ANCEL AD210 vs. AD310 vs. AD410: Which one should a Newbie avoid?

Tim Miller

The ANCEL AD210, AD310, and AD410 are some of the most popular diagnostic scan tools for vehicles. They are not only prominent at ANCEL, but also in the market. However, each of these products is unique in different respects. Any prospective buyer should consider this fact.  

This article is a comparison of the three items across several segments. It brings the products head-to-head. The comparison comes from experiences of users, extensive research, and professional tests.   

Read on to have an easier time choosing from the three great products. 

ANCEL AD210 vs. AD310 vs. AD410: Complete comparison table

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Editor's Pick
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Customer Rating
Weight10.6 ounces9.6 ounces12 ounces
Dimensions9.1 × 7.1 × 1.4 inches9.0 × 6.3 × 1.4 inches9 × 6.3 × 1.6 inches
Vehicle compatibilityOBD2 compliantOBD2 compliantOBD2 compliant
Software/Adapter CompatibilityWindows 2000/×P/Vista/7/8/8.1/10Windows 7/8p
Read & Clear Codes
Data Stream
Freeze Frame Data
O2 sensor Test----
On-Board Monitoring----
Evap System Test--
Vehicle Information
Retrieve Generic Codes, Manufacturer Specific Code, Pending Codes
Turn Off Check Engine Light
Read live PCM DataStream
Support CAN (Controller Area Network)
DTC Lookup--
Languages supported 688
Software update
Supported VehiclesOBD2 cars, SUVs, 12V trucksOBD2 cars, SUVs, 12V trucksOBD2 cars, SUVs, 12V trucks
Read this article to learn and choose the tool which is most suitable for you between Ancel AD210 or AD310 or AD410.
Read this article to learn and choose the tool which is most suitable for you between Ancel AD210 or AD310 or AD410.

ANCEL AD210 vs. ANCEL AD310 vs. AD410: Key differences explained


Despite the design and size similarities, the AD210, AD310, and AD410 have some notable differences. Let us start with the displays. While the AD410 uses a QVGA screen, the AD310 comes with an LCD screen.

ANCEL AD210 is a perfect tool for beginners with their excellent range of capabilities and reasonable prices
The ANCEL AD210 has a high brightness LCD screen with a resolution of 128 × 64 pixels.
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The ANCEL AD210 has a high brightness LCD screen with a resolution of 128 × 64 pixels. The screen gives clear test results. Also available are contrast adjustment and white backlight. For the AD310, the screen measures 128 × 64 pixels. It allows for contrast adjustment and has a white backlight. 

The ANCEL AD410, with the upgraded capability, features the more powerful 2.4 inches TFT true-color (262K) LCD. The user interface (UI) design enhances easy access to Review, Setup, DTC Lookup, OBDII Diagnostics, and Inspection and Maintenance readiness. The device is suitable even for a newbie- no need to go back to the manual to progress with the diagnosis. 

Yes, the three items have simple designs, but the simplest has to be the ANCEL AD210 with only three keys. Like the ANCEL AD310, this item comes with a backlit display. However, buyer will mostly recognize the three simple keys. 

As one would expect, the ANCEL AD410 is the most complicated. It has a key at the center to guide Inspection and Maintenance readiness tests. Along with this is an upgraded full-color display.  

Features and functions

Ancel AD210
ANCEL AD210 OBD II Car Code Reader Automotive Vehicle
The Ancel AD210 is a code reader which are capable of retrieving and clear codes.

The best way to describe the AD210 or AD310 is a code reader. In other words, the two products are capable of retrieving and clear codes. They have the most basics functionalities as compared to the AD410. The AD310 is slightly more advanced than the AD210. For instance, it provides the EVAP system test. 

Ancel AD310
ANCEL AD310 Classic Enhanced Universal OBD II Scanner
The Ancel AD310 provides the EVAP system test, which is slightly more advanced than the AD210.

The diagnostics in the AD410 and AD310 are more advanced than just reading and clearing codes. An example is the capability of the AD410 to run tests on oxygen sensors and the EVAP system (test also available in AD310). EVAP system comes in handy for monitoring fuel tank conditions. Furthermore, the ANCEL AD210 may not have an in-built DTC lookup, but you will find it in both the AD410 and AD310. 

