DaStaCo introduced the first radical new design for a calcium reactor with their Xtrema model back in 2014 and they’re continuing to keep it fresh with the DaStaCo Compact. We got our hands on this new smaller yet still powerful model of calcium reactor and have been enjoying the benefits of set-it-and-forget-it calcium and carbonate replenishment in our home reef tank.
Much like the Deltec Twin Tech, there’s a lot going on in a sophisticated device like the DaStaCo Compact, but once you start piecing things together the operation thereof is not much different from a conventional calcium reactor. The again, if you’ve never used a calcium reactor before at all, the setup might seem a little intimidating but the operation and maintenance will be much easier and stable than a regular calcium reactor.
The real big innovation of automatic calcium reactors such as the DaStaCo Compact is replacing the finnicky pH probe, pH controller and manual adjustment of the effluent with a single mechanism. The gassing chamber and float switch keeps this chamber filled with carbon dioxide running the entire reactor a lower pH, and therefore necessitating the denser marble chips as a source of calcium carbonate media.
Whether you’re in the market for an automatic calcium reactor, want to know more about them, or even want to better understand the principles that make calcium reactors work, this new video by Evan Montgomery is about as informative as it gets. This his first ever calcium reactor and he couldn’t really do much better than starting off with the latest DaStaCo Compact calcium reactor.