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View Poll Results: Which Do YOU Prefer?
Mediocre Performance (Lower Quality/Undetermined Reliability) but Priced Lower? 6 8.82%
Higher Performance (Better Quality/Reliability) Product but Priced Higher? 62 91.18%
Voters: 68. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 02-19-2013, 09:29 AM   #1
grambles423
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Price vs. Performance: What do you choose?

Alright Ladies and Gentlemen, Its time to drive a wedge in this forum.

From a technical and objective viewpoint, I'd like to know where this forum sits with products. We all know whats going on, whether its Chinese made products sold for a markup or American made pricey items, there's a definite trade off with any product you buy.

But the real question is, would you compromise quality and performance for a lower priced lower grade product?


This isnt solely about Intercoolers. This is about EVERYTHING. Mounts, Intercoolers, Wheels, Knock-off OEM products, Lights, HIDs, ebay products, Downpipes, catbacks....etc etc. etc.

A few items:
- Ebay downpipes have been known to rust away and break off. Yet they're $200-$300.
- ICs that under perform, yet cost $250
- Mounts that have been known sheer at the base, yet cost $400
- Intakes that perform well, yet cost $500
- Catch cans that cost $500, yet do the same thing as one that costs $250
- Tunes that cost a lot vs custom home made tuning

Where do you draw the line?
You own a Higher Trim Level Volkswagen, does that matter?
Do you even care?
Do you like sticking with just one company?
Do you look for data?
Do you care about other member reviews?

I'm honestly extremely interested to see other's views about this. Please share your experiences and thoughts on the matter. Even if it pertains to other categories, such as:

- Apple vs. Microsoft
- Droid vs. Iphone
- Toyota vs. Honda
- BMW vs. Mercedes
- Walmart vs. Target
- Toshiba vs. Samsung vs. Sony vs. Phillips vs. Etc

Now, a bit of housekeeping:

- If you'd like to post, please present yourself in a professional manner and provide SOME sort of objectiveness. Your opinions are welcome, but be reasonable.

- This will get heated. Dont make it personal. Doing so will result in an insta-vacation (1-2weeks or possibly months)

- Any trolling posts that do not provide positive reinforcement to the thread will be deleted immediately. Continuing to do so will result in a ban.

- This is not a vendor argument. I ask that all vendors stay out of this thread. Any information that would like to be posted, please send to myself or the other moderators and we will review and post.
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Old 02-19-2013, 09:31 AM   #2
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I included member voting in the poll to see how everyone voted.
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Old 02-19-2013, 09:36 AM   #3
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I've always tried to model my modifications after this mindset. I want a decent product at a reasonable price. This goes for anything that I buy. I did not buy a 250,000 dollar Ferrari because I could not afford that. I bought something that I enjoy is good quality and is a reasonable price. The same thing goes 4 my television or any other product at my home. I did not buy a 70 inch biggest greatest latest product because I did not need that. It all comes down to finding a good balance between the 2. You can have 2 of these 3. Good. Cheap. Fast.

Everything in life has to come with some trade-offs. Remember we drive a 30,000 dollar and under Volkswagen. Not a super hyper expensive exotic sports car
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Old 02-19-2013, 09:40 AM   #4
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My short contribution:

Quality wins. Why? This forum, and the others like it. Are you keeping this car forever? Then do it right and slowly upgrade the right way. If you're not keeping the car, the forum will still allow you purchase quality parts by offering the (good) potential of making a large portion of your investment back in the long term. There is zero room for negotiation on a rusted, broken down-pipe.
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Old 02-19-2013, 09:40 AM   #5
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Would not compromise. I would not be willing to weaken performance/durability/longevity at all. I would prefer not having something than having something that is subpar.


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Old 02-19-2013, 09:40 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A_Bowers View Post
I've always tried to model my modifications after this mindset. I want a decent product at a reasonable price. This goes for anything that I buy. I did not buy a 250,000 dollar Ferrari because I could not afford that. I bought something that I enjoy is good quality and is a reasonable price. The same thing goes 4 my television or any other product at my home. I did not buy a 70 inch biggest greatest latest product because I did not need that. It all comes down to finding a good balance between the 2. You can have 2 of these 3. Good. Cheap. Fast.

Everything in life has to come with some trade-offs. Remember we drive a 30,000 dollar and under Volkswagen. Not a super hyper expensive exotic sports car
I see your point. There's always that "trade-off" and compromising mentality.

Why did I buy Hankooks? Great reviews....and great performance FOR THE MONEY. Not the best of the bunch, but definitely worthy of the price.

Why did I buy an TSI MKV instead of the MK6? About $10K difference. Trade-offs......car is paid for and easy to tinker around with knowing that.

EDIT: However, as mentioned below....I do like peace of mind and quality reliability. A part that I KNOW will last a lifetime, gets my money. Even though it'll be more expensive.
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Old 02-19-2013, 09:42 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by excelevant View Post
My short contribution:

Quality wins. Why? This forum, and the others like it. Are you keeping this car forever? Then do it right and slowly upgrade the right way. If you're not keeping the car, the forum will still allow you purchase quality parts by offering the (good) potential of making a large portion of your investment back in the long term. There is zero room for negotiation on a rusted, broken down-pipe.
This is a VERY good thought. Used quality parts are often the biggest STEAL of them all. If they truly are quality parts...then they'll lasat for a very long time.

