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      09-21-2016, 12:55 AM   #1
Manda Marza
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Agency Power Exhaust Review

Hello everyone!

I recently installed (okay maybe I supervised more than installed) an Agency Power exhaust on my ///MEW3.

Full Disclosure: Neither Agency Power or Vivid Racing ever asked me to do a review, and I do not get anything out of review or if you buy anything from them. I also was never asked to put on a Vivid Racing decal on my car. Most (but not all) of the photos were taken by my husband and all were edited by him, he goes by Rosh Dawg and is also on this forum.

I have had an M Performance Exhaust since I bought the car, but wanted something just a little more aggressive, and also wanted larger tips that HAD to be burnt titanium. I did not want to break the bank as I have a lot of other mods coming up and had a strict budget. Within that budget Agency Power seemed to have the best reviews, build quality and looks. I felt conflicted with removing my M performance exhaust, since I know that runs for about $3,500 new, but that's with BMW tax added on...

Once I opened the box I layered it with 3 layers of Cquartz TiO2 to keep the tips clean and stain resistant - but am not entirely confident that regular Cquartz can hold up with temperatures seen on exhaust systems. I wish I had a bottle of professional level Ceramic Pro that can hold up to temps above 1500F. If you guys have used a coating that has lasted on your exhaust I would love to hear your opinions!

The M3 was too low for the lift my dad has to properly get to all the jack stands so we had to put all 4 wheels on those roller tire jacks. Once the car was lifted I was actually VERY surprised with how clean the undercarriage of my car was...
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The muffler was definitely the hardest thing to remove just because those rubber hangers were so tight, but everything else was very easy. You can have absolutely no idea what you are doing and can remove / install any exhaust on these cars (or is that the same with any car?)

The main adjustment of the exhaust comes with how far you want the expansion joints of the muffler section to go over the S pipe. If you want them sticking out more, have them not cover the S pipe connection joint as much. It's very easy to figure out what I'm talking about, and very easy to adjust, takes all of about 5 seconds when you're under there. Both sides can be adjusted independently, so I don't imagine any fitment issues with the exhaust - only installation errors. The included clamps will make sure everything is sealed so don't worry if you don't slip the expansion joints fully over the S pipe connection. I poked mine out about half an inch to prepare for a diffuser I want to get.

I may need to make a final little adjustment once I fit the diffuser on to make sure both sizes are evenly poking out, but that requires going under the lift again. I recommend lowering the car with the jack stands still touching so you can see the car from above to make the call on final adjustments and lift the car again if needed, because when you're underneath its hard to tell if both sides are 100% even.
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Build quality of the exhaust is amazing, honestly I've never seen higher quality. The welds are perfect, finish is perfect, the whole system is so light, I just couldn't be happier. Zero complaints and only praises in the build quality section. And the color of the burnt tips is EXACTLY what I wanted!! Here are some close up pics:
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There are very few better feelings than starting your car for the first time after you install your exhaust. I difference was noticeable immediately, and it was SOOO satisfying to hear! Everyone else in the garage noticed the difference in sound as well. Here's some pics with it lowered on the ground:
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The sound is along the same lines of the M Performance Exhaust, but louder in both high and low notes. After about 100 miles, the sound was noticeably more 'raw' or 'hardcore' (for lack of better words), not in terms of volume but in terms of character. This is definitely not an immature exhaust, there are no fart can noises or overbearing volume that will wake up the entire neighborhood (unless you want to ). In terms of volume, it is a huge step up from a stock exhaust but only a moderate step up from the M perf exhaust.
The thing I was most concerned about was drone, and I am happy to confirm there is no drone at all. I had to drive from my dad's house in San Diego back to my house in Orange County, and did not experience any drone in any gear at any throttle at any incline. When traveling normally on the freeway without traffic at 70 - 80 MPH, there is virtually no difference between the M perf exhaust and the Agency Power exhaust. At heavier throttle in high gear or on inclines you can tell the exhaust is louder. The main difference is with going through the gears or pressing the throttle any further than 1/5th of the way.
Overall I am VERY happy with my purchase, and if I could go back in time I would purchase it all over again. I am now considering their mid pipe which deletes the resonators to go a little louder since the M3 is no longer used as a daily driver, but I do want to keep my cats because I don't like the smell of being catless.

I took a sound clip of my car but the mic couldn't pick up anything. I will take another video tomorrow and try again with the stock mic (first time using it and idk what the heck I'm doing!). Here is a sound clip I found that sounds like my car:


Here is the link to the exhaust:
https://www.agency-power.com/shop/ex...-m3-coupe-e92/

Thanks for reading!
With love, Mew
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      09-21-2016, 10:30 AM   #2
kb9uwu
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isn't this exhaust the same thing but $1,000 less? i'm honestly curious, they look identical.

http://www.redline360.com/megan-raci...R-ABE-BE90M34D

(yes e90 link, but they have e92 as well)
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      09-21-2016, 10:39 AM   #3
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^ basically and there are a couple others that are almost identical.

OP thanks for the review but I'm a little interested in hearing more about the non drone. this exhaust along with others is known to have a decent amount of drone.
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      09-21-2016, 02:47 PM   #4
Manda Marza
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shimmy23 View Post
^ basically and there are a couple others that are almost identical.

