Aquariums are mostly appreciated for their capability to sustain aquatic life in a controlled environment. Not only does an aquarium shelter different marine creatures, but they also bring a touch of elegance to any room. And not many things can change the atmosphere in a common space like a properly equipped high-quality aquarium.
Potential buyers may opt for different types of fish tanks, but choosing a quality product may turn out to be rather difficult, especially for those who have just discovered their passion for fish grooming. One can find dozens of aquarium models on the market, coming in different shapes and sizes, but this diversity might make the buyer feel uneasy. If you are one of those buyers, do not stress over it too much, we’re here to give you a hand.
Now, let’s cut to the chase. If you plan on purchasing a roomy aquarium, you are in the right place. We have created this buyer’s guide that will narrow down the benefits of owning a big aquarium, the most important features to look for in a fish tank, and not in the least we have prepared a top seven best 120 gallon aquariums. Stick with us.
Hoping that you are more familiar with some of the dos and don’ts of owning an aquarium, let’s have a look at a top 7 of the best 120-gallon aquariums on the market:
Top Best 7 120 Gallon Aquariums
Although the long-time market leaders Marineland 120 Gallon Aquarium Fish Tank and Aqueon 120 Gallon Aquarium are still great options and in high demand by the most experimented fish groomers, they are quite hard to find on the market. At least the most popular retailers do not have them listed as available anymore. So, we have created a top of the most impressive 120-gallon fish tanks that can take their place. And those are:
|SC Aquariums 120 Gallon Starfire Glass Aquarium 48x24x24 12mm Euro-braced with Built-in Overflow Box||Capacity: 120 gallons||Dimensions: 48" x 24" x 24"|
|Red Sea Reefer XL 525 Rimless Aquarium 139 Gallon||Capacity: 139 gallons||Dimensions: 47″ x 22″ x 22.6″|
|Clear-For-Life 125-Gallon Acrylic Aquarium||Capacity: 125 gallons||Dimensions: 60″ x 18″ x 24″|
|Clear-For-Life UniQuarium 125-gallon Aquarium||Capacity: 125 gallons||Dimensions: 60″ x 18″ x 24″|
|Red Sea Max S-Series 500 LED Complete Reef System 135 Gallons||Capacity: 135 gallons||Dimensions: 50.5" x 27.5" x 25"|
|SC Aquariums 135 Gallon Starfire Glass Aquarium 15mm Rimless with Built-in Overflow Box||Capacity: 135 gallons||Dimensions: 36" x 36" x 24"|
|JAJALE Aquarium Fish Tank LED Light Pump Freshwater Filter Upright Fishtank Stand Bundle Clear Glass||Capacity: 135 gallons||Dimensions: 47.4" x 19.7" x 31.5"|
Built in the USA, SC Aquariums 120 Gallon Starfire Glass is one of the most popular fish tanks on the market. It is also Its main characteristic, which is the starfire glass makes this aquarium easier to perceive to the human eye and in combination with the lively colored fish, and the background in black you will experience a realistic marine environment inside your house, a visual performance that may delight your senses every day.
We would suggest you to keep in mind that this fish tank measures about 275 lbs in dry weight, so it is quite heavy. Thus, you won’t be able to move it around the house as you please, so make room for it where it is protected from too much heat or cold, from too much light, or noise. Make sure you have a plug nearby to connect your maintenance kit, but not too close though, as spurted water from the aquarium might cause you some serious distress.
Consider getting yourself a stand, as the aquarium does not come equipped with one and you will certainly going to need it.
SC Aquariums 120 Gallon Starfire Glass comes with 12 mm Euro-braced glasses that flash to each other and a skimmer that runs great. It also has 3 holes inside the built-in overflow, all of them fitting 1’’ SCH40 bulkhead.
SC Aquariums 120 Gallon Starfire Glass comes packed with 3 front panels in low-iron glass and plumbing parts. It is built-in silicone and the background in black can be easily removed if you want to get creative and change the interior design of the fish tank. Although well- adjusted lights combined with the black background offer a spectacular view.
- Protected by euro-bracings
- It adds Starfire glass
- It comes with a built-in overflow box
- Removable black background
- Great quality-price ratio
- It is quite heavy
- It does not come with a stand
Reefer has produced a more spacious fish tank that can embed more marine life and that gives you the chance to ‘play’ with your aquascaping without affecting the water volume or the space dedicated to your swimming friends.
The ultra-clear glass gives the aquarium a natural and stylish look. The sturdy Red Sea Reefer 525 is equipped with a surface skimmer and an automatic top-up system. Its rimless design gives the viewer a real show that will disconnect him from any negative thought whatsoever.
