Media recognition – Floppy Disks part 3

3 inch Disks (Mitsumi ‘Quick Disk’)


Type:
Magnetic storage media
Introduced:
?1985
Active:
Unlikely.
Cessation:
Used in the 1980s.
Capacity:
?128KB – 256KB
Compatibility:
Requires a 3” drive appropriate to the manufacturer’s specifications.
Users:
Likely to have been individual users and small organisations. Used for word-processing, music and gaming.
File Systems:
Unknown. May vary according to use. The disks were manufactured by Mitsumi and offered as OEM to resellers and used in a range of contexts including Nintendo (Famicom), various MIDI keyboards/samplers (Roland) and the Smith Corona Personal Word Processor (PWP).
Common Manufacturers:
Disks: Mitsumi appear to have made the magnetic disk (the innards), while other manufacturers made the cases. This resulted in different case shapes and labelling. For example Sharp Corona labelled the disks as DataDisk 2.8″
Drives: Mitsumi?

Recognition
The Smith Corona Personal Word Processor (PWP) variant of the disk is double sided with one side being labelled ‘A’ and the other ‘B’. Each side also had a dedicated write-protect hole, known as a ‘breakout lug’.
2.8″ Smith Corona ‘Quick Disk’
3.5″ floppy side-by-side with a 2.8″ Smith Corona ‘Quick Disk’
Nintendo Famicon disk
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High Level Formatting
Unknown. Possibly varied according to use.
3 Inch Disk Drives
Varied according to disk. The Smith Corona word processing disks are most likely to turn up in an archival collection. These were used in a Smith Corona PWP and possible models nos. include: 3,5,6, 6BL, 7, X15,X25, 40, 50LT, 55D, 60, 65D, 75D, 80, 85DLT, 100, 100C, 220, 230, 250, 270LT, 300, 350, 355, 960, 990, 2000, 2100, 3000, 3100, 5000, 5100, 7000LT, DeVille 3, DeVille 300, Mark X, Mark XXX, Mark XL LT. 

Lego mockup of a Nintendo Famicon drive

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Useful links
http://www.cromwell-intl.com/technical/quickdisk-recovery.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_the_floppy_disk

 -Susan Thomas

One thought on “Media recognition – Floppy Disks part 3

  1. We have a few of these disks in the archive of Stephen Spender. Any further guidance as to how the data might be extracted from these disks would be very welcome.

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