There are 2 types of consoles, Basic and Advanced.
The Advanced does MDC and decodes DTMF... not REALLY sure of any other advantage worth talking about.
If you want to change up it's as easy as reseting it "properly".
On the rear of the console there is a tiny reset switch where, if you press it, the console does a soft reboot. If you press it 5 times within 5 seconds it dumps all programmed info to default (BAD).
However, if you go into the Service Menu and increase the mic level up or down only 1, then press Mode then press Reset you have an instant upgrade!
BUT, be warned, that doing this may also corrupt the unit if the hardware to support the upgrade isn't already installed.
The Basic console is only programmable through the front panel. The Advanced console uses a PC to RIB cable for programming.
P.S. The Command Plus console functions the same way as the Comtegra but the "upgrade" hasn't been tried on one yet to see if it works.
Another tip, do not try and use the RSS to talk to the console if your machine uses Windows. Use a real boot floppy for DOS, or you risk corrupting the codeplug.