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Thread: Use A Tune Shop or HP?

  1. #1
    Potential Tuner tjloeb's Avatar
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    Question Use A Tune Shop or HP?

    I would guess this has been asked a million times, but I am seriously looking at the HP product and would love to hear the forum's input.

    I have a loaded 2008 Chevy Trailblazer 3SS with AWD. I have added a IEATSRT8 CAI and now want a tune to finish the project.

    Obviously I have 2 choices for getting a tune.

    1. Pay a reputable shop to do the work.

    I am looking for a simple tune, more horsepower without going nuts, optimize for the CAI, and any MPG improvement I can obtain.

    Problem with this strategy is I have not found a shop in Chicago that I can get a lot of customer feedback from specificaly on their TBSS work and the other shops that do have good references are in Michigan or NC. Long drives.

    These guys have tunes in the can they have developed. Fast and simple. Many have done hundreds of TBSS's, so I can rely on their expertise.

    This is a one time deal and if I have problems or are not happy I am stuck with another long drive.

    I don't want to swap the PCM.

    2. Go the HP DIY route.

    About the same money. But I know nothing about what I may run into or how well it will work compared to plan 1.

    I have strong computer skills and medium mechanical skills. Would I be biting off more than I can chew going this way?

    Other tuner manufactures seem to have a "built in tune" would the HP unit be harder to set-up?

    Are there basic of turnkey tunes for the TBSS?

    I like the idea of having more control over the tune and the option to change things down the road as I learn more.

    Does HP offer a basic tune to get started with?

    So, what do you folks think?

    Can I pop the HP unit out of the box, and do a tune in a turnkey manner or do I have to spend tons of time learning the system to get what I want?

    Thanks in advance for your answers and advice.

    tjl
    Last edited by tjloeb; 07-26-2008 at 03:02 AM.

  2. #2
    Супер Модератор EC_Tune's Avatar
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    3. Come to a tuner that uses HP Tuners.


    Even if you have no engine experience whatsoever you will probably be better off learning HP Tuners. Not saying Pro tuners are bad (I-R-One) but it's so much more rewarding doing it yourself. And later on when the mod bug continues to nibble away at your wallet you will have HP Tuners to change the cal appropriately.

    Make sure you get the Pro version or you will kick yourself later when you invest in a wideband (heck, buy it at the same time) and decide you just want to take the cable along to datalog and can't because it's standard and not Pro!
    Always Support Our Troops!

  3. #3
    Tuner in Training
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    I vote for hpt. I would suggest getting a wideband setup as well. There's lots of stickies with great tuning info. Plenty of help here if you need it. Plus if you ever want to tune other supported cars, you'll already have the software. My car was tuned by 3 different people over the years. So, for all that money and never being completely satisfied, I do it on my own now. Plus can do whatever other cars I have or purchase in the future...

  4. #4
    Potential Tuner
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    Some shops will tune with your software if you provide it. So I would say buy the pro interface and let a reputable shop that will tune with your software tune the car. You then own the tune and can make later changes as needed and then can also learn from seeing what changes they made. You will spend a little bit more now but you will have more control later.

  5. #5
    Tuner ws6ick's Avatar
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    I have the HPT Pro with LM-1 Wideband. I was tired of paying a local tuner everytime I added a Mod on my car. I also love the challenge of tuning my own stuff and will soon start tunning other cars as well.
    2000 Trans Am WS6, 383 RWHP 344 RWTQ
    2006 GTO, LS2, Cyclone Gray, M6, 1 of 475
    2009 Chevy Silverado

  6. #6
    Moderator WS6FirebirdTA00's Avatar
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    Be careful on what is considered a "reputable shop". There are many that really are good at what they do and others where people THINK they are good, when they really suck lol

    If you know what you are doing, your tuning ability will not vary from car to car. A TBSS has an LS2 in it, which is also in the Corvette. Don't doubt a shop just because they have never done a TBSS or you can't get a lot of feedback, because the bottom line is if they know what they are doing, they will tune it just as well as the rest.
    Sulski Performance Tuning
    2000 WS6 M6
    Old Setup: 480 rwhp 437 rwtq with 230/232 cam and a best of 7.17@98.47 w/1.58 60'
    New Setup: AFR heads, 11.6:1 CR, 90 mm ported FAST, Exo-Skel, 236/244 custom ground cam, QTP HVMC, EWP, GMMG, 9" w/4.11s

