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  1. #26
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    1 out of 1 members liked this post. Yes Reputation No
    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Brey335i Click here to enlarge
    So based on pressure drop and cooling efficiency, could you let us know which of these intercoolers are below par and which ones are decent?

    ETS, AMS, Helix, Big Tom, AA, HPF
    Quick google images search and gut instinct tell me that the designs go in this order from best to worst.

    AMS
    HPF
    AA
    ETS
    Helix
    Big Tom


    Mind you that all of these intercoolers are better than stock and will net you gains.

    The type of gains you will see from the AMS vs. an ETS for instance is not in IAT, but in WGDC. How?

    Less pressure drop across your FMIC means your turbos are not working hard to push air through terrible endtank and core design, a poor intercooler is not about cooling the air that's the easy part. The hard part is not wasting precious boost pressure in the process which is why this thread exists.

    hope it helps
    Some people live long, meaningful lives.

    Other people eat shit and die.

    I'm not racist, I hate everybody equally; especially fat people.


    Click here to enlarge

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    Yeah that's pretty helpful actually. I only wish that the AMS had more surface area.
    Click here to enlarge

  3. #28
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Brey335i Click here to enlarge
    Yeah that's pretty helpful actually. I only wish that the AMS had more surface area.
    The core is a little on the small side. That's why we have meth Click here to enlarge
    Some people live long, meaningful lives.

    Other people eat shit and die.

    I'm not racist, I hate everybody equally; especially fat people.


    Click here to enlarge

  4. #29
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by DBFIU Click here to enlarge
    Quick google images search and gut instinct tell me that the designs go in this order from best to worst.

    AMS
    HPF
    AA
    ETS
    Helix
    Big Tom
    What was the reason you put Big Tom in last?

  5. #30
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Brey335i Click here to enlarge
    Yeah that's pretty helpful actually. I only wish that the AMS had more surface area.
    I agree with that...Im glad to see that my intercooler looks like one of the best, and because of the larger surface area and since I dont use meth, maybe that bumps it up a spot or two Click here to enlarge

  6. #31
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    lol...i just saw that my posts got deleted on the other forum...guess they dont like when you have facts to back up your statements

  7. #32
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    What was the reason you put Big Tom in last?
    could it have anything to do with the fact that its held in place with zipties lol Click here to enlarge

  8. #33
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    1 out of 1 members liked this post. Yes Reputation No
    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    What was the reason you put Big Tom in last?
    It has pipes welded straight into the endtanks with no guidance for the flow. The air will slam up against the front wall of the endtank and loose pressure, then it has to turn 90 degrees unguided and another 90 degrees unguided all while diffusing into a plenum.
    Some people live long, meaningful lives.

    Other people eat shit and die.

    I'm not racist, I hate everybody equally; especially fat people.


    Click here to enlarge

  9. #34
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    1 out of 1 members liked this post. Yes Reputation No
    Great thread! Thx for sharing info.

    I'd love to see test results showing heat transfer and pressure drop for a few representative flow rates.
    Measure, and stop wondering.

    +1 for willingness to pay more for a good product. +10 for marketing material that presents meaningful information.

    -10 for those who are too dumb to care. And a life membership at some other forum. ;_)

  10. #35
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    I should have Helix versus AMS data in the near future. Have had AMS for awhile and wasn't very happy with my IATs when compared with other logs I've seen, but I do have very dry air in AZ. Viewing Helix IAT logs they always seem to be much lower then most, thus I purchased a used Helix to confirm myself. I will have IAT and WGDC data soon for comparison.

    Also the AMS has always bugged me in the hot side piping... it doesn't give the most confidence concerning potential leaks.

  11. #36
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by fast4door Click here to enlarge
    lol...i just saw that my posts got deleted on the other forum...guess they dont like when you have facts to back up your statements
    Wish you guys would give up on trying to educate them there and instead bring them on the turf where you can.

