Tuning box vs. OBD tuning
the direct comparison
You have bought a vehicle some time ago and are not satisfied with the performance? You have chosen the lower-performance model for cost reasons and would now like to retrofit?
Independent of the respective backgrounds, several questions arise for motorists with desired performance enhancement. A very explosive, the tuning industry divided into two camps, is that after the choice of tuning. The question arises again and again: Do I make a chip tuning via the OBD interface or do I buy a tuning box?
At the outset: There is no clear winner in this “duel”. Because it is simply a matter of two different approaches. If you want to draw parallels to sports, you can roughly compare this with a direct and an indirect free kick in soccer. The tuning box is an additional control unit, which is installed in the engine compartment, while the performance enhancement is done by
overwriting the software in the engine control unit. To the exact modes of operation of the two Chiptuning types a little later more.
Tuning boxes and their controversial reputation
Just the hardliners of the classic chip tuning method are considered harsh critics of the so-called chip tuning boxes. But how did the bad reputation of chip tuners offering tuning boxes, which has arisen in some parts of the scene, come about?
The answer is quickly found. Poorly optimized chip boxes are to be produced with hardly any effort and very cheaply. Therefore, dubious chip tuners have gone to unrealistically low prices to bring such boxes at gas stations, flea markets and various online platforms to the man. Such “tuning boxes”, which do not deserve the name in truth, have only one purpose: Fast money making.
Such products reach after installation on the test bench partly
even minimally worse values than in the original state. Of the
promised performance increase can definitely not
in such cases.
The speech can be. And this is still the lucky case, because in the worst case can be through NoName boxes at a ridiculous price even wide parts of the engine broken.
Such providers have the general reputation of the tuning boxes wrongly damaged and due to the flooding of the market also the serious and reliable chip tuners life additionally difficult. Therefore, we can only strongly advise against buying a box from such providers, which are offered far below the usual market prices.
Tuning box vs. OBD - the installation
In addition to the way it works, the installation is also an essential element, which makes these two chiptuning methods different from each other.
Modern tuning boxes such as those from Maxchip can usually be done without outside help in about 5-10 minutes thanks to innovative technology and supplied instructions in picture and text.
A little different is the OBD chip tuning installation. However, also in this area has developed in recent years something positive. So it was until recently still necessary in the context of an OBD tuning to visit the provider directly or a partner workshop. In the meantime, the technology in this area has advanced so far that you can install an OBD tuning from the comfort of your home. The procedure is also quite simple, although associated with several steps:
Which chip tuning is right for me?
Particularly people who are gaining their first experience with the topic of tuning and performance enhancement, often ask themselves the question of whether better tuning box or OBD tuning fits your vehicle. Here, too, it is difficult to almost impossible to make a blanket statement, since it depends heavily on the respective vehicle model as well as the individual driving behavior of each individual, with which of the two methods the performance gain is greater.
The purchase of a tuning box, for example, is always the better option if it is planned to sell the car again at a later date or to use only transitionally. In this case, it is enough to remove the tuning box from its slot and for the buyer, the vehicle is directly back in its original condition. Dahingegen is the production of the standard state associated with a little more effort since only again via the OBD interface the original data must be imported into the vehicle.
If you are unsure which of the two chiptuning types is the most suitable for you, it is best to contact the chiptuner you trust. An honest and reputable tuning provider will explain to you in detail here, which tuning measure why would be the best for you.
Where do I save more fuel?
Also this question is justified and can be read again and again in various forums and social media. Basically, it should be said that both OBD tuning as well as a performance increase via box a decent fuel savings is possible. The differences between the two variants is not so exorbitant in this area, although the use of a tuning box can save more fuel, at least in theory.
In this tuning product, namely, among other things, the injection timing and the injection pressure is specifically adjusted via the auxiliary control unit, so that an optimized fuel consumption is possible.
What these savings actually turn out to be, but in most cases it is difficult to predict. Since despite the adjustments still, the respective driving style has a corresponding influence on whether and in what intensity you can benefit from the fuel savings. One Depending on the selected chip tuning and vehicle savings between 5 and 15% compared to the previous consumption is in the realistic range.
