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Old 03-28-2013, 06:13 PM   #1
mtl_sti
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Default 2012 STi Sedan going to stage 1.5 (2?) Need some pro input

So in the near future I'm going to what would probably be called stage 2, but without a catback exhaust, for my 2012 Sti Sedan. I would love some input, especially in regards to any potential issues that might arise from doing a uppipe+downpipe+cold air intake without doing a catback.

The place doing the installation (Autobar, in Montreal), was pretty adamant about the catback not being necessary.

Parts:

-AEM red cold air intake system, with heatshields
-bellmouth 3.0" turbo down pipe, catless, cast flange
-Cobb Accessport Tuner
-Grimmspeed turbo up pipe w/flex joint intalled

Was quoted around $2700 for all parts and installation.

Will also do a pro tune after all part are installed.

Any tips would be much appreciated
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Old 03-28-2013, 07:25 PM   #2
RoadKillDMD
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No noticeable gains are made with a catback. You won't see much if any gains at all replacing the stock up-pipe either, so forget that. The gains are made with the downpipe and a stage 2 tune.
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Old 03-28-2013, 07:32 PM   #3
HinshawWRX
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Skip the up pipe as yours is completely fine. Catback is a noise maker.
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Old 03-28-2013, 08:27 PM   #4
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The down pipe and Cobb AP are the only things I would buy off your list. Then I would go right to stage 2 and call it a day.
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Old 03-29-2013, 04:13 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tripintaz View Post
The down pipe and Cobb AP are the only things I would buy off your list. Then I would go right to stage 2 and call it a day.
This, except get an e-tune from torqued performance, clark turner, IAG, etc. once you've gotten the AP.

I'd avoid running the Cobb OTS tune for a long period of time.
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Old 03-29-2013, 12:52 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1wrxtra View Post
This, except get an e-tune from torqued performance, clark turner, IAG, etc. once you've gotten the AP.

I'd avoid running the Cobb OTS tune for a long period of time.
Thnx for the feedback, will be skipping the up-pipe then; thought it would have more of an impact.
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Old 03-29-2013, 12:53 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1wrxtra View Post
This, except get an e-tune from torqued performance, clark turner, IAG, etc. once you've gotten the AP.

I'd avoid running the Cobb OTS tune for a long period of time.

And why would you suggest avoiding the Cobb OTS tune?
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Old 03-29-2013, 12:53 PM   #8
mtl_sti
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1wrxtra View Post
This, except get an e-tune from torqued performance, clark turner, IAG, etc. once you've gotten the AP.

I'd avoid running the Cobb OTS tune for a long period of time.
Thnx for the feedback, will be skipping the up-pipe then; thought it would have more of an impact.

Is the cold air intake at all worth it, or should I skip that as well?
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Old 03-29-2013, 12:54 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtl_sti View Post
Thnx for the feedback, will be skipping the up-pipe then; thought it would have more of an impact.

Is the cold air intake at all worth it, or should I skip that as well?

Depends if 5HP is worth $279 to you.
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Old 03-29-2013, 01:25 PM   #10
ALOKIN
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtl_sti View Post
Thnx for the feedback, will be skipping the up-pipe then; thought it would have more of an impact.

Is the cold air intake at all worth it, or should I skip that as well?
I had the Cobb SF+ Airbox for 500 miles. The only pro for me was the sound.

Now the cons:
Uses an oiled filter (not good for maf sensor), susceptible to heat soak due to bad box design, hence IAT when in traffic can go to >170F, would have to remove it anytime I took my car in for the free oil changes at the dealer (13 STi), Lastly I had slight overboosting issues running the Cobb OTS stg 1+sf maps (over 30, 4th gear WOT logs and it was always there). As soon as I put the stocker on, boost levels stay on target and car runs great.

I ended up going with the catted, Invidia Q300 TBE + Grimmspeed heatshield and a stage II OTS Cobb tune. Going to try an E-tune next. Prob a TP.

I don't see the need for me to do anything else atm. Car is fast, and you do get some more turbo sounds with the new DP.

