Quietest Fish Tank Filters 2022 (Silent Aquarium Filter)

Quietest Fish Tank Filter

There has been a massive trend shift towards purchasing quieter products for each aspect of daily life. For all the fish lovers out there, you can now add quiet fish aquarium filters to the list of products. Although the sound of water flowing makes for great white noise, the noise of mechanical filtration certainly doesn’t, especially when it lasts for more than an hour. So let’s find out what are the best silent fish tank filters, shall we?

Short on time? The best most quiet fish tank filters on the market in 2022 are the Eheim Classic External Canister Filter with Media and Penn Plax Cascade 1000 Canister Filter

Quiet Aquarium Filters: Quick Comparison

Winner Eheim Classic External Quiet Canister Filter
  • Type: Biological and Mechanical Filtration
  • Dimensions: 8 x 6.3 x 14”
  • Weight: 4.49 lbs
  • Volume Limit: 66 gal
  • Designed with sponge filters and provides loose filtration medium
  • It comes with a spray bar along with the inlet pipe and the accessories necessary for its installation
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Runner Up Penn Plax Cascade 1000 Canister Filter
  • Type: Mechanical, Biological, and Chemical Filtration
  • Dimensions: 4.5 x 7 x 6.5”
  • Weight: 12 pounds
  • Capacity: 100 gallons
  • Has 3 filter media baskets
  • Suitable for fish tanks with capacity up to 100 gallons of water.
  • Flow valves rotate at 360° and can be easily taken out for maintenance
  • Includes a spray bar, tubing, directional spout
  • Push button primer
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Budget Marina Slim S20 Aquarium Filter
  • Type: Biological Filtration
  • Dimensions: 3.8 x 11.5 x 6.5”
  • Weight: 1.88 lbs
  • Volume Limit: 20 gal
  • Power filters for aquariums
  • Self-priming
  • Adjustable water level flow control
  • Includes 4 filter cartridges: 2 Bio-Carb and 2 Bio-Clear
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Small Aqueon Quietflow E20 Internal Power Filter
  • Type: Mechanical, Biological, and Chemical Filtration
  • Dimensions: 5.75 x 3.94 x 8.19”
  • Weight: 1.6 lbs
  • Volume Limit: 20 gal
  • It has a very reasonable price and the filter works vertically, cleaning and filtering the tank water simultaneously.
  • Supports all three types of filtration systems.
  • It has a self-priming feature and restores and restarts on its own without a priming after power is reestablished.
  • Flow control rate up to 130 GPH
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AquaClear Fish Tank Filter - 110V
  • Type: Chemical, Biological and mechanical filter
  • Warranty: Lifetime
  • Easy Installation
  • Easy Installation
  • Auto-start feature for automatic restart after power restoration
  • Maximum water flow of 500 GPH
  • Self-priming pump
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Polar Aurora 4-Stage External Canister Filter
  • Type: Mechanical, Chemical, and Biological Filtration
  • Dimensions: 12 x 12 x 19”
  • Weight: 17 lbs.
  • Volume Limit: 200 gal
  • Suitable for a water tank with capacity up to 200 gallons of water.
  • 4 filter media trays
  • Built-in 9 Watt UV sterilizer for controlling algae, bacteria
  • Comes with adjustable spray bar
  • Self-priming pump
  • Maximum water flow of 525 GPH
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Best Silent Fish Tank Filters 2022: Reviews

1. Eheim Classic External Canister Filter with Media


The Eheim brand has been around for a long time, so we can assure you they know what they’re doing when it comes to manufacturing fish tank filters.

If you haven’t previously utilized any Eheim products, your first experience is guaranteed to be an amazing one.

The differences are very prominent and the quality shines through just within the usage of a few hours.

The instructions might be a bit difficult to follow but there are many instructional guides on how to set it up the way you should.

However, if you are a seasoned fish hobbyist, you’ll have no problem assembling this quiet beast of a filter together.

The Eheim brand is a leading aquarium filter provider, serving excellent quality products for over 30 years now.

This stands as a testament to their durability over time. The filter is often referred to as a ‘workhorse’, it never stops performing optimally! 

Once it’s completely set up, you’ll be able to see that cleaning it is incredibly easy and there is no worry of long tiresome maintenance schedules.

You simply cannot beat the price and the great water clarity you get out of it.

Fully equipped with valves that operate externally, this silent aquarium filter allows easy access to open or close the flow of water in the filter.

Thus the maintenance process is extremely hassle-free. It is simplified down to simply closing the valves, disconnecting them to conduct the maintenance, and connecting them back in and you’re ready to go!

