Reviews said that the filter is quite strong. But, it's easy to baffle.
It seems roomy, and MOST of the reviews are good. What type of heater are you using? Are you also going to cycle this tank? Also, when you mean " If it is housed alone." Do you mean if it's bare? With no gravel, or decorations?
If you want it bare, that's perfectly fine. It's easier to clean, but, you can see ALL the uneaten food and his poo. I think he would get bored, though.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! In a few weeks...