Best Laptops for Automotive Diagnostics [2022]

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Do you know that when you purchase a car or if you are a car owner already – to check if your car’s performance is top-notch and in good shape, you can get a full report of analytical data? For that, you need to do an Automotive Diagnostics test on the car.

Automotive Diagnostics of your vehicle is a crucial step in order to tune, detect and take care of any error or defect and nip it in the bud. Usually, the Automotive Diagnostics test is done by an automotive engineer.

But, how do they do that?

With all due respect, and thanks to non-stop technical evolutions, an automotive engineer is able to run the Automotive Diagnostic test of your car simply on their laptops. These laptops are specially built for this purpose and with the help of some heavy-duty software, they can give you a full analysis of your car in your hands.

Isn’t that great!

Well, if your car has broken down again or your car’s check engine light has been turned on, it indicates that there is a mechanical or hardware concern, which you won’t be able to find.

Now, you can detect it with the help of an automotive diagnostic test by taking it to an automotive engineer or if you are a home-technician, you can do it by yourself as well.

Either way, in order to perform the test you will be needing two things; compatible hardware, and software.

To ease your research for good and reliable software for automotive diagnostics, we have jotted down the top three best competitors for you, so take a look and choose the one that is suitable for you.

Some Commonly Used Vehicle Diagnostic Software

Pro Tip: Before you choose the software and make up your mind to purchase it, no matter how good and affordable it is, always double-check if it’s compatible with your car system.

1.                KlavKarr

KlavKarr is considered to be among the top-rated vehicle diagnostic software that helps you to get a complete, satisfactory, and real-time diagnostic report in numeric and graphs. It works with cars having an On-Board Diagnostic (OBD) 2 system, usually referred to as modern cars. The OBD2 system is normally found in all the latest cars available in America as well as Europe.

KlavKarr also supports different series of ELM327 interfaces. For example, ELM320, ELM322, ELM323 and so on. It also means that it is usually supported by most cars. Not only that, but it also keeps up with ISO 15765-4, 14230-4, and 9141-2. These standards are usually found in Honda as well as Toyota cars.

Apart from that you can also perform tests and get results for regular checkups of your vehicle like consistency, fuel consumption, and so on. The results can be decoded in the text format that eventually will help you in understanding the issue in simple words.

KlavKarr is a pretty great software when it comes to the detection of an issue, but that’s it!

The software has its limitations and you cannot make alterations or adjustments through it.

2.                OBDwiz Automotive Diagnostic

OBDwiz is considered to be the best software to detect and debug the issue at hand through its system.

Another perk of having OBDwiz is its customizable dashboards, you can customize it according to your liking which makes the whole task even easier.

Just like KlavKarr, OBDwiz also supports and is compatible with OBD2 vehicles. With OBDwiz you cannot only customize the dashboard but you can also send real-time instructions through its console to fix the issue at hand. Alongside regular checkups of consumption and consistency, it lets you record, playback, and export data and that too in CSV format.

As I mentioned earlier that OBDwiz is one of the easiest vehicle diagnostic software, you can run it on Mac and Windows even dating back to Vista.

3.                TOAD

We saved the best for you in the last. TOAD is a vehicle diagnostic and scanning tool that works well with both OBD1 and OBD2 vehicles, which means that it has the capability of compatibility with almost all types and models of automobiles. To operate it on your car you need an EML327 adaptor, Toad also provides you with it in case you do not have it.

Unlike KlavKarr, TOAD not only helps you with the diagnosis of issues in your vehicle but it also helps in modifying and eradicating them for your good through the same system. For example, you can easily reprogram the ECU and tune your car without any obstacles.

It has the ability to support various controller modules and OBD protocols. With OBDwiz you can diagnose, detect, analyze faults, resolution to solve issues, tune, correct, and remap everything and every issue at hand, that too with ease.

I personally like this program because it comes with a complete guide and if you do not know some professional terms or get confused, you can always refer to it for guidance. In the worst-case scenario, if you do not know how to fix an issue at hand, the system itself will guide you on how to do that.

Review of the Best Laptops for Automotive Diagnostic

1.                ASUS ROG Zephyrus G14 – Best Overall Laptop for Diagnosing Vehicles

best vehicle diagnosing laptops on market
Image Courtesy: Amazon

Specifications:

·       Display: 14 Inches

·       RAM: 16GB

·       SSD Storage: 1TB

·       CPU: Ryzen 7

·       GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 Max-Q

ASUS ROG Zephyrus meets all basic and almost advanced requirements to meet the criteria to run almost all vehicle automotive diagnosis software on this laptop. 16 GB of RAM and 1 TB of storage allow you to use it to its full capacity. Apart from being used in the automotive diagnosis field, it is suitable to run heavy games and other alike software or programs.