  12. #37
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by fast4door Click here to enlarge
    This is so true...I tried explaining this to someone else on the other forum and I just ended up getting flamed and being told that I overpaid for intercooler...Now I remeber why I stooped visiting that forum. Anyways, you get what you pay for, I always believe that. Some people want to throw a $300 intercooler on a $55k BMW..that logic never made sense to me

    BTW DBFIU...what do you think about the Active Autowerk Intercooler...when I bought mine(almost 2 years ago) it was supposedly one of the best intercoolers on the market. From what I researched back then, that seemed to be true but you know much more about this subject than I do...are you familiar with this unit, and if so whats your opinion on it?
    That's a great philosophy!
    Keep up the great work! Click here to enlarge

    I mean, this pic clearly shows the incredibly large differences of what you just mentioned:


    Click here to enlarge


    I just love the amount of basic technical knowledge that some people possess! Click here to enlarge
    Last edited by Big Tom; 12-22-2011 at 07:36 PM.
    GT-R R35 ​coming up...

  13. #38
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    On a serious level;
    Just go for the biggest and cheapest one, and you'll definitely be good.
    It's just so unnecessary to over-complicate things.
    GT-R R35 ​coming up...

  14. #39
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    All the intercoolers are better than stock. And if you want to get real practical, just get a big tom intercooler for 300 bucks and be done with it. If you want better performance you can go the more exotic designs with better endtanks, but for the average user it is moot.
    Some people live long, meaningful lives.

    Other people eat shit and die.

    I'm not racist, I hate everybody equally; especially fat people.


    Click here to enlarge

  15. #40
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by DBFIU Click here to enlarge
    All the intercoolers are better than stock. And if you want to get real practical, just get a big tom intercooler for 300 bucks and be done with it. If you want better performance you can go the more exotic designs with better endtanks, but for the average user it is moot.
    I guess I should be named as an "average user" as I only pushes my car in airfield races which are streching from 30-175 mph?

    So, what has the self-appointed intercooler-expert (DBFIU) to say about the inferior designed intercooler (Big Tom) vs the "best intercooler on the market" (AA)?
    GT-R R35 ​coming up...

  16. #41
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Big Tom Click here to enlarge
    I guess I should be named as an "average user" as I only pushes my car in airfield races which are streching from 30-175 mph?

    So, what has the self-appointed intercooler-expert (DBFIU) to say about the inferior designed intercooler (Big Tom) vs the "best intercooler on the market" (AA)?
    The self appointed intercooler expert designs heat exchangers for the gas turbine industry. I follow through with real design, analysis and experimention all the way into production and testing.

    If you dont like what I have to say, I'm sorry. But that intercooler is a poor design. The AA intercooler is not the best design either. Like I said, better than stock but not ideal.


    I never said the AA intercooler was the best, reread my posts and pay attention, I think the AMS is probably the best endtank design. What dont you understand about what I layed out here?
    Some people live long, meaningful lives.

    Other people eat shit and die.

    I'm not racist, I hate everybody equally; especially fat people.


    Click here to enlarge

  17. #42
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    Doesn't a larger core help to reduce the pressure drop seen from having a "poor" end tank design? I mean, more area to flow = lower speed = less frictional losses right?

    I dunno that its really fair to make judgements off a gut check. I found a thread once that tested (Evo forum) a bunch of different universal intercoolers. Net result was that the ebay intercoolers were mid pack. MID, meaning the cheapest product was outperforming a number of much more expensive pieces. Cars are hard to model though, and my thermodynamics knowledge is a bit on the rusty side, so I may be missing something somewhat critical.

  18. #43
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Bimmerdude Click here to enlarge
    Doesn't a larger core help to reduce the pressure drop seen from having a "poor" end tank design? I mean, more area to flow = lower speed = less frictional losses right?

    I dunno that its really fair to make judgements off a gut check. I found a thread once that tested (Evo forum) a bunch of different universal intercoolers. Net result was that the ebay intercoolers were mid pack. MID, meaning the cheapest product was outperforming a number of much more expensive pieces. Cars are hard to model though, and my thermodynamics knowledge is a bit on the rusty side, so I may be missing something somewhat critical.
    More surface area is more pressure drop. More velocity is more pressure drop. If you restrict the flow you increase pressure drop. If you increase the surface area with less flow area restriction you MAY OR MAY NOT increase pressure drop. You need to find the happy medium where you have minimized exposed surface area, maximized flow area, and maximized heat transfer.

    Of course its not fair to make a comparison with a gut check. If you want to test both intercoolers side by side. I would do it on a flow bench, testing them in a car is not repeatable.

