• Diesel Laptops DieselLink vs Nexiq USB Link 2

    To connect your PC or laptop to a commercial truck, you need a communication adapter that interfaces between your laptop and the truck. These devices are often called RP1210 adapters, communication adapters, or datalink adapters. The most popular adapter in the market today is made by Nexiq, which is called the Nexiq USB Link 2. Our company, Diesel Laptops, has recently introduced our competing device called the DieselLink. This blog post serves to compare the DieselLink with the Nexiq USB Link 2.

    Nexiq USB Link 2 Overview

    Nexiq USB Link 2

    The USB Link 2 is made by Nexiq, which is a company that is owned by Snap-On. Where Nexiq has done a fantastic job of becoming the factory standard tool for truck manufacturers. The new truck dealerships that sell the new trucks for Freightliner, Peterbilt, Kenworth, Volvo, and many others are expressly told by their manufacturer to use the Nexiq USB Link 2. This has lead to fast adoption in the dealership world, and it has also been recommended by dealerships to their clients throughout the years.

    Diesel Laptops DieselLink Overview

    Diesel Link

    The DieselLink represents Diesel Laptops' first entry into the competitive communication adapter market. We realize that the Nexiq USB Link 2 is a great adapter, but we felt that we could create a competing tool that offers the end-user more benefits, yet functions at the same high level.

    Kit Components

    Let’s start by comparing what you receive with each adapter. The chart below shows you what is included with each initial kit purchase.

    While the OBDII cable is often synonymous with automotive, the OBDII cable is needed in commercial trucks. They are used in Volvo Trucks that are 2013 and newer, Mack Trucks that are 2015 and newer, Isuzu, HINO, Nissan UD, Mitsubishi FUSO, Ford Trucks, GMC Truck, Chevrolet Trucks, and others. This cable from Nexiq doesn’t come with their initial kit and incurs an additional charge of $125.

    DieselLink
    USB Link 2
    RP1210 Adapter
    Yes
    Yes
    USB Cable
    Yes
    Yes
    6/9-Pin Cable
    Yes
    Yes
    Carry Case
    Yes
    Yes
    OBDII Cable
    Yes
    No
    HD OBDII Cable
    Yes
    No

    Warranty Coverage

    For warranty, the Nexiq USB Link 2 comes with a 12-month warranty. This only covers the adapter itself, not the cables. In order to process the warranty, you must fill out a form with Nexiq and then ship it off at your expense. Nexiq will then perform the repair, and ship it back. In our experience, this process takes 2-4 weeks to complete. After the 12-month period, you can still have Nexiq perform a repair on the adapter but they will charge you $325.

    The Diesel Laptops DieselLink comes with a 24-month warranty. We also handle the warranty different than Nexiq. You simply contact our technical support department, and once they validate that the item has failed, we ship you a replacement with a UPS return label. You don’t have to wait for repairs, and deal with shipping costs. Diesel Laptops covers that for you.

    DieselLink
    USB Link 2
    Standard Warranty
    2-Year
    1-Year
    Process
    Replacement Shipped Up-Front
    Customer Sends Unit In
    Turn Around Time
    Days
    Weeks

    Replacement Cables Cost

    Nexiq has made the decision with their USB Link 2 to include security chips embedded in the cables themselves. They have done this as an anti-aftermarket measure so that aftermarket cables can not be used. However, the chips also give them the advantage of being able to be used in multiple situations. For example, they can use just one OBDII cable to do both automotive and heavy-duty OBDII. However, the pricing on the replacement cables is also very expensive.

    DieselLink
    USB Link 2
    6/9-Pin Cable
    $174
    $250
    OBDII Cable
    $55
    $125*
    HD OBDII Cable
    $55
    $125*
    Can 3 to Can 1 Cross Over
    $70
    Not Needed
    OBDII for CAT in GMC/Chevrolet
    $70
    $125*
    9-Pin for CAT Off-Highway
    $70
    $175
    Cummins 3-Pin
    $70
    $209
    Komatsu 12-Pin
    $70
    $199
    PACCAR & Navistar K-Line
    $70
    Not Needed
    USB Replacement Cable
    $50
    $50
    Volvo 14-Pin Round
    $70
    $199
    Volvo 8-Pin Rectangular
    $70
    $199

    Protocol Coverage

    We are going to break this down into two types of coverage – Protocols and Software. This one is a bit more technical but let us compare the technical protocol coverage on both adapters.

