help formating 720k disks

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By retrocanada76

Champion (456)

retrocanada76's picture

23-09-2011, 15:26

Finally my quest is over. After 2 fakes Teac FD-05PUB drives bought from different stores I found a true 720k compatible drive at:

They are indeed experts in floppy disks. Also, they still have DD 3.5 disks for sale, both recycled or new and even unformatted. Very rare! I found them through Amiga forums. I recommend them. The drive they sell is a Dell part that works as usb external or internal laptop drive for lattitude brand.

Don't buy any Teac FD-05PUB. This product seems to be discontinued by Teac and instead you get fake chinese crippled drives. I have 2 to prove. Even worse, the box states they can read/write 720k but it's a lie! Maybe I use them to hold the door open, or any other use for a brick...

By Moniz

Champion (340)

Moniz's picture

01-10-2011, 23:53

I'm thinking about buying the drive you recommend because I want to buy a new pc that hasn't got an internal drive.
are you able to test a program for me?
I use this program now on my old PC for making or putting images from and to a disk, it also helped me a lot with recovering very old damaged discs.#
It says it can't be used with usb drives but I want to be sure.#
heres' the ling

thanks in advance!

By retrocanada76

Champion (456)

retrocanada76's picture

04-10-2011, 04:22

The program doens't even install. It says USB drives don't offer the same hardware access level.

By RetroTechie

Paragon (1475)

RetroTechie's picture

04-10-2011, 14:13

Don't buy any external FDD because as I said, the new ones don't work anymore.
Then don't buy new but 2nd hand. People are ditching these things because hardly anyone uses floppies anymore. Where possible check specs before buying. Or if you get it in person (vs. over the mail), test on location with some 720K disks before forking out cash.

Old internal floppy drives may have functioned as ventilation holes & be full of dust, for external drives this isn't an issue. And since (on the PC) floppy drives are rarely used anyway, a 5~10 years old 2nd hand one might be better condition/quality than flimsy crap you buy new.

FWIW: I use Linux, and floppy access goes through /dev/fd0 device that provides logical sector access. Read: copy-protected discs or exotic formats (like MSX 360K Hannibal ) are a no-go, but internal old-style PC floppy controller or USB external drive makes no difference. Linux-standard "dd" program works fine for reading/writing 720K disk images, I keep some images of freshly MSX-formatted disks on my PC in case I ever want to create an MSX-bootable floppy. 360K format is problematic because PC also knows a 360K format with double-sided 40 tracks, just use 720K disks (or in my case: SD flash cards) for transferring files or 360K images, and write 360K images with floppy drive on MSX.

Type I have here is Mitsumi D353FUE, which works fine with Double Density discs (bought on a flea-market IIRC, I just took a gamble and it worked).


Supporter (1)

AmpMSX's picture

23-06-2018, 23:58

I really appreciate all the insight everyone contributed to this topic. I registered so I could confirm that TEAC FD-05PUB floppy drives made in Japan (late 90s/early 00s) will format 720kb floppies. I bought a Sabrent floppy drive that is internally a TEAC drive that DID NOT WORK with 720kb, DD floppies --- it was made after 2007. $20 wasted on that purchase from Fry's. Found my FD-05PUB from the early 00s on eBay for about $15. It is an ugly case but it works flawlessly in Windows 10. Plug and play all the way.

I had to use a proprietary piece of software to transfer a disk image to a freshly formatted 720kb floppy for a Roland MC-500II sequencer made in the late 80's. The format works easily by using the command prompt in Windows 10 and entering:

format a:

Windows 10 automatically recognizes that there is a DD floppy in the TEAC drive and formats accordingly.

Thanks helping me figure out what drive would do the trick.

By Pencioner

Paladin (801)

Pencioner's picture

24-06-2018, 11:22

Also this IBM USB floppy has the TEAC FD-05PUB inside. I just noticed today what's inside (when read this post and read labels on my floppy drive...)

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