Autel MaxiLink ML619 CAN OBD2 Scanner

Autel MaxiLink ML619 CAN OBD2 Scanner

The Autel MaxiLink ML619 CAN OBD2 Scanner is a fairly inexpensive automotive computer scanner that has an extremely good feature set. Buster was getting a little age on him and I had already had a failed coil which set an error code that I could not read. After several trips to auto parts stores that could ready the codes, I decided I needed a reader, but which one.

My criteria were that it could read and reset the codes in both Buster and Lola, as well as any future vehicles we might get (software upgradable as much as possible). It should also be a stand-alone reader and not one of those Bluetooth units that use your phone. From the description, the Autel MaxiLink ML619 CAN OBD2 Scanner fits the bill and seemed like one of the best obd2 scanners.

So why am I excluding ones like the obd2 scanner for iPhone? I have had far too many apps I have really liked and paid for that I had to quit using because it did not work with newer versions of my phone’s operating system and the person who wrote the app would not update it. I am not about to do that with something I need to work on my cars.

Yes, the Bluetooth models are slick and easy to carry, but that is not worth the risk that I pull it out in the middle of nowhere and find out that it no longer functions because of my last phone update.

Now that doesn’t mean a stand-alone model like the Autel MaxiLink ML619 CAN OBD2 Scanner is necessarily better than the Bluetooth models, it only means that it did not fit with what I wanted.

While looking at all the different stand-alone models out there I found one that had good reviews, seemed to do what I wanted, including the ability to monitor sensors while driving the vehicle, had a nice looking screen and did not cost too much, the Autel MaxiLink ML619 CAN OBD2 Scanner.

Manufacturer description:

  • EASY ABS/SRS DIAGNOSIS: The obd2 scanner diagnoses ABS/ SRS system codes on most 1996 and newer major vehicle models. Turns off Malfunction Indicator Light (MIL) and ABS/SRS warning lights, clears codes and resets monitors
  • EXTENSIVE VEHICLE COVERAGE: The scan tool works on most 1996 and newer vehicles (OBDII & CAN) including GM, Ford, Chrysler, Volvo, VW, BMW, Mercedes, Toyota, Honda, Nissan, Hyundai, Kia, Subaru, Mitsubishi, Peugeot, Citroen, Fiat, Renault, Land rover, Jaguar
  • WIDE CODES DIAGNOSIS: The vehicle code reader retrieves generic (P0, P2, P3, and U0), manufacturer specific (P1, P3, and U1) codes and pending codes
  • GRAPH LIVE DATA DISPLAY: The diagnostic tool views freeze frame data; Reads, stores, and playbacks live PCM data stream and live sensor data; Graphs data; Prints data via PC
  • GRAPH LIVE DATA DISPLAY: The diagnostic tool views freeze frame data; Reads, stores, and playbacks live PCM data stream and live sensor data; Graphs data; Prints data via PC

Everything looked awesome so I ordered it.

When I received the Autel MaxiLink ML619 CAN OBD2 Scanner I noticed it was lighter than I expected but it felt good in the hand. The buttons had a very durable feel and gave a nice satisfying feel when clicked. They also had quite a bit of resistance making them hard to press accidentally which was a concern I had while reading data while driving.

The color screen on the Autel MaxiLink ML619 CAN OBD2 Scanner is very nice although slightly smaller than I expected. I would be willing to bet that is my older eyes more than any real issue with a small screen. Everything on the screen is clear and easy to read so I am quite happy with it.

There is plenty of cable to snake from under the dash to either side of the front cabin or to drape over the steering wheel. Connectors on the cable seat firmly with no wobble. The cable also completely disconnects from the Autel MaxiLink ML619 CAN OBD2 Scanner so that it is easier to store.

It all comes in a nice zip-up case big enough that I also keep a spare coil, socket for my security wheel lugs, spark plug, and a hex socket for my turbo heat shield in it. I then just throw it in the boot with my roadside emergency kit.

Using the  Scanner is straight forward, you plug it in with the ignition on and tell it to start reading data. At least that is what is supposed to happen.

The first problem I ran into was that the Autel MaxiLink ML619 CAN OBD2 Scanner would not read Buster at all, even when I got it to read Lola it just refused to read anything on Buster. Since it read the older car and not the newer one I suspected it needed an update.

Doing a software update to this device is not difficult, you install the software on your computer and create an account online on the Autel support website. Be sure to use an alternate email so they don’t spam you although so far I have not seen any spam I can trace back to this account, yet. I really hate it when you have to create online accounts to upgrade the software in something you purchased. I mean why? Only people who purchased the hardware can use the software update so the only reason you have to require me to sign up for an account is so you have my contact info for spamming me. I would assume other models of the Autel line such as the Autel Maxscan and Autel Maxisys update the same.

Once I had downloaded and installed the update into the Autel MaxiLink ML619 CAN OBD2 Scanner, I went back out to test it.

This time it did read Buster and allow me to monitor functions as stated in the literature. I can of course also erase stored codes quite easily as well.

I should note that connecting the Autel MaxiLink ML619 CAN OBD2 Scanner to Buster continues to be a little frustrating but I think it is more Buster than the reader. I find the easiest way to get it to work is to connect it with Buster off, let the device get to the main screen, then start Buster up, then tell it to read. This works every time. If I then want to clear a code I press the ignition button briefly to shut the engine off without turning off the ignition and clear the code. Easy peasy.

Trying to get the Autel MaxiLink ML619 CAN OBD2 Scanner to read and clear codes without ever starting the engine I find difficult when I don’t think it should be. Overall though, I find that a small price to pay particularly since the MINI has a smaller battery than I would like so messing around with its computer with the doors open tends to run the battery down quickly. Reading the codes with the engine running helps with this, as well as being able to use the air conditioner in the Texas heat,

The last thing I will mention here is that I recommended one of these to a co-worker who needed to be able to read codes in his Toyota. He purchased it and so far says he is very happy with it. He agrees that this could probably be the best obd2 scanner for the money.

Is this the best scan tool for ase mechanics? Well no. But if you are just working on your own car and are looking for the best auto scanner for the money, it is one to consider.

Overall I would give the Autel MaxiLink ML619 CAN OBD2 Scanner 4 out of 5 stars subtracting one star for the quirky way I have to get it to read in Buster and for the software upgrade method.

I hope this has helped you learn about the Autel MaxiLink ML619 CAN OBD2 Scanner.

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