Ancel AD410
ANCEL AD410 Enhanced OBD II Vehicle Code Reader Automotive
ANCEL AD410 gives repair suggestions via the error database of the manufacturer. These suggestions come from solutions that mechanics have suggested over time.

Unlike the AD210, the AD310, and the AD410 feature DTC Lookup and EVAP system monitoring test capabilities. The latter is instrumental for monitoring fuel tank conditions. 

It is also noteworthy that the ANCEL AD410 gives repair suggestions via the error database of the manufacturer. These suggestions come from solutions that mechanics have suggested over time. 

DTC Look-Up library and other extras

The ANCEL AD410 and AD310 have an extra feature that makes them stand out from the AD210- the DTC lookup library. This built-in feature enables the user to save time when retrieving data. While this information is available online, having it on the screen at the touch of a button is a time saver. 

For more special performance, the ANCEL AD410 offers a Review & Print capability that records diagnostic data and DTCs. If you connect the device to a laptop, you could print out this report. 

Performance and maintenance

Ancel AD410 is a DIY code reader which can read and erase error codes.
Ancel AD410 can read and erase error codes, reset monitor when the Check Engine Light comes on, and save you the trips to your mechanic.
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Each of these products is a DIY code reader. Once you plug it in the 16-pin port, it performs error diagnosis promptly. It is designed for engine system checks and reading/erasing error codes. The errors giving the warning light are usually engine-related. These scanners lack the capability to diagnose errors for other systems such as ABS and SRS.

The scanners get error codes and search for respective meanings. Results emerge on the screen.  

Maintenance of these devices is stress-free because they are sturdily built and have simple designs. It pays to accord the diagnostic scanners as much care as possible. For instance, avoid unnecessary exposure of the plug-in pins to forces that may break them. Further, coil the cable nicely during storage to prevent breakage. 

The ANCEL AD410 can form performance and maintenance logs. These logs are useful in mechanical repairs. 

ANCEL AD210 vs. ANCEL AD310 vs. AD410: Key things in common

Easy to use

Users with little or no technical knowledge can use these ANCEL products without much trouble. The scanners are all solidly built, which makes them ideal for harsh working environments. This fact does not take away the fact that the designs are appealing. Portability is also evident these diagnostic tools. 

Handheld products

The three devices are handheld, with the bulkiest-looking one being the ANCEL AD210. Height is almost the same at around 9 inches, which is quite comfortable for most users. The small screens complement the compact designs well. 

Scanners have no battery

The three scanners lack batteries. Once the diagnostic tool connects to the car, it draws power and does its job. This connection goes through the OBD port just underneath the steering wheel. 

Basic functionalities included

Whether you have the AD210, AD310, or AD410, you can comfortably get the codes. The most important functionalities are available in all three. In addition, these products can find engine system-related fault codes fast and easily. They can easily read and clear the codes. 

On top of that, the scan tools are capable of performing tests such as the Inspection and Maintenance monitor readiness test and turn off the check engine light. The three also retrieve important vehicle information such as CVN (Calibration Verify Number), VIN (Vehicle Identification Number), and CID (Calibration ID). 

OBD2 compliant products

On vehicle compatibility, the products are OBD2 compliant. In other words, the scanners are compatible with year 2000 and newer EU-based vehicles and Asian cars plus year 1996 and newer US-based ones. You can locate the OBD2 port underneath the dashboard. It is a 16-pin port that only requires a connection to the device for the diagnostic process to begin. Provided the car has a 12V battery, this process should be flawless. Plug the device into the port and wait for it to power up and signal for you to start the ignition. 

Supported protocols

The ANCEL AD210, AD310, and AD410 support all OBD protocols as listed below:

  • ISO9141 – Asian and European carsKWP2000
  • J1850 PWM – Ford Company 
  • CAN (Controller Area Network)
  • J1850 VPW – General Motors

Supported vehicles makes

Ancel AD310 is suitable for a wide range of cars manufactured globally that apply OBD2 diagnostic protocols.
Ancel AD310 is suitable for a wide range of cars manufactured globally that apply OBD2 diagnostic protocols.
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The list above for supported protocols means that a wide range of cars manufactured globally that apply OBD2 diagnostic protocols can work with the scanners. Many hybrids, SUVs, cars, and light trucks in Europe and the United States fall under these categories. 

