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      01-24-2010, 09:15 PM   #1
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Thoughts on which axle-back to choose

Having a few questions about which axle-back is the best overall for a daily driven car.


From the connecting pipes to the muffler. Which part of the OEM axle-back restricts it the most? The muffler itself or the connecting pipes?

I believe the stock muffler uses a helmholtz chamber or whatever it's called, similar to the Dinan, and AA (their design seems unique). I also notice all these aftermarket axle-back's with this chamber or NCC seem to provide no real HP gains, except a few ponies in the top end.

Other axle-back exhausts that focus more on power like Gintani and RPi do not use the helmholtz chamber usually get gains of 10-12whp and 10-12wtq from just the axle-back alone.

From what I've read, seems the only way to truly get rid of the 3k drone (bothersome on the freeway cruising in 6th at 70-80mph) is the use of the helmholtz chamber.

So are these my options:


1. Stick with the OEM ugly axle-back, drone free, noticeable power restriction when combined w/ a full x-pipe and tune.

2. Fork out a couple grand for the Dinan or AA system, with little to no wtq increase, and roughly 5whp increase in the top end, but with a much better exhaust note over OEM, especially combined with an x-pipe. Drone free.

3. Go with axle-backs that make decent power, and even more when combined with an x-pipe/tune such as Gintani's, but suffer mild drone when cruising on the freeway (mainly when going on inclines).



Would the Dinan or AA axle-back provide more gains when combined with a tune and xpipe over the OEM axle-back?

I'm just wondering if going with the Dinan or AA is all just for the sound, while the others do provide real gains.

Also, I'm worried since the AA is designed much differently than other axle-backs (different style NCC chamber, 3" piping), would it provide positive gains with an xpipe that isn't AA's?

Kind of the fence on which axle-back to pick and stick with. Any comments welcome!
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      01-24-2010, 09:40 PM   #2
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Let me start off by saying I have been looking for an exhaust for about 6 months and I have come to the conclusion there is NO perfect solution out there. Every exhaust is some sort of compromise.

I have a Gintani Sport on order with ceramic black coating. I am a bit worried that it will have a bit of drone and I think the tips are a bit big but again I had to go with what I felt had the most pros for me.

If you absolutely can not stand any drone then your choices are limited. You put that as your first priority and then looks, sound, and power take a back seat.

If you can live with a bit of drone then your options open up quite a bit. I think you have to find the exhaust that provides the most for the dollar and base it on your top couple priorities.

My order of priorities were visual appeal, sound (minimal drone factored in here), cost, and finally added power.

I was going to go with Dinan but lack of added power and the fake tips plus the higher price kept me away from it.
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      01-24-2010, 11:27 PM   #3
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if money isnt much of an issue...the akra doesnt drone
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      01-24-2010, 11:36 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sammyrusso View Post
if money isnt much of an issue...the akra doesnt drone

ya man! the akra is super nice if your sensitive to drone
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      01-25-2010, 12:33 AM   #5
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The akra is out of my price range
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      01-25-2010, 01:35 AM   #6
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Well, the design of the stock muffler system was designed very well. Its a tad bit on the heave side, but most aftermarket systems only cut back 10-20 lbs unless you go pay big bucks and go with a titanium system. Weight savings is a moot point at this level, you will never ever feel the difference between 10 lbs of weight, especially at such a low point on your car.

Rescriction wise, the OEM exhaust has a couple obstacles... The pipe segment from where it attaches to the mid pipe section to where it enters the actual muffler itself is made up of some strangly bent tubing, no mandrel bends, its compressed and shaped into some wierd shapes, I have no idea why? There is more than ample room underneath the car. People oftem comment that the "90 degree bends" inside of the muffler are super restrictive. Well, let me tell you first hand they arn't quite 90 degrees, probably closer to 110 or so and they are nice and smooth bends. The section of the muffler that does the job of attentuating the volume of the exhaust is done through small sections of perforatd pipe that is ran through a chamber stuffed with a fiberglass based, sound absportion material. You were dead on about the helmholtz chambers. These chambers are the key to tuning out the drone. Technically these chambers can be tuned by means of increasing or reducing their working volume which effectively "moves" the harmonic point of the exhaust resonance that causes the drone we all dread.
All in all there is not a whole lot in the OEM exhaust to cause truly significant back pressure, BMW did a good job engineering that, big surprise?

