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 FAQ: ZZP vs. INTENSE Powertrain Control Module (PCM)/Tune

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highwaywarrior
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: ZZP vs. INTENSE Powertrain Control Module (PCM)/Tune   Fri Jun 14, 2013 5:37 pm

yeah i just took her for a test drive, its a different car at wide open throttle, it pulls harder and shifts later at wide open throttle, i shouldve bought a scanner, to check KR, idk why i forgot about that. im wondering what its SUPPOSED to feel like
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: ZZP vs. INTENSE Powertrain Control Module (PCM)/Tune   Fri Jun 14, 2013 5:41 pm

Shifts later??? I don't like it no
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: ZZP vs. INTENSE Powertrain Control Module (PCM)/Tune   Fri Jun 14, 2013 5:56 pm

yeah it shifts at 6000 at WOT. there seems to be hesitation at certain speeds as far as down downshifting. but then it pulls. id forgotten about the shift points and though my trans was slipping at wot, nope

there also seems to be a sweet spot at 5-6k puls really hard there, thats why im wondering if its pulling timing. just ordered areoforce interceptor gauge, we will see
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PostSubject: intense pcm problem?   Sat Jun 15, 2013 1:14 pm

idk where this goes but, when i first put the pcm in things seemed as they should. now, after driving 50 miles or so, ALL of the upshifts are hard, in both WOT and light acceleration. i dont know what that is but, i call them and left a messageI hope it doesnt do damage to my car. im on a 6 hour drive to nj, i may just put my pcm back in unless this behavior is normal. any ideas?
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: ZZP vs. INTENSE Powertrain Control Module (PCM)/Tune   Sat Jun 15, 2013 1:29 pm

It takes awhile for the trans adapts to learn themselves. They probably changed the shift times and shift pressures drastically. That would cause really harsh shifts that you're not used to. Worn out engine and trans mounts will make these shifts seem much more harsh than they should be. I certainly hope they didn't change the 4th gear shift to that harsh. It'll wear out the 4th shaft REALLY fast.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: ZZP vs. INTENSE Powertrain Control Module (PCM)/Tune   Sat Jun 15, 2013 1:40 pm

4th is just as harsh as the rest
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: ZZP vs. INTENSE Powertrain Control Module (PCM)/Tune   Sat Jun 15, 2013 1:43 pm

Well they should know better than that. They even state on their website that the 4th shaft is weak, which is why they sell a "stronger" one.

It takes my car about 3 days to actually shift right when I do a reprogram. It's usually mushy until the trans adapts relearn. Then it gets stiff again. I'm assuming that's what's happening in your case. Personally, I left my 4th gear shifting alone in the tune. It's not used for racing, so why bother?
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: ZZP vs. INTENSE Powertrain Control Module (PCM)/Tune   Sat Jun 15, 2013 2:29 pm

left them a message to see if they can make fourtg stock and reduce light driving, shift firmness
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: ZZP vs. INTENSE Powertrain Control Module (PCM)/Tune   Sat Jun 15, 2013 2:36 pm

You'd have to send the PCM back.....and wait.

This isn't an issue of that they did it wrong, it's just that they tune generically if they don't have your car present. They probably have a "basic" tune that they load and send back to you. Most kids want their Grand Prix to shift like a racecar, so, that's what they load.

I've found that leaving 4th gear stock is fabulous. It just glidesinto 4th without going BANG. Ihated that when my car did it. 1-2 shift, firm. 2-3 shift, firm.3-4 shift, mush drunk
Perfect for just cruising.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: ZZP vs. INTENSE Powertrain Control Module (PCM)/Tune   Sat Jun 15, 2013 2:44 pm

I wouldnt mind sending it back and waiting. i held onto my stock pcm just in case lol
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: ZZP vs. INTENSE Powertrain Control Module (PCM)/Tune   Sat Jun 15, 2013 10:49 pm

You got what you paid for: a generic 3800 tune. Hate to say we told you so, but... (see previous posts in this thread). Scott is right - when you buy a PCM tune, you want something for your money, like firm shifts. If they were gentle stock shifts, customers would wonder what they were paying for.

What you feel is a combination of decreased shift times, increased fluid pressure, and decreased TM (torque management). All of these things are desirable for less clutch wear. There is of course more stress to the hard parts, but usually you need to be making lots of torque for something to break. Or, you are shifting inappropriately by by pressing the gas at inappropriate times. With practice, you should be able to get the very hard shifts only when you want them, just by how you drive.

Scott is also right that shifts start soft and then firm up over a period of 50 miles or so. The PCM is easing into it while evaluating slippage, rather than just cook your clutches out of the gate. Your firm shifts will only get firmer over the next few miles.

