We talked about it some weeks ago and now finally we have in our hands: the new AquaEL Ultra Heater 200, the heater with variable power.

This new heater, made of thermoplastic material, has a particularly interesting new modality: Smart Heating System. The peculiarity of this heater thermostat, in fact, is that it doesn’t work with an on-off mode like we’re used to, but it changes its power while it works based on the real-time temperature in the aquarium.

Technical characteristics of the AquaEl Ultra Heater 200

  • One Touch System – set the temperature with only one touch;
  • Built-in thermic switch: automatic shut off in case the temperature gets too high during the hot season;
  • Fully electronic – no mechanical parts;
  • Built-in electronic thermometer – aquarium temperature indication by color scale;
  • Crack resistant housing in special plastic;
  • Precise electronic thermostat (+/- 0,25 °C);
  • The temperature indication is shown by colored LEDs;
  • Possibility to work both in freshwater and in marine aquariums;
  • Smart Heating System.

Our test

In the video below you can see the test we did: we inserted the heater in a container, we connected the power consumption meter and we waited… And we found out that the heater works differently from what we thought, but maybe it suits the aquarium even better! As usual, the video is in Italian, but you can turn the English subtitles on, and there’s is a written explanation below.

After we plugged the heater in, we saw it was set to 27 degrees C with the green LED on as you can see in the image at the top of this article. The blue LED indicates the water temperature at that time, which is 23 degrees. In the video you can see that the blue LED turns on and off between 23 and 27 to show that the heater is on and it’s working.

What we didn’t expect is that the heater doesn’t start right away at 200 watt but at 18 watt. Even if we set it for 33 degrees, the maximum, and even if the water is only 18 degrees when it starts.

We observed that every 5 minutes the heater increases the power: 35, 50, 70, 90, 110, 150, 190 watts.

This type of functioning perfectly suits an aquarium, because it starts low and slowly increases the power if it isn’t enough. It’s a little bit inconvenient if you need to heat the water fast for a water change, because you have to wait a while before it reaches full power.

The maximum power we detected changed a lot. We never read 200 watts, but did read 190 watts, a value that dropped to 175-180 watts as you can see in the pictures above and in the video.

Let’s sum up

We liked the AquaEL Ultra Heater 200. And after we understood its logic, we liked that too. What we didn’t like is that it doesn’t reach 200 watts, and that’s a pity. We’d like it to have even higher power than that, in order to use it even larger (up to 300 liters) aquariums. But we have a feeling that that is coming in the  future. The 200 watt heater is only 35 euro ($36 USD) or you can buy it on Amazon by clicking here.

PROS

 Smart Heating System is very useful
 The setting is simple and precise
You can see the set temperature easily, as well as the aquarium’s
 Built in thermoplastic, less dangerous than glass

CONS

We didn’t measure 200 watts as declared; at maximum, it oscillates between 170 and 190 watts.

We thank our friend Gandalf that lent us his own heater in order to do the test.

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