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Hey Guys,

Thought I would post a quick review of the AEM OBD2 Gauge. This is one of the new X-Series gauges that has recently been released. I had one of my shops get it directly from AEM as it seems like most distributors are sold out across North America, and for good reason.

I have been using it for about 2 weeks and definitely prefer it over the ScanGaugeII. It slightly higher priced than the SGII but I think its worth it. It is much more user friendly and aesthetically pleasing. For starters, you can mount it in a gauge pod, I hated how the SG had to be mounted with some double sided tape, and was long and skinny so its mounting places were limited. I currently have it mounted in a cheap pod that I bought off Amazon but plan to bury it in the drivers side vent in the near future.

You will see the pic below that gives an idea of what it looks like. It has nice bright red numbers for easy display, you can toggle between functions to change what you want to monitor and the display will flash at each one before presenting the numbers. Similar to the SG but I just find it overall nicer to look at. The green "meter" that goes around the gauge is a little redundant but that's just my opinion.

My only other negative thing about this is that I wish the OBD2 connector went the other way. When you plug it in currently the cable naturally wants to come out in front of the dash. I have it looped back around and up through the steering column for this mount, but may look at buying an adapter to switch it so it not sticking out at the bottom.

All in all it is a solid purchase for anyone wanting to monitor the car. It will also give you engine code readings should you throw one, and has the ability to clear them as well.
 

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Looks like it only displays one function at a time? That would be an issue for many potential buyers. The Scangauge may be harder to mount but at least you can do multiple gauges on it.
 

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That's a nice-looking gauge. I wouldn't mind one myself.

As arathol noted, if it only shows one value at a time it's not as functional as a Scangauge II, which shows four values at a time. I don't think it's practical or safe to toggle through different values while driving.

As far as mounting goes, I find the Scangauge II easy to mount on the lower-left windshield just above the dash with the available suction mount.
 

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That's a nice-looking gauge. I wouldn't mind one myself.

As arathol noted, if it only shows one value at a time it's not as functional as a Scangauge II, which shows four values at a time. I don't think it's practical or safe to toggle through different values while driving.

As far as mounting goes, I find the Scangauge II easy to mount on the lower-left windshield just above the dash with the available suction mount.
Yes, one data set at a time - Although yes, the SG does present 4, I bought it because there's really not much I need to monitor through the OBD2 setting as it is already limited in its data set. For me, the other numbers I am interested in require different gauges so to see one more clearly on a track environment was preferred.

Additionally, once I man up and bury it in the dash it will clean it up - not a fan of gauges all over the place. When I had mine, It was mounted like arathol above.

SG isn't bad - I just preferred this for my application.
 

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Yes, one data set at a time - Although yes, the SG does present 4, I bought it because there's really not much I need to monitor through the OBD2 setting as it is already limited in its data set. For me, the other numbers I am interested in require different gauges so to see one more clearly on a track environment was preferred.

Additionally, once I man up and bury it in the dash it will clean it up - not a fan of gauges all over the place. When I had mine, It was mounted like arathol above.

SG isn't bad - I just preferred this for my application.
The OBDII Scangauge is only limited by how many PID codes you can find. Most of the important functions of the car are monitored, but some aren't. The Mazda 3 has no provision for monitoring oil temp and pressure for example, or cylinder head temps. Most other stuff you might normally see in dash gauges (volts, water temp, etc) you can display, and some other important stuff that normally you would not see is also available. MAF, IAT, a couple AFRs, fuel trims and plenty of other stuff can be monitored if you have the PID codes.
 

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The OBDII Scangauge is only limited by how many PID codes you can find. Most of the important functions of the car are monitored, but some aren't. The Mazda 3 has no provision for monitoring oil temp and pressure for example, or cylinder head temps. Most other stuff you might normally see in dash gauges (volts, water temp, etc) you can display, and some other important stuff that normally you would not see is also available. MAF, IAT, a couple AFRs, fuel trims and plenty of other stuff can be monitored if you have the PID codes.
Agreed - but any OBD2 gauge will be limited, even this AEM one as it is the car that has the limitation not the gauges. That's why I switched to the single gauge because I found it easier to read at a quick glance. I didn't do my homework before buying the SG as I had originally hope it would give me Oil temp & pressure. Other car manufactures will give you that data through the OBD2 port, unfortunately as you have mentioned, the Mazda 3 does not.

how does the Tach function on the AEM gauge compare to the crappy little digital tach in our dashes?
Haven't looked to be honest, I would find a second tach redundant. I would assume the green dot would move around the outer circle as the revs increased while the red numbers would show you the true RPM - but thats just a guess.
 

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One gauge, 4 gauges, lol. How about 16?


The gauges on the 3i are not my favorite aspect of the car. A speedo that goes to 160? 80-120 would have been fine and it would give better resolution. I want to know I'm not speeding in a school zone.


Ready to do some work on the 3? With the included software, this report is generated:
http://site.lvhost2.com:82/car/OBDLink%20Diagnostic%20Report.html

When the car lights the check engine light, it generates a freeze frame. Using the same scanner but more advanced software, this could be generated:
http://site.lvhost2.com:82/car/blazer-frz1.pdf

But one of the best diagnostic aids is graphing the o2 output along with the long term and short term fuel trims.
 

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I used to have a cheapy bluethooth OBDII dongle that I lost years ago. I remember using it in my Dodge Neon that it was super laggy, but that was in like 2013. Have they gotten any better with time, are the readouts actually responsive when using the Torque app?
 

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I used to have a cheapy bluethooth OBDII dongle that I lost years ago. I remember using it in my Dodge Neon that it was super laggy, but that was in like 2013. Have they gotten any better with time, are the readouts actually responsive when using the Torque app?
Yes. I had a couple of cheap scanners too. The OBDLink MX claims to be 3x faster than the cheapies. Its firmware is also upgradeable. It goes into sleep mode when the key is off so the car's battery doesn't discharge.

The display has to be fast too. A slow tablet will not show 16 meters and be lag free.

All the gauge types have their uses. I like having more options available. Since I'm doing a lot of work on an old GM, I needed the diagnostic capabilities. I learned I had bad fuel injectors without having to tear into the motor or throwing random parts at the problem.
 

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I used to have a cheapy bluethooth OBDII dongle that I lost years ago. I remember using it in my Dodge Neon that it was super laggy, but that was in like 2013. Have they gotten any better with time, are the readouts actually responsive when using the Torque app?
I picked up a amazon cheapo bluetooth OBDII dongle a few years back for my Subaru to use with Torque, actually worked pretty well, as long as you didn't try to use the calculated readouts like HP figures and whatnot. I did not find it to be laggy - stuff like AFR, RPM, felt like real time. That said, i don't even use it anymore - at the end of the day, i was more interested in seeing it work, it was not something i really needed.
 
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