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Bully Dog BDX Programmer & Monitor Review

Everything you NEED to know about the Bully Dog BDX tuner

Everything you need to know about Bully Dog’s BDX Programmer And How to Get $40 Off

Tuners and programmers are one of the easiest mods to improve performance on a diesel truck. They can provide a serious boost in horsepower, torque, and fuel economy. Not all tunes are the same though. There are box tuning packages which offer generic tuning and custom tuning designed specifically for your truck. I recently received the Bully Dog BDX which is unique because it offers both box tunes and custom tune capability. It does significantly more than just program your truck too. I’ve spent a couple of months with the product and I wanted to give you guys my final thoughts. Here’s everything you need to know about the BDX tuner and monitor.

What Can the Bully Dog BDX Do For You?

The Bully Dog BDX gives you more control over your diesel truck than you’ve ever had. Not only can you adjust powertrain performance, increasing horsepower and torque, but you can also keep an eye on important vehicle information, and adjust so many features on your truck. The BDX allows you to adjust settings like tire size or the speed limiter. You can even force a manual regeneration to clean that dirty Diesel Particulate Filter! For a full list of BDX capabilities, visit Bully Dog’s Website here.

Easy, Reliable Monitoring & Data Logging

Bully Dog BDX Tuner

A little over 2 weeks ago, I bought my first Powerstroke and I conveniently had two of Bully Dog’s latest products, the Bully Dog BDX and the GTX laying around to help me. They actually helped me in my purchasing decision of the truck. After a visual inspection of everything on the truck and driving the truck like a maniac for an hour, I decided to plug-in my BDX. I had to go through a couple of screens, but then I was able to search the truck for any diagnostic codes. Luckily enough, there were none. But having the Bully Dog BDX handy gave me peace of mind. If there had been any codes, I’d have known about them before I bought the truck. A good monitoring device is so valuable and is a must-have for any truck owner.

The Bully Dog BDX is Highly Configurable

I’ve always been a fan of the digital monitors to monitor my trucks’ vitals. Everything you need is on one easy-to-use screen. For a daily driver, it definitely beats having multiple gauges all around the truck. The BDX gives you close to a dozen pre-set gauge displays that you can configure to your exact liking. You can set up your own display featuring the specific parameters you want.

Bully Dog BDX Available with Box Tunes & Custom Tuning Options

BDX Dyno

I mentioned at the beginning of this article that the BDX is very unique. It offers standard box tuning for guys wanting a simple solution, while also offering custom tune capability. Unfortunately, not all trucks will have the standard Bully Dog tunes available. Before you buy the BDX, I recommend calling and making sure there are tunes available for your specific truck. Certain vehicles will need custom tuning as tunes directly from Bully Dog or SCT won’t be available. Even though my BDX came with boxed tunes for my 2014 F-350 Powerstroke, I chose to purchase a set of tunes from Innovative Diesel.

Get $40 Off Your New Bully Dog BDX

Use Code “DieselResource” at check-out to get $40 off your order when you get your BDX tuner direct from Bully Dog! This Offer only applies if you spend $399 or more and can also be used for a discount on other Bully Dog products as long as you meet that minimum dollar spend threshold. Click here to buy now!

MY FINAL RULING ON THE Bully Dog BDX

Overall, I've really enjoyed having the BDX on my 2014 F-350 Powerstroke. It's simple to use, it allows for custom tuning, and it's given me some serious insight on my truck. While I purchased custom tunes, the BDX came preloaded with box tunes for my truck too. Because it's not a touch screen unit, it's not quite as luxurious as other tuners I've had, but it gives users a little more reliability. Like other monitors and tuners, this product doesn't come with an EGT probe, which means you will have to pay the extra $179 if you want this feature. This product also doesn't come with a mounting solution, so make sure you purchase the mounting hardware for an additional $25. Overall, the unit and custom tunes are much cheaper than other alternatives like EZLynk at a price of $800.

This product won't be right for everyone, as it does not allow you to delete emissions equipment. Therefore, if you plan on building a strictly race vehicle, you're better off going with a product like EFI Live or EZLynk. If you are using your truck as a daily driver or a work vehicle, the BDX is a prime fit.