OP thanks for the review but I'm a little interested in hearing more about the non drone. this exhaust along with others is known to have a decent amount of drone.
Sure! My experience with drone was with my brother in law's 2011 STI with a stock exhaust. At low rpm'a from a stand still or going up hill it made this very boomy resonating noise that while not that loud seemed to pierce into your head and cause discomfort. Similar to the buffeting from cracking open a window at high speeds in some cars.
I believe that is what exhaust drone is, if that is incorrect feel free to correct me!
Anyways, this did not happen with my new exhaust at any time. At times there would be a noticeable difference in volume when you would press the gas but not downshift when going around 65-70mph (not under cruising conditions, more like passing someone or going uphill). The sound was similar as before but with the volume knob turned up just a bit. Same pitch and tempo as the M perf exhaust just a bit louder. It was never overbearing though and never did the sound have a resonating effect. I felt very comfortable driving from San Diego to Orange County with little traffic, and 95% of the freeway driving I didn't notice a difference. The difference is almost only noticeable on the street at street speeds when you're accelerating. Again this is going from the m perf exhaust to the agency power one, so the differences will be more drastic if you're coming from stock. Did that answer your question?
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      09-21-2016, 02:50 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kb9uwu View Post
isn't this exhaust the same thing but $1,000 less? i'm honestly curious, they look identical.

http://www.redline360.com/megan-raci...R-ABE-BE90M34D

(yes e90 link, but they have e92 as well)
I had a budget but it wasn't that low. We had a Megan racing 'axle back' exhaust on our 370Z and that had a drone and was annoying during freeway drives, but it did sound very cool when driving fast. Not saying anything bad about Megan racing, I just didn't want to use them again. I'm not sure how the internal design of the mufflers are different.
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      09-21-2016, 07:44 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Manda Mew View Post
Sure! My experience with drone was with my brother in law's 2011 STI with a stock exhaust. At low rpm'a from a stand still or going up hill it made this very boomy resonating noise that while not that loud seemed to pierce into your head and cause discomfort. Similar to the buffeting from cracking open a window at high speeds in some cars.
I believe that is what exhaust drone is, if that is incorrect feel free to correct me!
Anyways, this did not happen with my new exhaust at any time. At times there would be a noticeable difference in volume when you would press the gas but not downshift when going around 65-70mph (not under cruising conditions, more like passing someone or going uphill). The sound was similar as before but with the volume knob turned up just a bit. Same pitch and tempo as the M perf exhaust just a bit louder. It was never overbearing though and never did the sound have a resonating effect. I felt very comfortable driving from San Diego to Orange County with little traffic, and 95% of the freeway driving I didn't notice a difference. The difference is almost only noticeable on the street at street speeds when you're accelerating. Again this is going from the m perf exhaust to the agency power one, so the differences will be more drastic if you're coming from stock. Did that answer your question?
thanks! yup, those STIs drone pretty bad or any of the subbies with that flat four engine.
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      09-22-2016, 01:31 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Manda Mew View Post
I had a budget but it wasn't that low. We had a Megan racing 'axle back' exhaust on our 370Z and that had a drone and was annoying during freeway drives, but it did sound very cool when driving fast. Not saying anything bad about Megan racing, I just didn't want to use them again. I'm not sure how the internal design of the mufflers are different.
Yep, my megan racing axle back drone is sometimes annoying. Good choice not getting it if that was an issue on your 370z.

However, it does motivate me to downshift and lift the revs above the drone...
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      09-22-2016, 05:26 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nodemgr View Post
Yep, my megan racing axle back drone is sometimes annoying. Good choice not getting it if that was an issue on your 370z.

However, it does motivate me to downshift and lift the revs above the drone...
Downshifting is definitely the best part about getting an exhaust! Especially with the bars turned up high to get that rev match. That's how my dogs always know I'm home now before I pull up to the driveway
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      09-23-2016, 11:11 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nodemgr View Post
Yep, my megan racing axle back drone is sometimes annoying. Good choice not getting it if that was an issue on your 370z.

However, it does motivate me to downshift and lift the revs above the drone...
Is this drone with your Megan exhaust the same that one finds from 1,800 - 2,200 RPMs on these cars? I honestly feel that the drone in my car is kinda loud as well even with my current stock exhaust at those RPMs.

I'm trying to decide if it's worth getting the AP exhaust over the Megan if it actually has a different baffling method inside of the cans...otherwise i'd get the Megan exhaust.

GM
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      09-23-2016, 02:31 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GMCHEM83 View Post
Is this drone with your Megan exhaust the same that one finds from 1,800 - 2,200 RPMs on these cars? I honestly feel that the drone in my car is kinda loud as well even with my current stock exhaust at those RPMs.

I'm trying to decide if it's worth getting the AP exhaust over the Megan if it actually has a different baffling method inside of the cans...otherwise i'd get the Megan exhaust.

GM
Interesting. I never had a stock exhaust, only M performance exhaust and I never had any drone with that. I wouldn't imagine a Megan exhaust would help out your drone situation at all if you already have it at stock. Drone isn't just a loud exhaust note. It's more like a boomy resonating sound like buffeting Windows. Is that what you're experiencing?
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      09-23-2016, 02:58 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Manda Mew View Post
Interesting. I never had a stock exhaust, only M performance exhaust and I never had any drone with that. I wouldn't imagine a Megan exhaust would help out your drone situation at all if you already have it at stock. Drone isn't just a loud exhaust note. It's more like a boomy resonating sound like buffeting Windows. Is that what you're experiencing?
Yes, exactly what you are describing...the resonance that fills the entire cabin for just a brief moment with a low frequency booming sound as you transition out of ~2,000 rpm. My understanding is that it's pretty unavoidable for most performance cars unless the mufflers come with external sound cancellation chambers (Helmholtz chambers). I am totally fine with some drone if it is kept to just in those RPMs I mentioned. I drive mostly highway so it's about 3,000 RPM most of the time so I don't want ANY drone there, kinda like how it is now.

I just can't imagine there being some sort of secret sound-cancelling chamber in the small cans that AP or Megan have....so the fact that you are happy with your exhaust and aren't experiencing much drone at all is great news ! Beautiful car by the way, you have very good taste in how you're setting her all up.

GM
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