Portable Data Acquisition and Logging – AEM Electronics CD-5

This is the primary AEMnet CANBUS plug that goes to the CD-5 dash.

The harness main plug positively locks into the back of the CD-5 to fully populate all of the back plugs of the dash unit.

Other AEMnet devices like this X-Series wideband air/fuel ratio gauge P/N 30-0300 can daisy chain for data logging to the CD-5 via the second CAN plug on the harness.  This is super handy for tuning!  If you want to monitor or log more devices, AEM has several different accessory expansion modules with varying amounts of channels you can use to add more.  AEM also has a 4 port AEMnet CAN hub P/N 30-2255 that allows 4 AEMnet devices to daisy chain into the CD-5 CAN plug.  Two hubs can be daisy-chained together to allow 6 devices to be daisy-chained int total!

Adding the X-Series wideband to the CD-5 is just a matter of plugging it in!

Using the CD-5 for dyno testing is just one of many situations our portable data logging unit has come in handy.  Late model cars have ECU’s with very active self-learning with a lot of command authority.  It is very difficult to get consistent dyno results out of them.  We have found that you need to start your dyno pulls at the same water temp, and intake air temp and keep track of the oil temp and don’t let that climb to high to get consistent results.  The ECU’s long and short term trims need to be monitored as a sanity check as that is often an indicator that things are not going right.   When testing parts, like we were doing when testing the Vektor Performance headers on this 991 911 monitoring is very critical, especially because Porsche ECU’s are super active.  If you do not take care, run to run and day to day variance can exceed the gains or losses of the part being tested.  Since tests of a part may occur days after the original baseline run, having data logging makes a great reference to see snapshots of the state of things during the baseline testing.


  1. Wish you guys would put the MSRP of items you write about in the article….though I suppose this is done by design to drive traffic to their website.

    Just wish it didn’t have to be this way.

      1. I’m not buying this feeble excuse. Again, I think this is merely to drive traffic to manufacturers websites rather than making it convenient for the people who matter most: your readers. Most print magazine who do any product testing (including aftermarket automotive accessories and parts) print MSRP. And some even put the caveat “MSRP at time of printing”. And the time it takes to get to print is significantly longer than uploaded web content. I see no reason why this type of disclaimer can’t be done here.

        1. Hi RA! Part of this may have to do with the multiple iterations of the dash. So, as of 6/13/2019:
          30-5600 CD-5 Display: 999.00
          30-5600F CD-5 Flat Panel Display: 940.00
          30-5601 CD-5L Logging Display: 1318.48
          30-5601F CD-5L Flat Panel Logging Display: 1239.99
          30-5602 CD-5G GPS-enabled Display: 1115.48
          30-5601F CD-5G Flat Panel GPS-enabled Display: 1040.00
          30-5603 CD-5LG Logging/GPS-enabled Display: 1419.98
          30-5601F CD-5G Flat Panel Logging/GPS-enabled Display: 1339.99
          The 7″ versions start at 1340.00 and top out at 1740.00. Hope this helps!

        2. The posts are not dated. And these articles stay up forever. So ten years down the road from now, someone will come onto the site and say, “hey, you listed this as the MSRP but that’s not the case.”

          Also, does anyone ever buy at MSRP or buys from the first distributor they find? I don’t know about you, but I shop around.

        3. Also, I spent 5 seconds to highlight “CD-5 Digital Dash Display”, did a copy/paste into google and instantly had prices at JEGS, Ostar Motorsports, and Ebay.

  2. I like that there’s more players in the logging dash stuff than just the old standbys like Motec and AIM. I just wish that AEM had some high speed analog inputs. While it can apparently log at 1khz, I haven’t seen any way to get, say, shock pot data into it at that rate. Definitely a nice setup for most uses though.

    1. Hi Dan, Appreciate your comment! The CD-5 delivers a fully customizable display with logging and GPS for under $1500, which we believe delivers a competitive advantage with respect to price and features, and we are pleased with how well it is being received. You are correct that while the dash can log individual channels at 1kHz, there are still limitations that come from the transmission speed of a sending device. For the vast majority of channels, most CAN Converters transfer at speeds well above what is required for attaining useful data for a large swath of track applications. We assume you are looking for shock pot logging at that speed for frequency analysis, which goes into the realm of burst logging and is typically used for very specialized analysis.

      1. That’s exactly right; shock pots. Please don’t misunderstand – I know as a test engineer in my day job, my desires for data are pretty far out in left field and I can’t fault the CD5 series for not doing some of the more esoteric stuff. Everyone wants their perfect solution for affordable money though, don’t they? 😉

        I honestly think I’m going to dig into documentation – I have a hypothesis that I could set up a CAN stream to feed a CD5 or CD5G from another logger.

        1. We looked into this as we use the AQ1 and both the CD7. The AQ1 can easily do that 1000 hz shock pot sampling, and that is what we use. If you want to use the CD7, use the CAN adapter by Texense into AEMNet canbus channel on the CD7, that will allow you to sample up to 800 hz for the shock pots. Unfortunately there are not alot of analog to CAN adapters on the market that can handle the high sampling rates needed for dampers.

  3. As a side note, the AEMdata software is pretty easy to use. Pretty intuitive, like the Motec software.

    1. Yeah, I downloaded over the weekend and poked around – I really like what’s possible with the dash layouts compared to, say, the AIM dashes. That said, I have some math functions I want to try to implement that so far I haven’t found a good way to do in either dash; in broad terms, rate of change of a channel. I’m half tempted to homebrew an “advanced math box” to sit on the CANBUS and spit out calculated values; I really don’t want to look at Motec, or worse…

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