I have only had personal experience with around a half dozen exhaust systems and I can say that every one I have heard that incorporates a muffler system without some sort of NCC (noise cancelling chamber) has some amount of drone. That being said, you were also correct in saying that there are only a handful of exhausts on the market that incorporate these chambers, Dinan, AA, and UUC Corsa all have some NCC built in and do a great job of reducing the drone.

As far as power goes, I gave up on the search to find the most powerful rear section, I believe your estimation of some rear sections producing upwards of 10 WHP are very very optimistic. Possibly under perfect circumstances on a dyno on the right car with a comination of other bolt on parts.... maybe..... Bottom line the power gained from the reas section is sooo negligable, In my opinion, you should purchase a rear section for the sound and looks over everything. A little bump in power is an added bonus! If you are truly looking for power, look for a full cat delete x-pipe. This is where the restriction is. It seems the S65 engine responds very well to removing the cats.

Cheers!
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      01-25-2010, 01:46 AM   #7
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MrHarris,

I think you should give the Dinan rear section a shot, since I've heard that it has the least amount of drone when you compare it to all the other systems for the e9x M3. And from what I'm understanding, the reduction/elimination of drone is your main objective when upgrading to an aftermarket exhaust.

If later you feel that you want a higher volume for the exhaust note, then I'd add the Dinan mid-pipe.......Unless you already have a different brand of mid-pipe.

I'm sure you've already done this, but I would check out H Bomb's thread once again. He has some vids of his Dinan exhaust, combined with the Dinan mid-pipe. Here it is: http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=313042

I think his set-up does an awesome job of eliminating most of the drone, yet still producing a very pleasing exhaust note.

Also, I feel that getting an aftermarket rear exhaust for the e9x M3 is mostly for getting a better sound. I don't think there's much power difference to be felt from a rear exhaust only. The main power difference will come from the tune, and the x-pipe/mid-pipe IMO.

If I were in your situation, I would not worry about how much power different rear sections provide. The bottom line is to get a better looking exhaust which also provides a better sound, yet eliminates most of the drone.

Good luck on the tough decision man.
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      01-25-2010, 01:59 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrHarris View Post
The akra is out of my price range
Then buy the Bastuck V2 exhaust if you want a deeper exhaust tone that's not super loud...and doesn't drone.

You will get a good power bump from the exhaust, since it's a free flowing design. The gains are even better with a good x-pipe /w/ 200-300 cell HFC's.

The Bastuck V2 exhaust is reasonably priced (less than 2k), and it's manufactured using aircraft quality (ACQ) 304 Stainless Steel. Every exhaust system is hand-built to OEM quality standards in Germany. The fit & finish are both top notch.

It has 85mm double-wall polished tips, and the connecting pipes are included in the base price so it's also an excellent value. The Bastuck exhaust is an easy bolt-on installation. (no cutting required)

It's also about 10 lbs lighter than stock.

And the best part is...it won't cause your neighbors to call the cops on you anymore.

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      01-25-2010, 02:06 AM   #9
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MrHarris,

I'm sure you've probably already seen this thread, but there's a guy in your area that's selling a used dinan exhaust for as low as $1400 shipped. I'm sure he'll go even lower since you can just pick it up from him, and avoid the shipping cost.

Here's the thread link: http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=335724
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      01-25-2010, 04:59 AM   #10
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[/quote]

Damn thats a nice ass
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      01-25-2010, 08:38 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nawaaz View Post
MrHarris,

I'm sure you've probably already seen this thread, but there's a guy in your area that's selling a used dinan exhaust for as low as $1400 shipped. I'm sure he'll go even lower since you can just pick it up from him, and avoid the shipping cost.

Here's the thread link: http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=335724
Thanks nawaaz.

How bad is the drone of a vanguard/agency power w/ an xpipe

and how would that compare to the gintani sport?


Does the dual side canister design of the vanguard/AP help get rid of drone at 3k? I'm talking only when combined with an xpipe.
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      01-25-2010, 08:49 AM   #12
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I have the Dinan Midpipe and rear combo with the software. it is awesome. i got great power gains when i added the midpipe. now the car rips. and the sound is amazing and as you know no drone ever anywhere. i believe my combo of the 3 is putting out almost as much as all the others.

as far as feeling it, when i put the midpipe on that was the wow factor for sure, rear wheels want to rip loose everywhere now. best part i put on the car

guess it depends what is most important to you. drone and sound was a major factor for me so that is why i went dinan, then the power was an added bonus

H

Quote:
Originally Posted by MrHarris View Post
Having a few questions about which axle-back is the best overall for a daily driven car.


