Review of Marineland ML90609 Portrait Aquarium Kit

If an aquarium is the thing you want, then Marineland is the manufacturer to turn to. The Marineland ML90609 aquarium is one of the best on the market, with fish lovers basically swearing by it. Either for in home or in office, this outstanding aquarium is always in tune with the setting and the overall atmosphere of the place it’s been put in.

If you’re thinking about getting this aquarium, and you don’t know anything about it, you may want to stick around, and listen to what we’ve got to tell you in this here Marineland ML90609 Portrait Aquarium Kit.

Design and features

First off, let’s just agree upon one thing – ML90609 (now known simply as ML in the text) is one sleek-looking aquarium. What immediately strikes the observer is how well-designed and how insightfully designed this aquarium is.

The distinct advantage of the ML is its portrait orientation. This makes the aquarium much more compact, allowing it to fit into much smaller places, but still retain a decent volume. As we all know, the volume is important for the fish, as they will grow increasingly dissatisfied and even aggressive in confined spaces. This, for example, goes especially for betta fish. The males are extremely territorial and will attack and kill other males. So, a bigger aquarium is a necessity, if you’re going to keep them, and the fact is that many people do keep this species of fish.

The overall volume of the aquarium is 5 gallons. This volume should be enough for about 1 betta and a few other compatible fish. The size, or course, is always related to the species of fish you’re keeping, and we strongly advise you check the requirements, the biology and the behavior patterns of your pets to ensure you’re giving them a pleasurable habitat to live in.

The entire aquarium is made of very high-end glass. This glass is crystal clear, but very thick and sturdy. That being said, it makes the aquarium quite hefty even without the water in it, but it is, in our minds, a great trade-off, considering how resistant this glass is to damage.

The aquarium boasts a standard rectangular shape, but with nice curved edges. These edges are much appreciated, as one of our writers here says, because they will help with carrying the thing (the poor soul had to carry it up to the third floor). It also makes the edges protrude less, and reduce the risk of you, or somebody else, catching it and knocking it over.

On that note, the weight of the aquarium is of great help, and it is very hard to move the thing when filled with water. The fact is even more impressive as the stand upon the aquarium stands is just plastic, and is not coated in rubber or anything that would prevent slippage. Yet, the aquarium stands, as if bolted down.

Another great feature this aquarium offers are the LED lights. The lights come with a 3-position switch and 2 modes of operation. Of course, one of the positions is to turn the lights off, but the other two create an excellent ambiance for both the fish to frolic in, and for you to watch them frolic. The lights can be set to blue and white, which does an excellent job at mimicking the refraction of sunlight in the water, creating tropical colors that your fish will greatly enjoy (if you’re keeping tropical fish, of course). The other setting creates a wonderful blue-hued light which is amazing at replicating moonshine, giving the aquarium a very serene nighttime feel.

Overall, this is a very likable aquarium. In fact, it is an awesome aquarium! With great LED lights, the entire thing will greatly pop up, and its beauty is made safe thanks to its weight and sturdy design.

Filtration system

There is another feature to the aquarium, but this time, we have mixed feelings. The entire filtration system is placed in the back of the aquarium. In this way, the filter is hidden from view, allowing the one looking at the aquarium to really concentrate on the entire scene. However, when cleaning time comes, you might experience a great deal of trouble, as you have to reach behind the aquarium, which will require you to move the entire thing, which will be tricky because of the aquarium’s weight.  So it might be wise to give a little space behind the aquarium when deciding where to put it.

Of course, no tank can go without a filtration system. Marineland has made some great adjustments to their filtration system which makes it worth our while to write about.

The filter for this whole setup is the Marineland’s very own 3-stage Rite-Size Z Cartridge filter. Fish produce waste, and the water needs cleaning constantly to ensure the safety and the health of your fish. Unfiltered tanks are the perfect kind of environment for the development of bacteria and fungi, especially if you intend to keep tropical fish like bettas, as you will probably use water at a higher temperature. This may result in the development of fish diseases like fin rot that can be, if not deadly, then severely traumatic for your fish.

The way Rite-Size Z Cartridge works is that it pulls the water through carbon micro-cracks. Carbon is an element often used when filtration is required, because of its ability to hold down to any particles due to its mesh-like molecular structure, but let the water through. The filter is made to ensure that the water comes into contact with the largest surface possible, to ensure the extraction of harmful elements in the water.

You will also receive the Marine Bio-foam. This Bio-foam further increases the effectiveness of the filter. The filtration needs to happen in 3 separate stages, as we mentioned before – mechanical, chemical and biological. While the Rite-Size Z Cartridge performs the mechanical part of the filtration process, the Bio-foam handles the chemical and biological stages. The foam extracts the harmful chemicals that might already be in the water, and removes the chemicals that made its way into the water by the way of fish excrement.

Bottom Line

What more can be said about this outstanding tank? Such a combination of elegance, sturdiness, and efficiency is worthy of every praise, and the Marineland ML90609 Portrait Aquarium is any fish lover’s dream. So, if you weren’t convinced about it before, we hope this article convinced you, and that your fish will soon enjoy an amazing new home.


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