The Red Sea Reefer 525 is built with an ultra-thin glass measuring 15 (5/8) and, with the aforementioned rimless design, whoever comes to visit will be able to have an all-around view of the fancy decor that you have created.
The Red Sea Reefer 525 comes with a modern cabinet plus a complete water management system. This system is already equipped with a professional sump that, along with the top-up system ensures the Red Sea’s remarkable silent down-flow process.
It also features an extra overflow pipe in case the water management system fails and the main overflow downpipe gets stuck. This emergency pipe ensures the free flow of the water to the sump.
Unlike the SC Aquariums 120 Starfire, Red Sea Reefer 525 includes a stand to help support its superior size. It also adds to the elegancy of the aquarium. Speaking of the size, Red Sea Reefer has quite impressive dimensions: the total water volume is 139 gallons, with a length of 150, a height of 55, and a width of 57.5. It includes an LED light fixture.
- It comes packed with a marine-spec cabinet
- It has a complete water system
- It features an automatic top-up system
- It is made of ultra-thin glass
- It has a rimless design
- A bit pricey
The third option on our list today is also made in the US. Clear-For-Life 125-Gallon Acrylic Aquarium is a rather simple and yet spectacular model that will not go unnoticed by whoever passes by it. The sapphire blue black panel gives the interior of the fish tank a dreamy magical touch that you the viewer will definitely enjoy.
Not only is a spectacularly looking aquarium despite its simple design, Clear-For-Life 125-Gallon Acrylic Aquarium is also made of the most resistant acrylic material. It is also pretty versatile, as it allows both fresh and saltwater, planted, and reef aquariums.
The Clear-For-Life aquarium is sturdy enough but lighter, and more durable than glass-made aquariums. It measures 60’’ (L) x 18’’ (W) x 24’’ (H).
As it does not come with a stand, you know the drill, they can’t go one without the other. Consider purchasing a suitable stand to ensure the safety of your fish tank and to make it even more noticeable to the audience.
All in all, Clear-For-Life 125-Gallon Acrylic Aquarium is quite a deal for beginners mostly, as its system is rather intuitive, but also for experienced fish groomers that prefer a simpler design to match to their house.
- It has a simple design
- It is easy to maintain
- It is made of durable acrylic material
- It is good for freshwater and saltwater fish
- It does not come with a stand
An even simpler option for fish tank amateurs is the Clear-For-Life 125-gallon UniQuarium. It doesn’t have a fancy look, but it’s much more than meets the eye.
Clear-For-Life UniQuarium incorporates a filtering system that spares you the expense. It also offers a limited lifetime warranty against leakage.
Given its simplicity, it is considered one of the easiest to set up and maintain aquariums on the market.
Clear-For-Life UniQuarium measures 60’’ (L) x 18’’ (W) x 24’’ (H). Given its impressive dimensions, it is capable to accommodate a lot of fish of different sizes. Plus, you can freely joggle with the aquascaping, as long as you choose natural ornamental plants that won’t affect the fish’s environment.
Clear-For-Life UniQuarium 125R Rect Parent will require a stand, as it does not come packed with one. So, make some room for your new acquisition considering the factors mentioned before: light, heat, cold, space, electricity, water supply, etc.
- It comes with a built-in filtration system
- It has a simple design
- It offers a limited lifetime warranty against leakage
- One of the easiest to install and maintain aquariums on the market
- It does not come with a stand
Red Sea Max S-Series is a completely featured reef aquarium, the result of long research that Red Sea has conducted while studying corals and their survival and growth in an artificial environment.
Even the most sensitive SPS corals have been tested and it has been 25 years since Red Sea has proven that their ref-keeping technology accommodates any species of corals. Also, based on their study, they keep adjusting their technology to the point where Red Sea Max S-Series features WiFi controlled Hydra HD LED. It adds a filtration system, a water circulation system, a control center available at the distance of a plug.
Made of 12 to 15 mm ultra-thin and clear low iron glass, an aluminum frame, and a durable plastic, Red Sea Max S-Series uses weather-resistant polyurethane paints. So, it is quite sturdy and durable, while the 90 LED lights reflect the vibrant interior of the fish tank, offering the viewer a real symphony of colors.
Red Sea Max S-Series is supplied with C-Skim 19800 protein skimmer, a pump system, a carbon, and a mechanical filtering system.
It also comes with a beautiful stand that gives even more style to the aquarium. The 3W Moonlight channel ensures a low level of light that grants you with a spectacular view during nighttime too.
