Monday, September 22, 2008

First impressions of ELM327 (ver 1.2A)

I bought a box for on board diagnostics (OBD) for my car with the striking name of "ELM327 (ver 1.2a)" as mentioned earlier in my blog. Unfortunately I haven't been able to test it until today.

Here are my impressions:
  • The box contains two key components necessary to do on board diagnostics: The very versatile ELM327 chip and the FTDI USB to serial cable. I am unsure if they are original.
  • Most of the software solutions I tested had trouble communicating with my car. I have a Skoda Octavia 2003, and it is not recognized as a car with standard OBD/OBD2/CAN. I will have to test it with a different car to see if it is the car or the ELM box that is causing the problems.
  • The software that can communicate and read sensor data are only able to read them quite slowly. I am unable to speed up the connection by changing the update rate or the baud rate. I am not sure if I could change to a higher speed than 9,6kbauds. Perhaps it could be possible to set them by using AT commands?
  • Many of the interesting sensors like the lambda sensor are missing. I am unsure if there is a problem interpreting the car's ECU or if the ECU is not exposing the data to OBD. I have to read a bit about this.
To sum it up - I am pleased that I can read sensor data but sorry that they are too slow to be useful at the moment

Screen shots:

Charts made for my car

Gauges shown

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