Single Turbo Boost Control Options

Jewgo

Private
Nov 6, 2018
35
Hello,

Before I get into the question, little back story. I have switched over to the single turbo life and have had my kit installed for about ~3 months now. During my original research for boost control options I decided to go with the BoostBox. My e-tuning process, to say the least, has been subpar and I never got a working map from the original tuner I hired. Which leaves me to where I am now. In the search for a new e-tuner, I have reached out to quite a few people to get feedback on their service and which boost control method they preferred to tune with. Seems every tuner has their own flavor (to be expected), which leads to my question.

From my research the three main options for boost control are:​
  • JB4+MHD backend flash
  • BoostBox
  • EBC (G-Force, Turbosmart etc.) + wideband
What method for boost control do you prefer and why?

I am looking for feedback, experiences, pros and cons, with each setup. Was there one setup up you started with, experimented, then found a better solution?

It seems the information on these options are spread out all over multiple forums/threads so hopefully this will be a beneficial topic to discuss for those new to the single turbo life!
 
Last edited:

pysical

Sergeant
Jun 16, 2017
293
Get the boostbox and go with Motiv. They are the single turbo experts and have all the latest cool stuff.
 

chrisdfv

Corporal
Aug 29, 2017
210
I've used JB4 + MHD flash. Works well. Then my JB4 bricked itself two days after going single turbo and I decided to try flash only
Ran flash only on wastegate for a bit. The car drove much better flash only IMO, smoother and more consistent.
Added a boost box and tuned. I've been running the boost box for over a year now and I love it. The car drives like it came from the factory with a big turbo. Drivability is great, boost control is perfect. I love that I can sculpt the boost target using load so I don't have to run a flat boost target through the RPM band.

I help some of my local friends tune their cars. 3 of us Run boost box. 2 have jb4 with MHD flash. All 5 work well.
The JB4 cars boost control is much easier to set up than a boost box tune.
I haven't driven their JB4 cars, but I suspect they drive fine. They have no complaints.

Here is a log I took last night to show you how well the boost box works. If you're not happy with the results, I suspect it's because the PID isn't set up correctly in your tune.
https://datazap.me/u/cd919/log-1561514045?log=0&data=3-23-30-31
 

Torgus

Captain
Nov 6, 2016
1,087
Boston
Get the boostbox and go with Motiv. They are the single turbo experts and have all the latest cool stuff.
Same. Motiv has been tuning ST n54s longer than anyone else and developed and offer their own turbo kit, the boost box for any ST, 02 sensors for any ST, etc.

Given the very low cost of a custom tune I don't understand why people go with no names or new tunahs. Go with a reputable tuner.
 
Last edited:
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CornFedBimmer

Private
Jul 19, 2018
28
I originally ran a BoostBox when I made my single turbo kit a year ago, but for whatever reason the BoostBox just didn’t play nicely with my car. The first one was DOA and the 2nd one gave me wildly oscillating boost.

I tried out an EBC and never looked back. If you enjoy participating in the tuning process I think a standalone EBC is definitely the way to go. I like that I can make changes on the fly, say if I’m at the track or giving the car to a valet. My particular model allows very granular adjustments so I can even tune the PID values myself and learn along the way
 
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Milan

Corporal
Dec 24, 2016
179
jebi se
To me the biggest downfall of the boost box is not being able to dial up or down the boost, defeats like 50% of the purpose of owning a turbo car IMO
 

jyamona

Lieutenant
Free Vendor
Nov 7, 2016
965
Philly
To me the biggest downfall of the boost box is not being able to dial up or down the boost, defeats like 50% of the purpose of owning a turbo car IMO
People aren't adjusting it on the fly for stock turbos / upgraded twins though, so I don't see a real difference in how it is handled once you go ST. That said, on the fly adjustments are on the table for MHD :)
 

DCook

Corporal
May 25, 2018
162
GForce 3 boost controller w/ aem wideband safety. Had some issues with the boostbox, and lost a motor from overboosting without knowing ripping a rod in half and installed a nice window on both sides and the pan. All the safety's and overboost control the gfb3 offer are nice to have. Would highly recommend it, especially going standalone controller.
 

Milan

Corporal
Dec 24, 2016
179
jebi se
People aren't adjusting it on the fly for stock turbos / upgraded twins though, so I don't see a real difference in how it is handled once you go ST. That said, on the fly adjustments are on the table for MHD :)
They aren't doing it because they don't want to or don't have the option to? I'm pretty confident the percentage of JB4 owners who adjust their boost settings is very high.

Would be cool to have in MHD for sure
 

335is02

Specialist
Mar 10, 2018
88
Hello,

Before I get into the question, little back story. I have switched over to the single turbo life and have had my kit installed for about ~3 months now. During my original research for boost control options I decided to go with the BoostBox. My e-tuning process, to say the least, has been subpar and I never got a working map from the original tuner I hired. Which leaves me to where I am now. In the search for a new e-tuner, I have reached out to quite a few people to get feedback on their service and which boost control method they preferred to tune with. Seems every tuner has their own flavor (to be expected), which leads to my question.

From my research the three main options for boost control are:​
  • JB4+MHD backend flash
  • BoostBox
  • EBC (G-Force, Turbosmart etc.) + wideband
What method for boost control do you prefer and why?