Now if we talk about the display, it is making ends meet here, it supports features like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, HDMI, USB Type-C and A, Display Port, and G-Sync as well. The display screen is quite thin and the cherry on top is that it supports VR technology, which is heaven for gamers as well.

When it comes to its weight the laptop weighs around 3.64 pounds which is quite lightweight and easy to carry around on top of that it can give you 10 hours of battery life, which is not a bad deal. This laptop can easily handle any type of vehicle diagnosing applications without slowing down.

2.                Dell G5 15 – Best Value Laptop for Vehicle Fault Scanning Applications

best value vehicle fixing laptop
Image Courtesy: Amazon

Specifications:

·       Display: 15.6 Inches

·       RAM: 8GB

·       SSD Storage: 256 GB

·       CPU: G5 15

·       GPU: Dedicated

Almost all of us have used Dell laptops or seen someone using them. There is a myth saying they are ‘rough and tough’. Couldn’t say more to it, but I think Dell G5 is giving us a much larger screen than the ASUS ROG. But, that’s it in comparison to ROG.

Dell G5 provides you with a RAM of 8 GB which is a little above the RAM requirements for Automotive Diagnosis software and but still can get good output from them, in the worst-case scenario you can get stuck with heavy-duty software. However, it can still run basic to medium-level programs successfully.

It comes with a dedicated GPU, which is a good thing, it will not eat up the space and energy of your system. The SSD storage also is at the borderline but still works. Now, if we talk about the weight of the Dell G5 it is around 7.76 pounds, that’s heavy! It is 3x heavier than the ASUS ROG and in general circumstances, it is also not a portable laptop.

3.                LG 16Z90Q-K.AAS8U1 – Excellent Price to Performance Ratio Laptop for Automotive Software

Slim laptop for vehicle workshop
Image Courtesy: Amazon

Specifications:

·       Display: 16 inches

·       RAM: 16 GB

·       SSD Storage: 1TB

·       CPU: Core i7

·       GPU: Integrated

LG’s 16Z90Q is equipped with all the desired features that are a necessity as well, alongside some additional and useful features that make it unique. Its greatest feature is being lightweight.

This laptop will feel like nothing and you can carry it around while having all the powerful features. Another great feature is its battery timing, you can have up to 12-13 hours of non-stop power usage which can be extended – if used with caution – up to 19-20 hours.

Now, 16 GB of RAM and 1 TB SSD storage gives you enough room to use any software that is considered to be heavy-duty, it also means that you will never miss out on any software of your liking or requirement.

Although the top-notch graphics are not essential, this LG laptop will make sure with its integrated Iris Xe Graphics GPU card that you stay at the top of the line.

4.                ACER Swift 5 – A Budget Friendly Laptop of Vehicle Troubleshooting

Cheaper vehicle workshop laptops
Image Courtesy: Amazon

Specifications:

·       Display: 15.6 Inches

·       RAM: 16 GB

·       SSD Storage: 256 GB

·       CPU: Core i7

·       GPU: Integrated

Acer SF515 is highly light-weight, it weighs around 2.2 pounds, which eventually means that it’s portable, which is one of the key features for technicians, gamers, or anyone who needs their laptops with them most of the time.

SF515 gives you around 10 hours of non-stop usage battery life so you won’t get stuck in the middle of your work.  Acer SF 515 is beyond any doubt a highly portable laptop, but now let’s talk about other important features this provides you with.

Acer gives you 16 GB of RAM with 256 GB SSD storage, the RAM is good enough but SSD storage is on the bottom line. I think apart from the SSD feature Acer excels in all qualities you want to run an automotive diagnostic software.  For example, its 15.6 Inches display screen gives you a good sight view with an integrated GPU card.

It comes with almost all necessary ports, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth features that come in handy while doing automotive diagnostic tests on different cars. But what makes it extremely helpful is its backlit keyboard. While performing the automotive diagnostic test, a backlit keyboard acts like an extra helping hand.

5.                ASUS ZenBook 13 – A Compact and Sleek Laptop for Limited Spaces in Auto Workshop

thin laptop for installing vehicle troubleshooting software
Image Courtesy: Amazon

Specifications:

·       Display: 13.3 Inches

·       RAM: 16 GB

·       SSD Storage: 512 GB

·       CPU: Core i7

·       GPU: Intel Iris Xe Graphics

Another great laptop is ASUS ZenBook 13 edition which is quite popular among people who prefer extremely light-weight laptops to carry around. The ZenBook 13 weighs around 2.51 pounds, which is just a little bit more than the ACER SF515.

However, its screen size is 13.3 Inches which is hanging around the bare minimum requirements and it is surely no match to the SF515 in this regard.