With their emphasis on excellent quality, their customers get nothing but the very best.


  • Reasonably priced
  • Powerful
  • Quiet operation
  • High quality material
  • Easy to customize filter media
  • Great for tanks with plants


  • Not the best looking silent aquarium filter
  • No self-priming

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2. Penn Plax Cascade 1000 Canister Filter

Runne Up

With raving reviews from its users, the Penn Plax Aquarium Cascade Canister Filter is definitely a highly recommended option.

Some people may find it difficult to navigate through canister filters initially but the instructions are very easy to follow and you’ll be up to speed in no time!

We really suggest going through the instruction manual first before getting your hands dirty.

Canister filters are observably the quieter choice if you are sensitive to sound and this is no exception.

This silent aquarium filter is ultra quiet and you won’t even hear it running. 

Penn Plax boasts that you can see aquarium water circulation improvement within a day. The filter utilizes a large filtration system that is fitted externally.

It is well renowned to be excellent even for messy turtles that cause trouble with other filters. 

The unit contains a motor alongside the Pen Plax filter. It is equipped with a handle that folds up and is very convenient, thus allowing easily locating the filter by picking it up. 

By the looks of it, you can already tell that the construction is sturdy, and it’s also very simple and easy to get it up and running. 

It may seem a little difficult to disassemble this aquarium filter at first, but you’ll get used to it very quickly once you reach the instructions.

Their step by step approach towards assembly makes it very easy to use.


  • Suitable for both freshwater and saltwater
  • Quiet operation
  • Powerful
  • Large filter box
  • Reasonably priced
  • Easy to customize filter media
  • Aquarium water quality improves in a day


  • Tubing is a bit long
  • Quite big

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3. Marina Slim S20 Aquarium Filter

Cheap & Quiet Fish Tank Filter

For a customizable quiet aquarium filter that can handle up to 20 gallons of water, the size of this power filter is relatively smaller and it does not take up much space as compared to other models with similar volume. 

It simply hangs on to the back of your aquarium filter with no problem.

It’s compact shape and unique design looks incredible and allows you to peek into the filter and aquarium framework with ease. 

The motor is designed specifically according to submerging requirements and is sealed completely.

This allows the sound to dampen and the motor becomes noise-free, thus controlling the flow of water up to 92 GPH. 

Sustaining the environment for marine life is extremely important, depending on the water and other variables.

With features such as ‘self-priming’, you can easily clear the aquarium water and its bubbles. 

Installing the Marina power filter in your aquarium is definitely a no-brainer and you can get it done within 5 minutes. 

It is always recommended to keep a regular maintenance check by cleaning your filter weekly and replacing them every 4 to 6 weeks. 

Replacing the cartridges may be the only downfall for this aquarium filter as it is fairly pricey and racks up quite a bill.


  • Reasonably priced
  • Quiet operation
  • Strong power filters
  • Both cartridges contain Ceramitek
  • Easy to install
  • 2 year limited warranty


  • Pricy cartridge replacements
  • Cannot handle an aquarium that gets dirty too often

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4. Aqueon Quietflow E20 Internal Power Filter

Quietest Small Aquarium Filter

For marine life hobbyists that are looking to get a jump start on their aquarium, this is definitely the right filter for you!

If you’re on the lookout to avoid adding undue stress on your life due to improper aquarium configuration, this definitely is the right place for you! 

The black design allows for an element of subtlety and doesn’t stand out.

Your aquarium is guaranteed to be the center of attention! 

The Aqueon Quietflow E20 Internal Power Filter can either be attached to the aquarium via a suction cup or can hold on to the top of the fish tank so it’s up to you to position the filter wherever you like.

Even though the Aqueon Quietflow E-20 Power Filter is small in size, the performance it delivers is extremely powerful.

The system is so quiet that users have observed not knowing whether it’s on or not. The important thing about this filter is that it maintains excellent water flow from the top which is gentle on marine life.

All chemical balances are monitored and the water is kept translucent by using this incredible filter. You can use your own filter media as the cartridges need to be changed more often and would save you a little more money.

With creative features such as auto-start, you never need to worry about turning your filter on in case of blackouts again! As the filter is quite small, you’ll have to clean it at least once a week.


  • Reasonably priced
  • Powerful
  • Quiet operation
  • Customizable
  • Easy to install
  • Limited lifetime warranty 


  • Sometimes the cover doesn’t stay on properly

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5. AquaClear Fish Tank Filter – 110V

With its super simple and strategic design, the AquaClear Power Filter rests at the very corner of your fish tank quietly, doing all the work. 