    DieselLink
    USB Link 2
    CAN Channels
    4
    4
    Protocol Speeds
    CAN125 CAN250 CAN500
    CAN1000
    CAN125 CAN250 CAN500
    CAN1000
    Automatic bit-rate detection for all standard CAN channels
    Yes
    Yes
    Single Wire CAN
    Yes
    Yes
    Fault-Tolerant CAN
    Yes
    Yes
    J1939
    Yes
    Yes
    J1587/J1708
    Yes
    Yes
    J1850
    Yes
    Yes
    ISO 15765 (Diagnostics CAN)
    Yes
    Yes
    IESCAN
    Yes
    Yes
    GM UART
    Yes
    Yes
    GMLAN
    Yes
    Yes
    PTCAN
    Yes
    Yes
    ISO 14230 (KWP2000 over ISO9141)
    Yes
    Yes
    J2534-1
    Yes
    Partial
    RP1210 Drivers
    Yes
    Yes
    ALDL
    Yes
    Yes
    Allison CEC
    Yes
    No
    Automotive Ethernet (DoIP)
    Yes
    No
    ATEC 160 (160 Baud)
    Yes
    Supports RP1210A, RP1210B, RP1210C, RP1227, & J2534
    Yes
    Yes
    Bluetooth Capable
    No
    Yes (Only Bluetooth Model)
    WiFi Capable
    No
    Yes (Only Wifi Model)

    Software Coverage

    While trucks may run on different software protocols, as we have listed above, it really comes down to what software is compatible with each adapter. The short answer is virtually all of them, at least all the commonly used ones in the market.

    DieselLink
    USB Link 2
    Allison DOC
    Yes
    Yes
    Bendix ACOM
    Yes
    Yes
    CAT Electronic Technician
    Yes
    Yes
    Chrysler J2534 Application
    Yes
    No
    Cummins Insite
    Yes
    Yes
    Cummins Insite Fault Viewer
    Yes
    Yes
    Cummins PowerSpec
    Yes
    Yes
    Dana Diagnostic Tool
    Yes
    Yes
    Detroit Diagnostic Link
    Yes
    Yes
    Eaton ServiceRanger
    Yes
    Yes
    Freightliner ServiceLink
    Yes
    Yes
    General Motors SPS
    Yes
    Yes
    Isuzu IDSS
    No
    Yes
    Hino DXII
    Yes
    Yes
    International ABS Software
    Yes
    Yes
    International Body Controller
    Yes
    Yes
    International Engine Software
    Yes
    Yes
    Meritor WABCO ABS
    Yes
    Yes
    Noregon JPRO
    Yes*
    Yes*
    PACCAR Davie4
    Yes
    Yes
    PF-Diagnose
    Yes
    Yes
    Toyota CUW
    Yes
    No
    VCAD Elite Mack/Volvo
    Yes
    Yes
    V-MAC Service Tools
    Yes
    Yes
    Volvo Premium Tech Tool
    Yes
    Yes

    * Will not work with Ford, Chevrolet, or Dodge Trucks

    Where Nexiq wins is with the HINO DXII software. HINO has hardcoded their software to only work with the Nexiq USB Link II. However, this is a very unpopular and expensive program that costs over $2,000 to purchase. Also, understand that you can still read Isuzu trucks using aftermarket software such as JPRO and PF-Diagnose.

    Where the DieselLink adapter wins is with automotive coverage and the ability to use automotive OEM software from General Motors, Chrysler, Toyota, and some others.

    In terms of heavy truck commercial software applications, both tools are going to give you 100% coverage.

    Summary

    At the end of the day, we feel the Diesel Laptops DieselLink provides a better warranty, a better up-front cost, less expensive replacement parts, and provides an equal or better level of coverage. We back all of this up with a 90-Day Money-Back Guarantee. If you purchase a Diesel Link, we want you to have the confidence that it works as well as advertised.

    Comments and feedback are always appreciated, make sure to leave one below!

    Previous article The Diesel Technician Shortage Explained

    Tyler Robertson

    Tyler Robertson is the Founder, Owner, and President of www.DieselLaptops.com. Started in 2010, DieselLaptops.com has become the premiere source of diesel diagnostic equipment for commercial trucks, off-highway equipment, marine, motorcycle, automobile, agriculture, and more.

    Comments

    Ronald Monical - February 11, 2021

    on my Volvo the 9 pin wants to fall out of the connection all the time is there away to secure that connection? 2009 vnl

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