When reflecting back on each year that passes, you realize how quickly it all went by. 2010 was a tumultuous year largely dictated by the macroeconomic environment. For the aquarium industry it was the beginning of what I strongly believe to be the rise of LED lighting. It also put less influence on actual gadgets […]
When reflecting back on each year that passes, you realize how quickly it all went by. 2010 was a tumultuous year largely dictated by the macroeconomic environment. For the aquarium industry it was the beginning of what I strongly believe to be the rise of LED lighting. It also put less influence on actual gadgets and more on the overall appearance of aquariums; a change GBD gladly welcomes.
If we rewind a bit, the latter half of 2009 was all about the LED legal environment: PFO this and Orbitec that. Fast foward to today and there is all but a whisper of this lingering discussion.
We’ve also seen a drastic loss of interest in the skimmer market. High end skimmers are still very nice, but have come nowhere near the populist rage they stirred in 2009. Just a year ago skimmer discussions were more akin to a religious debate (read: DSB v BB) than any equipment dialogue that we were previously accustomed to.
Enough about those other years. If I could summarize 2010’s most popular stories and themes they would be:
- The Economy
- Rare Fish
- Beautiful Aquariums
Are most read articles on GBD have been without a doubt related to LED lighting. Kicking off the year in early January was our initial unboxing photos of the new AI Sol LED unit. As one of the the first units released from the Iowa based lighting outfit, the AI Sol kicked off the 2010 LED push.
Our other most popular LED articles inluded:
- Maxpsect G2 LED with Cree XP-Gs
- NanoCustoms PAR38 LED PAR Analysis
- TMC AquaBeam 1000 PAR Analysis
- JBJ 28g LED NanoCube
- Vertex Illumina LED
- Ecoxotic’s Photon Cannon LED
2010 started a bit slow and many aquarists were saving rather than spending. Overall this hurt new product development which was best exemplified by an InterZoo which many attendees described as “disappointing”. Now with a weak dollar and Fed manipulated low interest rates, companies (and individuals) are slow beginning to take on more risk and spend.
The timing worked well for MACNA. Not only was it one of the best MACNAs to date, a handful of North American based companies were showing off innovative products–such as the Vortech MP60 and AI Sol Nano.
Thanks to a few questionably insane and passionate fish enthusiasts, 2010 saw an influx of some holy grail fish. The demand for these unique fish grew rapidly in 2010 and in many cases prices have plummeted as collectors are less willing to pay thousands of dollars in this economic climate. Meanwhile collectors have increased supply of once passed over species as we saw with Lotilia graciliosa from Cebu.
For 2010, the biggest rare fish news of the year was not any species, but a business. Frank Baensch has RCT has back up and running with some incredible pairs already under one roof. On a similar note, ORA rocked the aquarium industry with the release of their captive bred mandarins.
Some of our most popular rare fish articles included:
- 1″ Juvenile Genicanthus personatus
- Lightning Maroon Clown
- Brachiosaurus Blenny
- Captive Bred Full Barred Latz
- Gramma dejongi
- Genicanthus takeuchii
As new exciting product launches have dwindled, we’ve seen increased focus on aquariums, rather than their gadgets. We’re also seeing more and more TOTM quality reefs; a testament to the hobby’s evolution.
Many of the beautiful aquariums we’ve featured have been using organic carbon dosing and/or biopellets. Aquarists have been more willing to experiment with these products and the results are showing. Check out Krzysztof Tryc’s reef and judge for yourself.
Happy New Year
Happy New Year to all our readers and thank you for your support. We’ll cap off 2010 with a hint of what we plan to bring in 2011. That is, aquaria is art.
Enjoy tonight and be safe.
Eric Michael Sanchez