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Chip tuning vs Serial port tuning

Discussion in 'A4/S4 forum(B5 Chassis)' started by macattax, Oct 14, 2006.

  1. macattax
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    macattax Member

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    [Oct 14, 2006]
    I was wondering what the differences and benefits are for each of these options.

    I read about the serial port tuning http://www.drivers-glasgow.co.uk/drivers_revotechnik.html

    Perhaps this would be the simplest way of tuning ?

    :idea:

    Oh and can anyone tell me what the hell a drive-by-wire is?
    Some kind of wire that detects when some homeys are creepin up on your wheels with the gats blazing?:respekt::busted_cop:
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  3. joost
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    joost Active Member

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    [Oct 14, 2006]
    LOL! Nowt as scary as that! IIRC, Drive By Wire (DBW) is where there's no physical link between the accelerator and the throttle body, it's all electronic. Non-DBW is the plain old, simple accelerator cable. Someone could correct me or elaborate before long though
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  4. smitch
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    smitch Active Member

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    [Oct 14, 2006]
    I had my car chipped the other week. The fella said that my car was too old to be tuned via the serial port so he removed the chip, put a new program on another chip then refitted it. My car's a '96 1.8T.
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  5. macattax
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    macattax Member

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    [Oct 14, 2006]
    Can vag be used to remap your car without installing a chip?
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  6. jcb
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    jcb Active Member VCDS Map User

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    [Oct 16, 2006]
    most modern remaps are serial port "reflashes". where they upload a new Map onto your existing solid state (think UBS pen drive) memory in the ECU.
    most cars have a much more complex connection to the ECU now to enable diagnostics and resetting of various sensors/airbags etc.

    in the bad old days they had to physically remove a chip from the ECU circuit board and solder in another.

    Laptop and cable is all you need now.

    And yes, it is essentially through VAGCom that they remap your Audi/VW/Seat/Skoda etc
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  7. macattax
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    macattax Member

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    [Oct 16, 2006]
    So basically could you not just copy somone elses remap as long as it is same make model and year. Then just overwrite your own with that?
    Would save quite a bit of cash!
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  8. rich1068
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    rich1068 Member

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    [Oct 16, 2006]
    I'm just guessing but I think it's a little more complicated than that :) We're not talking about a 'drag and drop' thing here. For instance Custom Code were quite keen on me not visiting a.n.other tuner when I had early versions of their product on my motors so obviously copying a map is possible but it makes my head spin thinking about it.

    Re: your original query. As jcb says serial port mapping is what most tuners offer now but a few years ago having the actual ECU 'chip' removed was the only option and older vehicles may still require this. A few tuners (eg Superchips) stayed with this method long after the likes of CC and Revo appeared but with modern vehicles there really is no need. Too much room for error. If I can find the picture of the 'no more nails' approach I will :(

    Slightly off topic, the ease in which a vehicle can be remapped now explains why so many companies are offering it.
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  9. jcb
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    jcb Active Member VCDS Map User

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    [Oct 17, 2006]
    I have been asking this for ages,
    remaps are essentially software, it has to be a straightforward process of copying it from an ECU onto a laptop. all the revo, jabba, type remaps are generic and not custom. that is why the remap for a 150 bhp 1.8t produces the same 200ish bhp as the remap for a 180bhp 1.8t engine.

    what i have not worked out is if it is possible to upload an OEM 180bhp map onto a stock 150bhp engine ECU.
    You are only a step away from a knocked off version of a tuning company's remap....
    It is no different to people sharing music online, god there are so many copied versions of windows floating around, i don't actually know anyone who has paid for a version for use at home!!

    surely this must be going on.....? (and mods, I am not condoning this or suggesting it, merely asking a technical question to explore the possibilities of code transfer)
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  10. JayB5UK
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    JayB5UK Member

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    [Oct 17, 2006]
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  11. macattax
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    macattax Member

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    [Oct 17, 2006]
    I agree with JCB totally on this.
    It should be possible to transfer settings from one car to another providing all the specs are exactly the same eg. the exact same exhaust system etc
    and if the car is exact same make model and year .
    Possibly could be seeing remaps appearing on the internet for downloading and perhaps some kind of software for installling it on your car.

    Lol not only is xp available to download so is the vag-com software with keygen to unlock to full version sorry I do not condone software piracy but I just dont admit to using any


    Mac
    :angrymod: :undwech:
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  12. rich1068
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    rich1068 Member

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    [Oct 17, 2006]
    Come on guys, get real.

    jcb,

    Yes it is software but cars don't run XP. How on earth are you going to lift the software from one ECU and onto another? Explain how straightforward that process is. Sharing your mp3s with someone on MSN really isn't the same.

