Diablo Predator Tuner Review - Ford Powerstroke Diesel Forum
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Old 05-16-2013, 04:38 AM
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Diablo Predator Tuner Review

Hey guys,
I figured I'd toss this up as the tuners aren't talked about much due to the fact most everyone goes with a custom Chip. The only reason I used this tuner was because I took it on a trade for my truck cap (plus I got cash on top of it) and figured I'd try it out for a bit.

Pro's:
The tuner had a good selection of tunes - Altitude (never tried it), Tow, 65HP, 85HP, & 100HP (or maybe it was 110HP) plus trans tuning options for most tunes. I first loaded the 65HP tune which completely changed the truck for the better. It no longer was sluggish off idle and spooled quicker, but under WOT it definitely felt like there was more to be had- basically took off then plateaued. I used this tune to tow a foxbody mustang from Mass to my home in Maine on a uhaul car trailer and it definitely helped on mileage and reduced downshifting a great deal on the highway. I liked this one overall.

Then the bug bit me and I figured I'd try the 100HP tune. I assumed that the tune already had firmer shifts tuned into it but later found out that it did not, the base tune just used stock shifting and you had to go back and set it to Firm/hard if you wanted to change it (more on this later). This tune was a lot of fun, made the truck a lot of fun to drive. Lots more power down low, good puff of smoke under mid/full throttle and really woke the truck up pulling harder to the redline unlike the 65HP tune. This base tune felt identical to the 85HP base/hard shift tunes so I won't go into those. So I decided I'd change the shift firmness on the 100HP tune (or at least just look to make sure it was on hard shift so I didn't slip the trans at all under the new power). This was when I found it was set to stock and the only other option was Hard Shifts. So I changed them and uploaded the tune.

The 100HP tune completely changed making me think that the base 100HP tune with stock shifting was basically the 85HP tune. The new tune held overdrive/lockup longer allowing more throttle input (and smoke) without downshifting. There were times I enjoyed this and other times I didn't, like when I gave it some gas to get through a yellow light and blacked out the intersection unintentionally

The power was much more pronounced and the truck kinda jolted whenever you touched the gas, it felt like an on/off switch and wasn't very smooth. Now comes the problem and the reason I sold the tuner - If you went Full throttle in this tune, it would get horrible shift flare in 3rd gear. Basically it would shift from 2nd to 3rd and slip bad then you could hear the engine (I'm assuming) defuel. The whole thing was just odd and from what I could find online it was fairly common with the software update I had in my tuner - it was an older version that if I wanted to update would cost $99 then I could flash any updates Diablo had. But from what I could find on their forums a new flash hasn't been made since 2011 or so. I didn't care to bother with it so I decided it was time to sell it. Didn't take long and I got $225 locally.

So this past Sunday I ordered a PHP Hydra Chip which was just shipped out yesterday. I went this route because I plan on getting turbo and injectors next summer and didn't want to remove the chip and send it back in, I'd rather the email updates and for the $125 difference I get all of their baseline tunes to play with. I will post up my impressions/comparisons when I get it.
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  #2  
Old 05-17-2013, 11:06 PM
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If you liked diablo tunes you'll love custom tunes. the trans will feel way different and bills tunes are awesome.
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Old 05-20-2013, 07:40 AM
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Yes thats exactly what I'm hoping for and will post up once I get it installed tonight (due to arrive today). I'm very excited to see how they work.
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Old 05-24-2013, 05:13 PM
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Well got the Hydra installed and this thing is amazing. I tried the 120HP tune and this truck flies now. It has the power of the diablo tune at WOT at 1/4-1/2 throttle. The transmission shifts so much better and actually changes depending on the tune your run. I towed my 5th wheel today on the 85hp tow tune and it had tons of power to get the load moving. The gps took us mostly through back roads with lots of hills and it never needed more then 1/4 throttle. If I went 1/2 throttle it would really get up and go. All in all Im overly impressed with this tuner.

Everyone was right, custom tunes are the way to go.
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