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Which computer do you think is right for me?

Old 07-09-10, 07:18 PM
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Which computer do you think is right for me?

Building a road race car, it will be a bridgeport NA to start with, but I want to go Turbo someday. I'm looking at Microtech and Haltech, but to be honest, I don't know the first thing about the benefits of either and why they would be better etc..

Thanks
Carl
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Old 07-09-10, 07:26 PM
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Personally, I would choose MoTeC or the AEM EMS. I am currently using an FD AEM in my FC race car (S4 motor) and it starts on the button, idles without an idle air motor, and works perfectly in all weather/temperatures/conditions. I very seriously considered MoTeC M4 or M400 but had the AEM in-hand already.

Also, I use the AIM Mychron XG LOG dash with my ECU, which is very handy and saves wiring in a bunch of extra sensors. The ECU supplies the dash with everything it "sees" like coolant temp, IAT, Boost, AFR, Vehicle speed, etc. so the dash only needs oil pressure, fuel pressure, and oil temp sensors wired in. Very easy and very straightforward.
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Old 07-10-10, 04:39 PM
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I run a Microtech. They are starting to seem pretty dated, but mine has worked quite well in the FC for the last three years at 400 rwhp or so. I'm interested in the new Haltechs and I think the AEM could be great once you get over the initial setup.

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Old 07-10-10, 05:22 PM
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AEM's initial setup takes about 10 minutes or less If anyone needs a hand with one feel free to ask, I will be glad to help.
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Old 07-12-10, 11:20 AM
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I had a Microtech MT8 in the car and couldn't find anybody with experience tuning it; since the car was getting a major rework the local guys convinced me to go with an AEM unit -- the feature comparison is entirely lop-sided. AEM offers so much added flexibility and capability it's crazy. But it also costs significantly more. I ended up with their generic box rather than the FD unit for my FC.

FWIW, I put thousands of street miles, a bunch of autocross, and a few track days on the car with the Microtech without any issues. Never had a problem starting it and combined with the J&S Knock Box and Jacobs Rotary Pro Pak the car actually got better mileage than when stock...
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Old 07-12-10, 06:36 PM
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So an AEM would be better than a Haltech or Microtech because of features and flexibility?
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Old 07-12-10, 06:49 PM
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Originally Posted by CJarrett View Post
So an AEM would be better than a Haltech or Microtech because of features and flexibility?
Can't speak to the Haltech, but for me the AEM made sense due to the combination of a local tuner, and all the features. If my tuner hadn't brought it up I would have stuck it out with my Microtech MT-8 which was the super simple hand controller model...
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Old 07-12-10, 06:51 PM
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The universal AEM one you have is the $2k one right? Did you buy thier harness is use yours?

With the FD AEM can you use the stock harness?
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Old 07-12-10, 08:32 PM
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You CAN use the stock S5 FC harness with the FD AEM ECU, you simply need to swap a few pins around, and you need to aquire a single connector for the Tach output ect. However, Honda and Mitsubishi use the same harness connectors, so they are easily found either in the junkyard or as I did, NEW from a couple of harnessmakers. If you have an S4 harness, you will need to have a jumper or "feilds" harness made, which is no big deal either. I can make you one, so can Rich at Autosport wiring in Texas. Easy squeezy.

For my race car I built my complete harness using new ECU connectors and pins. Heres the parts list for my harness/sensors/etc.

ECU connectors, new
ECU pins, new
Tefzel 14, 16, and 18ga wire, multiple colours
Various gauges of "welding" cable for main power, starter and battery cables. I used literally the lightest "big" wire I could get and have yet to have an issue with the starter not wanting to work etc.
AEM 5-bar MAP sensor kit, with harness connector
AEM IAT kit, with harness connector
AEM wideband, single channel, with harness connector
Bosch fuel injector plugs,new, 4
Bosch relays x3 (Fuel pump, Injector 12V, Coils 12V)
Bosch relay sockets and connectors, x3
Injector Ballast resistor "pack" OEM Mazda, just as easy to make your own or use from Mitsubishi, Honda, Toyota, etc.
fuse block, 8 circuit, new
Mistubishi 3000GTvr4 (V6) ignitor module (easier to find and LOTS cheaper than an FD ignitor)
Mitshibishi ignitor module plug
FD ignition coils (so I did not have to modify FC coils, also a bit lighter I think, definitely easier to mount)
OEM Mazda coolant temp sensor, S4 with connector and new pins
OEM Mazda TPS w/connector
4 pin Male/Female DTM connector set for OEM Mazda CAS
OEM Mazda CAS, OEM connector removed and replaced with DTM connector
12volt MASTER solenoid for main power,
Switch for master power on/off
Switch for ECU/dash ON/OFF
Starter switch

Very simple, very light and very easy to diagnose anything that goes wrong. Also VERY clean without a lot of wires that are not needed in a race engine. I made MANY grounds using "ground straps" from my local electrical supplier. Much lighter than insulated "cable" and work perfectly. There is also a short harness from the dash to the ECU for RS232 communication as well as the dash's few sensor input wires.

The only things I dont have that I need to wire in are brake lights for SCCA/Nasa legality and the SPAL fan. I have yet to NEED the fan but I should probably wire it in anyway. I am likely to add water injection in the future as well, also controlled by the AEM, but that will be on its own harness.
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Old 07-15-10, 03:19 PM
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Thanks again for all the info. Have a lot to think about.
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Old 07-15-10, 03:33 PM
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Originally Posted by CJarrett View Post
The universal AEM one you have is the $2k one right? Did you buy thier harness is use yours?
We used the generic harness and built it out.

The best advice I can give you here is to get something your local tuner knows how to use. You don't want them to be learning when you're after a safe, consistent, well behaved, reliable car. IMO computer choice is more about your tuner than about the features you want from the computer...
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Old 07-15-10, 04:31 PM
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What sanctioning body and class are you running the car in?
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