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Thread: WHAT is ELM 327 ?

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    Newbie Atulsohan's Avatar
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    WHAT is ELM 327 ?

    What is this device?
    Techinical info?
    like the internal compnents who made it ? for what things like please post it here as all are intersted

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    Newbie Atulsohan's Avatar
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    Chip? it is just a chip?

    So is it just a chip '? on which the OBD to serial interface is Burnt? that is it?
    but the thing cost about 30$ how is the chinise able to give the whole assembled thing for that price?

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    From what i read the chinese look-a-likes are actually fakes, go for something with a genuine elm chip, even if only in support of the work these people have put in over the years to get it where it is today.(i am not associated with elm just ****ed off with cheap nockoffs)

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    Variable Bitrate Uraijit's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by millsy View Post
    From what i read the chinese look-a-likes are actually fakes, go for something with a genuine elm chip, even if only in support of the work these people have put in over the years to get it where it is today.(i am not associated with elm just ****ed off with cheap nockoffs)

    The ELM327 is the chip. It either works or it doesn't. Pretty much ALL of those chips come from China. Whether they're assembled in the U.S. by a hobbyist who charges 2-3 times what the Chinese manufacturers do, or not, they're all the same...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Uraijit View Post
    The ELM327 is the chip. It either works or it doesn't. Pretty much ALL of those chips come from China. Whether they're assembled in the U.S. by a hobbyist who charges 2-3 times what the Chinese manufacturers do, or not, they're all the same...

    All ELM327 devices are the same, however there are many devices that claim to be ELM327 but are infact a copycat chip (which is why they are sold for less than $30), which dosent work nearly as well; so buyer beware.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Uraijit View Post
    The ELM327 is the chip. It either works or it doesn't. Pretty much ALL of those chips come from China. Whether they're assembled in the U.S. by a hobbyist who charges 2-3 times what the Chinese manufacturers do, or not, they're all the same...
    This is why cheap nockoffs flourish !!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Uraijit View Post
    The ELM327 is the chip. It either works or it doesn't. Pretty much ALL of those chips come from China. Whether they're assembled in the U.S. by a hobbyist who charges 2-3 times what the Chinese manufacturers do, or not, they're all the same...
    A chip is a chip, but the firmware is not. I have used several different knockoffs and the real elm327. The only reliable one, has been the "real" elm327.

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    Variable Bitrate bemenaker's Avatar
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    Working at a place that builds circuit boards in the US, I can tell you the most expensive part of those assemblies, is the labor to build it. Hence the reason everything is built in China. One of the problems of doing business in China is, if you have a decent product, especially if it is very cheap to make, they will clone it and sell it for half the price. If you can't afford an exact clone on the market, you can't afford to build in China.

    Some of those no name knock offs will be exactly the same, and even have the same firmware on them, others, will be total ripoffs that don't work. Since you can get the real ELM chip for ~$15, it's not unreasonable to be able to build one of those for less than $30 when your labor is that cheap. The Elm chip is the only expensive part there, the rest are pennies apiece in bulk.

    As too which ones are decent and which ones aren't, I have no idea. Personally, I would look at it this way, if you are using an older protocol, it would make sense that the cheap ones are no problem. If you have a pretty new vehicle, and use the newer CAN bus, you probably want to look at a more reputable product.

    I'm torn myself between buying a $30 one off ebay or buying one for $85, since I have a '97 vehicle using a well known protocol.

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