The Nyos Quantum 160i skimmer was first introduced by Nyos at the 2014 Nuremberg Interzoo.
We tried this protein skimmer in an SPS dominated 600 L tank with a few LPS corals, which meant that it had the tough job of keeping the nutrient levels down to an absolute minimum!
The first thing we noticed after removing the skimmer from its box is the stunning craftsmanship – the acrylic quality is incredible; it’s such a shame to hide this protein skimmer in a sump! I also love that the impeller is in plain sight. But now, let’s review its technical characteristics:
Total Height: 53 cm
Min. base measure: 18.5 cm
Max base measure: 25 cm
Quantum pump 3.0
Consumption: 18 watt
Air flow: 1,500 l/h
For tanks from 250 to 1,000 liters (60-260 gal) depending on nutrient load.
Price: 486 €
As you can see from the pictures, the Nyos Quantum 160 has taken protein skimmer construction to the next level. First quality materials and plastic components create a perfect product.
The overall design is similar to most manufacturers’, with some little exceptions like the bonus of having an internal pump. The pump is a Nyos Quantum 3.0, feeds into the sump at 7-8 cm sump level, and has its water inflow at the bottom.
Once pulled into the skimmer, the water is then pushed into the open view contact chamber with its purple impeller, and then moved up to the circular diffusion plate – the plate itself, as well as the holes in the plate, are smaller than what we have seen in the past. From there, the water and air are moved to the skimmer main body through the Nyos “Twister“.
As you can see above, the small holes on the plate are accented with semicircular holes, which are designed to give the water more “spinning velocity”. The design of the plate and the Twister guarantee a longer contact time between it and the water.
The skimmer is easily dis- and reassembled, a testament to the care and modernity of the device. Take a look at the thickness of the vibration adsorbing material under the pump!
To assemble the skimmer, we first attach the pump to the bottom plate, then we assemble the diffusion plate, and finally the main body, all connected with titanium screws. The cup is inserted into the body and connected by both an o-ring and threading, for an optimal watertight seal.
Here you can see the threading on the skimmer’s main body.
Pictured above is the white o-ring.
The beauty of the pump is visible through the transparent materials; this Clear View system allows us to inspect the impeller from the outside so that we can spot any potential problems.
Under the bottom plate, there are four rubber feet, designed to adsorb vibrations and make this skimmer as silent as possible.
The black silicon rubber feet do their job perfectly.
The following video is a very nice presentation of the skimmer by Nyos.
Available from 15th may worldwide – http://www.nyos.info Extreme performance. Very smooth operation. Low power consumption. Easy to maintain. The impressive outcome: – First: Extreme performance – Second: Very smooth operation – Third: Low power consumption – Fourth: Easy to maintain The innovative input: 1.
Nyos Quantum 3 pump equipped with the Nyos Quantum 160 Skimmer
The pump is equipped with the Nyos Quantum 3.0, a pump which we had never used before.
Since this skimmer employs a single pump set up, we don’t have to worry about the amount of water going into the skimmer or the air/water ratio – both are already set for us. We suggest you keep your sump water level between 20 cm and 23 cm.
The Clear View system deserves another mention; the impeller’s clear cover allows us to both see the bubbles coming out of it and assess its functioning and cleanliness. A very important feature that every skimmer should have!
As you can see in the above picture, parallel to the skimmer neck there are two cylinders: one is the silencer with a valve to control the incoming air flow; the other, connected to the bottom of the skimmer, is the outflow, complete with a micrometric regulation of the water outflow. The entire system is intuitively designed and easy to calibrate to a very accurate level.
We can adjust the skimmer’s outflow by hand, and then refine it with a micrometric screw for a more precise adjustment. The system is well developed and easy to use, simple but efficient; it allows us to do a quick adjustment or a much more accurate one.
Just like the Vertex Omega 180i, installation of this skimmer is extremely easy: just remove it from the box and place it in the sump; done and ready to go.
The low outflow contributes to the skimmer’s low noise. To produce a more wet or dry foam, we simply adjust the outflow.
The skimmer is ready to work as soon as it is placed in sump, the foam fills the body cone up to its neck and in the cup. The foam is soft and soapy, made up of tiny bubbles. When the cup is on, the bubbles go up in its neck and become bigger, just like in any other skimmer.
We suggest to keep your sump level around 20 cm – the skimmer is designed to have water pressure and air inflow perfectly balanced at this level. We kept our sump level at around 23 cm without noticing any problems, and with excellent results.
The skimmer has been used in a very loaded tank with nutrients level close to zero. The aquarium was an Elos 150 custom 150x60x50h, lit by three Ceab Slide & Led (here an italian review) and two 250 watt HQi. Water flow is managed by a pair of Vortech MP40w.
