Brake Pads


Registered User
Hello all!

I'm after some advice on choice of Front Brake Pads for my 51 plate S3

I appreciate there are a large numder of threads on here with discussion over brakes and some excellent information from Dave Bayern and others but not many of the threads mention noise from the pads.

Although i'd like a pad that performs well I don't want contiuous squealing on braking and am happy to drop some performance for a silent drive.
the car never goes on the track but does get driven quite hard!

I've already bought new OE discs & pads for the rear and Black Diamond discs for the front.
I'd originally decided upon DS2500's reading the reviews on here but have had trouble trying to source some.
Then I read this
I realise this is coming from fitment to a different car but are they always noisey being a track pad?
Are the DS performance pads really as bad as some say or are they better than OE pads and perfectly suitable?

I've thought about the Mintex Xtreme pads but some say they're great, others say they're pap!

From past experience I'd rather soil myself than fit EBC equipment! so are there any other options?
Pagid? Tarox? Black Diamond? Brembo?



Registered User
any thoughts anyone?
want to get some pads this week and could do with some experienced advice!


Registered User
I had mintex xtreme and they squeaked all the time...
Plus I found that 3 of the pads suffered cracks after getting very hot...


Top Gear
VCDS Map User


Registered User
Cheers David, a friend of mine had Mintex pads on his 206 and they were the same, continually squealed, you could here him pulling up outside the building!

Thanks abdus, I did have a read of that before (think i've been through every Brake post on here!) and although Dave mentions that the 3000's squeal he didn't (unless i've missed it) mention the 2500's.
Like I say I was thinking about the Mintex aswell but think i'll give them a miss from what David says above.

Too be honest i've kind of shortlisted them to the BD Predators or DS Performance pads now, I know they don't receive rave reviews (either of them) but I'm sure they'll be a damn sight better that the badly corroded discs and pads I have at the mo!

I've been offered some new Porsche Boxster calipers cheap too but am not sure what i'd need to make them fit.
I saw this on the Awesome site:
and was thinking I may be able to get the caliper adapters & hoses and use them with my new 312 discs.

Dunno really


Registered User
Hi deece, no not really!

I'm still reading left right and centre trying to make a decision.
More hunting round I found this on Awesomes site:
Perfect to go with the Calipers i've been offered and the discs I already have. Pads, fitting, fluid change & i'm away but then I read this:
and worried that I may spend all this cash and end up with a system that isn't all that good! if the change of Caliper position between 986 & S3 is what causes a drop in it's performance (can't imagine it but i'm no brake expert) then i'll avoid it.
Also don't really want to use wheel spacers, i've still got the Avus wheels on at the mo but have some 18" RS6 replicas in mind, not sure if either of those fit without spacers, doubt the 17's do.

like I say, i'm sure it'll be better than what i've got now but as with everyone (I would think) I want the best system for my money and don't want to be disappointed!

Are you thinking of going along the same lines?

anyone know any other Caliper upgrade that uses the original 312 disc, as I already have them.

Think I may end up just going with the DS Performance pads
You really have been reading up on this! I'm being lazy and waiting for you to make a decision lol!

I'm not too bothered about a caliper upgrade as I'm not looking for much more performance. Mainly, like you, I just want to get the best performance parts for acceptable prices.

I was planning on using OEM discs, as people on here say they are decent enough when used with a quality pad, but still unsure about the pad. I was think about DS as they get mentioned so much on here, but I open to other suggestions. Think I'll take a look at these BD Predators you've mentioned.

There are some sticky threads at the top of this forum by ess_three that review different performance upgrades, but unfortuantely the one about brakes just points out that EBC are a bit of a risk.

Let me know how you get on?!


Registered User
Im also trying to make the same decission but i have allready put new discs front and back up front ive got some zimmermann drilled discs 312mm with Porsche Boxster calipers (four piston black from non S boxster) These have improved braking. I bought the fixing kit from awesome which is a nuespeed kit. I bought a cheap second hand pair of front calipers, this is deffinatley the cheapest brake upgrade around and would recommend.As for pads the calipers came with brembo pads that were in good condition so i left them on but now need to be changed. i fitted mintex extreme to the rears so i think i will buy some mintex extreme for the front too. I have heard good things about these pads and they are good value for money too. they come in at £55 for a front set which are boxster size and fit.


Registered User
Deece, don't blame you mate! i'd be doing the same, if ur in no rush and I finally take the leep and make a decision I can let you know what I think of them!
All this for brakes! :sm4:

To be honest, I wasn't fussed about a Caliper upgrade either (I prefer to keep my cars mechanically standard anyway), I was vainly drawn in by having a pretty Porsche logo on my brake calipers and had been offered them cheap. When I found out they worked with the discs i'd already bought I thought 'what the hell, do it!'.