Warranty, software, and languages

These scanners typically come with attractive warranties and money-back guarantees. Most dealers give at least a 1-year warranty on the products. Part of the warranty coverage is workmanship and material defects. 

ANCEL code readers provide software support to help diagnose engine issues. The ANCEL AD310 is like the AD410. Its software and updates are available in 8 languages- English, German, French, Spanish, Finnish, Dutch, Russian, and Portuguese. The AD210 supports two languages less.  

While the ANCEL AD410 requires occasional software update, the AD310 and the AD210 does not need such attention. All products are ready for use out of the box. Users need not to worry about these updates; they are available on the company’s website for free. The devices have instructions on their screens to help with the download and installation process. 

User manual download

User manuals for ANCEL AD210, AD310, and AD410 are available on Ancel’s website once you have created an account with an email and password. But you can also download the manual with only one click on my website.

If you order the product, it will usually come with a user manual. There is also an electronic user manual on the scanner that you can access in the menu options.  

ANCEL AD210 vs. AD310 vs. AD410: Pros and cons

Pros and cons of Ancel AD210


  • Compatible with many vehicles
  • Easy to use
  • Good price
  • Attractive warranty
  • Errors fixation before error clearing


  • Restricted to 12V cars
  • Only engine diagnosis
  • It is unreliable sometimes

Pros and cons of Ancel AD310


  • Easy to use
  • Affordable
  • Has freeze frame data feature
  • Compatible with a wide range of vehicles


  • Excludes some OBD2 modes
  • Diagnosis stops at the engine

Pros and cons of Ancel AD410


  • Test or graphic presentation of live data
  • True color – TFT screen
  • Offers diagnostic reports for printing
  • Internet update available


  • On-board monitoring test accessibility challenges
  • Beginners may find it hard to follow troubleshooting process

Final Thoughts

Do you have a favorite among the three diagnostic scanners?

Ancel AD310
ANCEL AD310 Classic Enhanced Universal OBD II Scanner
ANCEL AD310 is the first choice for newbies because this is a simple quick tool with a suitable price.

A newbie is typically after a simple tool that does the job accurately and quickly. Budget is often top on the list of priorities too. That is why I recommend the ANCEL AD310 as the first choice.

An inexperienced user should not probably go for the more advanced AD410 if the AD210 and AD310 are available. With their excellent range of capabilities and reasonable prices, these two are perfect for beginners. They are also relatively easier to use.

If this analysis has helped you decide which diagnostic scanner works for you, please let us know in the comments section. You could also share the article using the buttons below.


1. What kind of Live data does the ANCEL AD310 stream?

The AD310 device displays real-time Live Data. This data includes system status information (fuel system status, closed-loop, open-loop, etc.) and values (temperature, speed, voltage, RPM, etc.). This information comes from actuators, sensors, and switches.

2. Will the ANCEL AD410 display Mass Air Flow (MAF) values, engine rpm, and oxygen sensor values?

Yes, it will. All the listed are basic obd2 parameters monitored by any basic scanner. The AD410 will display CEL trouble codes that are exclusively emissions-related. Note that it does not diagnose another engine- or body- or chassis-related problems.

3. Can I download the updates for the AD410 on my Mac?

Sorry. The upgrade for AD410 only supports Windows 7/8/10, so it will not work on a Mac

4. I just bought ANCEL AD310. I am experiencing Vehicle Linking Error when trying to use it. Please help.

This problem can emanate from several issues. The device itself could be faulty. There could also be a problem with the connections. However, the first recommended check is whether the car ignition is ON. Then securely connect the DLC of the car to the connector. Turn OFF the ignition and wait a few seconds before switching it back ON. If the module is still not working, it might be time to check with the manufacturer or dealer.

5. The ANCEL AD210 says it clears error codes and turns off the CK engine light. Elsewhere, it says it does not clear fault codes. Is there a difference between fault codes and error codes?

An error code appears when the device detects a fault from surrounding sensors to help pinpoint the error.

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