I want to feel like I'm piloting a spaceship with four wheels.
March 5, 2012 8:30 PM   Subscribe

Autofilter: is one bluetooth-enabled ODB2 scanner better than another?

I'm interested in getting at all of the hot, steamy information that my car's computer collects.

I've found the very neat, very slick Torque app for Android.

My question concerns the hardware that powers it. I've seen a massive array of ODB2 scanners that promise to feed that data into Torque but I can't find much in the way of reviews.

Is scanner more reliable than the other? Faster for real-time application? More versatile?

If it makes any difference, I'm interested in both diagnostic scanning as well as using it for real-time data collection as I'm driving - I want to feel like I'm piloting a spaceship with four wheels.
posted by burnfirewalls to Travel & Transportation (3 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Well, I do know that some only read the codes. You're going to have to carefully make sure you get the kind that actually read all the parameters. I looked at a couple on line that are just dongles that put out the data over WiFi, which is neat. Of course, it requires you to connect to it's own wifi network with your smart phone, which then disables your phone for its normal data. (Or does it? Would your phone still work?)
posted by ctmf at 10:29 PM on March 5, 2012

I use wifi at home exclusively and my phone rings all the time, no problem. In network terms, Android phones are capable of being multi-homed.
posted by rhizome at 10:50 PM on March 5, 2012

Response by poster: After continuing my search, I found that the Torque app itself has a comparison table.

I also posted a similar question on Reddit Cars to get more feedback.

And finally, I decided to order the PLX Devices Kiwi Bluetooth adapter. It doesn't have the same reputation for spottiness that the ultra-cheap devices have but I couldn't find a compelling reason to upgrade to the more-expensive Scantools ODBLink MX. The latter claims that it updates the data faster than others but I have nothing to which to compare.

I will update again with a trip report (pun intended)
posted by burnfirewalls at 7:26 AM on March 7, 2012

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