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Holley’s first standalone digital dash debuted back in the halcyon days of 2017. Outfitted with a 7-inch color touchscreen and wrapped in a weather-resistant aluminum housing, this digital dash offered customizable gauge readouts, data logging, and built-in data playback in a package that wasn’t bound to any particular fueling or ECU ecosystem.
Now Holley has taken that concept and elevated it in a number of different ways with a new pair of Pro series standalone digital dashes, improving everything from the form factor and display aesthetic to the logging capabilities and system expandability. And that means that whether you’re headed out to the race track or a car show, the Pro Dash is up to the task.
“The idea behind it was to provide our customers who might not have a Holley EFI system a way to get the features that this digital dash offers,” says Sean Miles of Holley Performance. “You can run your own sensors, and a lot of the sensors out there are just plug and play with this system. And for the ones that aren’t, you have options to wire those in as well.”
Available in 6.86-inch and 12.3-inch form factors, the sharp looks and robust feature sets of these digital dashes allows them to fit a wide range of applications. “We’re seeing these dashes used in everything from weekend cruisers to high-end race cars,” Miles says.
“Part of the mission of these designs was to allow the customer to be able to program a variety of different sensors – they don’t have to be running Holley stuff in order to make this dash work. So we made sure that it could read whatever you’re sending to it, whether that’s 0-5 volt sensors, or thermistor inputs – whatever kind of sensor they want to run. There’s a lot of custom scaling built into these dashes that allows for quite a bit of flexibility with the sensors that are used. And for folks who are running Holley sensors, there are of course connectors on the harness that plug directly in for things like fuel pressure, oil pressure, manifold air temperature, and coolant temperature.”
And that also means you don’t have to have any fuel injection system to get the benefits of the Pro Dash. “A lot of people use these with carbureted applications,” he points out. “Interfacing with an EFI system isn’t a requirement in order for this dash to provide its functionality. And that’s the beauty of it: for folks who have always wanted the look of a modern digital dash in their vehicle but the lacked an ECU or fuel injection system that supported one, this is the ticket.”
This simplified diagram shows the core configuration of the semi-terminated wiring harness that’s included with both Holley EFI Pro dashes.
Although the 6.86-inch and 12.3-inch Pro standalone digital dashes are virtually identical when it comes to capability, the 6.86-inch dash does have a unique feature that sets it apart. “This one has the integrated, 10-LED shift light,” Miles explains. “And that’s programmable in terms of the colors it displays and the RPM range that the LEDs operate in.”
The 6.86-inch digital dash is also equipped with four additional LEDs which can serve as anything from turn signals or high-beam indicators to warning lights. The latter could prove to be particularly useful if, for instance, your oil pressure dropped below a certain threshold – a situation where that LED could end up being the difference between a relatively small problem and a very big one.
Both Pro Dashes boast a sharp 1280x480 resolution display and smartphone-style touchscreen interface that you can truly make your own. “These come with 16 different backgrounds pre-loaded on the device, but your options are basically unlimited,” he notes. “You can simply load whatever image you want into the dash and create your own gauge backgrounds.”
The touchscreen also allows for clever interface designs like the virtual switch panel, which basically eliminates the need for external toggle switches in the car. Simply press a button on this screen and you can trigger a ground output; for example, if you had a fuel pump you need to fire up, a nitrous system you want to arm, or auxiliary lights you want to turn on, it can all be done from this interface in the dash software.
And since these Pro series standalone digital dashes are capable of monitoring up to 238 values in real time through its 13 multi-configurable inputs and two additional dedicated speed channels, it’s also nice to know that storage will never be a limitation when using the integrated data logger.
“You can’t watch every gauge at once and process all of that information, but the digital dash can,” Miles says. “You can program it to record whatever you want – maybe you’d like to go back and look at your last pass at the drag strip and see where you can shave some time, or you’re out cruising around town and you want to see how things are running – that data is there.” The Pro Dash allows for data to be logged directly to its 1GB of internal memory while the integrated microSD slot also allows you to add up to an additional 32GB of on-board storage capacity. Or you can simply data log to a USB flash drive.
The Pro Dash is also loaded with a lot of great technology that might not jump out at you on a spec sheet, but improves the overall experience. The built-in ambient light sensor is one such example. “The auto-dimming feature is definitely handy,” he says. “You don’t realize how blinding a display can be at night until you disable it.”
Along those same lines, the Pro Dash’s USB keyboard and mouse compatibility is particularly useful when you need to spend some time working in the menus. “If you need to make some configuration changes, use that sort of interface can be a bit quicker than using the touchscreen.”
And with both Pro Dash systems now out on the market, Holley is now turning their attention to the software behind it. Much like your smartphone, you can expect the OS that powers these standalone digital dashes to become more refined over time – and you may even see some new stuff down the road. “We’re always developing new firmware updates for these systems,” Miles adds. “And that paves the way for us to implement even more features in the future.”
The 6.86-inch and 12.3-inch versions of the Pro Dash are virtually identical from a feature standpoint, but the former boasts an LED shift light across the top, along with four programmable LEDs in the upper corners.
Both Pro series standalone digital dashes also feature a built-in GPS unit and an external antenna which serves the role of the speedometer and trip odometer, eliminating the need to mess around with the speed output on the vehicle’s transmission and factor in other external variables (like tire size) to get accurate speed and distance readings.
You can quickly transition between different active screens on the Pro Dash with a smartphone-style swipe of the touchscreen.
The Pro Dashes include 1GB of internal memory for data logging, and 32GBs more can be added via the microSD port. Data can also be sent directly to a USB flash drive.
The Virtual Switch panel can eliminate the need for a block of physical switches in the cockpit. If you are running a Holley EFI HP or Dominator ECU, you can also make real-time tuning adjustments directly from the dash itself.
The 6.86" dash has a strip of ten programmable LED lights that can indicate other functions, including turn signals and high beams.
Both of the Standalone Pro Dashes come ready to incorporate Holley EFI CANbus connections for Holley EFI fuel systems if desired and are able to run plug-and-play Holley sensors for oil pressure, fuel pressure, coolant, air temperature, RPM, a Hall effect speed input, boost, fuel level or just about anything else you could want out of a display. (Sensors are not included in the kit.)