According to hundreds of user reviews, the filter is so quiet, it’s possible that you’d forget that it was even on there.

Consisting of a sponge, carbon and ceramic balls, this filter incorporates a 3 stage setup for filtration. It is well known due to its adaptability and ease of use.

Customers absolutely love this filter and the reviews exhibit the unparalleled quality! 

Customary cleaning of the channel and its parts is suggested like clockwork. It keeps alive valuable microorganisms required for a calm climate, which is additionally basic for cleansing toxic alkali and nitrite from the fish tank. 

This channel offers consistency and even with its little size, it can give water development adequately and is anything but difficult to spotless and clean. 

A note of caution, animals, for example, ocean critters, huge or medium size fish would likewise have a chance of getting sucked into the working admission tube. 

The huge open channel baskets empower you to tweak whatever sort of channel medium you like and you’re not needed to constantly buy their image cartridges that don’t keep going insofar as utilizing other media. 

What individuals truly like about this unit is the means by which promptly accessible the cartridges and new parts are.


  • Reasonably priced
  • Powerful
  • 2 year limited warranty
  • Quiet operation
  • Works on saltwater filtration
  • Large filter box


  • Rattles when impeller needs to be changed

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6. Polar Aurora 4-Stage External Canister Filter

Clearly stated by the name, the Polar Aurora 4 Stage filter also has a canister that is external.

This filter is perfect for marine life fanatics that are a little more experienced than a typical layman.

The setup is not as straightforward as it seems and only experts may find it very simple to set up. 

If you’re handling canister filters for the first time, keep in mind that the work requires for setting up the Polar Aurora is definitely a lot more than you should expect.

These units are made to hold bigger aquariums that range up to 200 gallons of water. It definitely does have a lot of power, even though the water flow rate was up to 525 GPH.

The overall filtration is enhanced immensely by using 4 large stage canister filters that ensure high quality.

When you’re accustomed to the different various features, it is extremely easy to perform maintenance on the unit. Please make sure to always read the manufacturer’s documentation beforehand. 

Waiting for 1 or two days is perfectly natural as it takes longer for all impurities to be filtered out.

We recommend that you get all the air out of the hoses to allow for incredible water flow. If needed, you can always set up the spray bar and/or request to get the air out. 


  • Reasonably priced
  • Promotes clear water
  • UV sterilizer handles bacteria very well
  • Powerful
  • All media are readily available
  • Quiet operation


  • Might be challenging to use for first-timers
  • Can’t bend the hoses

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Silent fish tank filter buying guide

Make Sure You Choose A Suitable Filtration Process

As soon as you buy a new filter, test if it is even good for your system. You can choose from three distinct filtration systems whichever suits you best. However, they all work in different ways. For example, the mechanical one can remove rubbish from the aquarium.

These systems have pre-installed devices that are programmed to remove the waste product of fishes. You can opt for these filtration systems if you have large fishes as they defecate too often and if not cleaned time to time it may pollute the aquarium. 

Besides mechanical systems, there are also chemical filtration systems available. These systems keep an eye on the color of water in case it is discoloring and maintain a nice odor in the aquarium.

The last type of system; the biological filtration system is best for you if your fishes make a mess real quick and defecate too often. 

These systems clean up the mess from time to time and maintain a clean environment in the aquarium. If you are thinking that you need all of the three systems because my fishes have all these problems, opt for multiple trays filter.

These trays are multi-tasking that are suitable for different filter mediums and work well for all types of waste and mess in the fish tank.

Take Your Fish Tank/Aquarium Size Into Consideration 

The type and size of these systems depend upon the size of your tank. These systems are quite fascinating but you need to choose the suitable size and shape of them. Buy the filter that fits best with the capacity and size of your fish tank.

For instance, it would be foolish to buy a 50-gallon capacity filter for a tank that has a capacity of only 10-gallon water. Not only will it be a waste of money but it would be useless. 

Likewise, don’t choose a too small system for a large tank because it would not be able to work well and leave plenty of mess. This is why it is important to complement the filter size and the size of the fish tank.

Evaluate All The Types Of Systems And Their Features

We have mentioned different types of aquarium filters available in the article. It is for you to decide which machine is best suited to your needs. 

Every one of the five systems is unique in its own way and has distinct pros and cons. Evaluate these points before spending money on them.

For example, power filters are quieter and have adjustable sizes, while canister filters require minimum maintenance and are quieter than the power filters.