To get an idea of how the Nyos Quantum 160 skimmer works, check out this picture of the foam after 3 days of functioning.
Below is a more detailed picture: you can see the soft bubbles in the cup together with the bigger bubbles, like we explained before.
And finally, the material that stuck on the cup lid:
You can see the soapy texture of the foam, it has the right color and texture. We can consider this a dry foam but with a muddy leftover on the cup lid. The foam runs easily up the cup’s neck even immediately after cleaning it, with its very small bubbles.
After a 6 month trial of continuous use, we’re happy to report that we are very pleased with the Nyos Quantum 160 skimmer. If we run a very dry foam we will have a thick leftover which will cover the cup neck in around three days, after which the foam will no longer be able to climb into the cup and the skimmer performance will be lowered until we clean it.
Air Flow Rate
The manufacturer does not state a water flow rate for this product, we estimate it to be around the 700l/h but it’s difficult to measure because of the outflow’s low level. The air flow rate, however, is stated to be 1500 l/h.
To measure the air flow rate we used our usual Sander flowmeter which allows us to measure between 100 l/h and 1000 l/h, adjusting with a +10% to make up for the loss due to the flowmeter itself.
We measured an air flow of around 704 l/h (640 measure + 10%), with the air completely open and the flowmeter placed directly on the inflow pipe before the silencer and the air regulation valve. When we placed the flowmeter directly on the silencer we didn’t find much difference.
This value is not very stable, it tends to vary between 450/500 and 800 l/h very quickly. We took the mean value of this measures to come up with the final value. This is due to the hydraulic phenomenon called water hammer, which originates inside the pump.
We have to underline the fact that the skimmer pump impeller hadn’t been cleaned for a few months when we took these measurements, and it could have affected the results. This is our test modality for any skimmer we try, as we like to evaluate their performance during their real usage.
The air inflow is less than a half of what was declared (1500 l/h), 53% less to be precise, as we measured 704 l/h. This measurement hasn’t kept the skimmer from working properly in our rather large trial tank.
We have found similar disparities before: the Elos PS2000 and LGMAquari LGS850 had an air inflow much lower than the labels’, while skimmers such as Vertex Omega 180i, Tunze Doc Skimmer 9415 and Ultra Reef Akula UKS 180 were found to be closer to what was declared on the labels.
We measured air inflow with a sump level of 23 cm and salinity at 35 ‰, remember that a skimmer is extremely sensitive to water density and different values will result in different behavior from the skimmer.
Our trial tank was really loud, but this skimmer is extremely quiet. We took three measurements all at 1 meter from the tank (therefore from the sump) and we got the following:
Acoustic pressure at 1 m with all equipment on and cupboard doors closed: 53.1 dB
Acoustic pressure at 1 m with return pump on and cupboard doors open: 60.5 dB
At 1 m with return pump and skimmer on: 61.8 dB.
The difference in the acoustic pressure with the skimmer on and off is only 1.3 dB, an extremely small difference.
I used the professional phonometer VOLTCRAFT 320, digital phonometer IEC 651 Type II which provide me with very accurate results. Considering the type of noise we needed to measure, all the measurements were recorded with dBA wave attenuation.
The Nyos Quantum 3 pump is stated to have an electrical consumption of 18 watt, which would be 158 Kwh per year, with a cost of 42.50 € if the kwh price stayed at 0.27 €. This would result is a very cheap price of 3.50 € per month.
We didn’t find any shortcomings of this skimmer. We used it in a sump (Vertex) with a fixed level, dividing the skimmer from the return pump section, which we consider the ideal situation for the skimmer to work to its top potential.
Just like any single pump skimmer, if the water level slightly changes, the skimmer can vary its foaming behavior.
The problem is easily solved with a divided sump, which I suggest in any case, or with a very good osmocontroller which can refill the sump when the level decreases even a few millimeters.
The Nyos Quantum 160 is a really good skimmer. It is built flawlessly, with good air inflow values, and sold at an aggressive price of 486 €; very reasonable for its technical features and performances. We can easily recommend this skimmer as it worked very well in our big tank.
During our trial it worked regularly, efficiently and accurately, with an easy adjusting method and very silent, easy to open for cleaning, and very beautiful to see (it’s a plus!).
The Nyos Quantum 160 is marketed for tanks between 250 and 1000 liters, depending on the organic load. We think it could be used in SPS tanks up to 400 l, keeping it wet and cleaning the cup often. For less heavily populated tanks, soft coral tanks, or for fish-only tanks we think we could use it for up to 800 l.
We thank Nyos for providing us with the skimmer for this trial.
We are available to answer any questions you might have!
[Translated by Giorgia Lombardi]