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VCDS for the A3: What lead do i need to buy?

Discussion in 'A3/S3/Sportback (8P Chassis)' started by AidenUK, Jun 2, 2011.

  1. AidenUK
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    AidenUK Well-Known Member

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    [Jun 2, 2011]
    All i want is a VCDS application that scans the car for faults, am i correct in thinking you can download the shareware version of ross tech and use that just to scan for fault codes?

    Next question is, what lead do i need, i don't wanna waste £10 on some cheap crappy chinky lead only to to have to buy another one.

    I also don't want to be paying £200+ for the VCDS kit you can buy of ross tech, whats my options, if any?

    Cheers
    #1
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  3. jungleman
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    jungleman Well-Known Member

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    [Jun 2, 2011]
    the only way is to get a genuine cable, NHN is a dealer and is the cheapest place to get them, but they are still £200+
    #2
  4. AidenUK
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    AidenUK Well-Known Member

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    [Jun 2, 2011]
    200+ for ONE cable?

    Jesus.. :wtf:
    #3
  5. jungleman
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    jungleman Well-Known Member

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    [Jun 2, 2011]
    haha yea its not cheap, but thats 1.5 trips to an audi dealer for fault checking or clearing faults, in the long run you will be quids in
    #4
  6. AidenUK
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    AidenUK Well-Known Member

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    [Jun 2, 2011]
    Well yeah you are correct but still 200 GREAT BRITISH POUND for a lead lol..

    Thanks for your help anyway mate.
    #5
  7. Rhyso
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    Rhyso Active Member VCDS Map User

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    [Jun 2, 2011]
    This and you can help out other people for beer tokens :) Get a HEX-CAN USB lead and you can do the entire VAG range of cars :) Very handy if any friends or family have a car from within the group ;)
    #6
  8. Adam.
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    Adam. Meow.

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    [Jun 2, 2011]
    Defo worth paying for a pukka version. They hold their value well so you can shift it on when you sell the car.

    I borrowed a mates when I fitted cruise to my dads car and it was so much better than faffing about with a hooky version!
    #7
  9. Geraldy212
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    Geraldy212 Sportback owner

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    [Jun 2, 2011]
    Aiden, let's get this straight. Nobody pays 200 squids for a just a cable. In this case, the cable is special and because of the technology contained in the cable, it allows you to have access to the VCDS product, plus of course the technical support and upgrades that Ross Tech provides. What you get by buying the cable is the product itself. Now go buy one.
    #8
  10. Lings
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    Lings Active Member

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    [Jun 2, 2011]
    You buy this cable then you code your car how you want it .Its not just a cable .You can also help your mates out .Its worth its weight in gold !See Nige hes your man !
    #9
  11. jungleman
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    jungleman Well-Known Member

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    [Jun 2, 2011]
    no worries
    another thing, once youve got a cable, if there are any local members that need stuff coding or checking, you can always help out for a few quid which can help the cost of buying
    #10
  12. Digzz
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    Digzz "Started From The Bottom" VCDS Map User

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  13. ~RS~
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    ~RS~ Active Member

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    [Jun 2, 2011]
    If your gonna get a copy then get this one it's cheaper and free delivery, lol:

    VAG COM 106 HEX CAN 10.6.2 VCDS Diagnostic Tool VAG-COM | eBay UK

    With HEX CAN cales running VCDS lite you usually can't update your version of VCDS iirc, and there are sometimes issues with the lead itself dependent on the quality. I've used the 2 leads in ebay links and the original all without issue. If it's all you can afford then the copies are not that bad, although if money isn't too tight then the original with full access and updates is the way to go tbh
    #12
  14. N8
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    N8 Kowalski Details VCDS Map User

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    [Jun 2, 2011]
    PM NHN
    #13
  15. Hellz
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    Hellz Geordie Racer

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    [Jun 2, 2011]
    Now I'm set to stick with an 8P I'm keen on getting one of these and was considering the official cable.

    Is there any actual difference in the functionality (not quality) offered between the cable that costs £40~ and the cable that costs £200+?

    I understand that the software for the cheap one may not receive updates (is this right?) - if this is the case does that impact older cars in any way? for instance, if I have a 2007 S3 is the fact I've not got 2011's update going to significantly impact the ability to check fault codes or program certain items in for that year of car?
    #14
  16. Lings
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    Lings Active Member

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    [Jun 2, 2011]
    The copy cables are a pain in tha ass .take it from me i have had a few .Buy a proper one and enjoy all the updates along with piece of mnd that it actualy works
    #15
  17. Vertigo1
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    Vertigo1 Well-Known Member

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    [Jun 2, 2011]
    If you're going genuine and only care about the A3 or Golf-platform cars in general then the Micro-CAN cable will do the job fine and is a bit cheaper than the full HEX+CAN.

    It's what I have and does the job perfectly - bought it second hand and will just sell on when the car goes back at the end of next year. One thing I wanted it for was to adjust the headlights when I go abroad, which I'm doing in a few weeks - not having to pay the dealer to do it will offset the cost of the cable a bit :)
    #16
  18. Minstadave
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    Minstadave Member

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    [Jun 2, 2011]
    What is wrong with the cheapy cables? What can you do with the OEM one you can't do with the cheapy one?
    #17
  19. Vertigo1
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    Vertigo1 Well-Known Member

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    [Jun 2, 2011]
    I think there are two types of "cheapy" cables.

    Firstly there are the ones designed to be used with VCDS Lite - I believe these are totally "kosher" but are HEX only, not CAN.

    Secondly there are the full HEX+CAN cables which come with a copy of "full" VCDS, presumably "hacked" to work with the cable as it won't have the necessary chip to act as a dongle for the proper software. From what I can make out, these cables may well work but are including a pirated copy of VCDS and are thus technically illegal to sell.

    Of course all the above could be complete rubbish - that was just my understanding :)
    #18
  20. Adam.
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    Adam. Meow.

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    [Jun 2, 2011]
    Accidentally connect to the internet with a hooky cable and the license will be wiped off it leaving you with a cable that does jack ****.

    Along with adding rosstech sites to your hosts files meaning youcant access the rosstech wiki's while your sitting in the car with it plugged in.

    Get a mate to half in?
    #19
  21. AidenUK
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    AidenUK Well-Known Member

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    [Jun 2, 2011]
    Plenty of replies chaps, cheers.

    Why is theres a shareware version of VCDS available, shareware is free right? As i say all i wanted it for was to rear fault codes not to modify the car because no doubt and balls it up.

    What do people use if they download the shareware version of the VCDS?
    #20

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