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Old 03 December 2020, 12:45   #1
Derek
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Which IDE > SD adaptor/adapter?

Hi there more experienced Amigans

I'm in the hunt for an SD card HDD solution. There's a few options available, and i've spent a while trying to figure out the difference. What i've found is:
  • Buffered vs unbuffered makes a difference somehow. I've heard two points about this, are they true?:
    1. if it's unbuffered, the HDD light stays on permanently, or doesn't work properly to indicate drive activity; and
    2. if it's unbuffered, you shouldn't use a cable more than a couple of inches.
  • Very few have a master/slave configuration that works properly (or at all?) with the Amiga.
  • Mounting position matters for other upgrades.
Also, i've seen one which has a secondary IDE outlet - in what scenarios would you use this? It's only just occurred to me that one might use it with a CF or second SD card out the rear port area instead of using the pcmcia adaptor route to transfer files. Would that be a real use-case? Or is it too much hassle to setup whereas the pcmcia route is easy.

So with those things in mind, and anything else you think matters, what is the adaptor of choice at the moment?

Thanks
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Old 03 December 2020, 19:01   #2
Nobby_UK
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Have something similar to this:
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/44-Pin-Ma...i:193663752157
In my 600 and 1200
Both on a 2 inch ribbon
Never been able to do a Master/Slave with these or CF Adapters
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Old 03 December 2020, 20:56   #3
Krashan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Derek View Post
if it's unbuffered, the HDD light stays on permanently
LED HDD permanently on is caused by 3.3 V high logic level used by most of these SD2IDE adapters instead of 5.0 V. While it is accepted by Amiga digital lines, HDD LED circuit uses no logic gates but just a PNP transistor.

It can be fixed by either modding the adapter or using connector with level shifter like this.
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Old 04 December 2020, 01:14   #4
Derek
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nobby_UK View Post
Have something similar to this:
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/44-Pin-Ma...i:193663752157
In my 600 and 1200
Both on a 2 inch ribbon
Never been able to do a Master/Slave with these or CF Adapters
That looks near-identical to this one:
https://www.sordan.ie/product/481/an...miga-600-1200/

Does that have the mechanism that makes it easier to remove the card? That push-in click remove mechanism?

Here's a master/slave version of the above, but i don't quite understand the info provided:

https://sordan.ie/product/508/angle-...de-sd-adapter/

Quote:
* You can also connect 2x 3.5" 40 PIN devices but then 2.5" 44 PIN connector must be empty
* Jumper is for enable/disable HDD LED for 3.5" 40 PIN devices.
* Usually all SD to IDE Adapters are master so 3.5" 40 PIN such as CD-ROM will be always slave.
So i could use an SD card adaptor (44pin) and a CD-rom or 3.5" device (40pin), but not another SD or CF adaptor on that 2nd port?

Last edited by Derek; 04 December 2020 at 01:33.
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Old 04 December 2020, 01:17   #5
Derek
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Krashan View Post
LED HDD permanently on is caused by 3.3 V high logic level used by most of these SD2IDE adapters instead of 5.0 V. While it is accepted by Amiga digital lines, HDD LED circuit uses no logic gates but just a PNP transistor.

It can be fixed by either modding the adapter or using connector with level shifter like this.

Ah, ok, thanks. I was misinformed. So what's the distinction between unbuffered and buffered? Is the cable length thing true or a furphy?
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Old 04 December 2020, 18:05   #6
Nobby_UK
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No mechanism/Spring to ease Removal on either.

Quote:
So i could use an SD card adaptor (44pin) and a CD-rom or 3.5" device (40pin), but not another SD or CF adaptor on that 2nd port?
Possibly, but I'm too mean to pay €26 to find out.
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Old 04 December 2020, 22:43   #7
Krashan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Derek View Post
That looks near-identical to this one:
https://www.sordan.ie/product/481/an...miga-600-1200/
Yep, it is the same SD2IDE adapter model.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Derek View Post
Does that have the mechanism that makes it easier to remove the card? That push-in click remove mechanism?
I have a few of them and all have this push-in click feature.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Derek View Post
So i could use an SD card adaptor (44pin) and a CD-rom or 3.5" device (40pin), but not another SD or CF adaptor on that 2nd port?
It depends. There are two rules:
  1. No more than 2 devices total can be connected.
  2. One of them has to be set to "master", the second one to "slave". If you have two devices fixed at "master", they won't work together. Unfortunately this popular SD2IDE adapter is fixed at "master". Then the second device must be settable to "slave".
A single IDE port can handle one master/slave pair of drives on one cable. This device is just a "rigid cable" with two connectors. There is another category of devices, named "IDE doublers". They effectively create two (almost) independent IDE ports out of one. Then IDE doubler can handle two masters (one on each port), and up to 4 devices total. However they require a software driver and usually are more expensive. An example.

Last edited by Krashan; 04 December 2020 at 22:56.
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Old 05 December 2020, 07:54   #8
Derek
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Awesome info, thank you. I gather the master is the SD card on board.

I was thinking i might use the slave instead of using the PCMCIA adaptor - connect a ribbon cable to a CF adaptor out the rear port (like this). Do you think that will that work? I'm not expecting i'd be able to hot-swap it, but it would be awesome if i could.

EDIT2: I might have found a partial answer here.

EDIT3: However, i want to use that for transferring files from PC - i guess i'd need to format it to FAT32. I know with the PCMCIA adaptor you get a driver disk, can i do it for this setup and if so, any pointers?

I'm still curious to know why the SD card portion is 40 pin when the IDE interface is 44. I guess the SD card interface doesn't need the other 4 pins

Last edited by Derek; 05 December 2020 at 08:59.
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