I paid around $615-625 for my Stage 2 at the dealer. As I've suggested before, make sure you do comparisons on broken-in exhausts so that the final sound can be heard. They quiet down a bit as the packing gets loaded with soot.
Here are the two culprits...looks like both use much smaller than stock muffler cans. The Stage 2 uses a 1 in 1 out round muffler and then splits the pipes near the tips. With smaller tips the piece would easily fit through the stock diffuser. Rolled edge on the tip, and a resonator type perforated tip lining.
The Quicksilver uses a 1 in 2 out oval shaped muffler with true dual pipes leading to the tips. Cut off edge on the tip (nonrolled) and no lining. Shinier.
I can see why they would tend to sound different from one another. From raw muffler cubic inches alone it looks like they are pretty similar....the QS appears to be shorter, but has a wider cross-section. It also looks prettier, although the Bling will be covered up by the diffuser when installed. You only see the tips on an Elise, and barely.
I look forward to hearing Jer's broken-in QS in a couple weeks so that we can compare the sounds to my Stage 2. From memory it seemed like my Stage 2 sounded louder and deeper but had the same basic sound character as the OE system. I wonder if the QS has a different nature or not.
Well I have two events this weekend up here. Not sure after that, we'll see! Saturday = M3, Sunday = Elise.
BTW the Saturday event at Orchard Beach in the Bronx S/B pretty interesting. It's the TriState Autocross challenge in which each state sends in representatives and each State's group tries to win. NY won last year so it's on their home turf, a wonderful site with acres of pristine asphalt. I'm with the CT gang and am driving my E30 M3 in it.
But two top level national driver's will be driving an Elise on Hoosiers in Super Stock. For anyone nearby it might be interesting to check out. The site is on an Island, is easy to get to off the highway and is "safe" for the Bronx. It's the *HUGE* parking lot for the beach which is now closed for the season.
>>>did dealer install and if so, how much for labor???...or did you do install yourself??...not sure I want to tackle that one myself.<<<
It's really not that big a deal if you are a handy sort. I'm pretty hands-on but in this case I just paid the dealer about $200-225 while I was in for the first check-up anyway. So roughly 615-625 for a Stage 2 alone, or about 850 installed in about an hour or two.
>>> I think the idle on the QS was a little louder, but not a lot. <<<
Well if idle is louder, it will tend to be louder when loaded and revved too.
This makes two people saying that the QS seems to be a bit louder than a Lotus Stage 2, which is different than the QS claims.
Sounds like it's meter time, and ideally with a spectrum analyzer.
Use the A-scale on an SPL meter, slow response if you try this out...that's what tracks and the SCCA use for such matters. There is more to it than that of course.
To get relative dB you can just keep distances constant and go for it to get a sense of things. If you want to get SPL numbers that others can duplicate and that are more credible you need to start doing things like testing with the cars far away from anything, more accurate distances, heights and angles. For example inside of a garage would throw things off. If you are careful, deliberate sort, you can duplicate official tests though with about a dB or so.
I forgot my meter but Surferjer and I compared the Lotus Stage 2 and the Quicksilver side-by-side at the Saturday get together. With the naked ear in neutral just revving the cars it sounded like the SPL was very comparable....I personally don't know which was louder. There is definitely a different "sound" to each and that is nice as we get a choice. Jer says that the exhaust gets way louder under load and upstairs. So does the Stage 2 but this would be meter time. I hesitate to say this since this is very unscientific and I could have it backwards but listening at the autocross the next day it seemed like it may be louder than the Stage 2. But I'd have to compare that sound to what I remember mine sounded like weeks earlier with a co-driver. Our memory for sound is best when we compare A/B directly and without delay. So a few weeks and a different venue might throw things off!!
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