Keep it simple, get a DP, heat shield, and E-tune. Done.
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Old 03-29-2013, 01:52 PM   #11
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I'll just throw my experience in here. I used to have a stock axle-back on my protuned stage 2 WRX. I switched to a Greddy Evo2 axle-back and got re-tuned. I picked up 20 WHP; same tuner, same dyno, warmer ambient temperature.

So I would disagree that the cat-back makes no difference. If you are running a generic tune, like the Cobb OTS maps, it's true that there is no difference. But if you are getting custom tuned, there may be.
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Old 03-29-2013, 02:04 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tripintaz View Post
And why would you suggest avoiding the Cobb OTS tune?
Bump for this question
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Old 03-29-2013, 02:20 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kilfarsnar View Post
I'll just throw my experience in here. I used to have a stock axle-back on my protuned stage 2 WRX. I switched to a Greddy Evo2 axle-back and got re-tuned. I picked up 20 WHP; same tuner, same dyno, warmer ambient temperature.

So I would disagree that the cat-back makes no difference. If you are running a generic tune, like the Cobb OTS maps, it's true that there is no difference. But if you are getting custom tuned, there may be.
For the newer models wrx/sti's the stock exhaust is not holding back much power as the older GD models. The GD model stock exhaust are very very restrictive where as the stock GR's not so much.

So since the OP has a GR, the stock exhaust is enough for his power goals atm.
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Old 03-29-2013, 02:45 PM   #14
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Intake is also a noisemaker, but i love mine just the sam (AEM CAI.) As for stock catback, there is a youtube video of a hatch pushing 600+ hp on a stock catback!
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Old 03-29-2013, 02:52 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tripintaz View Post
And why would you suggest avoiding the Cobb OTS tune?
It's not to say the Cobb OTS tune is 'bad' or will blow your engine up. Mine's been running it for about 25k miles. Others have been running theirs 100k.

However, the OTS tune is a general tune for all WRXs running all brands of 93 oct in all climates. Each car is different and the tune compensates for all these random variables, plus each variations between cars.

It's like having an off-the-shelf suit or a tailored one right for your body... the tailored one costs more, but fits better... lol.
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Old 03-29-2013, 04:34 PM   #16
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Agreed that a custom tune would definitely be better and probably safer, but everyone seems to ignore the fact that your stock tune is also an off the shelf tune. Do you really think Subaru tailors each car's tune on a dyno before sending it out the door? Of course not, they all have the same general tune. When it comes down to it, I trust Cobb's ots tune more than Subaru's just knowing that Cobb's generally runs rich and the stock tune runs dangerously lean.
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Old 03-29-2013, 05:01 PM   #17
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If you're going to get an up-pipe get one with ewg setup. Even if you don't get an ewg right away you can always use a block-off plate for future installation.
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Old 03-29-2013, 05:07 PM   #18
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If your at roughly sea level (not Denver or some other high altitude place), and running Cobb's parts, then their OTS tunes are very good. I use their stage 1 OTS tune on my car, and the logs look great. The Cobb OTS tunes are a very safe, non-aggressive tune which should give you no issues if you follow their recommendations.

Where people run into issues is at altitude, or using non-Cobb components, then running their OTS tunes which are not tuned for those specific parts (ie. an Invidia DP). The tune still works, but things tend to be slightly out of whack due to the differences in the components.

That is always my advice to people looking at using the Cobb OTS tunes. If you choose to use it, then use their parts and follow their recommendations to the letter. If you do that, it will work great for you. If you want to run catless, or another brand of parts, then skip the OTS and get an etune or protune.
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Old 03-29-2013, 05:14 PM   #19
StackSmasher
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tripintaz View Post
And why would you suggest avoiding the Cobb OTS tune?
I'm going to parrot the responses given and say they are a one sized fits MOST application. Not all cars are the same. It will be fine on most, but some cars will have issues with it.

An etune is made specifically for your car. I had Cobb OTS stage 1 93. Had knock and it wasnt that great. Went to 91 oct stage 1, still had occasional knock and it was a tad slower.

