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Discussion Starter #1
I've spent quite a bit of time reading about the various code readers, and I'm either bad at searching or not researching the right thing.

I understand there are basic OBD code readers, there are ones that read the BMW-specific codes, then it appears there is a jump to more professional units, or cable+laptop combinations. What's more difficult is the variety of cables available, and of course you run the risk of getting crappy cables that don't work properly available overseas thrown in the mix.

It gets pretty confusing, so let me outline what I'd like to do and perhaps people can direct me to the right product.

I don't mind spending the money on something good, but I don't want to overbuy some professional tool that has features I'm never going to use.

Here's what I'm looking for:

First, I have two cars. A 1997 528i with the Pacman under the hood, and a 2002 M5 with just the OBD2 connection. So I need support for both cars.

Second, I want the device to be able to read the specific BMW codes.

Third, I want to be able to ALSO program the convenience features (like Central Locking, Key memory and lighting) as well as code for things like the IC options (currently my M5 doesn't chime or display anything on the Instrument Cluster), and for instance, I am replacing my Light Control Module and would like to be able to correctly program the VIN when I install it)

I'm looking at the Bavarian Technic unit, which I like because it comes with both HW and SW, but it's unclear to me if I need the professional version if I want to be able to code - and it's also unclear if that unit does the lighting stuff for an E39.

I've also looked at the software from PA Soft, which people seem to like, but then I get confused with all the different cables you can get online.

Is there a good, easy to use SW/HW combination that enables all of these things? I do NOT need any advanced programing like being able to run a custom tune.

Thanks in advance!
 

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