LET’S TALK ABOUT THE ZN085 ABRITES V850/ RH850 PROGRAMMER IN DETAIL
Alright, let’s try to compile all the information one may require in regard to the Abrites V850/ RH850 programmer to date so that we can all be on the same page of what it does and how it does it. Before we start, I believe we owe you an apology. All the updates and revisions took a longer time than we promised, and this raised the tension from you guys, our customers. The reason for that was that we needed to be sure that the product you will receive works well and provides the solutions we want it to. What you are about to read below is our current position regarding the V850 and RH850 and where we have reached. Everything you do not see here will be added in the future. If you want to get acquainted with the Renesas/ NEC processors you can read the following brochure: HERE.
Also please check this excellent article describing key differences: HERE.
I. How does reading of processors work?
- We said in the beginning of the project that we do not plan on cut ANY tracks on the PCBs, we also said we do not want to lift legs from the processor, and we did not want to remove components from the PCB unless we absolutely have to. At the end of the day, it is supposed to be as easy as possible for you guys. We must remove components from the PCB, however what we need to do is completely reversible and it is to the bear minimum. The user manual contains photos of all components required for removal for each cluster. In the next revisions we will reduce the number of components we remove by 30-40% because we already know what we need to do.
II. Types of files, licenses, and usage.
- In this very important section we need to communicate the following. The files you read from the V850 and RH850 programmer ZN085 are encrypted. They can only be used with the ABRITES software. All the available functionality uses specific Abrites software, most of it can be accessed directly from the V850/RH850 programmer menu. The functionality not available from the ZN085 software can be accessed directly from the respective software. For example, the ability to read the pin code for Clio V based cars will provide you with the PIN and you can place it in the ABRITES Diagnostics for Renault online. Here are the licenses you are going to need and what you will need them for:
• VN007 used for Mileage recalibration in VAG vehicles with V850 processors.
• VN009 used for key programming in VAG vehicles with V850 processors.
• VN021 used for key programming in VAG vehicles with RH850 processors and Megamos AES keys.
• RR026 used for All Keys Lost programming for Renault vehicles equipped with HFM/BCM modules.
• NN010 is used for Nissan cars with HFM/ BDC modules. We know that not all countries have Renaults and we do not want you to pay twice.
In terms of VAG clusters we support both analogue clusters with physical needles and Virtual Cockpits. Let me just take a moment to discuss key programming in MQB, particularly all keys lost as this is a major topic. You know how some tools give you something they call sync files. These files are taken directly from the VAG database and contain all needed Component Security bytes per the vehicle’s VIN. This is “thin ice” and we do not want to do that because the databases are not available freely and using them causes dangers for the company. We are not about that. The modules you need the CS from in order to program a key are ECU, TCU, ELV (if the car is manual) and MOST IMPORTANTLY Cluster. We can help with basically all these modules other than the ELV. This is a thing nobody can do for you at this time.
If you gather all these CSs you are good to do all keys lost. There are many conditions – locked crypto cores of ECU processors, etc. But in general, we can help with all but ELV Component Security.
The Abrites V850/RH850 programmer comes with a power supply. Normally the power from your PC should be enough, however, please use the power supply to be certain, if it comes in the box then use it. Speaking of which I must tell you about the USB. Please use nothing but the USB cable we supply. If you use another USB the programmer WILL NOT WORK.
Another important step I need to mention is that the ZN085 makes constant reading attempts until it succeeds, however reading a processor should not take any longer than 40 minutes. If it does, please double, triple and quadruple check your pinouts, the exact components you need to remove and if all checks out get in touch with our Support Team. Speaking of which please keep an eye on the ever-evolving User Manual HERE.
This is great and all but let me tell you what you can and cannot do as of today. Many people look at the V850 and RH850 as one entity, as if they are the same processor with slight differences. This is the same as saying that Usain Bolt and I are the same because we are both human, however if “Mr. 9.58” and me line up for the 100m dash the differences will quickly become apparent. Now we have full support for V850 – we can read them, decipher them, and write back data to them – no problem. This allows us to do basically whatever we want – let’s take the VAG clusters for example – in them we can read the Component Security of the dashboards, key programming is the highest priority, yes, we can also modify the values for the mileage and write it back, we can do whatever it is that you need.
RH850 is very different, they work in a completely different way, this is why at this point in time we can just read them. The reason for this is their complexity. What we can now offer for VAG dashboards with RH850 is the ability to see the CS of the dashboard with the data we provide. From there this opens the ability to complete cloning of dashboards.
Now is the time to open a very large can of worms and tell you all about the way we are able to write RH850… “Wait, what? You just contradicted yourself?! You literally said you cannot write RH850 one second ago, are you going mad?”
- Absolutely, but hear me out. Our developers have successfully completed the ability to read and write RH850 processors here. The problem really comes from the desire for stability. Part of the initial delay of the ZN085 was obviously the desire to provide a product that is at least feasible to use by a normal human and not just absolute experts. Now the writing of the RH850 is pretty much the same. The guys upstairs (my office is on the ground floor) are working on making the writing of RH850 repeatable and stable, at least as easy as the V850. Once that is done it will be released with videos and manuals as we all want.
III. Caution is our only option. Failure’s not!
ZN085 is a brand-new product, in fact there are one or two other programmers which came out with big promises which did not really deliver. This is why we cannot afford to slip and make a mistake. You guys will eat us alive, and we know that. This is why we are moving one step at a time, and we are trying to refine, hone and polish every last detail. Of course the continuous updates will be sent to you the moment we test them, you will probably not even notice most of the updates. As we have discussed before, the guys behind this project focus more on the minor increments that improve everything slightly rather than the bulky updates which cause confusion.
IV. Common points of error and troubleshooting.
A common error has been that customers have soldered the cables a bit loosely and they have accidentally touched a ground somewhere. The problem manifests in excessive heat from the processor. So far we have not had reports of one burning but try not to be the first.
We have seen multiple VAG cluster revisions with minimal differences. Our best way forward is for you to take a detailed photo of the dashboard and we will help from there.
Capacitors should be removed with a soldering iron, please do not try to remove condenser elements from the PCB with a heat blower gun.
V. Your input is essential, we need you.
Let me tell you about some of the things we have tested and plan on working.
• Ford BCMs have been read successfully and they require minimal input because they require minimal taking apart.
• FIAT BCMs (Renegade, 500e, etc.) are more complex. Both Ford and FIAT BCMs have multi-layer constructions, in Ford all the pins you need are on one side where with FIAT you need to disassemble the BCM to get to the points you need which makes it a bit more difficult for you. For the moment we cannot tell you when this will be implemented but it has been successfully done.
• Toyota SRS modules – these use RH850 most commonly and we need you to tell us if you need this. If we have more people, we will take the time to develop.
• Volvo Airbags are pretty much the same.
• Of course we want your feedback to tell us if you would like to see and we will consider if it is possible to do.
All in all, this is where we stand today. Check the support list, check the user manual. We do all we can to constantly improve and evolve the programmer and you will be the first to see all our updates. As boastful as it may seem we are writing history, boys, and girls, and we are doing so together.
Do share your thoughts and keep providing us with your feedback.
ABRITES RH850/V850 Programmer in Action! Mileage Recalibration: VDO MQB Virtual Cockpit 70F3526 V850
The procedure for reading the data is straightforward and the software provides detailed wiring diagrams and instructions for each module. This Programmer comes equipped with the required software for operating on a vast range of vehicles. You do not have to cut any PCB tracks, only remove a few capacitors and solder the Programmer's wires in their place.