I bought this as a cheaper alternative to the main branded external filters and I'm happy to say that one year on it is still working as well as the day I bought it- Perfectly! The set up of the filter was very easy; the selection of output devices is pretty standard and there are plenty of elbows etc to get the positioning just right. All these parts fit together without too much effort and they are water tight. Fitting the tubing to the canister is straightforward, the in/outlets are clearly labellied. The canister itself is the most fiddley bit, but even that wasn't a hassle!
Once it is ready to go it practically primes itself, as long as there is enough water in it. Running is almost silent. Of all the filters I have (on 7 or so tanks) this is the quietest, which has surprised me a lot considering my others are fluval, eheim etc.
Cleaning the canister couldn't be easier- the baskets lift out making rinising the different media types simple. As I mentioned I have benn running this filter for a year on my 4ft tank, and my water always tests at a good level for nitrates. The turnover for this size of tank is low, but that is what my fish need! I would have no qualms at all at purchasing any of the other models if I ever needed another- and the cost is so much lower than the main brands, so much better value.
I am very happy with this item and would thouroghly recommend it!