Author Topic: OBD11 vs VCDS  (Read 1265 times)

Offline Sootchucker

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OBD11 vs VCDS
« on: 25 April 2018, 07:46 »
I've noticed a propensity for a lot of users to be using OBD11 to tweak their cars rather than the Ross Tech VCDS cable.

I'm a VCDS man (having used them for years with a HEX+CAN cable), but was wondering about the differences between the two systems.

I know that as an initial purchase a VCDS cable is quite expensive, but is that the main reason for the growing popularity of OBD11 in that it's cheaper or because it doesn't require a seperate computer as well as the cable (i.e. can be done from a smart phone).

I've never used of even seen OBD11 so was wondering if some kind soul could give me a breakdown on costs, usability, features etc vs VCDS ?
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Offline Ant1981

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Re: OBD11 vs VCDS
« Reply #1 on: 16 May 2018, 22:38 »
Heard of OBD1 and OBD2, wasn't aware it went as high as 11. Thought it was just canbus after OBD2, however VCDS can connect via OBD2 and canbus. For what you're doing there shouldn't be any difference on connection types.
« Last Edit: 16 May 2018, 22:40 by Ant1981 »
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Offline dubber36

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Re: OBD11 vs VCDS
« Reply #2 on: 18 May 2018, 12:22 »
Heard of OBD1 and OBD2, wasn't aware it went as high as 11. Thought it was just canbus after OBD2, however VCDS can connect via OBD2 and canbus. For what you're doing there shouldn't be any difference on connection types.

OBDeleven is a product like VCDS. You are confusing it with OBD1 and OBD2 which are the On Board Diagnostic port and software built into the car for accessing the diagnostics.
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Offline BobbyT

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Re: OBD11 vs VCDS
« Reply #3 on: 02 June 2018, 06:26 »
I've used VCDS for years, coded a few bits and bobs on several VAG cars and used it to clear codes and work on the rear brakes.

Well worth it if you are going to stick to VAG products
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Offline scanesare

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Re: OBD11 vs VCDS
« Reply #4 on: 31 July 2018, 16:21 »
I've noticed a propensity for a lot of users to be using OBD11 to tweak their cars rather than the Ross Tech VCDS cable.

I'm a VCDS man (having used them for years with a HEX+CAN cable), but was wondering about the differences between the two systems.

I know that as an initial purchase a VCDS cable is quite expensive, but is that the main reason for the growing popularity of OBD11 in that it's cheaper or because it doesn't require a seperate computer as well as the cable (i.e. can be done from a smart phone).

I've never used of even seen OBD11 so was wondering if some kind soul could give me a breakdown on costs, usability, features etc vs VCDS ?


I can maybe give you an idea:

I've used VCDS in the past (mostly borrowing friends cables or tweaking stuff together). Reason I never got one myself (prior to finding out about OBDEleven) was clearly the cost. Most of the tweaks I do are fun mods that I could easily live without, or the occasional logging that just could not justify the cost in my eyes. The fact that I had to (plan to) carry a laptop with me every time (want to change a setting or do a log while being away from home? it'll need to wait) and the cumbersome interface and access (compared to modern alternatives) were just extra nuisances that I had to live with but not much that I could do about them.

And then I found out about OBDEleven (it's actually meant to be written like this I believe, not OBD11, anyway) that addressed all of the issues I had with VCDS and even some that I had never thought of before. The initial cost is 40eur + 24eur iirc, you pay the dongle and the app separately because you can opt for the free app version or the paid one (the 24eur bit). Having purchased the dongle for 40eur you most definitely want to invest in the app as well as it unlocks the typical VCDS functionality (long coding, logging, access to all modules etc. etc.) so let's assume a 64eur cost which is still a mere fraction of the cheapest VCDS cable's cost. That should already be enough for most people to be a deciding factor but here start the fun bits:

1) Absolute portability: Just hop in the car, any place any time (assuming you carry your phone with you) and do your thing. Think there is some weird sound/something leaking? Pull to the side, log the respective channel or just do a full fault scan and you'll know in no time.

2) Cloud saved history: With VCDS I used to keep a .txt log of all the changes I was doing together with their exact coding instructions as it would be otherwise impossible to remember what, when or how I changed anything and how I could revert it. No need for that any more. App automatically keeps a history of what setting you did change, at which mileage and point in time, perfect! Changed or lost your phone? Does not matter because it's all saved in your user account.

3) Interface: This might be a minor one but it's easier and faster to access any module by a few taps on the phone's screen. Plus there are usually hints as to what you are accessing and what it affects. Bonus: We know that some modules require passwords to be unlocked (even with VCDS). ODBEleven automatically suggests passwords from the internet that have been reported to work for the specific module you're trying to access, wow (that has actually worked for me)


To sum it up, I thought the biggest attraction of the OBDEleven was that it offered the same functionality for a much smaller price but I have grown to trully love it more for the portability, ease of use and all those little features that make life so much easier. Speaking from my experience, I would go as far as to say that OBDEleven has killed the hobbyist/private market for VCDS. I simply see no need to opt for VCDS when you can have the same and so much more at a fraction of the cost. There were some claims that it cannot do some of the most advanced stuff that VCDS does but although I can't deny it, I have yet to come across such one example. Funnily, I had found a feature that VCDS simply can't offer: enabling Video In Motion for the MIB2, go figure.
« Last Edit: 31 July 2018, 16:24 by scanesare »