Got an e-tune from TP, not a hint of knock, power is smooth and feels like it pulls much better.

I honestly look at the OTS maps as good enough to hold you over for a bit if you just went stage 1 or stage 2. But get a pro or etune is the near future.
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Old 03-29-2013, 06:14 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtl_sti View Post
So in the near future I'm going to what would probably be called stage 2, but without a catback exhaust, for my 2012 Sti Sedan. I would love some input, especially in regards to any potential issues that might arise from doing a uppipe+downpipe+cold air intake without doing a catback.

The place doing the installation (Autobar, in Montreal), was pretty adamant about the catback not being necessary.

Parts:

-AEM red cold air intake system, with heatshields
-bellmouth 3.0" turbo down pipe, catless, cast flange
-Cobb Accessport Tuner
-Grimmspeed turbo up pipe w/flex joint intalled

Was quoted around $2700 for all parts and installation.

Will also do a pro tune after all part are installed.

Any tips would be much appreciated
This is the exact same set up I had on my 2011 STI Hatch. Nameless Downpipe (which is a bellmouth) Grimmspeed UP and a CAI from AQ Motorsports (Located in LA, CA). I had my car pro tuned by COBB using the AP and got 328hp/350tq. I can upload the dyno graph if needed. My 50-100mph times were anywhere from 7.9-8.2 seconds (if anyone knows about that thread on here)

Now I had everything installed and tuned at the same time so I do not know the gains for each part but I would not agree with anyone here that said an UP or CAI is not worth the cost. These parts combined will be less than a cat back and will provide some gains. The stock UP can be restrictive even though it does not have a cat and a better flowing up pipe will create a better flow of gases which will improve your numbers over stock parts. The CAI could be more of a noise maker than a power mod but in the end for $230 I think it was worth it since it was combined with the other parts. I would not get this as the only mod.

Another thing I would consider would be engine/trans mounts and pitch stop mounts. You can get them all for less than $250 on flatirontuning.com and will really help once you are at stg 2 power levels.

Now to your last question $2700 for parts and cost seems pretty high for me. I paid the follow (if I remember correctly)

595 - Downpipe - direct from Nameless
50 - heat wrap 50'x2" for the downpipe
20 - turbo heat wrap
230 - CAI - direct from AQ motorsports
200 - UP - RallySportDirect
Engine Mounts - $235 Flatirontuning.com (engine, trans and pitch stop by group-n)
$400-600 Labor - (this is what I dont remember exactly but it was the best out of 3-4 places I got quotes from)

AP + Pro tune from COBB so Cal = $750 I am pretty sure. Since I got the AP they had a discount for $200 off the tune.

So I think I paid less than what you were quoted and I got all the mounts and a pro tune included. I would check into buying the parts on your own and work on labor costs seperatly. You might be able to find better deals on the parts you want.

Not having the Catback on the car and adding the UP I believe made the car quieter than stock. That was the main reason why I didn't want the Catback and since there was very little, if any gains to be had I could not justify the cost of the cat back (especially for the hatch).

Last edited by JonzFaSTi; 03-29-2013 at 06:24 PM.
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Old 03-29-2013, 08:11 PM   #21
Tripintaz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StackSmasher View Post

I'm going to parrot the responses given and say they are a one sized fits MOST application. Not all cars are the same. It will be fine on most, but some cars will have issues with it.

An etune is made specifically for your car. I had Cobb OTS stage 1 93. Had knock and it wasnt that great. Went to 91 oct stage 1, still had occasional knock and it was a tad slower.

Got an e-tune from TP, not a hint of knock, power is smooth and feels like it pulls much better.

I honestly look at the OTS maps as good enough to hold you over for a bit if you just went stage 1 or stage 2. But get a pro or etune is the near future.
Dude I'm not a noob. I was curious of his opinion. I ran an OTS tune for one day before I downloaded ATR and tuned it how I wanted.
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Old 03-29-2013, 11:20 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tripintaz View Post

Dude I'm not a noob. I was curious of his opinion. I ran an OTS tune for one day before I downloaded ATR and tuned it how I wanted.