From the connecting pipes to the muffler. Which part of the OEM axle-back restricts it the most? The muffler itself or the connecting pipes?

I believe the stock muffler uses a helmholtz chamber or whatever it's called, similar to the Dinan, and AA (their design seems unique). I also notice all these aftermarket axle-back's with this chamber or NCC seem to provide no real HP gains, except a few ponies in the top end.

Other axle-back exhausts that focus more on power like Gintani and RPi do not use the helmholtz chamber usually get gains of 10-12whp and 10-12wtq from just the axle-back alone.

From what I've read, seems the only way to truly get rid of the 3k drone (bothersome on the freeway cruising in 6th at 70-80mph) is the use of the helmholtz chamber.

So are these my options:


1. Stick with the OEM ugly axle-back, drone free, noticeable power restriction when combined w/ a full x-pipe and tune.

2. Fork out a couple grand for the Dinan or AA system, with little to no wtq increase, and roughly 5whp increase in the top end, but with a much better exhaust note over OEM, especially combined with an x-pipe. Drone free.

3. Go with axle-backs that make decent power, and even more when combined with an x-pipe/tune such as Gintani's, but suffer mild drone when cruising on the freeway (mainly when going on inclines).



Would the Dinan or AA axle-back provide more gains when combined with a tune and xpipe over the OEM axle-back?

I'm just wondering if going with the Dinan or AA is all just for the sound, while the others do provide real gains.

Also, I'm worried since the AA is designed much differently than other axle-backs (different style NCC chamber, 3" piping), would it provide positive gains with an xpipe that isn't AA's?

Kind of the fence on which axle-back to pick and stick with. Any comments welcome!
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      01-25-2010, 08:56 AM   #13
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i didn't even see Nawazz added those. those vids do no justice at all for the midpipe and rear combo. it sounds so much better in person and i wasn't even able to hit all the rev ranges in those vids bc some cops started driving by so i had to quit and i was alone doing it so it was hard to get good shots. i can take more MR H if you need but my camera is not good quality.

below 4k it has a nice deep sound then after that it sounds very exotic like. i love the different sounds it has

someone mention there is no perfect setup, i feel for me this is the perfect setup. yes the rear alone is not like wow factor but it is not bad and some power, but when adding the midpipe that really brings the car to life and then you get the power and the sound and no drone so the best of all worlds. i was amazed how much more powerful the car was after the midpipe install

i also like the warranty factor i get to keep

hope that helps some
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      01-25-2010, 11:04 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrHarris View Post
Thanks nawaaz.

How bad is the drone of a vanguard/agency power w/ an xpipe

and how would that compare to the gintani sport?


Does the dual side canister design of the vanguard/AP help get rid of drone at 3k? I'm talking only when combined with an xpipe.
Vanguard/Agency Power?

Are you serious?

I've suggested the a rear section exhaust that is just about perfect. (the Dinan exhaust is also very well built and doesn't drone)

Did you even read my post?

Is the Bastuck exhaust not 'sexy' or 'cool' enough?

Just wondering why you completely glossed over my post about that brand.

Hopefully Vangaurd and Agency Power make decent exhaust products, but those companies are still in the craddle compared to Bastuck and Dinan.

Now I know you are going to catch hell from your socal friends, for going with either of these two brands. But if you focus on the quality and performance of these products, you won't need to keep buying and selling exhaust products.

I took the time to carefully describe all the important details that a quality exhaust product should have, so you could see how well it fits the criteria you said you wanted.

At the end of the day, it doesn't matter what you socal friends think about what YOU buy. Your decisions should be based on the performance, sound quality, value, and the build construction of the part you bolt on to your ride.

An actual track record (that you can check) also helps you determine whether or not it will last. The durability of a product is extremely important. (welds crack, exhaust hangers break off, tips can be be welded out of alignment, etc.)

The attributes of a quality product seems to be disregarded around here for some reason...

You can easily identify what a quality exhaust product is if you know what to look for. The good products will all have very slimier traits. This is often overlooked or ignored by the masses. (which is a big mistake)

You guys must be rich.

I certainly can't afford to constantly swap out parts, and hope that one day I'll get lucky and find the one.

That's not exactly a fundamentally sound game plan...

You can't compare a Vangaurd or Agency Power exhaust system to the Bastuck, Eisenmann, or even the Dinan exhaust. These well known brands can be throughly researched, so at least you know what your buying. (without question)

No-name brand products that are still in the craddle, don't even belong in the same discussion. (unless you you don't care how or where they are built)

I hate to sound like a broken record here, but quality parts (build construction + excellent fitment) don't just fall out of the sky fellas.