    JayB5UK,

    Jabba are damn good at what they do but for three/four hundred quid don't get bogged down by all this 'custom map' nonsense. Fair enough they can tweak but their stock maps are not custom. I used to be able to tweak boost and timing on my Revo map with an SPS3 but no one ever called that custom.
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  13. jcb
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    jcb Active Member VCDS Map User

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    [Oct 17, 2006]
    if you can upload a new map onto the memory, you can copy it. its exactly like an MP3 on a flash drive. ECU's have a solid state memory identical to modern usb pen drive. software is software. its just a file
    the only difference is the operating system environment and an ECU is not as straighforward as a windows PC. but it is not rocket science
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  14. madvw
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    madvw Active Member

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    [Oct 17, 2006]
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  15. macattax
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    macattax Member

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    [Oct 18, 2006]
    It is very possible to do this. I am not saying I would do it myself but being a computer geek I am very interested in this theory.
    Rich we never said cars run on xp lol . As jcb said software is software.
    Everything on a computer down to the little icons on your desktop is made up of binary numbers which is a series of 1s and 0s eg. 110110001110110 all the data saved on an ecu is made up of 1s and 0s.
    So to actually copy a remapped ecu you would need some type of custom made software that woul be able to read,copy and save the data of one cars ecu.
    Then when connected to the car you want to transfer to the same software would have to be able to perhaps read the data on the ecu to be safe it should be able to backup and store the original data in case of errors. Then the software would be able to flash and rewrite the ecu data with the data taken from the ecu in car number 1,
    The link madvw might be very close to what I am talking about.
    Basically the software would be more of a simulator of an ecu writer.
    To make it available to everyone it would be written for windows compatible computers and Macs too.
    Sorry for the big techy speech but its a very interesting topic.

    Edit: I did a few searches and found this so it seems it is available to do this and looks very very easy.
    So JCB looks like we got to the botttom of this it can be done LOL :idea:

    Find all the details here look down the page for instructions

    http://ucables.com/ref/KWP2000

    Supported audi cars as follows

    Audi
    A3 1.9 TDi VP37 Bosch EDC15V
    A3 1.9 TDi VP37 Bosch EDC15VM
    A3 1.9 TDi VP37 Bosch EDC15VM-1M
    A4 1.9 TDi VP37 Bosch EDC15V
    A4 1.9 TDi VP37 Bosch EDC15VM
    A4 1.9 TDi VP37 Bosch EDC15VM-1M
    A6 1.9 TDi PD Bosch EDC15P
    A6 1.9 TDi VP37 Bosch EDC15V
    A6 1.9 TDi VP37 Bosch EDC15VM
    A6 1.9 TDi VP37 Bosch EDC15VM-1M
    A2 1.4 TDi PD Bosch EDC15P
    A3 1.9 TDi PD Bosch EDC15P
    A4 1.9 TDi PD Bosch EDC15P
    A4 2.5 TDi VP44 Bosch EDC15P
    A6 2.5 TDi VP44 Bosch EDC15P
    A8 2.5 TDi VP44 Bosch EDC15P
    Allroad Quattro 2.5 TDi V6 Bosch EDC15P
    A3 1.8T ME7.5
    A4 1.8T ME7.5
    A6 1.8T ME7.5
    S3 1.8T ME7.5
    TT 1.8T ME7.5
    EDC15VM+


    So i wonder if an A4 1.8T ME7.5 is what we have?
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  16. macattax
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    macattax Member

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    [Oct 18, 2006]
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  17. madvw
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    madvw Active Member

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    [Oct 18, 2006]
    its not quite as simple as that though if you want to modify the maps. You'll need something to either decode or view the map - in other words, a viewer.

    You can get some graphical map software which will give you a nice way to view and edit your proposed map - this is pretty much essential.

    finally, when you have your new map, it cant be just uploaded. If you do, it will be ignored. You need to have the map modified so that when it's analysed by the ECU, it comes up with a certain checksum.

    you'll need a program written by andy whittaker called ECUFIX which will compute and modify the needed checksum for your map .bin file.

    then you can upload it using the KWP interface, and you should be all set to go.

    the information is out there, but its pretty well hidden. Tuners DO NOT LIKE THIS!! - and you have to agree with them the reasons why. All their hard work on generating safe generic maps would be effectively lost and ripped off. Without their development and support, there would be no remaps out there to choose from safely.

    I have absolutely no interest in doing any of this, and keep my car stock. However, the possibilities were what made me look it up. I guess that the cheap remaps offered on auction sites are just people with a KWP cable and a cd full of images they are using to remap peoples cars with.
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  18. macattax
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    macattax Member

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    [Oct 18, 2006]
    Personally I would sooner go to a professional tuner than to start fiddling about with ecu checksums. In fact I may be getting the car tuned witin a months time by a pro and not a hacker lol.
    Well I think that about wraps up this topic all the info has been provided as far as I can see.
    Thanks for all the comments and information guys. :friends:
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  19. madvw
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    madvw Active Member

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    [Oct 18, 2006]
    nice find.

    yeh, i'd agree. If i was to remap my car i'd get it done by a professional. just having comeback in the form of a warranty on components and results of a bad flash is enough to warrant that.

    as said in that thread though, its not unheard of for professional tuners to let a bad flash drive out of the workshop...
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