I am looking for feedback, experiences, pros and cons, with each setup. Was there one setup up you started with, experimented, then found a better solution?

It seems the information on these options are spread out all over multiple forums/threads so hopefully this will be a beneficial topic to discuss for those new to the single turbo life!
2970"]
Hello,

Before I get into the question, little back story. I have switched over to the single turbo life and have had my kit installed for about ~3 months now. During my original research for boost control options I decided to go with the BoostBox. My e-tuning process, to say the least, has been subpar and I never got a working map from the original tuner I hired. Which leaves me to where I am now. In the search for a new e-tuner, I have reached out to quite a few people to get feedback on their service and which boost control method they preferred to tune with. Seems every tuner has their own flavor (to be expected), which leads to my question.

From my research the three main options for boost control are:​
  • JB4+MHD backend flash
  • BoostBox
  • EBC (G-Force, Turbosmart etc.) + wideband
What method for boost control do you prefer and why?

I am looking for feedback, experiences, pros and cons, with each setup. Was there one setup up you started with, experimented, then found a better solution?

It seems the information on these options are spread out all over multiple forums/threads so hopefully this will be a beneficial topic to discuss for those new to the single turbo life!
[/QUOTE]
G-Force/AEM Wideband with four Mac and AiC. Custom tune by Ken at wedge performance
I was running jb4/MHD with custom tune and was just tired of the BINGS (codes) when it was Driving around town and issues that you have to learn to ignore. To me I didn’t like the it’s nothing just ignore that it’s normal for jb4.
I made the change and have not had one issue since and I do love the fuel cut safety option now I enjoy driving my car again.
 

Abacus38

Lieutenant
Nov 2, 2016
599
Tampa/Orlando, FL
There's 3 boost control methods these days

1. Boost Box
2. JB4
3. Manual Boost controller or Electronic Boost controller

I've been running boost box since it came out and they only issued I had was when my ALT was dying. People forget that the boost box is a simple signal converter. All it does is convert the signal DME puts out into something that Mac solenoid can read. When your car has Electrical issues the DME isnt going to put out the right signal for the Box to work. Our cars are old so if you are going to run the BB make sure the maintenance is up to date. As far as tuning is concern JB4 is easiest and most idiot proof option to run but in my experience the Flash only runs smoother than JB4 stacked combo. I prefer Boostbox but JB4 does work and is idiot proof
 

suspenceful

700HP Club (N54)
Aug 1, 2017
476
I love my JB4 + MHD BEF. Car runs great, 750whp with no check engine lights or limp mode. I've never tried anything else so I can't say it's better than others. But I'm very happy with my choice.
 
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Jewgo

Private
Nov 6, 2018
35
Thanks for the responses.

After talking to a handful of tuners and getting feedback from other users, I have decided to get rid of the boostbox and try the Gforce 3 EBC. Hopefully within a few weeks I can give some feedback.
 
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jyamona

Lieutenant
Free Vendor
Nov 7, 2016
965
Philly
I would recommend keeping the DME in control of WGDC whenever possible. There's quite a few current and future things you EBC users are going to miss out on, like a separate tuneable wgdc setpoint during anti-lag / NLS / 2-step, as well as on the fly load/boost target switching.
 

Jewgo

Private
Nov 6, 2018
35
I would recommend keeping the DME in control of WGDC whenever possible. There's quite a few current and future things you EBC users are going to miss out on, like a separate tuneable wgdc setpoint during anti-lag / NLS / 2-step, as well as on the fly load/boost target switching.
Everyone I got feedback from all had the same experience. Boostbox isn't consistent or is a hit or miss. The tuner I had, after about 4-5 revisions still couldn't control boost which is probably part of the reason he flaked (speculating). So it only seems right to go with a product that actually works.

Like I mentioned before I am here to gather information to make the best decision possible.
 

chrisdfv

Corporal
Aug 29, 2017
210
Everyone I got feedback from all had the same experience. Boostbox isn't consistent or is a hit or miss. The tuner I had, after about 4-5 revisions still couldn't control boost which is probably part of the reason he flaked (speculating). So it only seems right to go with a product that actually works.

Like I mentioned before I am here to gather information to make the best decision possible.
Beautiful DME Boost control with boostbox shown below. Either your tuner is no good with PID, your boost box isn't on a good ground, or your alternator is old(voltage isn't stable).
Load by gear working perfectly. Something the G Force will not be able to do.
28680


28681
 

Jewgo

Private
Nov 6, 2018
35
@chrisdfv
I'll agree with the first one but the other two probably isn't the case. I went through diagnosing the boostbox and it was verified working fine along with the mac. I don't believe it is the third one as I have never had electrical issues and BB was verified to be working correctly. Do you provide tuning services?
 

jyamona

Lieutenant
Free Vendor
Nov 7, 2016
965
Philly
Verified to be working correctly doesn't mean your alternator isn't slowly going to shit and causing fluctuations under load, as I imagine it was "tested" at idle / steady state.
 

Jewgo

Private
Nov 6, 2018
35
Verified to be working correctly doesn't mean your alternator isn't slowly going to shit and causing fluctuations under load, as I imagine it was "tested" at idle / steady state.
It was tested at idle. How would I test it under load?
 
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