Cold Air vs Short Ram intake
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This is a discussion on Cold Air vs Short Ram intake within the Engine Modifications forums, part of the Tech & Modifying & General Repairs category; Wondering the differences and which one is better?...

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    Cold Air vs Short Ram intake

    Wondering the differences and which one is better?

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    ClubWRX.net Vendor adam@kronosperformance's Avatar
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    In my opinion, it doesn't matter. Its a tube with a filter...one is longer than the other. There is enough air circulation under a hood while driving to get a good temperature coming in and a bigger part is how well our intercooling systems working.
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    If you want to be technical, the CAI is much better. You have cold air all the time vs having to take a few seconds to get the air cooled down.... and even then, air under the hood is hot, each 10 degrees lower equates to 1-2 hp I believe.

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    ClubWRX.net Vendor adam@kronosperformance's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Methodical4u View Post
    If you want to be technical, the CAI is much better. You have cold air all the time vs having to take a few seconds to get the air cooled down.... and even then, air under the hood is hot, each 10 degrees lower equates to 1-2 hp I believe.
    Thats all very hypothetical but you're also assuming that the temperature outside the engine bay (which the filters aren't really far from the engine bay) are colder in temperature and then you factor in that it still has to travel through an alluminum tube which gets heated and stays heated and having a longer traveling path slows down air velocity.

    This is all nitpicking but no one will every dyno a before and after switching intakes. Hence, it doesn't really matter especially on a turbocharged vehicle like ours where the intercooler plays a bigger part in that post turbo air flow.
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    Moderator rage-wrx's Avatar
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    I got the CAI because it is quieter than the Cobb.Also it is cheaper.

    In principle it is easier to clean the CAI which is a dry filter than the Cobb SRI which is oiled.

    In practice ,although I haven't cleaned mine yet,it may be quite difficult to take the CAI off to clean it while the Cobb is relatively easy to dismantle.
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    Quote Originally Posted by KronosPerformance View Post
    Thats all very hypothetical but you're also assuming that the temperature outside the engine bay (which the filters aren't really far from the engine bay) are colder in temperature and then you factor in that it still has to travel through an alluminum tube which gets heated and stays heated and having a longer traveling path slows down air velocity.

    This is all nitpicking but no one will every dyno a before and after switching intakes. Hence, it doesn't really matter especially on a turbocharged vehicle like ours where the intercooler plays a bigger part in that post turbo air flow.
    I was saying that in theory... the CAI is supposed to be better hence the reason why it is called a cold air intake. Yes it does cool the air coming in more ... how much more? Well as you said, it depends on the outside temps... how hot the intake tube itself is, etc etc. I think most peoples points are simply that a filter is where the air is drawn... you cannot convince me that a turbocharged engine bay is as cool as ambient temps... yes, the tube itself may get hot, but the flowing air going past will cool it much quicker and remain cooler than if it is an SRI. The 370z I owned was an NA car so natually an intake was a big part of power output. The Stillen G3's were everyone's choice... they were dyno proven to be colder and put out 15-20 whp, while even some of the best looking SRI set-ups in some cases yielded a loss in power, most SRI's yielded at best a 5 hp gain... less than a good drop in and post maf tubes.

    Different cars, but IMO same theory. I myself could care less for though, as I have not seen any solid proof that either of them gains much power over stock.

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    OMG WTF MainFrame's Avatar
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    I still like to pose the argument that in theory a SRI is better because when you're moving the under hood temp is practically ambient (I've logged readings from my IAT sensor), and when you're stop and go the hotter air allows the fuel to atomize better, improving fuel economy (search "hot air intake" on fuel saver forums).

    Basically, you're not losing any power when you would want it, and you've got better mileage when you don't need/can't use the power. Not to mention the propensity of CAIs to hydro-lock the engine.


    Dyno testing is moot because it in no way simulates real world air flow.




    ..and begin the debate.

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    Moderator Donkey's Avatar
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    There has been a million discussions on this topic.

    My .02.........The lower the IAT sensor readings the better for performance. Mainly due to the fact that the ECU has timing and fueling compensations tables based on IAT readings.
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    He simply abides. SD_GR's Avatar
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    For me it comes down to mapping and filtering.

    An intake that results in less efficient filtering than stock should not be on the car.

    An intake that doesn't require a re-map isn't worth putting on the car.

    An intake that requires a re-map isn't worth putting on the car.

    Between those three criteria the intake choice is simple.
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    The Member michaelwfox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SD_GR View Post
    For me it comes down to mapping and filtering.

    An intake that results in less efficient filtering than stock should not be on the car.

    An intake that doesn't require a re-map isn't worth putting on the car.

    An intake that requires a re-map isn't worth putting on the car.

    Between those three criteria the intake choice is simple.
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    Registered User deepseastetson's Avatar
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    My car has a Short ram intake and i like my car the best so in short the Short ram Intake is the best.

    Just kidding around but honestly, you will get opinions of both sides and no one really has any hard proof. the CAI goes into your fender. right? well the COBB intake with the box installed takes air directly from the fender and the filter is sealed off from the engine bay. Plus you have the intake duct taking more air into the fender well. So guess what, the COBB intake with the box is a short ram and cold air intake. Makes sense to me

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    there is a difference but as far as hp gains its pointless to get either. i bought a CAI and it didnt help the power hardly at all. im sticking with my factory airbox until i go rotated turbo.

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    He simply abides. SD_GR's Avatar
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    There are plenty of data supporting the correct intake. Those that lack "hard proof" to use your wording generally are those that sell intakes they market as better than Subaru's yet when asked to produce UOA data showing how much Si is in the motor there aren't any, or it's not relevant etc.

    I'd buy an intake that generates statistically significant data showing reduced Si and wear metals in the oil without hesitation.
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    Master Baiter EJ257's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 03gdanoob
    there is a difference but as far as hp gains its pointless to get either. i bought a CAI and it didnt help the power hardly at all. im sticking with my factory airbox until i go rotated turbo.
    What turbo?

    Quote Originally Posted by Donkey
    My .02.........The lower the IAT sensor readings the better for performance. Mainly due to the fact that the ECU has timing and fueling compensations tables based on IAT readings.
    Agreed.
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    Quote Originally Posted by EJ257 View Post
    What turbo?


    I doubt it really matters.. when you start changing placement of things then there becomes a legitimate reason to change intakes. One of the big advantages of going rotated is that you can run a large diameter straight intake instead of having to cram it under the intake manifold.

    I couldn't run the OEM intake if I wanted to.. FMIC pipe is in the way.

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