However, they are more expensive besides having cheaper alternatives. Overhead filters, on the other hand, require more space and are not so quiet compared to other options.

While choosing filters, consider maintenance duration and costs of either of them. 

Noise Production

Filters utilize motors to drive the system so it is pretty obvious that they produce some noise while working. Now you might think that a quiet fish tank filter may not produce sound but it simply means that they have an insulation system for the noise produced. 

In most filters, there is a protective cover that lessens that noise and vibration to a bearable degree.

Besides these covers, there are intake strainers that dampen the sound produced by the vibration of motors. The more the noise is dampened, the happier the fish and you are. 

Look For A Self-Priming Feature In Your Machine

You should pay most attention to this factor while choosing a filter. Your system should have a self-priming property in it.

This feature allows to maintain the water flow through the filters by keeping the path clear.  This is helpful if you have a power breakdown issue or if you have inconsistent voltage in your area.

The air is sucked out by switches that prevent obstruction whenever you face a power breakdown. And the fishes won’t even feel the drop when the power is back. 

Judge The Water Flow Control Mechanism

You need to give minimum control of the water to the system. You must be able to control the speed and amount of water yourself as necessary.

It helps when you have many aquariums with different water ranges. Different fish live in different water ranges and at different speeds.

Fishes such as goldfishes and guppies have distinct living environments and water flow. If you can’t control that one of them would be suffering. You need to have a switch or any other controller for that purpose. 

However, some filters don’t work well on less speed. Choose the filters which maintain quality even when speed is reduced. 

Aquarium Filter Types and Tank Sizes

Air Driven Filter

Even though they are small, these types of filters can still be very sturdy and well-constructed. The air pump of the aquarium sucks in air and supplies it to the filter. 

The basis of this is that these are supposed to function the air pumped into the aquarium. With the help of these filters, you can keep your marine life completely healthy, unharmed and at peace.

You will require a panel normally in the corner of the water tank to place this filter. This filter is not very noisy.

The design concept has been strategically oriented to be compact in order for them to be perfect for workspaces, hospitals, and homes! 

Power/Hang back Filter

The hang back filter is definitely the most common filter in most aquariums. This filter is suitable for water tanks of capacity up to 10 -55 gallons of water.

They are not only long-lasting but also have an easy installation system. Most of the people prefer it because it is suitable for all three filtration systems. 

They create a stunning effect of a waterfall due to them hanging on the side of the wall of your aquarium. Every 4 days, the water should be replaced to avoid the sounds of splashing. These are pretty low noise but need some maintenance.

We would not recommend this type of filter unless you’re willing to stay on top of regular maintenance.

Canister Aquarium Filter

The basic advantage the canister filter provides is that it allows the tank water to go through different filtration mediums. Therefore, the goal is to cleanse the water at the end.

These filters are very quiet due to them being placed in a strategically oriented cartridge on the outer side of the aquarium. 

You won’t be bothered by splashing sounds due to the process of returning the water via the tube, thus making it completely soundproof.

You will also experience no humming or vibration noises during use. Also, all of these filters come in an ergonomic sleek design, ensuring compactness to maximize ease of use.

Overhead Filter

These are very common types of filters. The rear part of the filter is attached to the top of the water tank. This causes the water to splash in the tank. Due to this, it is not completely noiseless. They are quite reasonable when it comes to noise production.    

Undergravel Filter

In the event that you don’t need your filter to be obviously visible, this is the perfect alternative. These are set at the lower part of the tank. 

They move the water through the rock to make conditions for natural filtration to happen, where gainful microscopic organisms separate the losses in the fish tank. 

There are huge loads of conceivable aquarium arrangements, and you should consider yours when picking a channel. 

At the point when you enter the page, you’ll first see a speedy route table there. Locate your ideal aquarium size in it and snap on its separate connection to create a stable and robust system.

Silent Aquarium Filters

Final Thoughts on Quietest Aquarium Filters

As stated above with examples, with the help of quiet fish tank filters, you can reduce the noise of your aquarium tank by a lot. With so many options out there with their different functionalities, it can get very difficult to pick the right one for your needs.

Our team of talented experts has conducted extensive research in order to identify the best quiet fish tank filters on the market in 2022 to make sure you’re getting the most out of your silent aquarium filters.

We’ve reviewed and compared the products above in order for you to choose the quietest fish tank.

We recommend the highly rated Eheim Classic External Canister Filter with Media and the Penn Plax Cascade 1000 Canister Filter.

Hope you have an amazing experience with whichever one you choose!