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RuudB
May 18th, 2014, 04:14 AM
Hallo allemaal,

I ran into this: http://www.ebay.com/bhp/floppy-disk-to-usb, a device that can emulate a 1.44 MB floppy drive. Is anyone familiar with it and wants to share his/her experience, please?
Many thanks!

Chuck(G)
May 18th, 2014, 08:26 AM
Yes, that looks like a variety of the Gotek drive.

It works well, but note that the format is fixed--18 512 byte sectors per side. Don't expect to put odd or copy-protected (e.g. DMF or XDF) formats on it--and it will not format DD (9x512 sectors) either.

It's a nice cheap solution if your needs are limited.

amouse
May 18th, 2014, 08:43 AM
SO , if you have specific needs it might be a solution to you

Bear in mind that most of the cheap emulators (< 50 USD) are specific to 1.44, 720K or 1.2MB formats

Also they typically will not handle FM and MFM combined format diskettes

Also they may not handle FM (single density) recorded diskettes at all.

If you search on ebay you will find > 30 differerent types and makes

ALSO

there is a close cousin to these cheap emulators. Some companies produce very similar products for usually the 200+ USD dollar
mark. These emulators have better documentation and may be able to write FM single density for example.

2 more things to know.

I would look at Gough Lui's excellent website
http://goughlui.com/
and his review of the gotek emulators. I too bought the gotek emulators but did not review them as well as him
http://goughlui.com/?p=3126 gotek 100 review

I WOULD instead reccomend Hxc emulator. And I made a review here
http://majzel.blogspot.com/2014/04/the-hxc-solid-state-diskette-emulator.html

RuudB
May 18th, 2014, 09:48 AM
Hallo Chuck, Amouse,

Thank you very much for the info!

Chuck(G)
May 18th, 2014, 10:09 AM
The real problem is that nobody, to my knowledge, makes a real floppy emulator. That is, a simple device that will record whatever signal (within limits) that is placed on its write input. Even the HxC is format-specific--the difference is that one can download specific firmware to handle it.

To make my point, consider that it's completely possible to record high-quality audio data in 400 millisecond chunks (two sides of a cylinder at 200 msec. per track). Child's play for a $10 floppy; all but impossible for any of the emulators mentioned.

So, until disabused of my notion, I maintain that there are no true floppy emulators in existence. Not that there couldn't be--there's simply little need for it.

Jeff_HxC2001
May 18th, 2014, 10:00 PM
The real problem is that nobody, to my knowledge, makes a real floppy emulator. That is, a simple device that will record whatever signal (within limits) that is placed on its write input. Even the HxC is format-specific--the difference is that one can download specific firmware to handle it.

!?!?

Sorry but this is completely wrong : The HxC have only one firmware... And it handle all formats...
The HFE file format is a low level, bit by bit copy of what is on the magnetic support...
It seems that you misunderstood how the HxC is different from the others solutions.

http://hxc2001.com/download/floppy_drive_emulator/SDCard_HxC_Floppy_Emulator_HFE_file_format.pdf



Third part : Track data
A track data is a table containing the bit stream of a track of the floppy disk. A track can contain a MFM / FM / GCR or a custom encoding.