ZenBook is the latest model by ASUS and because of that it supports all software while giving ultra-high performance and speed, however, the credit also goes to its 16 GB RAM and 512 GB SSD.

But its SSD and screen features can be ignored because the main feature is its CPU that is run by and supports Windows 11 pro and just for a little more information, it is 11 generation Intel Core i7.

In short, it might be a bit on the edge in terms of the SSD storage and screen features, but this is covered by its amazing speed, performance, the life of the battery and Iris Xe Graphics card. So, not only can you use it for Vehicle Automotive Diagnosis, but you can also run several high-profile games, software, and programs while easily carrying it in your backpack.

6.                Lenovo Yoga C940 – Best Lenovo Laptop for Installing Auto Workshop Applications

low budget laptop for vehicles
Image Courtesy: Amazon

Specifications:

·       Display: 14 Inches

·       RAM: 12 GB

·       SSD Storage: 512 GB

·       CPU: Core i7

·       GPU: Integrated

Lenovo’s Yoga is among those top-notch laptops list that can offer you the maximum number of battery hours, Yoga gives you around 15-16 hours of non-stop usage battery life while being weighed around 3.09 pounds. It weighs a little more than the ZenBook 13 but all laptops around this weight are considered to be lightweight and portable.

In terms of features you can get RAM for up to 12 GB, fair enough to run the Automotive Diagnosis on your vehicle, and 512 GB of storage that is also fair enough to run the programs without buffering or any errors. The Graphics card used in the Yoga C940 is Intel’s Iris Plus that is integrated.

If you are satisfied with these features then we would like to inform you that it comes with a touchscreen – that is an additional feature and extremely helpful – with a screen size of 14 inches. Because it’s Core i7, you will not need to worry about its compatibility with different software.

It also supports the latest Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and different types of ports models that makes the whole connectivity and display process even simpler!

Minimum Hardware Requirements to Run Automotive Diagnostic Software:

Whether you are an automotive engineer or home technician, the above-mentioned automotive diagnostic software or any other software you choose won’t be able to perform well unless you get them on a fairly compatible laptop.

RAM

The laptops being used in vehicle automotive diagnosis are a bit special and built with some specific requirements. First and foremost is the RAM that you need to look out for, the minimum requirement to run any such software is 4 GB. For better and excellent performance, it is highly recommended to use a laptop with 16 GB or 32 GB RAM.

SSD Storage

Storage or depository is another factor that plays an important role because there should be plenty of space to save the reports and data.

You need to check the SSD storage capacity of your laptop as well. The minimum requirement is 256 GB of SSD which will be the least storage capacity, always look for more or create by customization (only if you can do that in future).

An SSD storage of above 512 GB is recommended and if you can get around 1 TB or more it is the best by all means.

Display

To see everything clearly and get crisp and sharp images you need a good display panel that can provide high quality for better results. The minimum requirement for display is at least 13 inches with a resolution of 1920×1080. Of course, more is always better!

CPU

CPU is another important part of running a successful diagnostic test. When you have a powerful processor, you can run heavy-duty software without getting worry wrinkles on the forehead and in this line of work, this is a must-have!

To perform and work with such software you need at least an Intel Core i5 8th generation CPU processor. On other hand, the laptops that are latest or those launched in recent years are also good to go.

GPU

Who can forget this part, some might think it’s not important but one way or another, it surely is!

The GPU helps to enhance the capacity of your graphics and you won’t lack anywhere with a good GPU. The minimum requirements for a GPU are not high, and iGPU Intel HD620 would do the work but when you are getting everything top-notch, why not the GPU, right?

Battery Life

The most important thing is the battery life of your laptop. When your CPU runs high-end programs it automatically drains the battery. And, if you are a technician, this feature is the foremost. Good battery life is worth everything at the end of the day.

At this point, we have discussed and covered most aspects you want to have in terms of software as well as hardware to perform a successful vehicle diagnostic test. Now, we will share with you the most compatible, pocket-friendly list of the top 6 laptops that are in the trend.

Verdict

We have tried to jot down a list of all laptops that are highly compatible with almost all Automotive Diagnostic Testing software here.

All these models are not only useful for automotive or home technicians but all those who need a laptop that is equipped with heavy-duty features and also portable with maximum battery life and utmost speedy performance and output.

A good laptop is the one that is helpful for you in the hour of need and provides you with maximum output and this good laptop may vary from situation to situation and according to a person’s choice.

However, for an automotive technician or a home-technician LG 16Z90Q-K.AAS8U1 is the most suitable laptop because it comes with marvellous screen size, plenty enough RAM and SSD storage, more than average battery life and it is light-weight as well.