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David Saxby's Aquarium

Other than being the MD of D-D The Aquarium Solution Ltd, David Saxby is known throughout the world as being at the forefront of modern reef keeping and his 3,700 gallon home aquarium system has appeared on television and in many books.

David initially formed D-D in 2001 as he wanted to bring his own personal experience of which products worked for him to the mass market and to dispel the myths and witchcraft that abound within the hobby.

David describes his methods as a 'reef gardener' approach rather than that of a scientist and has learned the hard way over many years what works and what doesn't work whilst pushing forward the boundaries of the hobby through his worldwide connections.



David Saxby's Aquarium


Display Aquarium Dimensions

3 x 2 x 1.5m/10' x 6.6' x 5’ (L-shaped) 1.2 m/4’ deep, the whole system is around 12'000 litres/3200usg (Rebuilt in 2013 and re-aquascaped in 2015)

Braced with stainless steel rods 



Aquaillumination Hydra 52 HD x 19 , Aquaillumination Hydra 26 HD x 9



  • 3 x Large Deltec Protein Skimmers (One beside the display aquarium and two in the remote sump room) 
  • Deltec Fluidised Media Reactors running Rowaphos to control phosphate levels
  • A large Deltec Nitrate Reactor (sump room) 
  • 2 x large Fleece Filter Units (One beside the main aquarium, one in the remote sump room)
  • Large array of U.V Sterilisers (Sump Room)
  • Bespoke aquarium chiller


Aquarium Flow 

Multiple Abyzz A400 and A200 pumps supplying a bespoke internal (up and over) closed loop system, pumps are set to create random flow dynamics within the aquarium.


Sump Room

The sump room resides in a repurposed cellar (10 x 11 feet) some 40 meters from the main aquarium. Due to the elevation Abyzz pumps are used to pump water from the sump room to the display and back again. The flow is controlled by a special system designed by David utilising mercury float switches to maintain the correct water levels at both locations without the use of a gravity siphon.


Water Chemistry 

D-D H2Ocean Pro Reef salt is used exclusively and David carries out 10% water changes on a monthly basis

Whilst the enriched Salt mix maintains Magnesium and the majority of minor elements David doses Strontium and Iodine on an ongoing basis and closely watches his levels via ICP testing.

Calcium and Alkalinity are maintained by the use of a large Deltec Twin-Tech Calcium Reactor.

Nitrate is kept at a level of around 2ppm by the Deltec Nitrate Reactor whilst Phosphate levels are controlled by Rowaphos at a level of 0.018 mg/l

Aquarium Alkalinity 7-8dkh , Calcium 440- 450 pm 



Over 300 fishes that are mainly shoaling varieties and countless SPS and LPS species plus some of David's favourite Soft corals

Technical drawings of David's system and more imagery of David's wonderful aquarium can be found in the gallery section.


David Saxby's Reef Aquarium From Above (Technical Layout)

David Saxby's Reef Aquarium Lounge View (Technical Layout)

David Saxby's Reef Aquarium Hallway View (Technical Layout)

David Saxby's Remote Sump Room for Reef Aquarium (Technical Layout)

David Saxby's Reef Aquarium A Peak Behind The Curtain