Forum » Off Topic Discussion » Choosing an experienced remote tuner vs. a local tuner new to the car, but with a dyno?

Choosing an experienced remote tuner vs. a local tuner new to the car, but with a dyno?

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Hi there,

We have a local tuner here who's no doubt very good in general, but has zero experience with my particular car (A90 Supra - few have the experience yet). I trust they're good (great reviews on other cars), but my car would be the first of its kind. They use EcuTek, which does have decent support for the new Supra.

But if you had to choose between a good tuner with no specific experience with your car, but has the tools and the dyno... or an experienced remote tuner, which would mean street data logging etc (which I actually enjoy), which would you choose?

Which is more likely to produce a better tune?

- I assume the remote tuner will start with a map that's known to work well, and then dial it in, but using poorer street data logs.

- Meanwhile, the local tuner would start from scratch on a car they don't know, but would have better dyno data to work with.

The ultimate would be to have the local tuner do the remote tune with the experienced team, but then the cost nearly doubles.


IMHO Local tuner. However I'd want to understand a little more on your tuning objectives. Are you looking for a little more power from your stock setup? Have you done some major mods that mandates a major change in the tuning?

A great tune is something that evolves over time and is not a 'one shot' thing. Dyno followed by street tuning is part of the process if you want to 'get into' the process over time...

I think building trust with a local tuner that you can work with (look in the eye) and know that they are taking responsibility for their work and standing by not damaging your engine is essential.

The Supra is running a fairly well known (at this point) BMW engine and depending on your objectives I don't think it should present a major challenge to anybody experienced with working on OEM systems.

as above i agree i think it would be worth asking your local tuner if he is willing to spend the time in the seat learning a new system with the remote tuner tuning the car, they may or may not want to but i would certainly ask

I have had tuners learn from me this way for a few years

i love teaching and often learn something new my self

Thanks for the tips!

It's a stock car, but the A90 Supra has proven to see significant gains with just a tune. It has tons of hidden potential without any new hardware. But the maps are apparently extremely complicated. EcuTek has done the best job of reverse engineering them, but it doesn't save the tuner themselves from flipping through tables to come up with the best tune. The tuners in the US have purchased cars, run them on the dyno for months, and dialed in the base tunes. My local tuner would likely be starting from scratch, and I'm not sure how friendly other tuners are about sharing their secrets, since they spent so much time dialing them in.

So if a remote tuner sends me a starting point that has worked for dozens of other cars, then a month or so of data logging on the street (which is more fun than having the car in the shop for weeks) to fine tune any unique things about my own car and location... For some reason that seems more reliable than being a local tuner's test car.

I was pretty convinced of this, but watching some of the HPA course material and stating that there's "no magic" has made me reconsider. But now I find myself conflicted again... experience vs. dyno. Both would be nice, and if it wasn't for covid, I'd just drive to Vegas and have it done. :-)

Thanks again!