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2017-04-17

So the Schwaben scan tool I bought is Foxwell NT510

As the title suggests, I boughtECS Tuning's Schwaben ProScan Tool (now also called Foxwell NT510). I've seen them mention it in a load of threads here, and the tool has NO reviews anywhere, and no one has any info.

Given that it's $200, I thought I'd do a good deed and maybe help somebody out.
(Schwaben tool is confirmed the same as Foxwell NT510, the factory, software, user manual... All the same except the shape. So, i think it’s the marketing strategy. And it’s wise to buy Foxwell NT510, $50 saved!)

I'm going to cover a few topics:
1. First Impressions
2. Usability
3. Features I've tried

I have an R58, so I'll be able to answer questions readily about it but of course it'll apply to R56, etc. This weekend, I'll use it on my girlfriend's R50.

(all with the Schwaben tool is also gonna happen on Foxwell tool NT510)

Part 1
So, my first impressions, first.
Holding the Schwaben tool. I have large hands.
It seems well constructed. Has a rubberized surround that looks like it'll survive a drop or thirty. The cable leading to the OBD plug is about 42" long, which for my Coupe is enough to bring the tool just outside the door, when the door is shut. Not a problem to use inside, at either seat. There is a port on the bottom for a mini-USB cable, and a microSD slot on the left side. (It came with an unbranded 4Gb class 6 card)

It includes a zippered case with an embroidered Schwaben logo. It's OK, I guess. It's marginally padded and seems to be made of the same material my old gradeschool backpack was. Includes an elastic strap to hold the scanner and a pocket on the flap for the USB cable and the microSD reader also included. I'm nonplussed, nothing particularly special about it.

The first thing I actually did with it was plug in the included USB cable and see what happens. (I used my Windows 8.1 laptop) It powered on quickly.

Powered on and on the default screen.

Next, I installed the Foxwellsoftware called FoxScanner. It had me create a username and password, registration data (address, etc). I'll be honest, I got it straight from Foxwell (the actual manufacturer) and I didn't even bother with the CD.

A bit of a problem... As soon as I inserted the microSD card, Windows Defender had a FIT! It claimed malware was present in the autorun file.

With that mess out of the way, I registered the scanner and checked for updates. I'm pleased to say that it was easy to do, pop in the card, check a box, hit update. There was a couple updates available, and very recent too. Time will tell how frequently and what quality the updates are.

I clicked the card back in its slot, and brought the scanner out to my car. To connect it, just plug it in to the OBD2 port and it'll light up. You can use it as a regular OBD2 reader if you want (I think; haven't tried it yet) or select the MINI logo.

So, at this point it's rather late here and I need to sleep. My next post I'll actually get to what everyone wants to know, "what does it actually do." (Cliff's notes: It's INPA, but far easier to use and in your hand.) In the mean time, if anyone has questions, or wants me to check a feature for them, I will.

Part 2

Alright, time for part two.
that the scanner is like INPAcable- for those that don't know, INPA is a diagnostic tool typically used with a laptop and a special OBD2 cable. It can be tricky to set up (I have used it on my R58 and an R50) but it's capable of an amazing array of diagnostics and controls.
This scanner is SO MUCH EASIER to use than INPA. 

Usability
Plug in the scanner and it'll turn on, bringing you to the main screen. Speaking of screen, it is not a touch-screen. Navigation is done using the soft-touch buttons, which feel like... one of those universal TV remote controls with the comically large buttons. I had no issues navigating; all button presses react quickly and there's no lag that I can detect.
Once it's on (again, takes maybe two seconds to turn on) you choose your model (in this case, MINI - it also does BMW, and, inexplicably, Rolls Royce) At that point, you get the VIN, either through an automatic scan (my preference), entering it manually, or "manual selection" (which I haven't tried). 

This is my car, there are many like it, but this is mine.


With the scan complete, you can scan for active modules, (Auto Scan), directly select your control unit, or enter the Service menu.

The auto scan polls a list of options your car may or may not have, and it takes a while. I think the full manual-select list has 39 control units; my car had 12 units respond - it takes a short while to scan since each unit is polled for response and any errors.

a sampling of the full code list

A sample of my control units' list and response

If there is a fault reported, it will tell you how many and you can read the error, such as these in my TPMS system:

I have winter tires without TPMS sensors.

You can also do a "quick erase" which goes through all control units and eliminates all codes. This includes stored codes, which other scan tools won't see.

Each control unit has its own menu:

Each control unit has a menu similar to this. Option 6 is my favorite.

Here's my ABS pump:

So information. Much datas. Wow.

OK, that's enough.


Part 3

I'll dial down in to a control unit and bend it to my will.
The procedure is the same for any control unit with an option to activate. First, you have to drill down to your component and choose "component activation". I think it can be accessed more quickly using the manual control unit selection, but this time I used the automatic scan and selected the unit that way. Either way works, and it's nice to be able to skip the scan if you know which unit you want to try. (a touch I appreciate)

Some control units have several layers deep worth of control, while others may have only one. For example, the ABS unit has like one option, whereas the radio has at least 6 top-level options and several levels below most of those options. It depends on the complexity of the control.

The RAD2-BO User Interface menu (the radio, in other words)

I chose it because it is an example that has lots of options. Let's poke it...

These work like you'd think. Except I'm not willing to try GERMAN STUFF IN ALL CAPS.

Here's a sample of what you'll get when you select "Turn On Radio":

All individual control screens look like this.

That's just one option. There's so many more that I can't list everything. Just about all the diagnostics you could think to run, it can do. For example, have a buzz on songs with high bass levels but you can't tell which speaker it is? Turn on your radio to that song, and activate only one speaker at a time until you find which one buzzes.

One warning, though - DON'T activate the PDC beeper. Even if your car doesn't have PDC (parking distance control) it can still make the noises. If you activate it, it will stay on until you finally find the option to turn it off, and it will annoy you. It won't even turn off if you remove the key from the ignition. (this could be easily patched, I think, by adding a "deactivate" option to the PDC-activate option. All that's there now is "Activate")

OK, there's more to cover, including CBS resets, interval control, and engine parameter trimming (you can even control your engine idle RPM in various circumstances...)


The final note- now no need waste $50 more to get ECS Schwaben tool. just save it to buy candies for your daughter :D Foxwell NT510 is what i really wanna share with you. The same tools with different names definitely is the trick from the manufacture to make more benefit.