Monster MotorsportJMB Retrofits
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  1. #1
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    Is it worth getting VAG-Com and Cable

    I have been looking at the usb cable and vag-com software on ebay. I have been told that its a waste of time if you dont know how to use it?

    Im guessing a lot of you have it, is it easy to use? and can you mess the car up? what sort of things can you change.

    thanks for any advice you can give
    2001 AUDI S3 GOODWOOD GREEN - STANDARD - HYPERBOOST VALVE - BOSE SYSTEM - FULL HEATED LEATHER SEATS

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  3. #2
    DPM
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    You can't change anything or mess the car up really, it's just nice to have to check faults codes and things like that. I've been after the full software for a while now but don't know which one to get or where to get it.
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  4. #3
    S3MHT's Avatar
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    sounds stupid but I heard you can change the welcome screen on stereo. it would look impressive with your custom message.

    Im sure you can change other things too like the way the electric windows work etc... not 100% but thats what ive read previously.
    2001 AUDI S3 GOODWOOD GREEN - STANDARD - HYPERBOOST VALVE - BOSE SYSTEM - FULL HEATED LEATHER SEATS

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    DPM
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    With the full software you might be able to, but i don't think you'd get the full software off Ebay though.
    DPM Performance
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  6. #5
    Wicked666's Avatar
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    is the ross tech one full software?

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    vag com is indispensable! you can check to see if your maf or DV are knackered before they log a DTC (if they do at all)..

    you cant change the stereo screen (not on the navi+ anyway), you need to mess about with the navi CD to do that, but looks good when changed to an S3 logo...

    i bought my interface from gendan.co.uk for 40 on the tip from someone on here. Its more than ebay, but you get a warranty and at least some comeback.

    ross tech vag com software is $99 and downloadable.


  8. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by madvw
    vag com is indispensable! you can check to see if your maf or DV are knackered before they log a DTC (if they do at all)..

    you cant change the stereo screen (not on the navi+ anyway), you need to mess about with the navi CD to do that, but looks good when changed to an S3 logo...

    i bought my interface from gendan.co.uk for 40 on the tip from someone on here. Its more than ebay, but you get a warranty and at least some comeback.

    ross tech vag com software is $99 and downloadable.
    If I was to buy the ross tech version, do i have to buy the software seperately?

    http://www.ross-tech.com/Merchant2/m...ry_Code=VAGCOM

    Or if I get an aftermarket interface and buy ross tech software can I still make changes to the car?

  9. #8
    DPM
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    Where can i buy the cabel with the software in it for my 2003 S3 then?
    DPM Performance
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  10. #9
    S3MHT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by madvw
    vag com is indispensable! you can check to see if your maf or DV are knackered before they log a DTC (if they do at all)..

    you cant change the stereo screen (not on the navi+ anyway), you need to mess about with the navi CD to do that, but looks good when changed to an S3 logo...

    i bought my interface from gendan.co.uk for 40 on the tip from someone on here. Its more than ebay, but you get a warranty and at least some comeback.

    ross tech vag com software is $99 and downloadable.
    You've lost me what do you mean mess about with the navi cd??? i have the symphony 1 bose system. not a sat nav system if thats what you mean! When i turn it the engine on the stereo comes on and it says bose thats what i wanted to change
    2001 AUDI S3 GOODWOOD GREEN - STANDARD - HYPERBOOST VALVE - BOSE SYSTEM - FULL HEATED LEATHER SEATS

  11. #10
    DPM
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    If i want the full software am i going to have to buy something like this?...

    http://www.gendan.co.uk/product_VCKU.html

    http://www.ross-tech.com/Merchant2/m...ry_Code=VAGCOM
    DPM Performance
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  12. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by DPM
    If i want the full software am i going to have to buy something like this?...

    http://www.gendan.co.uk/product_VCKU.html

    http://www.ross-tech.com/Merchant2/m...ry_Code=VAGCOM
    I bought mine from Gendan- I felt I could justify the cost as I have an A3, and the wife has a Lupo. I bought the USB HEX+CAN cable as my next car will be a post 2003 VAG car. It's been invaluable- it helped me diagnose my failed MAF for a start, and resetting the service indicator is easier than fiddling with the buttons on the dash. I bought it as now I'm looking after 2 modernish VAG cars I need to be able to read codes, and it's the best solution unless you want to buy a 1551/2.