  7. #7
    HPT Employee Eric@HPTuners's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WS6FirebirdTA00
    Be careful on what is considered a "reputable shop". There are many that really are good at what they do and others where people THINK they are good, when they really suck lol
    SO SO TRUE!
    Eric Brooks
    HP Tuners, LLC

  8. #8
    Advanced Tuner
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    If your interested we have a huge TBSS product line and also are a distributor/reseller for HPtuners. We have sold HPtuners with starter files to quite a few customers.

    We also have plug and play transmission cooler kits, and fan kits for the 2006-2008 trailblazer SS's.
    Tuner at PCMofnc.com
    Mail order, Dyno tuning, Performance Parts, Custom harnesses, Fan Kits, Installs


    10 Camaro LS3 M6 - TVS PCM '545 cam 696 rwhp
    07 Trailblazer SS Jackshaft TVS 2300 PCM '545 cam 648rwhp
    06 Silverado Magnacharged

  9. #9
    Tuner in Training andrew383's Avatar
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    http://www.hptuners.com/forum/showthread.php?t=19217 this should help you plus its free

    +1 for alvin!! he's got everything you need for your tbss

  10. #10
    I'm a tuner as well, with hundreds of tunes (mostly GM trucks) under my belt. That said, I don't hesitate to recommend the self-tuning approach to a potential customer if I believe they will be better served by tuning their own. Sure, it's potential business being turned away, but I'd rather be honest with folks rather than profit-driven to the point of dishonesty.

    When folks ask me what's best, I usually answer something like:

    1. If you're willing to "learn the ropes" and put the time into learning the *proper* way of tuning (and trust me, there's a lot that gets put into these forums that simply isn't the right way), then buy the hardware and software and do it yourself.

    2. If you're not willing to put the time in, then a local shop is the next best bet.

    3. If there are no local shops, then a mail-order tune from a reputable individual will often fit the bill, especially if you're not planning on running at the track, and the tuner is willing to work with you with tweaks, and you don't mind swapping out PCMs/ECMs/TCMs.

  11. #11
    Супер Модератор EC_Tune's Avatar
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    ^^^ I agree here.
    Always Support Our Troops!

  12. #12
    Advanced Tuner eficalibrator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by brianko
    1. If you're willing to "learn the ropes" and put the time into learning the *proper* way of tuning (and trust me, there's a lot that gets put into these forums that simply isn't the right way), then buy the hardware and software and do it yourself.
    Amen. Consider the source whenever getting "advice" about doings "the right way."

  13. #13
    Tuner in Training carseat-qatar's Avatar
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    Hi to everyone tuners im new in HPtuner and we just purchased VCM Suite Pro and trying to introduce it here in Qatar were focusing on GM cars and trucks which is most people own here.

    Any advice for the new tuner?

  14. #14
    Tuner gr8vet's Avatar
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    Read!

    If you are even considering HPT, go the DIY route, IMHO

    Read! Gather more information, READ! Get Greg's book, read it, and read it again. You MUST understand what your car is doing and can do in order to make changes, successfully. There is a great post on here from Cpig, very useful info. Read it.

    By ALL means, spend 10:1 of your time reviewing the scan data and understanding the scanner, then move to the editor. Yes you must have a wide band O2.

    Best

  15. #15
    Tuner
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    The way I see it is that you can do a good job of tuning yourself with a bit of study, the HP TUners software and making careful, subtle and prudent calibration changes
    We have 1000's of people online that can offer helpful suggestions and a great info base right here.

  16. #16
    Tuner
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    My input
    1. Learn to do it yourself
    2. Log as you drive you will think like your engine very cool
    3. Case in point I got the e-fans and I installed the patch
    4. Cam, turbo and larger injectors well you need to change things
    5. Pay a tuner shop or learn how to do it your self.

    Thanks,
    Mr. 2008 SS