Using a mini disc adapter?

Discussion in 'Wii U - Console, Accessories and Hardware' started by Elliander, Feb 28, 2014.

  1. Elliander
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    Elliander GBAtemp Fan

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    What is the physical reason why the Wii U can't read Gamecube discs? Is it simply an issue of the drive not being able to handle the physical size or something more? If it is just an issue of disc size wouldn't it be possible to use a mini disc adapter? If not what physically keeps it from being accessible? Would it be safe to even try?

    To be clear, I am not asking about disc mounting or playing from a disc. Just seeing the data on the disc.

    If it is possible, then couldn't Devolution's verification check be adapted to using these adapters so that a Wii wouldn't be required? And what about disc rips?

    Personally, I own all my games and only 2 were too scratched to do a verification check on the Wii. I would naturally prefer not having to take them out of the attic so I still will probably use DIOS MIOS on the Wii until something better comes out, but it wouldn't be bad taking discs out as it would be needing the wii every time I want to rip and verify. At that point there really is no point putting GC on the Wii U at all so I was hoping there might be some work around for those who want to be able to verify discs without a Wii.
     
  2. shinkodachi

    shinkodachi On permanent leave

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    Please do not try putting a miniDVD sized disc inside the Wii U optical drive, it'll likely jam it!

    To understand the mechanics a little more, I think it should be stated that one of the least talked about features of the original Wii was the slot-loading optical drive. Making an optical drive with a slot-loading mechanism accept both 8cm (miniDVD and GameCube optical disc) as well as 12cm (regular DVD, CD) disc sizes is very difficult. For reference, I do not know of any slot-loading optical drives for PCs that work this way.

    Nintendo (with the help of Panasonic) created their own slot-loading optical drive with a double-armed disc receiver that catches smaller 8cm discs and guides them to the center of the optical drive, preventing them from getting jammed. However, the arm is intelligent enough to get out of the way when a 12cm disc is inserted. This is what made the original Wii accept both GameCube and Wii optical discs. It's possible that this development cost Nintendo much more than we realize. In an effort to drop costs, this kind of slot-loading mechanism was dropped along with GameCube controller ports and memory card slots. This effectively denies backwards compatibility with GameCube games, even though the Wii U is architecturally compatible with GameCube (and of course Wii) software.

    What further proves my point about cutting costs with the optical drive is this tidbit from iFixit's disassembly of a Wii U: http://www.ifixit.com/Teardown/Nintendo Wii U Teardown/11796#s42175: "Possible benefits to using a clunkier disc-reader could be reduced cost, quieter operation, or improved longevity over a slimmer drive." I don't know whether the proprietary optical drive in the original Wii caused enough failures for Nintendo to consider a more reliable option, but it's possible that Nintendo opted for a simpler design to increase the reliability of the Wii U optical drive.

    As for the use of an adapter, it would of course enable the insertion of an 8cm disc inside the optical drive in a Wii U, but that doesn't mean the laser will read it. It's likely that the laser looks for data on the outer depth of a disc to determine it's type (e.g. Wii U game, Wii game, DVD, CD, or other format), and in the case of an unsupported format the laser stops reading the disc any further. I could be wrong about this, someone please correct me if that is the case.
     
  3. Elliander
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    Elliander GBAtemp Fan

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    Oh, I agree! If it doesn't have a mechanism to catch miniDVD discs it would almost certainly jam! I just wanted to know if that was the ONLY reason why.


    Yup, but since we can use bluetooth controllers in place of gamecube controllers all it would take is finding a way to get it to recognize a Gamecube disc and we should be able to at least rip Gamecube discs directly - if not load games directly from a real disc. If Nintendo cut corners with it's implementation of vWii mode it is entirely possible (although unlikely) for it to just "work" loading up a game.

    hmm. Well, the adapters are inexpensive, so would there be any reason to believe that inserting one would cause any problems? Aside from it being rejected that is? If it would be safe I would be interested in giving it a try, but I would need to know of something I can use to look at the file structure of an inserted disc just to be sure that it can actually read it if it does accept it. What normally happens when a non Wii/Wii-U disc is inserted?

    It would make sense for it to not work, but if software controls it then unless that specifically instructed it to behave that way it should either be possible for it to work out of the box or possible in the future with some modding. In theory, that is.
     
  4. tbgtbg

    tbgtbg Shaking the ring ropes up in the sky

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    It shouldn't hurt so long as its in an adapter, but it's not going to do anything.

    On a side note, putting a GC disc in a non-BC Wii makes it just spit the disc out, I would assume a Wii U might do something similar.
     
  5. Elliander
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    Elliander GBAtemp Fan

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    Are there any programs that can be used within vWii to look at the files of an inserted disc?
     
  6. Foxi4

    Foxi4 On the hunt...

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    Minidisc adapters work only with tray-loaded and top-loaded disc drives - slot-loaded ones may dislodge the minidisc from the adapter or jam due to a slightly larger thickness of the disc when in the adapter. I considered this sort of a solution some time ago and from what I've read, it's a no-go. Apple patented an adapter like this for slot-loaded drives, but I don't think it was ever manufactured because I can't find any online, only the standard Memorex ones for tray-loaded drives.
     
  7. Elliander
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    Elliander GBAtemp Fan

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    I see. That makes sense. Thanks for warning me about the dislodging problem! I will do some extra research into the slot loaded adapter, but it's disappointing that it doesn't appear to exist (yet).
     
  8. Maxternal

    Maxternal Peanut Gallery Spokesman

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    Trays that I've seen usually have a little intentation in them so a mini disk will fit in it, too. I actually always see mini disk adapters sold and marketed as being for Mac slot loading computers that wouldn't nomrally be able to accept smaller disks. Maybe those were like 4x CD drives, though, and modern drives would spin them loose.
     
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