Best Manual Boost Controller

The Best Manual Boost Controller in 2021 – Reviews & Buying Guide

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Turbo and superchargers are excellent go-to-power adders that provide co-effective ways to boost your vehicle’s performance. But, for these systems to be accurate and effective, they need one key upgrade in the name of a boost controller. Boost controllers can either be manual or electric. In our case today, we’ll be focusing on the best manual boost controller.

Also known as a mechanical boost controller, a manual boost controller (MBC) is tasked to regulate the amount of pressure the turbocharger forces into the engine manifold. Once it’s set up, you’ll only need to use the manual knob to dial in the exact pressure boost you’ll need the turbocharger to force into the engine.

While an electric boost controller is adjusted automatically depending on the engine’s RPM, throttle position, and atmospheric conditions, a manual boost controller is not affected by these parameters. Now that you’re aware of what a manual booster really is, the next step, which is the most critical, is to pick a boost controller model that will suit your needs and demands.

 

Best Manual Boost Controller: Editor’s Top Picks

 

Top 10 Best Manual Boost Controller Reviews:

 

But, wait. With so many options available in the market, picking the right manual or mechanical boost controller will definitely be a tad overwhelming. For that reason, we’ve invested ample time to put together a comprehensive list of ten of the best manual boost controllers that will never disappoint your efforts.

 

1. GrimmSpeed 070002 Manual Boost Controller-Black

 

GrimmSpeed 070002 Manual Boost Controller-Black

Product Specifications

  • Pressure Range: 0-60 psi
  • Material: 6061 Aluminum
  • Over 250 adjustment points
  • Weight: 10.7 Ounces
  • Fitment: Universal
  • Color: Black

Claiming the pole position in today’s discussion is the GrimmSpeed 070002 Manual Boost Controller. Now, in case you’ve been struggling to find an authentic MBC that will match your vehicle’s OEM specifications, then this model is a surefire purchase. As for the brand, GrimmSpeed has really excelled as one of the best automotive aftermarket manufacturers since its debut in 2006.

As per the GrimmSpeed 070002, this MBC is a “next evolution boost control” that raises your car’s turbo boost system to amazing levels. This unit offers a remarkable 0-60 psi worth of air pressure that’s enough to push the engine to achieve peak performance. Besides, this MBC is equipped with an Exact Control technology that utilizes over 250 adjustment points.

For effective performance, these points are locked into place using a special heavy-duty stainless dual-ball detent system. Better yet, the GrimmSpeed 070002 is a universal MBC that allows quick and easy mounting procedures. It has an extra-long travel spring that offers you a superior range without sacrificing the resolution. To those worried about longevity, this MBC is housed under a Weapons-Grade 6061 Aluminum casing to help it withstand the test of time.

Highlighted Features

  • Made from an authentic brand with immense knowledge in the automotive business
  • Designed to fit all types of turbocharger systems
  • The extra-long spring is ideal for long travels without demanding a replacement
  • This MBC can be rotated to offer over 250 adjustment points
  • Designed to improve horsepower without harming the engine

Buy on Amazon

 

2. Turbosmart TS-0101-1001 Blue Boost-Tee for Boost Controller

 

Turbosmart TS-0101-1001 Blue Boost-Tee for Boost...

Product Specifications

  • Weight: 0.8 Ounces
  • Fitment: Universal
  • Material: High-Grade Brass & Aluminum

The Turbosmart TS-0101-1001 Blue Boost-Tee Boost Controller is a unit that offers a cost-effective way of adding some boost to your turbocharged or supercharged engine. Although it’s a cheaper aftermarket solution, this MBC is equipped with sophisticated technology that boosts your vehicle’s engine performance without harming it.

This manual boost controller is small and light making installation a breeze. To make it extremely light, Turbosmart has used a combination of high-grade brass and aluminum in the construction. Due to these design features, the Turbosmart TS-0101 Blue Boost-Tee is suggested to be used in off-road applications such as in circuit racing.

But, other than the design, the Turbosmart TS-0101 Blue Boost-Tee doesn’t disappoint at all. For instance, it has an exclusive gate feature that lowers wastegate creep substantially to improve turbo response to about 800 rpm. It also allows you to manually increase the wastegate spring pressure to over 200% for external wastegate and 100% for the internal wastegate. The Turbosmart TS-0101 Blue Boost-Tee is an affordable piece that’s a must-have for any high-performance vehicle.

