That tropics stuff does look pretty chunky, a bit like cookie dough.....
Are you pleased with the sand? It's looks nice, not the very even black that I guesed it would be. Does the tropica give you that laterite doesn't? I suppose that's more of a general substrate query, but with all the substrate additivies around now it's difficult to decide what to go for.
Hagen Sand - I think this is a very natural look, never seen natural sand that was not a mix of shades and I like it, but going by the product description you could be deceived a little I guess.
Tropica substrate - this is a mix of fine sand/dust and larger particles. The larger particles do squash fairly easily and I would think that when wet they would end up very soft. There are more finer bits than the large bits from the picture above, it is certainly more natural looking/feeling than the JBL AquaBasis Plus which I used last time - the JBL product is pretty much the same as Tetra Complete substrate as far as I can tell.