    As I said before, I am talking purely about pressure drop through the intercooler. Box end tanks with sharp edged pipe discharges are bad flow design. Thats why you pay 300-400 for an intercooler. The 900 dollar intercooler has a formed endtank with good diffusion characteristics.

    bimmerdude, you are right if you neglect friction. More area to flow = less restriction. But what if that area entailed adding another 100 rows of exposed metal (friction). You've effectively added more pressure drop through exposed metal wall friction.
    Some people live long, meaningful lives.

    Other people eat shit and die.

    I'm not racist, I hate everybody equally; especially fat people.


    Click here to enlarge

  19. #44
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by DBFIU Click here to enlarge
    I never said the AA intercooler was the best, reread my posts and pay attention.
    I didn't say it was your words. Reread and pay attention:


    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by fast4door Click here to enlarge
    What do you think about the Active Autowerk Intercooler? When I bought mine it was supposedly one of the best intercoolers on the market.
    From what I researched back then, that seemed to be true.

    One can diagnose and analyze everything down to it's molecules, but hey, it's a intercooler we're talking about here. Click here to enlarge
    I couldn't believe this would be such a big and serious deal when I first created that intercooler-thread over a year ago on e90post...

    Big and cheap is what our N54 needs. It's a car, not a space rocket nor a nuclear power plant...
    GT-R R35 ​coming up...

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    I think AMS, Helix and HPF are the FMICs for the average users, they are low in pressure drops, cooling and design. Big Toms and AAs are definetly better suited for the upgraded turbos and maybe some 18-19 psi pushers on stock turbos, and less expensive, and when you get to upgraded turbos an enthusiast would have undergone many BOs and added lots of crap to the car, dont think zipties would really be of any concern at that stage, considering when people start to take seats out, using NOS etc... its no longer a proper DD and could care less how it looks, they are just hungry for POWAA

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Big Tom Click here to enlarge
    Big and cheap is what our N54 needs. It's a car, not a space rocket nor a nuclear power plant...
    lol..that line says everything we need to know

  22. #47
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by DBFIU Click here to enlarge
    The self appointed intercooler expert designs heat exchangers for the gas turbine industry. I follow through with real design, analysis and experimention all the way into production and testing.

    If you dont like what I have to say, I'm sorry. But that intercooler is a poor design. The AA intercooler is not the best design either. Like I said, better than stock but not ideal.


    I never said the AA intercooler was the best, reread my posts and pay attention, I think the AMS is probably the best endtank design. What dont you understand about what I layed out here?

    dont even bother with this guy man, apparently he thinks his IC is the best thing since sliced bread..I dont know about you, but I cant tell the difference in flow characteristics, diffusion, heat transer, pressure drop, ect., just by seeing a side by side picture of two intercoolers..but I guees thats just me..

    Big Tom, just go back to E90post...on this forum we like to use real facts, number and proven theory to back up statements without having to worry about posts being deleted or getting banned...

    with your modding philosophy, Im surprised you didnt stick a filter onto some pvc pipe and call it a cold air intake...btw I wish I was in Sweeden at one of those airfields so I can show you what a car with quality parts can really do..

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Big Tom Click here to enlarge
    Just go for the biggest and cheapest one, and you'll definitely be good.
    damn, you keep giving me these great one liners I might have to add them to my sig lol

  24. #49
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by fast4door Click here to enlarge
    dont even bother with this guy man, apparently he thinks his IC is the best thing since sliced bread..
    That was your words... Click here to enlarge
    My opinion is that this cheap $300 toy will perform as good as the more expensive and exclusive alternatives. That's all. Click here to enlarge
    And that's the part that some of you are having such a hard time to accept. Click here to enlarge



    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by fast4door Click here to enlarge
    with your modding philosophy, Im surprised you didnt stick a filter onto some pvc pipe and call it a cold air intake...btw I wish I was in Sweeden at one of those airfields so I can show you what a car with quality parts can really do..
    Click here to enlarge You're more than welcome! Click here to enlarge
    GT-R R35 ​coming up...

  25. #50
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Big Tom Click here to enlarge
    That was your words... Click here to enlarge
    My opinion is that this cheap $300 toy will perform as good as the more expensive and exclusive alternatives. That's all. Click here to enlarge
    And that's the part that some of you are having such a hard time to accept. Click here to enlarge


    your opinion is without basis or any relevant information to support your claim...thats what people have a problem with. If youre going to say something, than have the proof to back it up, otherwise its just talk..and talk is cheap

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