I've mailed Al at Awesome about them though and he doesn't rate them either, he says you lose a bit of the feel from the pedal and says the other, more preferable, option to use the 312 discs I have is the TAROX 6 pot conversion. I would think though that they will weigh quite a bit more including the single piece discs i'd be using. When I add the 18" wheels, i'd like, my unsprung weight will go through the roof so to hell with it, just pads it is!

I'm gunna order the DS Performance pads!! i'm gunna do it!

I think you'll be absolutely fine with the OEM discs, they're supposed to be excellent quality, hard wearing and not as susceptible to warping as many of the aftermarket jobs. The Pad does most of the performance improving.

The DS to go for are either the 2500's or 3000's apparently, £130 or £160!
Personally I don't want noisy squealing brakes though and with their friction coefficient i'm sure they will make a hell of a row!
they are track pads afterall.
The Mintex Extreme pads are supposed to be good too but i've known even OEM replacement Mintex pads to squeal.

Black Diamond Predators are only about £55 and have had some good reviews, I'm only opting for the DS Perf's as i'm a bit of a mix and match person and feel a manufacturer usually excels in one particular component!

Yeah, from my own experience EBC should be avoided!
terrible brakes! they were only OEM replacement jobs I put on my run around but they were awful, never again!


Registered User
Nice setup Harry!
I see you've got the DieselGeek short shifter, what dyu think of it?
I'm eyeing up one of them as the S3 gearbox has to be the worst i've yet used in a car and will try anything to improve the use of it!
Did you fit it yourself? easy job? was the adjustment & setup fairly feelable and easy?

What dyu think of ur Custom Code map too?
After reading alot about maps I think it's the one for me and as soon as the brakes are done, the front roll bar is replaced (as it's rusted to hell and squeeks) and the new wheels/tyres are on, it's my next step!

I've bought a Forge 007 DV in preperation although haven't put that on yet as i've either been too lazy or it's been peeing down!
If it helps I've never had a screeching problem from either my Ibiza or my S3 which both use DS2500s. I'm on my second set in the Ibiza - first lot lasted just over a couple of years and about 15 track days.


Registered User
cheers Jason, honestly?
not when cold?

hmmmm they were my first choice, they're so expensive to try and ditch if they squeel though


Registered User
never had my ds2500's squeal. on two differnt cars. get plenty of abuse and never let me down

ask bill @badger5 for a price


Registered User
cheers guys, I had mailed Bill and and agreed to take a set off him but he was in Cornwall that week, haven't been able to get him on his office phone since then, tried several times, didn't leave a message as I don't get much free time at work
there is a mobile number on the message though so i'll try that, was hoping to catch him when he wasn't busy rather than harass him on his mobile!


Registered User
Hi Wernlas, The Dieselgeek shift is excellent havent tried any others but after a bit of research they seem to be the best regarded, they are excellent quality and they gearbox feels transformed, it feels 100% easier to change gears changes are nicer and car feels like new especially with the new steering wheel.
Custom code is a great remap havent really tried others but the way it delivers the extra power is very smooth havent had any problems with the re-map except the normal such as coil packs and boost hose working its way loose because of the extra boost but a good jubilee clip will hold it in place.
As for brakes The porsche set up excellent as it is a 4 piston solid caliper which is lighter and a close match to the master cyclinder of the s3. I ve heard bad reports about caliper that are any bigger such as tarox or 911 calipers as these are 6 piston types and the master cyclinder in the s3 is too small to cope with them. I would highly recommend the porsche boxster calipers to anyone a great upgrade from the standard. :greyrs4:


Dark Knight
where can i get some ds2500's ?

and some Zimmerman discs ?
Well I've wimped out and brought a Mintex Brake Box set from eBay.

My brake warning light came on on the way back from Audi Driver International at the weekend and I was hoping to spend some more time doing some research, but this is the cheap and quick option. Its only £82 delivered so I figure even if they are only as good as what I have at the moment they are pretty cheap to buy me some time to work out what I really want.

Wernlas - how are you getting on with yours?
Brake warning light can mean several thousand miles to go! Or even that the sensor or wire is playing up. You can't beat a visual inspection!


Registered User
I'll let you know soon Deece, still trying to get the pads
called Bill again today on both office phone and mobile but answer machine for both
will have to try and get them from somewhere else
once they're on i'll let you know
Fitted the mintex stuff tonight. They seem good quality but won't know how good they are until they bedded in a bit.