8

QUALITY

9

PERFORMANCE

10

VALUE

8

DESIGN

QUALITY

I'm giving the BDX an 8 for my quality rating for two reasons. First and foremost, this tuner is incredibly easy to use, and the simple design means a long product life. While the tuner comes with a warranty of one year, I don't see any reason why you would have problems with this unit over any length of time. The second reason is that this unit has already impressed me in terms of durability. This unit has been on my windshield for weeks now, exposed to the heat of a Florida summer with no major issues. Even when my unit gets really hot, it still turns on and functions normally. The only issue I've had is the screen not turning on when I start the truck. I've found the culprit to normally be a poor connection to the OBDII port. After adjusting the cord, everything works well.

PERFORMANCE

While the Bully Dog BDX doesn't share some of the ultra high-tech features of the EZLynk platform, this tuner/programmer is more than enough to meet the needs of truck owners looking for tunes that don't delete emissions systems. Unfortunately, the BDX programmer doesn't allow for deleting emissions, so this isn't the best tuner for your race truck. Box tunes that come with this programmer offer moderate gains and noticeable improvements. For major gains in horsepower, torque, and fuel economy you need to purchase custom tunes.

There are many custom tuning vendors out there, but you should find one who specializes in your type of diesel truck. Once your tuning company finishes your tunes, they can be sent directly to your tuner by the cloud. You only need to connect your device to wifi. If this is not an option for you, you'll have to receive the tunes by email and download them manually.

After doing my research, I decided to roll with Innovative Diesel. They specialize in Powerstroke diesels and they offer custom tuning for the BDX and other Bully Dog Products too. After speaking to a technician on the phone, I received a little insight into just how much horsepower and torque your truck can gain from using their custom tuning. At the top end, the performance + tune gives gains of up to 150 horsepower on the 2011-2016 Powerstroke. ID also has dedicated tow, street, and optimized stock tunes. All of these tunes include transmission tuning too!

After driving around on my custom tunes for the last week, I've gained approximately 2 miles per gallon, while also drastically improving throttle response. I'm not going to go into too much detail on this post, but for more detailed results of my tunes from ID, click here. The three tune pack offering engine and transmission tuning set me back $325, but it was so worth it!

The monitoring and data logging capabilities of the Bully Dog BDX are fantastic. Everything is very customizable so you can keep track of every temperature or specification that is important to you. There are multiple layout options, so everything can be arranged just how you want it. I love the ability to see a percentage of fuel remaining, Diesel Soot Mass in the DPF, and all my temperatures in one screen. My only complaint is the lack of an EGT probe. You have to buy the Bully Dog/SCT EGT kit separately for an extra $179.

While you can have multiple tunes uploaded to the BDX device, Bully Dog doesn't offer Switch-On-The-Fly tuning. To switch power levels you will need to re-flash the vehicle. The screen is also not touch screen, which gives it a little less appeal to the high tech people out there. My experience with touch screen monitors is that they can actually be difficult to use. Sometimes when you click the screen it doesn't work or it's extremely hard to click the correct item as everything on the screen is very small. This product is very simple to use, making it ideal for people who want a seamless tuning experience.

VALUE

Tunes can cost upwards of $1500, sometimes even reaching $4,000 (L5P Duramax). The Bully Dog BDX is at the low end of the spectrum, costing $399. At this price point only the hardware and box tunes are included. Custom tuning is an additional $100-$400, depending on how many tunes you want. Even with all that included, $800 is a very fair price for the data logging, monitoring, and tuning the BDX gives you. Custom tuning with EZLynk is easily over $1,000. You also have a physical monitor which you can use for diagnostics.

DESIGN

The Bully Dog BDX was designed to have a low-profile look. It's not much bigger than the biggest iPhone, but somehow it manages to provide all the data you need on your truck. I really like that it has one sole cord that connects to your vehicles OBDII port. Other tuners sometimes have a module that the OBDII Cord plugs into, and a separate cord that connects to the back of the module and the tuner. This tuner does a great job at cutting unnecessary clutter by cord.

The unit can be mounted using a suction-cup mount, but unfortunately it is not included with the unit when you buy it. It has to be purchased separately. The mount costs $25 and can be purchased by clicking here. This tuner can also measure EGTs, but you have to buy a $179 EGT Kit for this feature. These are my only two grievances about the design of the BDX kit.

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ABOUT Kamil

Founder of Diesel Resource and a complete diesel head. Has a little bit of problem buying too many trucks. Learn more about him by checking out his truck.

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