They are the result of good engineering, solid manufacturing techniques, and the experience that comes from building a specific product over a long period of time.

You think the quality of an Eisenmann exhaust is the same NOW as it was when the company was founded? Of course not...

It's an elite brand NOW because of all the reasons I just mentioned.

I'll bet none you guys even know where half of these exhaust brands are even built, what materials are used to build them, who engineered them...or what standards they were built to meet. (example: Eisenmann and Bastuck are built to meet strict TUV quality control standards)

Here is the bottom line folks...

Make SURE that you are making an apples-to-apples comparison in these situations.

I'm not sure how you guys are ever going to be able to do this, if you don't do your homework. Finding the right exhaust setup for your car (without comparing notes and key specifications) is going to be much harder than it needs to be.

This process will never end for some of you, if you don't establish some rigid minimum standards.

I tried to help Mr. Harris, by directing him to exactly the kind of exhaust product he was asking for...

I just don't understand you guys sometimes...
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      01-25-2010, 03:24 PM   #15
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Hi Lemans ... still interested in your input to the Gintani exhausts from the other Dinan vs. Gintani thread.
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      01-25-2010, 03:35 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lemans_Blue_M View Post
Vanguard/Agency Power?

Are you serious?

I've suggested the a rear section exhaust that is just about perfect. (the Dinan exhaust is also very well built and doesn't drone)

Did you even read my post?

Is the Bastuck exhaust not 'sexy' or 'cool' enough?

Just wondering why you completely glossed over my post about that brand.

Hopefully Vangaurd and Agency Power make decent exhaust products, but those companies are still in the craddle compared to Bastuck and Dinan.

Now I know you are going to catch hell from your socal friends, for going with either of these two brands. But if you focus on the quality and performance of these products, you won't need to keep buying and selling exhaust products.

I took the time to carefully describe all the important details that a quality exhaust product should have, so you could see how well it fits the criteria you said you wanted.

At the end of the day, it doesn't matter what you socal friends think about what YOU buy. Your decisions should be based on the performance, sound quality, value, and the build construction of the part you bolt on to your ride.

An actual track record (that you can check) also helps you determine whether or not it will last. The durability of a product is extremely important. (welds crack, exhaust hangers break off, tips can be be welded out of alignment, etc.)

The attributes of a quality product seems to be disregarded around here for some reason...

You can easily identify what a quality exhaust product is if you know what to look for. The good products will all have very slimier traits. This is often overlooked or ignored by the masses. (which is a big mistake)

You guys must be rich.

I certainly can't afford to constantly swap out parts, and hope that one day I'll get lucky and find the one.

That's not exactly a fundamentally sound game plan...

You can't compare a Vangaurd or Agency Power exhaust system to the Bastuck, Eisenmann, or even the Dinan exhaust. These well known brands can be throughly researched, so at least you know what your buying. (without question)

No-name brand products that are still in the craddle, don't even belong in the same discussion. (unless you you don't care how or where they are built)

I hate to sound like a broken record here, but quality parts (build construction + excellent fitment) don't just fall out of the sky fellas.

They are the result of good engineering, solid manufacturing techniques, and the experience that comes from building a specific product over a long period of time.

You think the quality of an Eisenmann exhaust is the same NOW as it was when the company was founded? Of course not...

It's an elite brand NOW because of all the reasons I just mentioned.

I'll bet none you guys even know where half of these exhaust brands are even built, what materials are used to build them, who engineered them...or what standards they were built to meet. (example: Eisenmann and Bastuck are built to meet strict TUV quality control standards)

Here is the bottom line folks...

Make SURE that you are making an apples-to-apples comparison in these situations.

I'm not sure how you guys are ever going to be able to do this, if you don't do your homework. Finding the right exhaust setup for your car (without comparing notes and key specifications) is going to be much harder than it needs to be.

This process will never end for some of you, if you don't establish some rigid minimum standards.

I tried to help Mr. Harris, by directing him to exactly the kind of exhaust product he was asking for...

I just don't understand you guys sometimes...
+1 agency and vanguard dont really have much sound either...id rather stick with oem than go with either IMO
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      01-25-2010, 03:44 PM   #17
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I went with Active

Dude...

I am sensitive to noise... I promise you that there is not drone....

This exhaust sounds amazing..