Brake warning light can mean several thousand miles to go! Or even that the sensor or wire is playing up. You can't beat a visual inspection!
Yep, I had the wheels off last week to check them. I know what you mean; definately at about 1000 miles left in them even though the warning light came on, but the disks were pretty tired anyway so I was happy to get it done sooner rather than later.


Registered User
Ok, tried Bill again on office number & mobile but still no answer, gave up with that
found that the DS2500's could be ordered onine from Balance Motorsport:
fantastic service, didn't order them until gone midnight Wednesday night and they arrived this afternoon.
weather allowing i'm hopefully fitting them tomorrow so will let you know how it goes and how they feel.
may post up some pics


Registered User
Ok, all fitted, first impressions are 'not worth the expense'!

They're Ok, and much better than OEM when warmed up but when cold they're not. There's also alot more travel in the pedal to achieve the same amount of braking power but once you're in the bite zone (that's what I'm going to call it) there seems to be an OEM level of braking so you push harder on the pedal and then you're locking up.
I don't know, maybe I need to get used to them but there seems to be a small area from normal braking to locking up.
There is a huge amount more feel through the pedal than there used to be but that maybe because the piston is retracted now. I didn't realise how low my front pads were!

I do also get a small amount of squeal at low speeds when they are hot which is something I desperately did not want!
I followed all the bedding in advice on here from Dave B and Simch but they do squeal a little ( I can put up with the amount)
got plenty of Copper Grease on them too.

Will see how I get on over the next couple of weeks, if the squeal gets worse or the cold performance stays the same I might bin them and just get some OEM pads for the front.

Fitting was a doddle for both front and back really. Only problem I did have was one of the discs retaining screws in the rear was corroded solid and I had alot of trouble getting that out! + I couldn't get one of the rear wheels off the disc, they were stuck together something awful.

I had the brake fluid changed at 60K, 3K ago and i'm not sure if my pedal travel is right, it's no different to before the change but I've heard people on here say their pedal is solid firm. mine has alot of travel, especially since the new discs & pads on the front.

I'm not sure I've made the right choice of pad for my style of driving.


they need bedding in thats the reason for the longer pedal also if your getting better braking effort whilst the pads arnt fully bedded in then the pads should be v. good after there bedded in


Registered User
Ok cheers Kev, i'll persist with them for a few weeks then.
I got the impression from the instructions with them and what other people had said that if I gave them a good cook then let them cool down on the motorway (away from braking) which I did, they would be good to go.

I'll see how they are in a few weeks
Hope they work out ok - thats a lot of money and effort otherwise!

My wheels didn't want to come off when I changed mine either, and those retaining screws (grub screws??) are always a pain as they are so soft, had to angle grind them off my last car as the head was rounded off.

Let us know how the brakes end up.


Dark Knight
Hi ,

Let us know how you get on would like to know if there any good ?

I would like some new brakes but i dont know which ones to go for !

Ok cheers Kev, i'll persist with them for a few weeks then.
I got the impression from the instructions with them and what other people had said that if I gave them a good cook then let them cool down on the motorway (away from braking) which I did, they would be good to go.

I'll see how they are in a few weeks


Registered User
right guys they've been on a while now and I still wouldn't recommend them for the cost!
they're good when they're warmed up, very good, never seem to fade but I do seem to have to push harder to brake the same amount as with my old OEM pads! seem to always have a bit more braking if you need it though. Difficult to explain really
They're not so easy to lock up now as they were

The main issue for me is when they're cold they are shocking! I don't care what anyone says about them being better than OEM even cold, they are pants. warm up fairly quickly but for those first few stops

Also when they're cold they squeal, sometimes terribly if it's been raining and you've got a bit of surface rust on the discs
they do sometimes squeal when warm too at very low speeds
If the squealing gets worse they'll be coming off and in the bin

I do get masses of feel through the pedal now whereas I didn't have any before, not sure if that's the Pads, Grooves on the discs or the piston now being wound right in.

In summary for me they weren't the right choice and certainly not worth their price tag!
Sorry to hear about this, seems a real shame to spend so much, especially when all the old posts say great things about them.
My mintex discs and pads from ebay have been pretty good. They are obviously not a performance part, but they perform just as well as the oem ones, absolutely no sqweaks and it seems like slightly less brake dust.

I haven't noticed any extra feel through the pedal so maybe your pads are giving you that benefit?

S3 Rav

Registered User
keep us posted on this ill be very interested