Category:Quick Disk Drive Interfaces
This page was last modified 12:39, 6 December 2021 by Mars2000you. Based on work by Rderooy and Gdx.



A Quick Disk (QD) is a magnetic disk of 2.8" designed by Hitachi Maxell, Ltd, and the drive was designed by Mitsumi Electric Co., Ltd in 1984.

This format never really caught on in the MSX world. Both the drives and the media are quite rare now.

This storage device can be used with any MSX generation, but when used with Turbo R machines, it's limited to the Z80 mode (which implies booting while pressing the "1" key until you can hear a beep). The Quick Disk uses a Z8440 Serial Input/Output Controller at a certain clock speed, it lacks the WR signal because it is synchronised with the clock of the Z80. When using the R800 mode, is looses synchronisation and you get an I/O error message on the screen.

Only a hand full of MSX software titles were released on this format in Japan and Italy.

Instead the market widely adopted the 3.5 inch diskette format.

Some other companies have used the Quick Drive outside the MSX standard. The Sharp MZ-1500 computer has a built-in Quick Disk Drive. Yamaha, Roland, Korg, Akai and Kawai have used it for their synthesizer, sampler, sequencer and some other sound equipment. Sharp, Casio and Canon for some Japanese word processors.

Disks of the Family Computer Disk System for NES (Nintendo) are Quick Disks with a longer casing.


QD compared to the disk of Family Computer Disk System


This media is called 2.8 inch which probably refers to the size of the medium inside the hard plastic case. The medium is sometimes also called 3.0 inch which refers to the hard plastic casing.

An unformated disk has 64kB on each side. Instead of using tracks like regular disks, and a file system with directory, it is more similar to tape. Data is recorded in a spiral and the whole disk needs to be scanned to do a directory listing. This makes QD much slower then competing disk storage systems.

Deleting files is also a problem, and you can only delete the last file or format the disk and start from scratch.

The Quick Disk interface cartridge will provide a ROM with special QuickDisk BASIC commands

In case of malfunctioning, the Quick Disk Drive needs a new belt, with the following specifications: square shape diameter 40mm and 1.2mm thick.


As this media has been rarely used on the MSX system, none of the MSX emulators has support for it.

However, if you are the lucky owner of a MSX game on Quick Disk, you can be interested in the VirtuaQD hardware emulator (Japanese site), which emulates also the Famicom Disk System. An image of a Quick Disk is first made on a SD card, then you can directly run the game of this disk image. A detailed step-by-step can be found here (again in Japanese).

Pages in category "Quick Disk Drive Interfaces"

The following 13 pages are in this category, out of 13 total.