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    Just to clarify as some of the posters seem a little confused. Ross-tech make the vag-com software so they are one and the same. vag-com isn't official VAG although it does much the same thing as the official device/program.

    If you 'want vag-com' then you can either buy the cable and software from ross-tech, or buy a third party cable from ebay or whatever and buy vag-com itself from ross-tech. Finally you can download and use for free an older version of vag-com from the ross-tech website and use it with an unofficial cable - the version was 4.09 last time I looked. This doesn't work with CAN-BUS cars apparently, although I don't have one to try it out on. This free version allows you to scan for error codes and change settings but can't, for example, plot graphs of engine parameters. But it's free!

    So in answer to the original question, you can get a lead for 20 ish on ebay, and for only 20 what have you got to loose? Its handy just to scan for error codes if something is wrong with your car, or its going in for a service and you think your garage might fleece you.

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    The most reliable 'cheap' way of getting full VAG-COM is buy a 40 Gendan cable and a $99 software license from Ross-Tech. IMHO this is just as good as anything else available, i use it all the time and never have any problems.

    The only 100% supported, never have a problem, guaranteed way is to get a $250 cable from Ross-Tech that also acts as a dongle to license VAG-COM.

    They both do the same thing (i'm talking 8L A3 Chassis here, not your fancy new A3/Golf V platform); i don't see the point in paying double for a guarantee that you'll never need.

    This only apples to the Gendan cables though, some of the ****e you buy off eBay is just a pain in the arse; it'll work but i've got better things to do than mess about with drivers, baud rates and COM settings.

  15. #14
    S3MHT's Avatar
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    thanks for the replys! so the ones from ebay are the all a pain in the backside or not I only want a little play about so spending 150 - 200 is a bit much for that!
    2001 AUDI S3 GOODWOOD GREEN - STANDARD - HYPERBOOST VALVE - BOSE SYSTEM - FULL HEATED LEATHER SEATS

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    can you not buy a trouble hand held device scanner for about 90 quid?that would be a lot easier
    2002 225 S3, metallic black, REVO, 18" RSTT alloys, goodyear Eagle F1s, silver leather heated seats, tinted windows, H&R spacers, black diamond grooved discs & Ferrodo DS2500 pads, BOSE system, xenons, forge DV, samco TIP & upper boost hoses.

  17. #16
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    I got a usb cable from here
    http://stores.ebay.co.uk/alpha-bid
    Works perfectly with my B5 A4 and mates mk4 golf. Was about 20 ish.

  18. #17
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    if you use a third party lead, and even if you buy the licence, you will permantly be held back to an old version of the software.


    Only official leads are able to make use of the latest software.
    Audi RS3

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    Quote Originally Posted by PaulS3
    if you use a third party lead, and even if you buy the licence, you will permantly be held back to an old version of the software.


    Only official leads are able to make use of the latest software.

    true, but the new features of the newer VAG-COM are only available on the newer ECU's (i.e. 2005/6 cars, and use CAN-BUS).

    For me, 40 delivered for a guaranteed cable, and 50 for licensed vag-com is more than reasonable (although i'm still running the shareware one atm).. Yes, its not the latest, but nor's my 2002 S3 - it does the job fine though.

    and it'll do far more than a cheapy faultcode reader could ever do.


  20. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tallpaul
    The most reliable 'cheap' way of getting full VAG-COM is buy a 40 Gendan cable and a $99 software license from Ross-Tech. IMHO this is just as good as anything else available, i use it all the time and never have any problems.

    The only 100% supported, never have a problem, guaranteed way is to get a $250 cable from Ross-Tech that also acts as a dongle to license VAG-COM.

    They both do the same thing (i'm talking 8L A3 Chassis here, not your fancy new A3/Golf V platform); i don't see the point in paying double for a guarantee that you'll never need.

    This only apples to the Gendan cables though, some of the ****e you buy off eBay is just a pain in the arse; it'll work but i've got better things to do than mess about with drivers, baud rates and COM settings.
    couldn't agree more.


  21. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tallpaul

    They both do the same thing (i'm talking 8L A3 Chassis here, not your fancy new A3/Golf V platform); i don't see the point in paying double for a guarantee that you'll never need.
    I'd agree, if you never want to change your car, or your laptop. The official, dongled cable means you never have to worry about the licence key issue (without the dongle you have to remove the licence key from one PC and add it to another if you change your laptop, AFAIK), or if you change your car for something post 2003.

    It's worth mentioning the official cables and licences can be upgraded as well, so you don't lose all your money if you have an old one and need a later cable (say for CAN bus).

