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Hi guys, I recently got a 2004 RSX 2.0L with the base K20A3 engine. I am looking to start modding it but want to start slow, I am looking to spend a couple hundred on my first mod and am looking right now at either a cold air or a catback, I am looking more for sound as I don't track or race often. Although this how much could I expect (performance) out of a cold air and what are some good brands on a budget. From my own research I have seen the AEM intakes look good and also the KNFilters aswell, I have also looked into the HKS Hi-Power and Skunk2 MEGA POWER catbacks but they are a couple hundred dollars more then an intake but obviously are a better route for sound.
 

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You can expect somewhere around 7-10 horses with a CAI just due to the difference in temp, an SRI might give you 2-3 at the top end. You don't really gain anything without a tune, especially being that you have an A3. Look at the below link, they compare the most common intakes on the Type S. You can expect something similar on a smaller scale. If you want sound, gut your airbox and get an exhaust that sounds nice. If you want performance, start saving up for Kpro, and later on forced induction or a swap.

 

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I have a fujita intake and i think it sounds neat. I'm not very good at tuning though, so my gains are negligible as far as I can tell.
 

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Hi guys, I recently got a 2004 RSX 2.0L with the base K20A3 engine. I am looking to start modding it but want to start slow, I am looking to spend a couple hundred on my first mod and am looking right now at either a cold air or a catback, I am looking more for sound as I don't track or race often. Although this how much could I expect (performance) out of a cold air and what are some good brands on a budget. From my own research I have seen the AEM intakes look good and also the KNFilters aswell, I have also looked into the HKS Hi-Power and Skunk2 MEGA POWER catbacks but they are a couple hundred dollars more then an intake but obviously are a better route for sound.
catback will do nothing for power, the sound increase will be based on the make of exhaust.
any intake that replaces the stock airbox will yield a louder sound and a decent power uptick. this isn't due to the potentially cooler air (the ecu adjusts for that) but because of the reduction in airflow restriction. the airbox is full of baffles and sound chambers that reduce the flow and make the intake pretty much silent.
remember that a car engine is just an air pump, reduce any restrictions to the intake or exhaust flow and it performs better.
 

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catback will do nothing for power, the sound increase will be based on the make of exhaust.
any intake that replaces the stock airbox will yield a louder sound and a decent power uptick. this isn't due to the potentially cooler air (the ecu adjusts for that) but because of the reduction in airflow restriction. the airbox is full of baffles and sound chambers that reduce the flow and make the intake pretty much silent.
remember that a car engine is just an air pump, reduce any restrictions to the intake or exhaust flow and it performs better.
If the cooler air doesn't make more power, how do you explain the concept of losing power to heat soak? Cooler air has a higher oxygen content, the ECU will indeed adjust for that by increasing the amount of fuel injected, resulting in more power. By your logic, someone running a Hondata modded air box or SRI can expect similar gains to a CAI. There's dyno sheets from years ago on here that state otherwise.
 

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If the cooler air doesn't make more power, how do you explain the concept of losing power to heat soak?
If I had a stock airbox with me I'd test this by datalogging the iat with the stock airbox and comparing it to temps from the cai but I don't so I can't. Certainly interested in this subject though
 

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If I had a stock airbox with me I'd test this by datalogging the iat with the stock airbox and comparing it to temps from the cai but I don't so I can't. Certainly interested in this subject though
I'll do it this weekend if I get bored enough. This can be determined with the most skeptical of butt dynos though. Hondata wouldn't have bothered developing a heat reducing gasket if temperature was not a factor in producing more power. Take a look at your fuel compensation tables, the lower temp values have a higher correction percentage for both IAT and ECT. That's no coincidence.
 

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- Short Ram Intake improves throttle response and engine noise. Sounds great past 4k. Heat soak is livable in Florida. You do feel a decrease in power off the light, but I blame the A/C, lol. Have not tried CAI. If you can get a SRI used cheap, go for it. Buy a new filter obviously.

- Catback does nothing for power, at least not in the butt dyno. All for sound. Don't really recommend because you're louder and no increase in power. You'll be revving all loud just to keep up with Odysseys. I hear good things about Invidia Q300. Deeper growl, similar to stock so no drone and not rice loud.

- Race header improves top end power, past 5K. Not recommended for daily driving. How often are you kicking it up to 5k? Plus you'll have to live with the cons of raceheaders. Stiffer mounts needed and fitment issues on the sway bar.

- Hondata Reflash - Highly recommended because you actually feel an increase in power. Better overall usable power especially when daily driving, on the highway and need to change lane.

Let me know if you have any other questions. I've had my Base RSX for 5 years and experimented with bolt-ons before swapping in a K24A.
 

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flow must be a pretty significant factor too though. I wonder what gains are got from velocity stacks
It certainly is a factor, but that flow will still be impeded by the factory TB and intake manifold. As mentioned above, the intake is reducing the restriction. This doesn't mean that you are making more power, just that the power is not being lost. A CAI is 2-3 times the length of an SRI so the air has a longer path to follow before it reaches the combustion chamber, and there are bends in the intake pipe which we know for sure will reduce the rate of flow. This typically results in reduced throttle response compared to the SRI, and can be considered a restriction, yet a dyno with a CAI will consistently show more power and torque everywhere. In my opinion, temperature is a bigger factor.

It's is said that a properly designed velocity stack can produce 3-5 horsepower, this dude in the thread below somehow squeezed 13 out of it.
 

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A CAI is 2-3 times the length of an SRI so the air has a longer path to follow before it reaches the combustion chamber, and there are bends in the intake pipe which we know for sure will reduce the rate of flow. This typically results in reduced throttle response compared to the SRI, and can be considered a restriction, yet a dyno with a CAI will consistently show more power and torque everywhere. In my opinion, temperature is a bigger factor.
I experimented with this, I took my CAI off and stuck the filter on the end of a short elbow. No change in throttle response, small but noticeable loss of power in the high end running the same map. I'll stick with the CAI.
 
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