Canister filters seem to have increased in price over time at a greater rate than the simple siphon filters that hang on the back of the tank, but they are much better filters, and usually quieter as well. Models which can act as a diatom filter also can get you incredibly clear water, if that’s you’re goal. Even with excellent filtration, water changing is necessary to maintain good water quality. The canister filters make this task easier because they can be used to pump out old water, and pump in fresh. A ‘gravel vacuum cleaner’ can be attached to the intake hose as well. Do this job before you clean or replace the filter element in the canister.
Under gravel filters are a relatively inexpensive option that will provide excellent water quality for the fish. These systems use the gravel on the bottom as a filter, drawing water downward through the gravel, and then up through tubes in the rear corners of the tank. They can be powered with an air pump or an electric power head pump, or even connected to a cansiter filter pump. With these, the gravel on the bottom acts as the filter. Biotic action will break down most waste, and the gravel shouldn’t need cleaning any more often than with other filter types. The downward circulation of the water aids in oxygenation also. There are reverse flow types that push water through the gravel from the bottom, keeping the gravel much cleaner.
35 gallons isn’t that big of a tank. Water changing is always a necessity no matter what type of filtration you use, and for a small tank, it can be very easy to do. Get a couple of 1 to 2 gallon plastic buckets. Keep one filled with fresh water, uncovered to allow dissoved gases to disperse. Every week, or more often, drain old water into the other bucket, pour in the clean water, then refill the bucket. Waiting longer and changing half or all of the water will turn into much more work, and wayward water.
Good luck with your fish.