is that Marineland really has packed their newest filters with great, novel useful features.
Both the Penguin Pro and Emperor Pro are now powered with submerged motor so there’s no longer any need to prime them, the impellers have been improved for higher flow and reduced noise, and the motor dampener helps to reduce any associated noise and vibration. Both models have a built in flow control that is likely more responsive than what they previously had, and an all-new combination pre-filter and media basket adds a much welcome extra stage to the Penguin and Emperor’s already abundant layers of filtration.
Both the Penguin and Emperor now include two slots for media and filtration cartridges, the primary mechanical and chemical filtration cartridge and a spare, refillable cartridge that can be filled with your media of choice. After that comes the signature wet dry spinning bio-wheel for biological filtration and this is where the most tangible difference between the Penguin and Emperor filters comes in, with the emperor being the only line with a dedicated spray bar to deliver even more water to the spinning wheel.
Other improvements included a hinged lid which all black for a real slick and stealthy appearance on the aquarium, subsurface intake and a more dedicated ‘spillway’ to deliberately move more water across the aquarium. The Penguin and Marineland Pro will be available in six sizes ranging from the Penguin Pro 100 to the Penguin Pro 375, with the Emperor Pro 450 topping out the line with a capacity of 90 gallons for around $65.
Saltwater aquarists might be preoccupied with sumps, under tank filters and lots of fancy accessories for their fish and reef tanks, but some of the smaller all in one aquariums are actually pathetically filtered, or very bare to start. This new breed of modern power filters like the Penguins and Emperors are a really great value proposition providing flow, filtration and lots of features to make it more effective as an aquarium filter, and more efficient to service and maintain. [Marineland]