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EcoQube C: An End to End Guide Part 3

Posted by Kevin Land on


The EcoQube C is the world’s most compact and maintenance free aquarium. We designed our product to be as intuitive and simple to use, a stress free way of adding a window to nature to your home or office. This guide will cover everything you need to know and more to ensure that you have the best experience possible with your EcoQube C.

This part will cover adding fish, plants, and invertebrates to your EcoQube C. For the rest of the guide, check out these links:

Part 1: Setting up your EcoQube C 

Part 2: Starting your Ecosystem 

Part 4: Maintaining your Ecosystem 


Part 3: Filling your EcoQube with Life

Once the Qube is full of water, the pump is running, and the basil is planted, let the EcoQube C run for 2 - 3 weeks before adding aquatic animals. While this may be the most difficult part for some people, it is very important that the ecosystem of the EcoQube has time to grow before adding more complicated life, like fish or shrimp.

The EcoQube uses an integrated aquaponic filter, and part of that involves filtering the water through a culture of beneficial bacteria. These bacteria (which will thrive in the bag of activated carbon inside the filter of every EcoQube C) will be instrumental in breaking down fish waste in the water, but adequate time must be given for both the beneficial bacteria and the terrestrial plant (basil) roots to grow large enough to handle the bioload.

During this time, your basil plant (or whatever you planted in your Ecoqube) should grow to be about 1 or 2 inches tall with a developed root system extending beyond the plant medium. For best results, turn the LED lights on for at least 7 hours a day (the timer function will do this automatically.) If your plants don’t seem to be growing as fast, consider leaving your lights on for 10 hours a day or more.

Using the LED Controller

  • Inline controller - EcoQube Cs with inline remotes have three buttons located on the LED cord. The three buttons are the Timer Button (A red '7' with a clock around it), the Power Button (the middle button with a lighting bolt and power symbol on it), and the Color Button (a rainbow).

    The Timer Button will activate the timer mode on your lights. In this mode, Your White, grow lights will turn on once a day, for 7 hours at a time. Simply press and hold the button down for 5 - 10 seconds and you will see a red indicator LED turn on on the controller. For example, if you press and hold the button at 10:00 AM, the light will turn and remain on at 10:00 AM until 5:00 PM everyday until you unplug your EcoQube.

    The Power Button will cycle the white grow lights between: on, off, and lightning effects (the weather effects will flash the white lights like a lightning storm)

    The Color Button with cycle the RGB LEDs (Color lights) between a selection of pre-set colors.

  • Remote Controller  - The remote controller has all the functions of the inline controller listed above, with some added features, including creating your own colors! Use this video and diagram as a reference


Fish and Invertebrates

After 2 to 3 weeks, you can finally add some animals to your desktop ecosystem! The EcoQube, like other aquariums, can host fish and invertebrate life. For the EcoQube C we highly recommend adding 1 Betta fish, about 3 Nerite snails, and about 3 Amano shrimp, especially for aquarium beginners. These animals are well suited for the standard EcoQube environment and are very hardy, making them easy to take care of. More advanced aquarium owners can try adding a small community of Zebra Danios, White Cloud Mountain Minnows, Neon Tetras, or other like fish. When adding multiple fish, keep in mind that the EcoQube C is compact and not to overcrowd your fishies.

Every type of fish has different requirements in order for them to thrive, so be sure to understand how to best care for whatever animals you add to your tank. Check out these guides to better understand how to care for some of the life commonly found in EcoQubes: Betta fish, Amano Shrimp, Nerite Snails, White Cloud Mountain Minnow, and Neon Tetra.

Keep in mind that some tropical fish require water warmer than room temperature. For these fish, it’s best to use a heater for your aquarium. For help installing your heater, check out our guide here!

Life and Death

While the EcoQube provides the best possible environment for aquatic life, there are countless variables that affect the health of these pets.   

It is always best to start with healthy animals. When selecting fish from a pet store ask questions, make sure all the fish in the tank look happy and healthy before purchasing. It can be common for fish to have a pre existing condition that you are not aware of or possibly known about. It is very difficult to recognize and identify illnesses in small fish and invertebrates and therefore, the passing of one of these animals may seem sudden and unexpected, in any type of aquarium.

Particularly for beginners it is important to remember that there is a learning curve to aquariums and plant care, some aspects can be unpredictable and out of anyone's control.  The death of fish or plants does not necessarily mean you did anything wrong. Death is as natural a part of an ecosystem as life is, and while the remains of an animal are not usually dangerous to the overall health of the EcoCube, it is best to remove them and dispose of them outside the EcoQube.

Finish the guide with Part 4: Maintaining your Ecosystem



Helpful Videos and Resources


Setting it up:

Tips for maintaining:

How to use the remote if you have one:

Our set up:



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