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Attach PC floppy drive to Amiga...

Al Hartman

Veteran Member
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Aug 13, 2013
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Keansburg, New Jersey, United States
I have two Amiga 500's I'd like to fix.

Both power up, but won't read floppies.

I see on eBay, a guy in Greece selling a cable to attach a PC drive to an Amiga 500. But, he wants a lot of money for it. Does anyone have the wiring diagram for the cable so I can try to make my own?

Or, a more reasonable source?

I'm also thinking of making the parallel port cable for the PC that lets you write ADR files direct to a floppy.
 

konc

Experienced Member
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Apr 8, 2013
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Greece
The (considerable) amount of money is because with this adapter you can use simultaneously the pc floppy AND the gotek. But I agree, it's an amount to think of if you just need the floppy.
btw the seller is reliable, I've bought myself some amstrad cables from him.
 

jltursan

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Sep 24, 2010
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Madrid, Spain
Anyway, what's your drive's brand & model?. There're plenty of drive adapt tutorials in the net. IIRC I've adapted an ALPS drive for an A500 without too much fuss.
 

KC9UDX

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IIRC I've adapted an ALPS drive for an A500 without too much fuss.

Same here.

I've also found drives from DEC machines and even Macintoshes, that will work just fine, except for physical alignment with the case opening. With the Mac drives though, you need to implement some kind of eject mechanism.

Amiga floppy drives are industry standard drives, electrically, that actually adhere to the standard better than the PC and clones.
 

geoffm3

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Not so sure about that. IIRC, while PC drives can be made to work by adapting the cabling, there was some signal that's not typically available on PC floppy drives that renders some troubles in game software (RDY/BSY? Can't recall offhand). But generally the results are fairly good. Good enough at least to test out your hardware before spending money on pricier gadgets.
 

RizThomas

Experienced Member
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Jan 2, 2012
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Surrey,BC,Canada
If you followed the link that amadama pointed out, I have converted the Samsung SFD-321B as drives on both my Amiga1200 and A2000s. They work great.

Also, have you looked at Amiga Forever site. I built the Amiga Explorer and used it as well. Is it well documented there.
 

jac_goudsmit

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Apr 4, 2012
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Arizona
That thread runs to 16 pages, TL/DR.

All the essential information appears to be in the first post: the drive has to be modified to activate on DS0 instead of DS1 (DS=Drive Select), and the DC (Disk Change) signal has to be on pin 34 instead of pin 2. A cable to use a PC floppy in an Amiga is nothing more or less than a short ribbon cable with drive pin 2 (DC) connected to computer pin 34, and a twist between pins 4 and 6 (to switch DS1 and DS0). I could make such a cable for less than $5 in parts (mind you, on eBay I see floppy drives for $5 too -- I'd probably just do the hack on a floppy drive and not even bother putting a cable together).

Disclaimer: I've known since the 1990s that this hack existed but I've never tried this myself; I don't own an Amiga anymore (unfortunately).

===Jac
 
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RizThomas

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Jan 2, 2012
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Surrey,BC,Canada
Yes..the first essential information (as mentioned above) are that is what I needed to know once I got a few used drives from my local (Freegeek) computer recycle store. I can assure that if you can find some Samsung SF-321B drives ( which was easy to modify), they work great as Amiga drives. I have extended the life of 2-A2000 and A1000 of mine.
Although the thread is long, it all depends on what PC floppy drive you want to modify. As you go on the thread, several PC drives are being discussed ( much like HowTo).

RizThomas
 
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