I have the Marineland Eclipse 5g Hex also, got a really good deal on it on amazon. Its nice, and especially so considering what I paid for it lol, and I do like that for a 5g it has a fairly small footprint, but its really not one of my top choices for bettas.
Originally Posted by VJM
I have a standard Petco 2.5g, an Evolve 4, and a Deep Blue Professional Betta 5. They all have their pros and cons. I really like the length and shallowness of the DBP. The Evolve keeps everything contained in the rear sump, for a cleaner looking tank (also, it was inexpensive), but the light probably isn't going to be strong enough for my plants. The 2.5 with a CFL desk light is my easiest tank, just chugs along. However, I think it is a bit small and am looking at 6 gallons for an upgrade.
I recently picked up an Evolve 4 as well--couldn't pass up the clearance price and had been wanting my next tank to be one designed pretty much exactly like that--with the filtration hidden in a rear sump thats also able to house the heater, very clean look.
I've been reading all the reviews and threads I can find online with info about the tank and specifically the light in regards to what you can realistically grow with just the stock light. From the info I've gathered so far, it actually is strong enough to support true low-light plants, but in the few posts I could find mentioning specific plants, I didn't think to save the info and don't remember any of them. I guess thats what google is for though, right? What are you planning on putting in there as of right now?
I'm also doing a bit of a "test run" with the tank right now, have the filter and a heater running, with 2 ludicrously bright neon fake plants attached to black river stones so they don't float, a big handful of java fern and java moss tossed in and floating around the bottom-middle, a few floaters--mostly salvinia, and a DT male betta (thats really code for I was at Petco getting crickets and ended up leaving with a betta that I didn't have a tank set up for). I wanted to play around with the filter, seeing how strong it actually was since apparently thats been an issue, and figure out which method of baffling/lowering the flow would work best for me as well as trying some different things out under the stock light. And actually, I'm really glad I decided to do this first, before setting up everything else in the tank. Have you tested it out yet with the filter on? If so, what did you think? If not, you should and then come back and tell me what you think lol.