IE. My BFI Stagae 1 mounts. 55K No issues. No signs of failing

Quote:
Originally Posted by MissVeeDub View Post
Would not compromise. I would not be willing to weaken performance/durability/longevity at all. I would prefer not having something than having something that is subpar.


-Tania
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Peace of mind approach? I like that.
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Old 02-19-2013, 09:42 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grambles423 View Post
I see your point. There's always that "trade-off" and compromising mentality.

Why did I buy Hankooks? Great reviews....and great performance FOR THE MONEY. Not the best of the bunch, but definitely worthy of the price.

Why did I buy an TSI MKV instead of the MK6? About $10K difference. Trade-offs......car is paid for and easy to tinker around with knowing that.
What's funny about this is you and I have had this conversation several several times over the course of the last 6 months. And as much as some people may not want to admit it they do the same thing. There are very very few people here and elsewhere who are willing to shell out unlimited amounts of money for anything. It might be their personality to know they have to have the absolute "best".
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Old 02-19-2013, 09:43 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grambles423 View Post
I see your point. There's always that "trade-off" and compromising mentality.

Why did I buy Hankooks? Great reviews....and great performance FOR THE MONEY. Not the best of the bunch, but definitely worthy of the price.

Why did I buy an TSI MKV instead of the MK6? About $10K difference. Trade-offs......car is paid for and easy to tinker around with knowing that.
Same logic behind why my car is on Goals, and why I bought Kumhos first time around. After selling my Detroits for near top dollar, the $/performance return over those 15,000 miles was everything I could've asked for. OEM quality wheels and worthy rubber for the dollar.. I almost feel like I made money even though it was $200 out of pocket. Now that I've purchased another set of tires which are a bit nicer, I still overall don't feel like I've spent much money.
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Old 02-19-2013, 09:44 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A_Bowers View Post
What's funny about this is you and I have had this conversation several several times over the course of the last 6 months. And as much as some people may not want to admit it they do the same thing. There are very very few people here and elsewhere who are willing to shell out unlimited amounts of money for anything. It might be their personality to know they have to have the absolute "best".
Very true. Even you and I have differing opinions about the matter BUT!

You have a weekend car and I have a DD traveling almost 80miles a day. I AM willing to shell out a bit more money for stuff to know that it wont fail. Problem is....I do most research that others dont to find the BEST product. Others just go off of forum sway.
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Old 02-19-2013, 09:47 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grambles423 View Post
Very true. Even you and I have differing opinions about the matter BUT!

You have a weekend car and I have a DD traveling almost 80miles a day. I AM willing to shell out a bit more money for stuff to know that it wont fail. Problem is....I do most research that others dont.
And I have seen your side and agreed with points and you the same with me. But we also need to keep in mind that price does not always reflect quality. Our brains 1tend to associate a higher price with a higher quality product which is true most of the time but that isn't always the case. The tires you mentioned earlier aren't the most expensive but in a recent comparison done by a magazine they compared with a top dollar michelin tire.
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Old 02-19-2013, 09:51 AM   #12
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Where do you draw the line?

Quality and reviews from other members...a great example would be the DEPO Led Tail lights. OEM cost $780ish while the DEPO cost $385...situations like that, I don't see the quality/look being worth 2x as much.

You own a Higher Trim Level Volkswagen, does that matter?

For me it matters. Little things like built in Nav, Led/HID headlights and sunroof all give the car a more expensive feel. The reason I didn't go autobahn was because I couldn't justify paying $2000 for them and I didn't "want" them. Sure it would have been awesome to have them but I like the plaids just fine.

Do you even care?

I care in the sense that I want my car to reflect me. I can buy loads of parts from buychina and add them to my car but it just wouldn't feel right. If I paid $29k for my car I want quality parts on my car.

Do you like sticking with just one company?

I like picking companies that not a lot of people have. For example, there are loads of exhausts out there and some are proven to be amazing sounding. But...for me that's not good enough. I wanted an exhaust where if someone asked they would be like that rare and you'd have to be crazy to buy it...hence why I went Akra. I know people on the forum will give me crap for getting an expensive catback but I want it for the heritage that comes with the brand and the exclusivity.

Do you look for data?

Not really...I don't track my car but if certain reviews have data I'll glance at it.

Do you care about other member reviews?

Yes absolutely. It is my go to before I make a purchase. The only problem is a lot of the review are "bang for the buck" reviews and you just have to look past it sometime. You have to find what's right for you and want you NEED on your car rather than what you would like on your car.
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Old 02-19-2013, 09:52 AM   #13
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I try to find a nice balance between the two. I think we end up paying the "Euro tax" on most of our stuff. Meaning, that just because I drive a German car, all parts for it, regardless of quality or performance, must automatically be more expensive than their counterparts.

I'll use lights for my example. I chose to go with Ed's replicas for both my headlights and tail lights. I've read reviews about them and hear nothing but good things. Now what can OEM provide that these don't? Both of them work as described and look nearly identical. Both are subject to wear and tear and will need some sort of maintenance/replacement to keep them looking new. In the end, they're just lights. There's a sense of elitism throughout the VAG community as a whole that seems to make people think they're "better" because they forked over the extra few hundred dollars to go OEM vs Aftermarket.

I think folks should try to find that balance. If you can save a few hundred on lights and put that money towards a quality DP or the pricier coils then go for it.
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Old 02-19-2013, 09:57 AM   #14
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i choose price because of my budget. i wish i could have gotten better things. that just leads to more regrets down the road knowing i should have gotten better parts.
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