    Whatever route you take, VAG-COM makes more sense than a handheld scanner for anyone that wants to know or adjust the car in depth as it lets you do more and understands more. It's also worth having a licenced copy for the graphing: It helped me be *certain* that my MAF was faulty, for a start.

  22. #21
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    I know i have found another old post here, I'm good at this...

    does anyone know if i can you use vag-com on a Mac running OSX. or am i gonna have to dig out an accient laptop with windows...o and repair the disk drive first....

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    AFAIK vag com is not mac compatable.

    For everone else, buy it, its invaluable!

  24. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by madvw
    i bought my interface from gendan.co.uk for 40 on the tip from someone on here. Its more than ebay, but you get a warranty and at least some comeback.

    Have you had any issues with this cable? I read in another post of yours that it isn't a true USB connection and that the dongle has a built in USB to Serial adaptor. Has this caused problems? Does it come supplied with Win 98 / XP drivers etc?

    Cheers,

    ICE

  25. #24
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    i think all the usb interfaces are not true usb! i got mine off ebay and it came with the relavant drivers on a cd with it! i have an old dumb version of vag com which only has com port settings on it neway! my usb lead is set to com port 2!

    dont know if that is any help!!!

  26. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by vanilla_ice
    Have you had any issues with this cable? I read in another post of yours that it isn't a true USB connection and that the dongle has a built in USB to Serial adaptor. Has this caused problems? Does it come supplied with Win 98 / XP drivers etc?

    Cheers,

    ICE
    the random controller communication loss i was experiencing with the interface i have so far put down to the laptop i was using... I have since bought another laptop, and will probably give it another go this weekend..

    The drivers for the gendan are available from the gendan site, and haven't had any problems under xp.


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    Thanks lads,

    Please report back with how you get on madvw!!

    Cheers,

    ICE

  28. #27
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    Just bought my cable from Gendan, 45.45 including a Saturday delivery so I can use it straight away over the weekend; billy bonus. http://www.gendan.co.uk/product_VAGUSB.html

    Off to buy the software...

    Thank god it's pay day!!!!
    Jester
    "On my second S3 and loving it. RS3 here I come!!!"

  29. #28
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    They are a lot cheaper than that on the bay.

  30. #29
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    Can anyone suggest somewhere to get a serial port vag.com cable from? - I've only found the USB connection ones on Gendan.co.uk and the old laptop I intend to use doesn't have USB.

    I'd rather not pay $250 for one from ross tech so I think i'd be looking at an e-bay one but what would this allow me to do? - I'm not too fussed about doing the graphs but just want to use vag.com to check the car is running ok every once in a while.

    Thanks in advance

    Mike
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    Bilstein B8's & Eibach Springs, Neuspeed ARB's (22mm front & 19mm rear).

    Badger 5's Machined Discs with DS2500 pads & HEL braided lines.

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    Not sure if you can get serial vag=com cables any more mate.

    Also, I have 2 x ebay cables. 1 of them only works with the engine off, which is ****e, but the other works fine with the engine running, or off. All functions available too.

  32. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by steve1975l
    They are a lot cheaper than that on the bay.
    Yeah I know but I heard it was a bit hit and miss; hence why i went for the 'reputable' option plus with the saturday delivery it is a bargain in my eyes..

    ...though it is propably made in China by the same person!
    Jester
    "On my second S3 and loving it. RS3 here I come!!!"

  33. #32
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    i've got the genuine Ross-tech lead. the software updates itself automatically so i always have the latest version. i always recommend that you buy the genuine kit as your supporting the guys who are devoloping the software. the bonus is you always have the latest features and full support, as i've said many times i've yet to see an ebay seller appear on here to offer help when his product doesn't work or is difficult to install.

    there's so much more you can do with the genuine lead, check out here

    http://www.ross-tech.com/vag-com/vag-functions.html

    for details of the differences.
    Dave

    "If that's the Turbo Fairy knocking tell Her I'm not in"

  34. #33
    timps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MikeA3
    Can anyone suggest somewhere to get a serial port vag.com cable from? - I've only found the USB connection ones on Gendan.co.uk and the old laptop I intend to use doesn't have USB.
    Alpha bid still do a serial version http://stores.ebay.co.uk/alpha-bid

    Cannot comment on the quality of the serial version but quite a few people on ASN including me use the USB Alpha bid cables & recommend them.

 

 

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