Glasspacks are the typical aftermarket universal mufflers you see. They tend to have a deep sound at idle and low RPM, and can get that higher frequency pop and a bit raspy sounding at higher RPM as the exhaust pressure builds.
Chambered mufflers dont sound as raspy at higher RPM like glasspacks do, but also don't sound as deep at lower RPM compared to glasspacks. These often have resonance drone though, even the dual-chambered models that are supposed to reduce the drone.
Then you have turbo mufflers which I have not had personal experience with but can sound nice from the youtube clips I have heard. They seem to sound too high frequency and "ricey" on 4 cylinder engines, but on 6 and 8 cylinders (like we have) to me they seem like the smoothest sound when compared to glasspack or chambered types.
Lastly, you have turbine mufflers which seem very cool to me. I really want to try one but as of yet I have no experience with them personally. These seem to have a deep sound like glasspack since the main bore of the muffler is straight through in the same manner, but also seem to have a deep throatiness as you rev. The design of a turbine muffler in a way is a combination of glasspack and chambered. It is straight through like glasspack, but instead of fiberglass material on the outside it has a chambered design directing gas flow around and then back to the center flow path.
edit: I forgot about another category that is an offshoot of glasspacks. The "Laminar flow" muffler from Flowmaster. These are very similar to a glasspack and they do have fiberglass outer shell in the same way, but do not offer a straight-through design like a glasspack does. Instead, there is a baffle inside that allows about half the exhaust gas to go straight through some small holes while the rest slows down and is forced around the muffler design, and the sound waves going through hit the baffle and are bounced in other directions into the fiberglass. I cant really decide what this sounds like (I do have one of my exhaust setups with them so have heard them in person)
. I guess it is sort of like a glasspack deep sound, but also a little bit like a chambered sound as well. So I guess it would sound similar(ish) to a turbine muffler.
A resonator in the car changes the sound of the exhaust and lowers the volume by 2-3db. The purpose is usually to remove some high frequencies to produce a more pleasant sound, and this also tends to smooth out the sound somewhat. People often delete their resonators to make the engine sound "throatier" and/or more "raspy" when you really hit on the gas.
The length of a resonator is directly proportional to the frequency of sound it allows to pass. The longer the resonator, the deeper the exhaust note.
You have all the main types of mufflers as resonators as well. They do very similar things. The most common aftermarket resonator is a glasspack.
The size of your exhaust pipes should be directly proportional to the amount of power your engine makes. Too small exhaust pipes will restrict power by adding too much resistance to the air trying to flow through the engine, but you should not just throw on the largest size you can fit under the car. Too large of exhaust pipes with not enough air/exhaust flowing through will create a loud "drone" sound. You need a balance of restrictiveness to negate the drone, but size to allow the air to flow. Stock size is 2.25", and if you have a completely stock engine you may want to stick with this size. The largest I would ever recommend going without a turbo charger on the car is 2.5".
The larger your pipe diameter, the deeper your exhaust will sound. It allows the sound waves to bounce around more and cancel out higher frequencies, and by being so large as to not maintain enough back pressure it will create "pressure waves" as each cylinder hits in the engine and will sound more "boomy" at idle.
Inline engines all have exhaust coming out one side of the engine, so no crossover is needed. Our engines are a V though, which has two cylinder/exhaust banks in the engine. By using a crossover pipe, it merges the cylinder banks and allows for scavenging of one side of the engine to the other, increasing horsepower. You should always have a crossover of some kind on any V engine configuration or really any engine that has multiple cylinder banks.
An X pipe is the most efficient and produces the most power.
Our car comes with a Y pipe stock. This is fine, but it is more restrictive as it forces all exhaust into a single pipe for a couple of feet.
Tips and tricks:
Often the most pleasant exhaust sound comes from combining multiple types of muffler and resonators. Like using glasspack resonators and chambered muffler for example.
You can get a deeper exhaust sound like you would get from large pipe size by instead just upsizing the muffler and using large tips. Like if you keep 2.25" pipine, but have it go huge to a 3" right as it enters the muffler. Note that this will cause drone at the back of your car and be more noticeable in the back seat. You cant get fully around physics :/
You can smooth out your exhaust sound even more by using two crossovers, such as a dual x-pipe (sometimes called a helix). This doesnt increase horsepower by having more crossovers because the second one is usually too fart from the engine to make a noticeable difference.
If you want a higher-pitched growly sound similar to this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n_n9vAw_6a0
Then you probably want to avoid glasspacks in both the muffler and resonators. Those will deepen your exhaust note which will keep it from sounding higher-pitched like this. You will most likely want to go with a "turbine" muffler style and possibly either no resonators or maybe a short length turbine type resonator to get this type of higher-pitched sound. See here for another example of the sound: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GPgmB73MD4Y
https://www.jegs.com/p/Cherry-Bomb/Cher ... 4/10002/-1
https://www.jegs.com/p/Flowmaster/Flowm ... 2/10002/-1
https://www.jegs.com/p/Dynomax/Thrush-T ... 6/10002/-1
https://www.jegs.com/p/Jones-Exhaust/Jo ... 5/10002/-1
https://www.jegs.com/p/Flowmaster/Flowm ... 4/10002/-1
https://www.jegs.com/p/Cherry-Bomb/Cher ... 2/10002/-1
I suggest breaking the exhaust into 2-3 sections so it can be removed easily without cutting or welding by using clamps:
https://www.amazon.com/EVIL-ENERGY-Stai ... 07D5V348W/
https://www.amazon.com/ESPEEDER-2-25Inc ... 07XYSYTGD/