- It comes with built-in filtration equipment
- It is built of single optical-glass
- It is WiFi controlled Hydra LED
- It ensures a silent flow
- It is equipped with a stand
- It comes shipped with 3W Moonlight channel
- It is a bit expensive
We decided to add to our list the bigger brother of the aforementioned SC Aquariums product. This time, we are speaking about a wider and even more impressive 135-gallon fish tank. It measures 36x36x24, so it is quite on the heavy side. Still, its imposing size does not ‘steal’ from the aquarium’s beauty, it rather adds to it.
SC Aquariums 135 Gallon Starfire is shipped with a removable black background, just like the 120 gallon Starfire. It is made of 15 mm (5/8’’) thick glass.
It has a rimless design and comes packed with a built-in overflow system that ensures Herbie overflow. The Herbie overflow is a plumbing system consisting of two standpipes, the main that acts as a siphon, and an emergency pump. This setup ensures a silent overflow of the sump and protects the aquarium from flooding. Of course, as long as it is correctly set up and properly maintained.
SC Aquariums 135 Gallon Starfire includes a plumbing kit but does not feature a stand, so keep in mind that you will definitely need to purchase one.
- It is made of low iron glass
- It features the Herbie overflow
- It features a rimless design
- It includes a plumbing kit
- It does not come with a stand
Last but definitely not the least, the JAJALE Aquarium Fish Tank stands out from the rest due to its stylish design.
Not only it is cozy and spacey, but JAJALE Aquarium Fish Tank is also made of high-quality permeable glass. The glass is four times more resilient than regular glass, it is ultra-transparent, with 99% light transmittance, giving the viewer the feeling of being in the middle of sea life, swimming alongside the fish.
It is sturdy, yet its hard surface is protected from smudges or scratches. Its wear resistance and acid or alkali resistance make it even more durable. Its manufacturers guarantee a 20-year resistance to saltwater erosion due to the German silica that features the glass of the aquarium.
JAJALE Aquarium Fish Tank is shipped with a spiral silencer that is placed in the down-pipe, so the tank is also pretty quiet. It is also equipped with modern filtration tanks and water pumps that make the maintenance process much easier.
By choosing JAJALE Aquarium Fish Tank, you will also receive a set of filter media, and a beautiful cabinet that keeps the entire water system inside without affecting the visual experience of the viewer.
- It has a hard surface
- It is made of four times more resistant glass
- It is resistant to water erosion
- It comes with a set of filter media
- It is shipped with a stylish cabinet
- It is pricey
The Benefits Of Owning A Fish Tank
1). It reduces stress
We struggle daily to mix work with spending time with our families, paying bills, and so on. By doing so on a daily basis, we become overwhelmed by the many duties that we have to complete, so we need mechanisms to cope with such effort. The real challenge is finding ways to release or reduce the pressure that all this running around provokes. Along with physical exercise, yoga, and meditation, fish tanks are a great way to lower the stress level and reduce overall anxiety. Didn’t you notice that as soon as you get into a calm environment, you become more relaxed? It is scientifically proven that even taking care of a fish tank releases stress because it takes your mind off of any unfinished chore.
2). It improves sleep quality
We seldom take home with us the burden of a hard day and before we know it, while sleeping, racing thoughts cause us insomnia, a condition that we tend to ignore, but that, left untreated, can get pretty serious. An aquarium placed near your bed can help you sleep better. The good energy that a fish tank brings to your room reduces tension and also wards off any negative thought you might have before going to sleep.
3). It maintains good blood pressure and a normal heart rate
In ‘The effects of interacting with fish in aquariums on human health and well-being: A systematic review” written in 2019, studies have shown that the presence of an aquarium in a room can lower a person’s heart rate and blood pressure. When someone admires a fish tank filled only with marine seaweed and rocks, the heart rate may lower by 3%, while if you add fish to the aquarium, the heart rate lowers by 7%, which is quite impressive. This stress reducer is beneficial for those who suffer from cardiac arrest too by consistently lowering their blood pressure.
4). It decreases anxiety
Many doctors, therapists, and dentists have placed an aquarium in their waiting room. It is not set there only for show, but rather for its capacity of calming and soothing physical and psychological pain.
Those who were exposed to an aquarium while standing in the waiting room experimented less pain during the treatment applied by their dentist. Also, they needed a lower dose of tranquilizers after leaving the doctor’s office.
A fish tank is a natural treatment for those suffering from an anxiety disorder. Similar to hypnosis, watching fish swimming in a tank drifts one’s attention from uneasy thoughts, calm their mind, and helps them leave any problem aside, and just be present in that moment.