Highlighted Features

  • It’s a cost-effective alternative to your horsepower upgrade
  • Made from a mix of high-grade brass and aluminum
  • Improves turbo boost to a whopping 800 rpm earlier in the rev range
  • Offers stable and accurate increases in boost without harming the engine
  • It’s small and very light

Buy on Amazon

 

3. Grimmspeed Manual Boost Controller – Blue

 

Grimmspeed Manual Boost Controller - Blue

Product Specifications

  • Weight: 11.2 Ounces
  • Material: Weapons-Grade 6061 Aluminum
  • Fitment: Universal
  • Color: Blue
  • Pressure Range: 0-60 psi

Whether it’s a supercharged or a turbocharged engine, the Grimmspeed Manual Boost Controller is an excellent money saver that improves your vehicle’s horsepower and torque without having to break the bank. This MBC is equipped with sophisticated technology that improves your vehicle’s performance to unimaginable levels.

One of the features that make it a brilliant choice is the ability to match your car’s OEM specifications. Another refined feature with this MBC is the ability to provide more air pressure to the engine manifold without causing any harm. To make the whole process even more accurate, Grimmspeed has designed this Grimmspeed manual boost controller with a fine resolution to offer more detailed adjustments when setting up the required pressure boost.

To those that are keen on compatibility, this manual boost controller is universal meaning it suits all turbo and supercharged systems. It’s also equipped with a unique Exact Control technology that offers over 250 adjustment points. Lastly, the Grimmspeed Manual Boost Controller is a durable unit that’s constructed from heavy-duty 6061 Aluminum metal that’s strong enough to withstand heavy abuse while under the hood.

Highlighted Features

  • This MBC has over 250 adjustment points that lock securely using the dual ball detent system
  • Maintains a high resolution when making detailed adjustments to the air pressure
  • Has a high-pressure range that’s enough to offer a tremendous boost to your engine
  • The extra-long travel spring guarantees you superior range without having to replace it
  • Coated using a high-quality 6061 Aluminum housing

Buy on Amazon

 

4. Vibrant Performance 16901 Boost Controller Kit

 

Vibrant Performance 16901 Boost Controller Kit

Product Specifications

  • Weight: 4.8 Ounces
  • Material: T6061 billet aluminum
  • Fitment: Universal
  • Color: Black

The Vibrant Performance 16901 Boost Controller is an affordable alternative if you’re looking to squeeze more horsepower and torque into your engine. The best thing about this kit is that it’s 100% compatible with your car’s turbocharge or supercharge specifications meaning it won’t need any extra modification after installation.

As you can see, the Vibrant Performance 16901 Boost Controller doesn’t come alone. Instead, it comes as a kit comprising of the boost control valve, the low-pressure check valve, mounting hardware, 4 feet of the flexible reference line, and removable hose barbs. At least with the entire kit ready, the installation will be fast and precise, as all the parts will lock perfectly into place.

About the construction, the Vibrant Performance 16901 Boost Controller is CNC machined from heavy-duty T6061 billet aluminum. It’s also equipped with a premium-grade brass knob that’s large enough to allow easy and precise adjustment of pressure boost. There’s a low-pressure check valve in the mix that’s mostly used in MAF vehicles to adjust the pressure to prevent the engine from stalling.

Highlighted Features

  • It’s coated with an Anodized black finish that protects it from corrosion and rapid wear
  • The large adjustment knob and the fine threaded valve allow you to make accurate adjustments
  • The kit comes with all the accessories needed for installation
  • The low-pressure check valve is used in MAF equipped vehicles
  • Designed to fit all types of turbo and supercharge systems

Buy on Amazon

 

5. Grimmspeed Manual Boost Controller – Red

 

Grimmspeed Manual Boost Controller - Red

Product Specifications

  • Weight: 12.8 Ounces
  • Fitment: Universal
  • Pressure Range: 0-60 psi
  • Material: Weapons-Grade 6061 Aluminum

The Grimmspeed Manual Boost Controller is one of the best manual boost controllers that’s available in the market today. Available in red color, this MBC is manufactured by one of the leading automotive aftermarket brands. This gives you every reason to smile once you’ve added it to your car’s turbo or supercharge system.