INTENSE can't be held to blame unless they somehow programed the PCM with the wrong values. Very unlikely. They might refund you if you don't use the tune, but don't expect them to customize your tune without charging you for it. Then again maybe they will. John R. will go out of his way once in a while to make customers happy.

If you want to have your cake and eat it too, a custom tune is the way to go. Otherwise you'll always want this or that changed X amount. Cheap PCM tuning assumes you'll setting with performance that's compromised to some degree.

Good luck!

_________________
'98 SC Riviera 268k miles 298 HP/370 TQ 0-60: 5.79s ET: 13.97 @ 99.28 4087 lb 20.1 avg MPG Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:30
3.4" pulley AL104 plugs 180 t-stat FWI w/K&N 1.9:1 rockers OR pushrods LS6 valve springs SLP headers ZZP fuel rails
KYB GR2 struts MaxAir shocks Addco sway bars UMI bushings GM STB Enkei 18" EV5s w/ Dunlop DZ101s F-body calipers
EBC bluestuff/Hawk HP plus SS lines Brembo slotted discs DHP tuned Aeroforce Hidden Hitch


'05 GTO 49k miles 0-60: 4.8s 16.9 avg MPG Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:26
Because fun
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: ZZP vs. INTENSE Powertrain Control Module (PCM)/Tune   Sat Jun 15, 2013 11:25 pm

of course im not blaming them for this, i just wasnt sure how it was supposed to feel
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: ZZP vs. INTENSE Powertrain Control Module (PCM)/Tune   Sat Jun 15, 2013 11:38 pm

If you can learn to like it, I wouldn't worry too much. If it bugs you, consider returning it. Tell them why you don't like it and who knows?

BTW, don't assume your 4th gear shaft will look like Abaddon's. I doubt INTENSE programed their shift pressures so aggressively. You can ask INTENSE for their pressure values. I'd be very interested to know what they're using.

Good luck!

_________________
'98 SC Riviera 268k miles 298 HP/370 TQ 0-60: 5.79s ET: 13.97 @ 99.28 4087 lb 20.1 avg MPG Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:30
3.4" pulley AL104 plugs 180 t-stat FWI w/K&N 1.9:1 rockers OR pushrods LS6 valve springs SLP headers ZZP fuel rails
KYB GR2 struts MaxAir shocks Addco sway bars UMI bushings GM STB Enkei 18" EV5s w/ Dunlop DZ101s F-body calipers
EBC bluestuff/Hawk HP plus SS lines Brembo slotted discs DHP tuned Aeroforce Hidden Hitch


'05 GTO 49k miles 0-60: 4.8s 16.9 avg MPG Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:26
Because fun
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http://www.cardomain.com/ride/657082/4
highwaywarrior
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: ZZP vs. INTENSE Powertrain Control Module (PCM)/Tune   Sat Jun 15, 2013 11:41 pm

good point,
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: ZZP vs. INTENSE Powertrain Control Module (PCM)/Tune   Sat Jun 15, 2013 11:59 pm

I wasn't trying to scare anybody, nor do I blame Intense either. They're professionals and know better. By no means was I implying that they did anything wrong.
Me posting my 4th gear shaft was a result of me reading about harsh shifts...it reminded me that I actually uploaded my trans pics that I said I was going to do anyway.
Yes, you're trans is/will probably be fine. BUT, when I read the word harsh, I assume that it's too much.
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: ZZP vs. INTENSE Powertrain Control Module (PCM)/Tune   Sun Jun 16, 2013 12:15 am

no worries i got.you loud and clear
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PostSubject: temp   Sun Jun 16, 2013 8:15 am

Yeah Intense's default 'tune' includes higher shift points and quicker shifts.

Next you'll want at least some 1.9 rockers! wink
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: ZZP vs. INTENSE Powertrain Control Module (PCM)/Tune   Sun Jun 16, 2013 11:41 am

Quote :
yeah i just took her for a test drive, its a different car at wide open throttle, it pulls harder and shifts later at wide open throttle, i shouldve bought a scanner, to check KR, idk why i forgot about that.

yeah it shifts at 6000 at WOT. there seems to be hesitation at certain speeds as far as down downshifting. but then it pulls. id forgotten about the shift points and though my trans was slipping at wot, nope

there also seems to be a sweet spot at 5-6k puls really hard there, thats why im wondering if its pulling timing. just ordered areoforce interceptor gauge, we will see
I just read this little bit. These are really concerning things you're saying. No ability to scan, yet pushing WOT to 6k with a new PCM = potential for disaster, IMO. Not so much worried about your 4th gear shaft, but to your engine and/or upper valvetrain components. If I were you, I'd lay off the WOT and read our modding 101 thread.

