FAQ

Questions

1.Q: Is HKS F-CON V Pro Gold ECU worth getting for my WRX / EVOX / R35 / etc?
2.Q: Isn't HKS USA no more? What's happening?
3.Q: Are HKS employees knowledgeable?
4.Q: Who can tune HKS F-CON V Pro Gold v3.0?
5.Q: What's the deal with including HKS's other products on the accessories page?
6.Q: I heard that you can run the F-CON V Pro GOLD / Silver in trim-only mode. Is this possible?
7.Q: Is it possible to log the IGNITION input signal from the stock OEM ECU?
8.Q: Is it possible to run the F-CON iS with a MAP-sensor-only based engine?
9.Q: I benchtested a F-CON V ECU and it's all returning 00 data. What's happening?

Answers

1.Q: Is HKS F-CON V Pro Gold ECU worth getting for my WRX / EVOX / R35 / etc?

1.A: It is advised to avoid HKS ECUs at all cost for newer vehicles, because it is not an open ECU for tuning purposes, and you are restricted to one possibly-not-good tuner (yes - I have received confirmed reports by end-customers of problems) so if you have any problems, the only option is to sell the ECU and take a 1400 AUD loss on the unrecoverable tune, together with another 500AUD+ loss on the ECU hardware itself.

Now... what options are there? Options are:
Tactrix Openport 2.0 - supports Subaru (WRX, STi) and Mitsubishi (EVO6, EVO6.5, EVO7, EVO8, EVO9, EVOX) vehicles.
COBB Tuning AccessPort and AccessTUNER Pro - Nissan GT-R (R35) and 350Z, Mitsubishi (EVO8, EVO9, EVOX), Subaru (WRX, STi).
Haltech - Mitsubishi (EVO8, EVO9).
Link ECU - Mitsubishi (EVO4-EVO8, EVO9), Suburu (v7-v10)

2.Q: Isn't HKS USA no more? What's happening?

2.A: HKS Co. decided to close down HKS USA operations at the end of August 2011, according to this. At the same time, HKS Co demanded V-Pro keys from several authorised tuners, according to a well known Texas tuner and parts dealer:
HKS USA is closed and out of business.

They also took the liberty of completely shutting down the V-Pro program.

Last week (early August 2011) HKS asked me to immediately mail in my V-Pro Key, which would prevent us from
supporting current customers who have the V-Pro and need tuning.

I promptly told them where to shove it.

3.Q: Are HKS employees knowledgeable?

3.A: According to this email exchange, HKS employees themselves dont know correct information and advise customers to perform the wrong action. Which is beneficial to HKS, as they charge US$200-300 per inspection, hardware reset, and repair to their loyal customers:
The issue with all values being displayed as "0" when reading from the ECU most commonly occurs when the communication
cable is plugged into the scramble port rather than the commnunication port. The Powerwriter look like it is reading
correctly but as you say the values of all tables is 0.
 
Although it seems like a small issue, could you please check tghe ECU by connecting to both ports and trying to read the
data. If I'm not mistaken, the communication port on version 3.3 is in the opposite location to earlier versions.
 
Best Regards
HKS Europe Ltd.

4.Q: Who can tune HKS F-CON V Pro Gold v3.0?

4.A: The only authorised tuners who can tune this version of ECU are the ones who have been authorised tuners for the last 10+ years when the v3.0 version was released. Newer tuners are NEVER given access to older version PowerWriter software. Which goes to show that even HKS reward loyal authorised tuners over those who are recently authorised.

5.Q: What's the deal with including HKS's other products on the accessories page?

5.A: The non-V series of ECUs support features such as EIDS (Electronic IDle Stabilizer) and AIC (Additional Injector Controller) and usually those acronyms are not described fully when referred by the main ECUs. The V-series supports these features as an integrated solution so both additional pieces of hardware is NOT required if you choose the top-of-the-range ECU.

6.Q: I heard that you can run the F-CON V Pro GOLD / Silver in trim-only mode. Is this possible?

6.A: As far as I know, trim-only mode - whether fuel and/or ignition - is NOT possible at all. But, it is possible to run the F-CON V Pro in either fuel-only or ignition-only full-control by physically rewiring the harness so IGNITION or INJECTION output goes to the ENGINE, rather than to the HKS F-CON V PRO.

7.Q: Is it possible to log the IGNITION input signal from the stock OEM ECU?

7.A: F-CON V Pro Ver3.2 onwards supports this feature, denoted by the "Stock Ignition Input" table. But there is an unknown trick to enable this feature properly - it can be enabled, however the hardware does not know which pin to use for IGNITION input as the pins used for IGNITION input can be used for OPTIONAL ANALOG / SWITCH inputs.

Apparently F-CON iS hardware can support this feature however it is unknown how to enable it in software since the data is marked as ****.

8.Q: Is it possible to run the F-CON iS with a MAP-sensor-only based engine?

8.A: Even though the OEM map sensor exists, an additional MAP sensor is required. The original MAP sensor is logged, however it is "detected" as an AFM input signal, with no configuration options at all to interpret this value. Hence the second MAP sensor input is REQUIRED. This is confirmed NOT a problem on the F-CON V Pro, even in piggyback configuration.

9.Q: I benchtested a F-CON V ECU and it's all returning 00 data. What's happening?

9.A: This will happen in one of several scenarios:
• ECU connected to laptop, without being connected to harness and vehicle.
• using serial cable with all 6 wires connected to RJ12 plug.
• HKS recommending (see FAQ Q2) authorised workshops to use the incorrect port.
• Password protection system has triggered complete lockout.