The modes of operation
von Tuningbox und OBD-Tuning
Let’s first take a closer look at the different modes of operation of the two chip tuning variants. First of all, the tuning via box. Here we must make a distinction between common rail turbo diesel vehicles and models that have the pump nozzle technology.
In a common rail turbo diesel is a sensor measurement, which ensures that to the appropriate situations different instructions are forwarded via the engine control unit to the individual vehicle components.
Our Maxchip chip tuning box serves as an intermediate control unit, takes the individual measured values and adjusts the values such as the boost pressure or the injection amount so that this is optimized to the engine control unit and as the next step then passed on to the engine. Which components are changed and to what extent depends heavily on the vehicle model in question? Because each vehicle requires individual adjustments to create in the end a maximum of performance increase and the possibility of reduced fuel consumption.
Also via an additional control unit, diesel vehicles with built-in pump-nozzle technology can be tuned. Here we bring about a gain in performance by increasing the injection volume and boost pressure within harmless limits.
In contrast to common rail vehicles, the tuning box is installed here directly on the injectors. A direct readout from the engine control system is thereby possible, which aims to optimize the various components. These optimized values lead to a recalculation of the engine control unit including the transfer of individually adapted data to the engine.
For all vehicles that are optimized by means of tuning box, the 100% control over the engine parameters remains exclusively with the engine control unit of the manufacturer.
The function of OBD tuning
The OBD tuning to this indirect comparison takes place without the installation of additional hardware. Because in this form of tuning, the data is not optimized by an external device, but directly via the software. As a customer, one thus saves the installation of a box or other devices or conversion work directly on or around the engine. In contrast, a direct intervention on the data from the control unit.
For this purpose, the OBD interface installed in now every vehicle is used for reprogramming. Over a for it intended OBD-2 cable the series data from a vehicle are readout. These are then overwritten by a professional chip tuner using special software and individually adapted so that the individual engine parameters are ideally matched to the wishes of the customer. For this purpose, many different options are available, from a change in accelerator pedal sensitivity to KAT deactivation. In contrast to a tuning box, this already provides each customer with a standard tuning product tailored to him.
OBD tuning for one – tuning box for several vehicles usable
Naturally, it may be very pleasant for the end-user, if he receives a performance increase and adjustment already tailored to his vehicle. However, this is also associated with a significant disadvantage.
Because of the high degree of customization, such OBD tuning is only applicable to the vehicle for which it was programmed. In direct comparison, we have the tuning box.
This works with integrated AI technology and thus automatically adapts to the vehicle predicted for it after installation and connection. Thus, it is sufficient to buy a single chip tuning box from Maxchip and this is then actually used for more than 30,000 different vehicles of the following brands:
To do this, it is already sufficient to remove the tuning box from a vehicle and plug-in another again.
With OBD tuning, however, after the new purchase of a car, for example, a new, individual tuning to exactly this vehicle is necessary.
between OBD and box
As already mentioned a little further above, in a classic OBD tuning the optimization and adjustment is already made in advance for the respective vehicle. These fine-tuning options are not provided in advance in this volume with a tuning box, but with the help of app control, the engine behaviour and the tuning can be adapted to the desired situation. For example, the tuning mode of a box can be conveniently changed via the app. This is particularly practical when a few kilometres in the city are on the agenda after a long highway trip. Likewise, there is also a so-called boost mode with the tuning box in contrast to OBD.
This enables a short-term power surplus and thus facilitates overtaking other vehicles, for example. Another difference between the two tuning variants is the VMAX cancellation. This option is made possible to customers exclusively in the context of an OBD tuning.
However, there are also a few points that the two measures one. So none of the two provides for a subsequent increase in taxes, as well as there the exhaust gas values are complied with so that you as a customer in no case get problems with the emissions test.
Conclusion: Tuning is versatile!
As already mentioned at the beginning, this is in no way intended to represent a “valuation” of the individual tuning options. However, we also defend ourselves quite drastically against the opinion held in small parts of the tuning industry that tuning boxes have no right to exist. With a professional chip tuner like Maxchip, you can achieve up to 35% performance increase, depending on the vehicle. If you would like additional information about a reliable OBD tuning, we can recommend our partner OBDFlash.us.