5). Great therapy for hyperactive children
Specialists say that children suffering from hyperactivity tend to take things easier when watching fish peacefully swimming in an aquarium. Not only it helps them cool down, but it also grants them a night of good night sleep. Hyperactive children might show better results in school as well after constantly being exposed to this type of therapy.
6). It improves productivity
By reducing stress and lowering blood pressure, an aquarium can help you focus better on daily tasks. The aesthetic value of an aquarium enhances your creativity at work and thus improves your productivity.
7). It helps patients with Alzheimer
Studies made on Alzheimer patients have proven that watching an aquarium with lively colored fish has helped them to improve their eating habits and to minimize their disruptive behavior. By relaxing, patients are less prone to physical aggression. Plus, their short-term memory has been improved allowing them to reduce medication.
Why Should You Buy A 120 Gallon Aquarium?
Because a well-endowed aquarium, regardless of the types of fish you plan on accommodating in it, has to be spacious, impressive, easy to see, and admire. From small fish to 18’’ Pleco, or 14’’ Oscar, a gallon of these dimensions meets all the requirements to house small to big fish in optimal conditions.
Speaking of dimensions, the typical proportions of this type of aquarium are 46cm x 152cm x 66cm. They usually come in a rectangular shape, which makes them very stable and safe not only for the fish inside but also for the external environment.
Be mindful of the weight and size of these fish tanks, as they will require more time for maintenance. Certainly, not only the price of the fish tank, but also the maintenance costs are higher, but it is totally worth it. The consequent satisfaction is that a well-groomed fish tank will embellish your living environment.
The Stand – A Must Have When Owning A 120 Gallon Fish Tank
If you plan on buying an aquarium, think of purchasing a stand too. Unless your aquarium is already equipped with one.
You wouldn’t want to place your aquarium directly on the floor or on a table, especially when we’re talking about an aquarium of such dimensions.
A stand is designed to support large tanks and also ensure the safety of the aquariums and of the outside environment.
If you already have a DIY stand at home, then that’s great, you can use that one. If not, do not hesitate to buy one and also think of the spot where you are going to place it, because once you settle the entire kit inside your house, it will be harder for you to move it due to its consistent weight.
Think of investing in a rather sturdy compliant stand for your 120-gallon fish tank. It should typically measure the same size as the tank, maybe a bit taller (about 76 cm).
Types Of Aquariums
Next, we will note the main differences between a sealed and an open-top fish tank.
a). If you decide to go for a sealed aquarium, consider the fact that the plants and fish inside will not be easily accessible. Plus, a sealed fish tank keeps more warmth inside, causing more water to evaporate. Also, your plants won’t be allowed to grow too tall. Another disadvantage would be the unpleasant algae smell that you might feel as soon as you unseal the aquarium. Also, keep in mind that it might be harder for you to install any additional equipment because of the cover.
On the other hand, there will be no ejected water when fish do their jumping. Plus, you won’t find any fish hopped out of the aquarium like you sometimes might when owning an open-top fish tank. With a closed fish tank, you will also spare yourself the dust that penetrates the open-top fish tank.
b). As for the open-top fish tank, it is, first of all, more expensive than the closed one; it also allows plants to grow outside of the aquarium, giving you, the observer, an amazing view; the access to the fish and plants inside the aquarium is easier and faster.
As a side note, we would suggest you buy a quarantine or maternity fish tank. Newer fish should be held in quarantine for a while, under strict surveillance. Thus, you avoid causing any illness to the other fish, in case something is wrong with your new acquisitions.
As for maternity, baby fish might not survive alongside the rest of mature fish, which is why they should be kept in a different tank for a while. So, we would suggest you opt for the ideal 120-gallon fish tank as the main aquarium, then we would recommend you to go for a second one smaller to serve you as a quarantine fish tank, for instance, one of the 40-gallon fish tanks or even a 55-gallon aquarium.
What Does a 120 Gallon Fish Tank Include?
Here is a list of the equipment that a regular freshwater fish tank can include:
- The fish tank itself
- The internal or external filter
- A means of filtration
- Lights (we recommend LED)
- The water or substrate heater
- The chiller (if necessary, for warmer areas)
- A water pump (usually included with the filters)
- An air pump
- The UV filter
- Water tests
- A CO2 system (for heavily planted tanks)
Besides the stand, we would recommend you to add to your maintenance kit the following accessories: a well-calibrated digital thermometer, a fishnet, a window cleaner, an UPS, a surface skimmer, a gravel cleaner, adjustable outlets, a food dispenser.
As you can see, picking the right 120-gallon aquarium is not easy, but hopefully, this guide has made things clearer for you and now you can decide upon your best option. Remember to properly equip and maintain your fish tank and you will enjoy a spectacular view at home or at work every single day.