No, Purigen and Activated Carbon are not the same. The Activated carbon added to the filter is to remove a wide variety of inorganic and organic toxins and the Purigen removes organic nitrogenous wastes.Garuf said:He says purigen, which is essentially carbon it just doesn't remove ferts.
A lot of people seem to be paranoid about Activated carbon for unfounded reasons. They blame carbon for removing trace elements, which it may do to some extent, but so what? Just add more traces. If you're dosing EI you're always adding more than the plants can use anyway so this is never an issue. Fluval has an excellent zeolite-carbon granule mix that works like a charm. I fill entire trays of my filters with this and I've never suffered any issues with trace deficiencies.