The fifty-eight-year-old company that brought you Instant Ocean and Reef Crystals have released a new, third salt called Reef Evolution. Made in collaboration with Dr. Tims Aquatics, Reef Evolution is a reef recipe synthetic salt that also contains vitamins, amino acids, and food for beneficial bacteria.
Aminos are the hot additive in salts right now and Reef Evolution follows in the footsteps of Aquaforest Hybrid Pro Salt by adding 10 different aminos to the salt mix itself, in powder form. Instead of probiotics, however, Aquarium Systems appear to be taking the prebiotic route by providing food for beneficial bacteria but not the actual bacteria themselves, which are available in abundance (but separately,) in Dr. Tim’s products like One and Only.
The recipe is enriched with Calcium and Magnesium although still retains conservative values with Alkalinity at 7.5-8 dKH, Calcium 430-450 mg/l, and Magnesium at 1300-1350 mg/l when mixed to a specific gravity of 1.024. The salt is also free from ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, and phosphate.
Aquarium Systems are synthetic saltwater pioneers and have been producing salt since way before we were born. Instant Ocean helped make our hobby possible and Reef Crystals was the first salt designed to better cater to captive corals and their care. Both salts are still widely used although probably not cemented into the mindset of new reefkeepers or on-trend like they once were.
Although not displaying the obligatory “ICP batch-tested” stamp, with its new-fangled additives and ingredients Reef Evolution does appear to be a thoroughly modern salt, and it is coming from a company that has probably manufactured more salt, and salted up more aquariums, than anyone else.