Now, if you look at most of the boost controllers we’ve discussed so far, you’ll realize that Grimmspeed has claimed the largest share. That’s because most of their products are engineered to match your car’s OEM specifications. This MBC, for instance, is designed to raise your car’s OEM boost levels to remarkable levels without harming the engine’s horsepower. With such precision, your engine will enjoy quicker spool up, quicker response, and improved horsepower in just a matter of time.

The Grimmspeed Manual Boost Controller doesn’t stop there. It’s equipped with a very functional Exact Control technology that offers you over 250 adjustment options. There’s an SST dual ball detent system and an extra-long travel spring in the mix that give you a superior pressure range of 0-60 psi without sacrificing the resolution. Made from an anodized CNC’d 6061 Aluminum metal, the Grimmspeed Manual Boost Controller is a worthy contender that will always stand the test of time.

Highlighted Features

  • Offers over 250 adjustment options
  • The extra-long spring gives you superior range without having to replace it
  • Offers a universal mounting solution
  • Increases your engine’s horsepower and torque without causing any harm
  • Offers a superior boost range with exceptional resolution

Buy on Amazon

 

6. Turbosmart TS-0101-1002 Black Boost-Tee for Boost Controller

 

Turbosmart TS-0101-1002 Black Boost-Tee for Boost...

Product Specifications

  • Weight: 3.84 Ounces
  • Fitment: Universal
  • Material: High-Grade Brass & Billet Aluminum

If you’re looking for the best manual boost controller that will guarantee excellent performance without spending much, then the Turbosmart TS-0101-1002 Black Boost-Tee is a worthy contender. A close cousin to our previous Turbosmart TS-0101-1001, the Turbosmart TS-0101-1002 is packed with surprising features that make it a cost-effective way to upgrade your engine’s horsepower and torque.

Manufactured in Australia, this MBC is surprisingly small and light. Although it offers a faster and less challenging means of installation, its small body size makes it an excellent pick for circuit and off-road usage. But, despite being restricted, this MBC doesn’t disappoint when used in high-performance racing vehicles. First, it’s equipped with a very accurate detent system that controls the amount of air pressure getting to the engine from the turbo or supercharger.

Secondly, the Turbosmart TS-0101-1002 has an exclusive gate feature that minimizes the amount of boost creeping through the wastegate in a bid to improve turbo response. Since it’s expected to face a lot of abuse when working, this MBC is manufactured from super durable brass and billet aluminum that’s able to last for a much longer time.

Highlighted Features

  • This MBC is small and lights making it an excellent pick for high-performance vehicles
  • Totally universal making it the best for both turbo and supercharged engines
  • Has excellent craftsmanship that gives it years of use
  • Offers a higher performance response without harming your engine
  • Available at an affordable price

Buy on Amazon

 

7. NXS Motorsports Manual Boost Controller

 

NXS Motorsports Manual Boost Controller

Product Specifications

  • Material: Anodized Type-6061 Aluminum
  • Pressure Range: 0-30 psi
  • Fitment: Turbocharged Diesel & Gas Engines
  • Warranty: Lifetime

The NXS Motorsports Manual Boost Controller is another excellent add-on to your turbocharger system that guarantees exceptional performance without harming the engine. Manufactured in the USA by NXS Motorsports, this MBC is an affordable pick that serves as a crucial piece in your turbo system. One of the factors that make it an excellent piece is the ability to offer increased power and instant boost response to your engine.

About the construction, the NXS Motorsports Manual Boost Controller is manufactured from high-quality type 6061 Aluminum that’s highly resistant to extreme abuse. The ball detent is made from 440 c stainless steel while the hose barb fitting and the lock nut are engineered using nickel-plated brass. With such an exclusive combination of quality engineering, this MBC can offer a significant air pressure boost by just fine-tuning the knob to your desired levels.