What you've done jump to hotter timing and raised shift points (INTENSE is known for this). Without scanning, for all you know you're knocking like a SOB running at 6k. And w/OEM 150k mile valvesprings, I'm surprised you aren't hearing metallic sounds from fragmentation up top. Seriously, 6k RPM is for cars with cams or rockers and upgraded springs. Same with hotter timing. Danger, Will Robinson!

(sorry should have spoke earlier, but just now noticed because you posted in "What did you do to your Riv today" thread.)

_________________
'98 SC Riviera 268k miles 298 HP/370 TQ 0-60: 5.79s ET: 13.97 @ 99.28 4087 lb 20.1 avg MPG Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:30
3.4" pulley AL104 plugs 180 t-stat FWI w/K&N 1.9:1 rockers OR pushrods LS6 valve springs SLP headers ZZP fuel rails
KYB GR2 struts MaxAir shocks Addco sway bars UMI bushings GM STB Enkei 18" EV5s w/ Dunlop DZ101s F-body calipers
EBC bluestuff/Hawk HP plus SS lines Brembo slotted discs DHP tuned Aeroforce Hidden Hitch


'05 GTO 49k miles 0-60: 4.8s 16.9 avg MPG Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:26
Because fun


Last edited by AA on Sun Jun 16, 2013 11:45 am; edited 1 time in total
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highwaywarrior
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: ZZP vs. INTENSE Powertrain Control Module (PCM)/Tune   Sun Jun 16, 2013 11:42 am

Thags next on the list after I figure out the humming noise

Very true, ive already switched out to my stock pcm. Wonder if they will exchange the pcm for an aeroforce interceptor

Good stuff here fellas thanks, put my old pcm back in, buying an alternator, wont put other pcm in until that gauge gets ghere, and I put new rocjers and valvesprings lol
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: ZZP vs. INTENSE Powertrain Control Module (PCM)/Tune   Sun Jun 16, 2013 1:38 pm

Do we all agree that tuner software/custom tune, despite additional cost, is the right move when it becomes tune time in your Riv's timeline of mods?
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: ZZP vs. INTENSE Powertrain Control Module (PCM)/Tune   Sun Jun 16, 2013 1:51 pm

Thats what im gathering
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PostSubject: Re: FAQ: ZZP vs. INTENSE Powertrain Control Module (PCM)/Tune   Sun Jun 16, 2013 2:58 pm

Yes and no. If you know what you're looking for, an INTENSE or ZZP PCM can match your mod plan - then it's a good deal. Just look at INTENSE's PCM ordering page for example. You can select lots of specific options: ignition timing, shift points, fan settings, etc. They let you customize to some degree if you know what to ask for. If you ask for 6k RPM shift points and you have stock rocker arms and springs, then NO it's not the right move.

If you don't know what your mods are now, or will be in the next 6 months, tuning software gives you more options at a higher cost. If you have a plan, INTENSE or ZZP can help you select the right options to get your money's worth.

Another thing, some folks just want to go a bit faster, and won't nit-pick about every little thing. A correctly optioned INTENSE or ZZP PCM tune is fine for these people. But if you are the type who wants to spend a month of your life fine tuning every shift point to feel perfect at every throttle %, an la carte PCM definately isn't going to work. Custom tuning software is for the nit-pickers!

One last thing - don't think you'll be able to just sit down and tune your car on the first try with DHP or HP Tuners. Getting the tuning package set up and working is a challenge in itself. Then you need to learn how to use it, and you have to have a plan. It's just a tool, and won't tell you what to do. The curve is steep, and it's not like other programs that are more user-friendly. If you put the wrong value in a single field, your car will go boom! Seriously, there is a real benefit to what INTENSE and ZZP are offering, taking much of risk out of the equation. Custom tuning isn't for everyone.

I guess what I'm saying is, la carte PCM tunes won't be exactly right, but they'll be close enough unless you order the wrong one. Custom tuning software on the other hand will give you more power and control, but with that comes the risk that you will grenade your engine or transmission from irresponsible experimentation. Make changes in 1% increments, scan, tune, scan, tune, scan, tune, scan. It never ends...

_________________
'98 SC Riviera 268k miles 298 HP/370 TQ 0-60: 5.79s ET: 13.97 @ 99.28 4087 lb 20.1 avg MPG Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:30
3.4" pulley AL104 plugs 180 t-stat FWI w/K&N 1.9:1 rockers OR pushrods LS6 valve springs SLP headers ZZP fuel rails
KYB GR2 struts MaxAir shocks Addco sway bars UMI bushings GM STB Enkei 18" EV5s w/ Dunlop DZ101s F-body calipers
EBC bluestuff/Hawk HP plus SS lines Brembo slotted discs DHP tuned Aeroforce Hidden Hitch


'05 GTO 49k miles 0-60: 4.8s 16.9 avg MPG Nelson Ledges Lap: 1:26
Because fun
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http://www.cardomain.com/ride/657082/4
 
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