Real vs Clone Nexiq USB Link 2 Bluetooth

Nexiq USB Link 2   genuine and the clone, a difference?

Many talk about Nexiq’s differences the original and the clone. I have the original Nexiq USB Link 2 and the clone. Here, share something with all of you. I hope it helps.


Let’s start with the easiest way to tell the difference, and that’s packaging. This includes not only what the product looks like, but also the included accessories. Throughout this post, we will publish images side by side, with the authentic Nexiq USB Link 2 on the left, and the clone of China, USB Link 2 on the right. As you can see in the photos below, the real USB Link 2 comes in a nice hard plastic case. The image on the right comes from the clone of China, which contains no case. The cables and the adapter were stuffed into the box.

We then take the content to compare. The original device, shown on the left, comes with the adapter (with all the stickers), a long 6/9 pin cable, a special USB cable (which we’ll talk about later), as well as paperwork. The USB Link 2 clone adapter comes with a wide assortment of cables, covering just about everything. It also has loose stickers to place on the tool, along with a set of 3-disc DVDs.

In summary, the real USB Link 2 will come in a hard plastic case and will come only with the USB cable and the 6/9 pin cable. The fake and clone adapters from China and beyond will come with a great assortment of cables, as well as several DVD discs.


So far, not a huge deal. You can save $ 400, not just get a cheap plastic box, right? Well, there are many more differences, so let’s start with the cables and the connector on the Nexiq USB Link 2. Again, the image on the left is what the bottom connector looks like to the genuine adapter. The image on the right is the clone of China.

In summary, the true USB Link 2 will come with a 26-pin male connector for cables, while the USB Link 2 clone will come with a 15-pin male connector. Remember, Nexiq has put an authentication chip in each cable, so how can these clones do it? The answer is that the porcelain clone adapters are simply Nexiq USB Link’s original printed circuit boards placed in USB Link 2 enclosures. We will continue to prove this point as we move forward.


One thing that people may like about China USB Link is that it comes with a wide assortment of cables – 8 different. The original comes only with the standard 6-pin and 9-pin cable, which is used on commercial trucks. The first thing we notice is that the part numbers are on the labels of the Chinese device. When inspecting these cables, we find that they are all cables for the original Nexiq USB Link, NOT the new USB link 2. This further proves the point that the China adapter is just an original USB link in disguise.

The other problem is that the 6-pin 9-pin cable included in the China clone is NOT the new 9-pin green that has been used in all 2016 truck models. This means that this cable will only physically connect to no trucks built in 2016 or newer. Even if you had the right cable, we have serious doubts that this clone of China is a new 500k bus speed management cable that use this green connector.

In summary, the USB Link 2 clone from China comes with more cables, but these are cables for the original USB link. The 9 pins provided by China will not be compatible with 2016 and newer model year trucks.


The USB connection port is also different on the knock-off of China compared to the authentic USB Link 2. With USB Link 2, there is a fancy clip on the USB cable to prevent it from being detached of the adapter. On the cloning tool, we find that this is an “ordinary” USB cable connector, as you would on a larger printer or USB device. On the USB Link 2 clone we received, this cable was actually very hard to drive, and the plastic cracked a bit when we did it. Again, another reason to stay away from this tool and prove it is a fake / clone.

The other important thing to note is that on the clone / fake adapter, you will see that there is a hole in the bottom. On the original adapter, this is a real button that you could push.


Now that we have explored all the components, let’s take a look at the PCB inside the adapters. Again, we have the original adapter on the left and the China clone on the right. Without being a computer engineer, you can see the differences in the tips right away. The clone adapter is actually made up of 2 circuit boards, with wiring in between, while the original is a solid circuit board. The clone version does not contain a Bluetooth chip, so it is only USB.

the real PCB

the clone PCB


We also thought it was a good idea to show you the adapters side by side. In the first view of the front, you can see some noticeable differences. The sticker on the front, of the same size, has the order of the LED lights and also the size of the different icons. Both adapters will display the Bluetooth logo, but the Chinese version has no built-in Bluetooth. The original adapter also displays an icon for an iPad and an iPhone.

On the back of the adapter, the sticker is a completely different size and much smaller on the USB Link 2 clone. There is also a lot less information, including the fact that it says ” Made in China, “while the original does not.


In summary, we strongly suggest that you do not use the USB Link 2 cloning adapters. Using a USB Link 2 clone will only cause you problems, and is not worth saving a few dollars. There are many other RP1210 adapters that are priced lower than a Nexiq USB Link 2, and are also manufactured by legitimate manufacturers in the United States. The following is a list of things you can look for if you plan to buy one:

  • It does not come in a black plastic case
  • It comes with more than the “long” cable 6/9 pins
  • The connector on the bottom is a 15-pin female
  • The 9-pin connector is not green
  • The USB cable does not “pinch” in the Nexiq USB Link 2
  • There is a hole at the bottom of the tool where the cable plugs
  • The sticker on the front is different so it should

Of course, if you are a handyman, the clone is OK for you. But you should have a Nexiq HQ clone. For cheap craps, forget that. You will get what you pay for. 100% certain.

Be careful to buy a Nexiq clone

I had several people having problems with all the lights flashing and they can not connect anymore, you can not get a guarantee on the Chinese clones, so you have no luck. Chinese clones are also made with much lower quality than the real Nexiq.

I had so many support issues that ended up being bad Nexiq Chinese adapters that I warn customers that if they have a Chinese adapter, they are alone, I do not support them and Nexiq will not guarantee them. Be very careful when buying a Nexiq. TRVideo is a supplier of the real Nexiq and has great support, this is the only source I recommend (Truck Parts Today)–Software-Diesel-Truck-Interface-And-Software-With-All-Installers.html

I used it to program a new chip. Success.