To prevent any air pressure leakage, the NXS Motorsports Manual Boost Controller is equipped with a captured O-ring that seals the casing perfectly. It has a bleed release vent on one side that prevents pressure accumulation on the inside that can result in possible rapture. This MBC is quick to install thanks to the detailed user manual.

Highlighted Features

  • Made from a mix of corrosion-resistant materials
  • Comes with a very detailed user manual
  • Offers excellent boost control thanks to its excellent ball and spring construction
  • Offers a cost-effective solution to buyers looking for cheaper options
  • The captured O-ring seals the casing entirely to prevent air leakage

Buy on Amazon

 

8. Hallman Pro Boost Controller Kit – Black

 

Hallman Pro Boost Controller Kit - Black

Product Specifications

  • Weight: 11.6 Ounces
  • Model Number: ‎HBC-PRO-01
  • Material: Billet Aluminum & Stainless Steel
  • Package Details: Pro valve, 3’ vacuum line, mounting hardware & instruction manual

Appearing quite late in our discussion is the Hallman Pro Boost Controller Kit. As you can see, this kit contains several mounting accessories that are aimed at making installation much quicker and effortless. Since this MBC is intended to receive a lot of abuse, Hallman has used credible parts in the construction process such as machined billet Aluminum and stainless steel to guarantee longevity.

Besides, the Pro valve itself is equipped with a large knob that’s very easy to adjust. So, with this knob, you won’t have to rely on lock nuts and wrenches just to adjust the air pressure. Something else about the adjustment knob is that it’s tightly fitted to avoid any shifting when the engine is vibrating. This will hence prevent any chances of accidental over boosting which can harm the engine.

Other than that, the Hallman Pro Boost Controller Kit comes as a kit containing the Hallman Pro valve, 3 feet of black vacuum line, hardware packet, mounting hardware, and a detailed installation manual for a quick and effortless installation process. The Pro valve is offered in a wide range of cool colors that include Black, Blue, Red, Purple, and Silver.

Highlighted Features

  • Made from a combination of high-quality materials
  • The adjustment knob is strong enough to get loose unexpectedly
  • The kit comes with all the required pieces for easy installation
  • The Pro valve is very easy to use when adjusting the boost setting
  • The valves are available in different colors

Buy on Amazon

 

9. NXS Motorsports Manual Boost Controller -w/Ceramic Ball & Ports

 

NXS Motorsports Manual Boost Controller -w/Ceramic...

Product Specifications

  • Size: 3/16 Inches
  • Material: Anodized Type-6061 Aluminum
  • Warranty: Lifetime Warranty
  • Country of Origin: USA

The NXS Motorsports Manual Boost Controller is another outstanding piece that will never let your efforts down. Made by a US manufacturer, NXS Motorsports, this valve is a convenient piece that promises increased power and an immense boost response to your engine. The material used in the construction is anodized Type-6061 Aluminum while the hose barb fittings and the lock nut are made from nickel-plated brass.

At least with this construction, this MBC will manage to stand the test of time without wearing out prematurely. Something else about this valve is that it’s an affordable piece that won’t cost you an arm and a leg. So, in case you’re on a tight budget, this valve will offer a cost-effective way of adjusting your car’s turbo boost in a way it won’t hurt the engine.

About the installation, this best cheap manual boost controller is quite easy to mount thanks to the available installation manual. In fact, installation mostly takes around 15 minutes making it one of the easiest MBC valves to install. It’s designed to handle air pressure from 0 to 50 psi making it an excellent pick for turbo boost applications.

Highlighted Features

  • Proudly manufactured in the USA
  • Installation is easy thanks to the detailed instruction manual
  • Can handle tremendous pressure in excess of 50 psi
  • Offers a quick air pressure response once you adjust the knob
  • Its compatibility prevents any further modification during installation

Buy on Amazon

 

10. Dewhel MBC Manual Turbo Boost Controller Kit Adjustable Black

 

Dewhel MBC Manual Turbo Boost Controller Kit...

Product Specifications

  • Pressure Range: 0-30 psi
  • Fitment: Universal
  • Weight: 6.4 Ounces
  • Package Details: Valve, silicone hose, Aluminum diverter Tee, securing clips & user manual

Claiming the remaining position in today’s discussion is the Dewhel MBC Manual Turbo Boost Controller Kit. Available at an affordable price, this MBC is a universal piece that can be added to any turbocharged system. During assembly, this MBC is mounted on your car’s boost control line near the actuator. While at that position, all you need is to adjust the knob to regulate the amount of pressure exiting through the wastegate actuator to the atmosphere or back to the intake system.

