Top Fin Internal Filter 20/Cascade170/Hagen Eilte Aquarium Filter Reviews

This is a comparison of the Top Fin 20 Internal Filter, Cascade 170 Mini and the Hagen Elite Mini. These I have in my three betta tanks. Two tanks are 3.5 gallon and one is 2.5 gallon. All three have Cobalt Neo Therm 25 watt heaters. The TF 20 raised my water temp last night to 80 deg without the heater. I may exchange it later for a TF 10 but testing it out right now. I went to purchase the Fuval U1 and saw the TF line at Petsmart. What is neat is the TF’s have hollowed out sponges where I removed the charcoal and added ceramic rings for more bio filtration. All three of my tanks are cycling after 2 weeks using Tetra Safe Start and small water changes. Ammonia is approximately 0.5 to 1.0. Note: Yes I used “ums” & “ands” a lot while rushing this but not changing the video:) I want my filters in cyberspace! Any questions, feel free to ask. The yellow betta is an import from Thailand.



Congratulations for the video! We don´t see to much reviews about filters for small tanks/Betta tanks/Nano tanks. Couple time ago I had difficulty to find a filter for my Betta tank. Especialy in my coutry (Brazil) we don´t have many opitions in stores and even in internet filters are aways small and powerful. As a sugest, you could title your video with sayings “Filters for small tanks/Betta tanks/Small tanks”. Thank you and my compliments for your beautiful tanks and Bettas!

Wolfchacer says:

I agree with below the TF 20 is way to large for that small tank. You can try air driven sponge filters 1 pump can run a mess of them and the huge surface area of the sponges will house tons of Bacteria. I used just sponges in my Breeding tanks for Betta’s, Angels and discus and reared over 600 babies every 20 days and never once used a power filter of any kind, very underated filters and under 10 dollars will last for years. Internal filters raise temps too much in smaller tanks and for yours from what I’ve seen it’s not how much sponge is in it that will work best, use the smalles ones you can find the Azoo palm filters are HoB styles under 8 dollars and are completely customizable for what media you want to add in. Basically very tiny Aquaclears lol.

In your tanks I recommend zoomeds Internal Sponge filters they last forever and clean easily and have huge surface area.

Giani says:

Update:  I am preferring the Top Fin models because of the larger capacity of bio media and also the flow rate does not seem to decrease like the other filters.  Not shown is the Top FIn 10 which is a bit smaller then the 20 model.  The TF 20 does still heat my tank but it has not gone over 82 so far and we are still receiving summer weather.  The Elite stopped working and I had to take it apart several times.  I removed the flow adjuster and had to make the opening wider.  Still sometimes it slows are stops and I end up removing the flow adjuster completely.

MrSaint23 says:

So I have the top fin one. And I put in yesterday and the water is murky and I’ve only had put in new water in the same day I put in the filter. I’m new to this could someone help? One of my gold fish died already I only have one left

KushKILLa ! says:

so i jus bought the elite mini filter an its to strong for my tank i thought you wouldnt be but it is so they have a adjust ment for the power an i add set it to the lowest one an dose the filter work still like dose the air run thru it an am i even using it right dose it filter an clean still while is on the lowest one it show + for more power – to lower the power an i have it on – dose it still clean an filters the water

Carolinagirl1028 says:

Thanks for the through review. The filter on my 6 gallon betta tank died tonight so I am looking at internal filters. I was worried the Top Fin 20 would be overkill but if it is doing fine in your 3.5 than it should be okay in my 6 gallon. I really like the fact that it has more room for filter media since I will be moving my media to the new filter so my cycle doesn’t crash. I think I will head to PetSmart tomorrow to pick one up. Beautiful bettas by the way!

Alyson Kay says:

Seachem’s Stability is excellent for cycling. Safe Start is a miracle worker, but I’ve stopped using it because of how expensive it is. one question. I got a Top Fin Multi Stage Filter 10 in my 10 gallon Betta/ ADF tank and the outtake is too powerful like you described. I’ve had to baffle it with pantyhose, but I noticed that you have a lowish flow without it. How did you get the flow so low? (I have the filter on its lowest setting)
Your Betta looks great BTW. I love to see Betta fish in good conditions and he looks happy and active!

Glenn Beaver, Jr. says:

carbon helps remove ammonia js

Clearly Geckos says:

The top fin filter is complete shit

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