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Discussion Starter #1
While I know there are some threads here about tuning programmers, most discuss one at a time.

While researching, I have found numerous programmers that essentially make the same claims to hp/torque gains, though the prices range from $250 to $1000.

Even on the top known Abarth parts sites, the programmers range from $600 to $1000. Has there been a definitive best bang for the buck?

I have done the Bosch Coil upgrade, the EC 2.1 Intake and the GFB DV+. Just looking now to get that extra power that is waiting to be unleashed, without wasting money.
 

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There are 3 main players for ECU flash tuning, Tork, EC, and Open Flash Tablet. There are additional "piggyback" tuners. I think it can be agreed that an ECU flash is going to be more effective than a piggyback, although I don't claim to have numbers to back that. I have not found the direct apples to apples comparison between the three. I have seen on youtube where Valley Crew Racing dyno'd their EC tune, then Tork tuned and re- dyno'd, claiming the Tork tune was superior. Somewhere on the Broken Fiat Club, some guys did a head to head on 2 different cars between EC and Tork. I believe the performance was to similar to really declare a "winner", and there were questions about whether or not it was an apples to apples test. There has been some discussion that Tork really makes its power at the high RPM's while EC has some advantage down low, before running out of power up top. Myself, I have the Open flash tablet. It is the lowest advertised power of any of the three, but I chose it for the low initial price, the low custom tuning price, and the ability to screw around with some maps on my own (I haven't yet, and I don't know what I'm doing, but I'd like to learn something). So that's pretty much what I have gathered when I tried to answer your exact question for myself. Here is a video I did where I tried to measure the effect of my tune using some telemetry to try and get a precise 20-50 mph time. I'd love if others with other tunes would duplicate what I did. It wouldn't be as good as all 3 tunes on the same car. Even if you could do all 3 tunes on the same car, different tunes are going to play differently with different mods, and there is not a single "performance" number to rank them. For example, I use my Abarth for Autocross. I want the most torque to pull me out of a slow corner at 2000 RPM. I rarely have room on the course to get above 5500 RPM. So one tuner having a big advantage in peak horsepower way up the power band does nothing for me. Good luck in your search!

 

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Thank you Doug for the info provided. Great video also, very informative.

Yes, after doing even more research, I believe you are correct in the flash being more effective than piggyback. It seems that the piggyback systems just trick the ECU into seeing different values than what are actual. Though they do produce good numbers, they also appear to be a bit more twitchy and prone to errors, from what users have described.

I don't race, just like to tweak all of my vehicles to get more out of them. Does the OFT offer dual configurations for the Sport Button, if you know? This was one reason I was leaning towards the EC unit. I could run Phase 0 with Phase 1 on Sport or Phase 2 if I add an inter-cooler.

The Tork seems to be the most expensive of the 3, though they are only about 6 miles away from me. If I ask them, theirs of course will be the best. Maybe I can get them to drop a $100 to price match the EC and set up a dual tune for me. Never hurts to try I guess.

I do like the idea, as do you, of the OFT being open for your own tunes. As you, I would need to learn the system, but may be fun.

Anyway, thanks again for your input.
 

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Does the OFT offer dual configurations for the Sport Button, if you know? This was one reason I was leaning towards the EC unit. I could run Phase 0 with Phase 1 on Sport or Phase 2 if I add an inter-cooler.
I meant to ask them, and I haven't, so here is my crappy answer. The sport button does something. I believe sport mode = the tune from open flash (car is deffinately faster / more aggressive in sport mode). What I don't have a crisp answer on is "what is the tune for sport mode off?". Before tuning, I could feel if I forgot to turn on sport mode the first time I accelerated. My opinion was the car was dog slow with sport mode off. Now with sport mode off, it is not dog slow. But I don't know if this mode is "original sport mode" or some less aggressive open flash tune. Either way, I still drive with sport mode on all the time because life is short and tire treads are the enemy.
 

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While I know there are some threads here about tuning programmers, most discuss one at a time.

While researching, I have found numerous programmers that essentially make the same claims to hp/torque gains, though the prices range from $250 to $1000.

Even on the top known Abarth parts sites, the programmers range from $600 to $1000. Has there been a definitive best bang for the buck?

I have done the Bosch Coil upgrade, the EC 2.1 Intake and the GFB DV+. Just looking now to get that extra power that is waiting to be unleashed, without wasting money.
Hi gents, I am new here but just wanted to comment on piggy backs. My experience is with Madness V3 Power Plus. I got it last summer and it worked great for 250 miles or so. That is when the errors started and "limp modes". After talking to the guys at Madness they basically told me to tinker with it as these things happen and every car is different, restart the ECU, try for another 250 or so miles...Turn back policy expired and long story short and $699.00 later, I took it off and just continued to drive the car with upgrades I had already GFB DV+, EC V4.1 Intake and Turbosmart WG. Now, I am trying to sell the unit and will be lucky to get $300.00 back if that. Plan to switch to EC flash and start with Phase 1 and hope for the best. BTW, Doug, your chanel is awesome:)
 

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Well the decision has been made. Tork Tune it is.

Just stopped in and spoke with John for about an hour. First impressions were great. I will be paying a few extra bucks for a dyno tune. He can keep the car for a few days and get in dialed in properly.

May be a bit before I get the money, but will post outcome when done.
 

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Well the decision has been made. Tork Tune it is.

Just stopped in and spoke with John for about an hour. First impressions were great. I will be paying a few extra bucks for a dyno tune. He can keep the car for a few days and get in dialed in properly.

May be a bit before I get the money, but will post outcome when done.
I think that is a great choice given your location. I know if I ever found myself with my Abarth in the northwest I would pay for the dyno tune in a heartbeat for the learning experience if nothing else. Good luck!


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