Since the entire process is expected to be quite precise, the Dewhel MBC is equipped with the necessary features that make the pressure boost procedure 100% accurate. For instance, the knob used is tight enough to get loose or fall off whenever the engine is vibrating. Secondly, the material used is high-grade CNC machined anodized aluminum that’s tough enough to withstand substantial abuse.

About the performance, the Dewhel MBC is designed to offer immense torque and horsepower to your engine by increasing air pressure to a remarkable 30 psi. The installation process is easy and the valve doesn’t just come along. Instead, it comes as a complete kit consisting of a silicone hose, an aluminum diverter tee, securing clips for the hose, and a detailed instruction manual.

Highlighted Features

  • This MBC valve comes in a wide range of colors to pick from
  • Designed to fit both turbocharged and supercharged systems
  • Installation is easy thanks to the detailed user manual
  • Constructed from CNC’d anodized aluminum
  • The package comes with all the necessary accessories needed for installation

Buy on Amazon

 

Things to Consider When Choosing a Manual Boost Controller

 

Turbo boost upgrade is becoming more common in recent times. It’s considered one of the best ways to improve your car’s performance. Now, one of the key upgrades to your turbo system is adding a boost controller to adjust the amount of air pressure getting to the engine manifold from the turbocharger system.

In this guide, we’ve discussed at least ten of the best manual boost controllers in the business. But, other than perusing through these MBCs, you need to be aware of some of the factors that directly influence your buying decision. So, in this section, we’re going to discuss some of the key parameters you must be aware of when buying a manual boost controller.

 

1. Manual vs. Electric:

 

So, when buying a boost controller, you need to decide on whether to pick a manual or an electric model. Although this topic is specifically intended for MBCs, you need to learn the main difference between the two before making your decision.

  • Manual Boost Controllers:

A manual boost controller, on its side, relies on a set-and-forget set up where you adjust the knob to get the exact amount of boost you’ll need when driving. These types of boost controllers are preferred by most daily drivers and performance vehicles as the boost you get is not affected by engine RPM, throttle position, or atmospheric conditions. 

  • Electric Boost Controllers:

An electronic boost controller uses the ball and spring mechanism to function. It’s mounted on the wastegate vacuum line where it blocks the boost pressure until the pressure accumulates to certain levels. Once the spring is overwhelmed, it released the pressure.

While MBCs work by tightening the spring manually, electric boost controllers rely on the car’s onboard computer to tighten the spring electronically. The best thing about boost controllers is that there’s a cabin screen where you can adjust the settings.

 

2. Bleed vs. Ball-and-Spring Type MBC:

 

Although we’ve discussed electric vs. manual boost controllers, manual boost controllers are further divided into two major categories. These are the bleed and the ball-and-spring type MBCs. Let’s take a closer look at each of these MBC types.

  • Bleed Type MBC:

Just like any other MBC, a bleed-type MBC is mounted on the wastegate vacuum line. To improve its efficiency, it’s recommended that you mount it close enough to the turbocharger to minimize the length of the vacuum line.

A bleed-type MBC contains a small precision hole that rests in the middle of the flow path to minimize the amount of air pressure reaching the actuator.

Since the pressure must reach the recommended levels to be bled off, the turbocharger will have to overwork to compensate for the lost pressure (bleeding off through the precision hole) to reach maximum boost. As a result, this increases the boost substantially.

  • Ball-and-Spring Type MBC:

With this controller system, a spring and a ball are placed in the vacuum line to interrupt the flow of pressure leading to the wastegate. By tightening the spring manually, the turbocharger is forced to overwork to create enough pressure to overcome the spring. In the process, a tremendous amount of boost is created.

Although this technique is accurate, it has one major flaw. The free-floating ball can sometimes flutter around the restrictor hole causing boost fluctuations that can lead to boost spikes.