I bought it conjunction with the software, and I noticed a big difference...

below is my dyno link.. just did it this saturday... I put down an extra 30 whp from stock...


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      01-25-2010, 03:59 PM   #18
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LMB, what you think of AA, Gintani Sport, or Dinan? I'm leaning towards those 3 at the moment.
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      01-25-2010, 04:12 PM   #19
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i think the dinan has the least drone.
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      01-25-2010, 04:29 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrHarris View Post
LMB, what you think of AA, Gintani Sport, or Dinan? I'm leaning towards those 3 at the moment.
Of those three options, I would choose the DINAN exhaust no question.



I wrote a detailed post on the Dinan exhaust in another thread just this past weekend.

Instead of writing all that out again, I'll just cut and paste it here:

Quote:
Dinan manufactures their mufflers to be free-flowing, so no, more back pressure is not the reason they only use one tip per muffler can. (left or right side)

While it does seem odd...Dinan's unique 'one active tip' muffler cans are actually designed to effectively reduce back-pressure (and turbulence) for improved flow, which results in more hp & trq across the entire rev band.

They also manufacture their exhaust system components from 304 stainless steel (inside and out) for superior corrosion resistance.

Someone was asking about Magnaflow mufflers just yesterday, and I pointed out in the thread that Magnaflow actually uses an inferior 409 stainless steel that will rust.

Do any of you know what material grade your mufflers were built with?

Cheap "Aluminized steel" perhaps?

It pays to do your homework guys.

Dinan also coats their exhaust tips with a special high-temp ceramic powder coating that is very durable. (not the less effective high-temp black paint) Dinan uses that coating to help reduce the chances of burning or distorting your OEM or aftermarket rear diffuser. (it also looks cool)

The other reason they do this, is that the Ceramic coated tips will be more resistant to abrasions, corrosion, scratches, and harsh chemicals when compared to tips coated with high-temp enamel paints. Ceramic-coated tips will retain their black finish with much less fading and color bleeding over time.

As maligned as Dinan is on the boards for delivering 'average' performance while demanding top dollar...you rarely see anyone criticizing the quality of their aftermarket products.

That's because they actually take the time to properly engineer and test their own products prior to releasing them to the general public.

They find and fix any issues that arise during R&D...before we ever see them.

That gets a huge thumbs up in my book.

The Dinan exhaust is built with a very effective exhaust engineering principle (straight through design with a diffuser pipe & Helmholtz chambers), and it delivers a smooth sounding exhaust note in the process.

They know what kind of sound the M3 enthusiast is looking for in their rear muffler sections, and they deliver that in spades.

The overall performance, the fit, the finish, the sound, and the quality of the materials used in it's build construction are all top notch.

In my opinion, it is worth the asking price if you are looking for a muffler for a 60-70,000 dollar car. (with Diann's warranty protection to boot)

Too many people are caught up in the superficial aspects surrounding high performance parts in general, instead of the more important things like the actual performance characteristics, the engineering & technology used, and the overall quality of the materials used in it's construction. This type of research is severely lacking in the BMW community at large with regards to the products that most individuals buy.

Dinan aftermarket parts will never be the most 'aggressive' in regards to performance, but they will always deliver a excellent quality product that performs as advertised. You can't go wrong with a Dinan part bolted to your BMW car.

They also stand behind their product (with a solid warranty protection program) if something needs to be replaced or repaired.

So 'fake tips' or not, Dinan (and their exhaust system) will deliver where it really counts.
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      01-25-2010, 04:30 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by MrHarris View Post
LMB, what you think of AA, Gintani Sport, or Dinan? I'm leaning towards those 3 at the moment.
id say go with aa or gintani...if your getting an aftermarket muffler might as well get something you can hear and has some tone...and all the drone your talking about wont be as noticeable as you think...but if your really that picky about the drone issue go with dinan as LMB stated


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Of those three options, I would choose the DINAN exhaust no question.
so im guessing you have dinan...or maybe you work for dinan haha
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      01-25-2010, 04:39 PM   #22
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Have you actually heard either of those exhausts, or are you just stating an opinion based on ZERO experience?? I have the AP and it sounds absolutely wicked with an x-pipe. Mike from Powerchip can verify that. Additionally I have heard the Vanguard couple with a Fabspeed x-pipe and it sounded very aggressive.

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Originally Posted by xxe92xx View Post
+1 agency and vanguard dont really have much sound either...id rather stick with oem than go with either IMO
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