View Full Version : Reef Keeper or Neptune Apex?

12/21/2009, 10:17 AM
I am looking to purchase an automated system for my 120 and I am looking for information on these 2 systems. Which one do you prefer and what are the pros and cons?

12/21/2009, 10:21 AM
I upgrade from a RK2 to an Apex and am very impressed with the Neptune controller. It allows you to custom program the outlets in many different ways, along with allowing you to name them. Comes with the network module built in - not an add-on.

12/21/2009, 01:43 PM
Here's someone from Neptune posting why the Apex is much better:

Of course it's biased but a lot of his points cannot be countered by the RKE.

I'm an Apex owner as well. ;)

12/21/2009, 05:56 PM
I spent a lot of time at MACNA in Atlantic City talking to Neptune and Digital Aquatics and after about 2 hours at each I went with the Apex, and love it. I'm running pretty much my entire tank off it with a couple back up pieces that run backup just in case. I have 2 EB8's 16 outlets that are programmed. I love the online thing also, just in case something happens and I am at work I can go in and make the needed changes. Getting ready to set up my reactor to run off the Apex as well. The Apex is in controll of my main 215 and my 40 frag system. Also if you have any questions you can go to the Neptune fourm and have a very fast response. As you can tell I really like this controller, Go Apex.

12/21/2009, 07:54 PM
I'm moving this to the equipment forum for more views.

I don't know anything about these controllers, so I can't help, but I would make a list of functions that I wanted to automate, and check that against the features list. I'd definitely want a pH controller feature, and SG and temperature monitoring. Salinity might be hard to find, though. I'm not keen on putting too many features into one box, since the tank might die if that box failed, but I'm more cautious than some.

I'd also have a battery back for the controller, to limit issues with power outages, but the newer controller might tolerate power failures better.

12/21/2009, 08:14 PM
The Apex has a fall back feature that if power is lost you can have each receptical program to fall back on or off. I do have a UPS for the controller and a gen back up for the house/tank. One of the biggest thing I see is that the Apex will be able to controll is the Vortech pumps soon, testing is being conducted at this time. If you have any questions on the Apex go to this location. http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=368
They will be able to answer any questions you have.

12/21/2009, 08:20 PM
I used to own a RK Elite and recently switched to the Neptune Apex. Out of box, the Apex is a far better value, and more capable, than the RKE. It has net built in, controllable over the internet, programmable on a PC, Tunze stream control, and 0-10v dimmable ports built in. They are also working on Vortech wireless control. It comes with both a pH and ORP port, but the ORP port can be used as a secondary pH port, great for calcium reactor usage.

The RKE is a decent controller. Several features I consider basic- web control, naming outlets, and PC programming- were not, and still are not available on it(not sure on the PC programming). I switched for this reason, I grew tired of waiting on DA for something the competition had from the start. While they have announced Tunze control, they have not given any tentative date at all for it. Neptune has been controlling Tunzes for years. DigitalAquatics has not commented on Vortech allowing 3rd party wireless control. Firmware updates currently require each module to be brought over to a PC and individually updated. The Apex does it all over its NET connection, takes literally less than a minute to accomplish.

Service is fantastic from Neptune, I dealt with them once years ago, but see nothing but great reviews. Digital Aquatics has alot of mixed service reviews. My dealing with their service was OK, the work got done on it. However, it took a week and a half of emails and reminders just to get a RMA number.