 

3. Construction:

 

Other than the type, the material to which the MBC is made can have a huge influence on its performance. If you look at most of the MBCs we’ve discussed here, you’ll notice that most of them are made from a combination of anodized aluminum and stainless steel.

With such premium-grade materials, your MBC will manage to stand the test of time without rapturing, cracking, or suffering extreme corrosion.

 

4. Ease of Installation:

 

Again, you need to inspect the level of difficulty when it comes to installing the best manual boost controller. You need to ensure that the package comes with a detailed installation manual that will assist you throughout the installation process. Thankfully, most of the MBC models we’ve discussed are shipped with a manual on board.

 

5. Package Details:

 

Lastly, you need to decide whether to get a single valve or a complete kit. In most cases, buying a complete kit is considered way better as you’ll have all the accessories needed for installation. The best thing about a complete kit is that the vacuum hose and the mounting hardware are compatible with the valve meaning you’ll be unlikely to face pressure leakage.

 

How to Install Manual Boost Controller

 

  • To install a manual boost controller, you need to start by accessing the turbo system. This can be done by removing the airbox assembly to gain better access.
  • With the turbocharger system on sight, locate the turbo intake or outlet manifold and the wastegate actuator canister.
  • Remove the OEM hoses and replace them with your new silicone hoses that come with the MBC. Make sure the hoses are tightly fitted in the turbo system.
  • Next, disconnect the boost hose from the solenoid. Don’t touch the vent hose at all.
  • Now pick your manual boost controller and mount it close enough to the turbocharger. This is one way of improving effectiveness. Secondly, mount the MBC in a safe location where it won’t be interrupted by any moving parts.
  • With the MBC perfectly mounted in place, connect the line from the boost source to the input side of the MBC. Connect the other silicone hose on the output side of the MBC. This line will be leading to the wastegate actuator. In case you’re lost, simply follow the arrow on the MBC.
  • Once you’re done, adjust the boost by turning the knob in the direction marked.

 

Frequently Asked Questions about Manual Boost Controller

 

  1. Why Do I Need a Manual Boost Controller?

If you’re wondering why you need the best manual boost controller in your turbocharger system, then here’s the reason why. An MBC is intended to control the boost pressure your turbo is producing. This type of boost controller offers a cost-effective way of improving your engine horsepower and torque.

While an electric boost controller is affected by engine RPM, throttle position, and atmospheric conditions, and an MBC is not affected by these parameters once you’ve adjusted the knob.

 

  1. Which Direction Should I Turn the Knob?

Now that you’ve installed the MBC in your turbocharger system, one of the questions that might arise is how to use the boost controller. In most cases, the knob of the MBC should be turned clockwise if you want to add some boost. To reduce boost, you have to turn it counter-clockwise. To get accurate results, it’s recommended that you start from a lower boost level then work yourself up.

 

  1. What’s the Difference Between Internal and External Wastegate?

When your turbocharger is running, it generates a lot of compressed air. This air pressure (measured in psi) can cause turbo overheating and engine damage if left to accumulate to higher levels. So, to exhaust these gases from the turbo, a wastegate is needed.

With an internal wastegate, a bypass valve located inside the turbo housing is used to exhaust excess air from the system. With an external wastegate, an entirely separate actuator is used to exhaust excess air from the turbo through the exhaust.

 

  1. What Happens If the Boost is Too Much?

As a rule of thumb, more boost translates to more power. But, this is not always the case. When you tune your MBC to a specific boost level, you must ensure that the engine is capable of handling it. If the engine is too restrictive or maybe its specs are not efficient enough to meet the boost level, then this can cause excess strain to the engine, which can eventually damage the engine or the turbocharger.

 

Final Verdict

So, in case you’ve been asking what’s the best manual boost controller, then this guide has given you every reason that makes the MBC an absolute must for any turbocharged or supercharged system. These units are available at an affordable price and they’re not affected by any external parameters such as engine RPM, atmospheric conditions, or throttle position.

In this insightful guide, we’ve discussed at least ten of the best MBCs that will make a whole world of difference. We’ve also included a detailed buyer’s guide section and have answered some of the pressing questions most people have regarding this topic.

So, if you’re looking to upgrade your turbo system with a boost controller, then this guide has offered you all the information you’ll need.

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