Calm down buddy. I didnt call you a noob. You asked why somone wouldnt run a cobb ots tune and I told my experience with it and why I personally wouldn't run it for very long. Not trying to insult your epeen
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Old 03-30-2013, 12:33 AM   #23
ALOKIN
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StackSmasher View Post
I'm going to parrot the responses given and say they are a one sized fits MOST application. Not all cars are the same. It will be fine on most, but some cars will have issues with it.

An etune is made specifically for your car. I had Cobb OTS stage 1 93. Had knock and it wasnt that great. Went to 91 oct stage 1, still had occasional knock and it was a tad slower.

Got an e-tune from TP, not a hint of knock, power is smooth and feels like it pulls much better.

I honestly look at the OTS maps as good enough to hold you over for a bit if you just went stage 1 or stage 2. But get a pro or etune is the near future.
Same exact story here. I get a whisper of knock every once and awhile even on their 91 map running 93 octane. I can go 2 or 3 wot logs without and the last one of the night will have a knock sum count increase by 1 on one of the cylinders with some fine knock pulling a smidge of timing around there. I hope a TP map will get rid of this.
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Old 03-30-2013, 12:41 PM   #24
mtl_sti
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JonzFaSTi View Post
This is the exact same set up I had on my 2011 STI Hatch. Nameless Downpipe (which is a bellmouth) Grimmspeed UP and a CAI from AQ Motorsports (Located in LA, CA). I had my car pro tuned by COBB using the AP and got 328hp/350tq. I can upload the dyno graph if needed. My 50-100mph times were anywhere from 7.9-8.2 seconds (if anyone knows about that thread on here)

Now I had everything installed and tuned at the same time so I do not know the gains for each part but I would not agree with anyone here that said an UP or CAI is not worth the cost. These parts combined will be less than a cat back and will provide some gains. The stock UP can be restrictive even though it does not have a cat and a better flowing up pipe will create a better flow of gases which will improve your numbers over stock parts. The CAI could be more of a noise maker than a power mod but in the end for $230 I think it was worth it since it was combined with the other parts. I would not get this as the only mod.

Another thing I would consider would be engine/trans mounts and pitch stop mounts. You can get them all for less than $250 on flatirontuning.com and will really help once you are at stg 2 power levels.

Now to your last question $2700 for parts and cost seems pretty high for me. I paid the follow (if I remember correctly)

595 - Downpipe - direct from Nameless
50 - heat wrap 50'x2" for the downpipe
20 - turbo heat wrap
230 - CAI - direct from AQ motorsports
200 - UP - RallySportDirect
Engine Mounts - $235 Flatirontuning.com (engine, trans and pitch stop by group-n)
$400-600 Labor - (this is what I dont remember exactly but it was the best out of 3-4 places I got quotes from)

AP + Pro tune from COBB so Cal = $750 I am pretty sure. Since I got the AP they had a discount for $200 off the tune.

So I think I paid less than what you were quoted and I got all the mounts and a pro tune included. I would check into buying the parts on your own and work on labor costs seperatly. You might be able to find better deals on the parts you want.

Not having the Catback on the car and adding the UP I believe made the car quieter than stock. That was the main reason why I didn't want the Catback and since there was very little, if any gains to be had I could not justify the cost of the cat back (especially for the hatch).
Wow, thnx for the feedback. Yes I would appreciate the dyno graph.
In regards to the price, I am sure you are correct, but consider that I am in Canada, all the parts come from the states, and I get hit with customs, which makes up about $500 of the $2700 price tag. Yes its still pricy, but my options are limited in montreal, and the only other option (lachute performance subaru) is even more costly).

I will still look into pricing the items and labor seperately. And after your pep talk, me thinks the up pipe will stay in the mix.
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Old 03-30-2013, 03:14 PM   #25
JonzFaSTi
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I thought about that after my post. I am sure being in ur area has a lot of impact on the costs.

Good luck with ur build.

I plan to put all these same parts on my 13 fairly soon too and cant wait to see the difference between the '11 and '13.
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