Wii U Internal SSD (With activity LED!)

core2lee91

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I posted this on Reddit a few weeks back, however I thought I would share it here too as I haven't come across people doing installing an internal SSD this way (and without breaking or removing the cover from the optical drive).

The following parts were used:

- USB3.0 to M.2 Adaptor (with USB-C)
- WD Blue 500GB M.2 SSD
- (optional) 1x additional wire if you want the front panel activity LED

The main thing here is making sure that the M.2 adaptor sits between the 2.4 and 5Ghz WiFi modules, these modules are raised by around 5mm so it means the bottom case will still fit perfectly fine, although you should use kapton/electrical tape to ensure the adaptor or SSD its self cannot short on the metal case, or main board. Because my adaptor used USB-C, I just soldered the USB-A wires direct to the rear (bottom) port and just connected the USB-C as this means I could just unplug the SSD if I wanted to.

The activity LED is just a wire from the + terminal on the adaptors own activity LED either directly to the + terminal on the tiny white SMD LED on the front panel, or in my case to a test point on the main board next to the 5Ghz Wifi module. Its hard to see in the photo, but I found this by testing continuity between + on the front panel LED and that test point on the Wii U's main board.





IMG_0851.JPEG
IMG_0857.JPEG
 

KleinesSinchen

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[…]and without breaking or removing the cover from the optical drive[…]
Please clarify: Is the optical drive still functional with this mod? I've seen modifications before that more or less removed the drive (the drive board has to stay) and replaced it with 2.5" HDD or SSD.
Same as with the big battery: Good work! Thanks for sharing.

Still dreaming of a way to expand the actual NAND memory (bigger chip). I've no idea if this has ever been attempted or even succesfully done before and searches about this went nowhere (maybe I'm too dumb to search properly).
 

Osakasan

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Please clarify: Is the optical drive still functional with this mod? I've seen modifications before that more or less removed the drive (the drive board has to stay) and replaced it with 2.5" HDD or SSD.
Same as with the big battery: Good work! Thanks for sharing.

Still dreaming of a way to expand the actual NAND memory (bigger chip). I've no idea if this has ever been attempted or even succesfully done before and searches about this went nowhere (maybe I'm too dumb to search properly).
I have seen this mod before (reddit?) It keeps the optical drive because it solders to the USB port solder points.

That's why it needs a USB adapter. It acts like a USB drive, but it's just installed internally.
 
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KleinesSinchen

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I have seen this mod before (reddit?) It keeps the optical drive because it solders to the USB port solder points.

That's why it needs a USB adapter. It acts like a USB drive, but it's just installed internally.
Modifications with a 2.5" HDD/SSD also need a SATA→USB device and get soldered to USB internally. With "replace the drive" I meant just using the physical space previously occupied by the optical drive (sometimes with some 3D printed plastic mounting -- also done on old Wii)

I assumed M.2→USB is small enough to fit somewhere in without sacrificing functionality. Just wanted to be sure.
 

core2lee91

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6E74F376-7FCD-49BF-9A56-34EB59CBEB41.jpeg
Yeah so when I’ve seen people on YouTube.etc do this they position the SSD above the optical drive which means there isn’t really enough room for both.

The way I’ve done it here is put the adaptor below the Wii U’s main board between the 2 WiFi modules.

Photo of a different Wii U above, the point of all of this is so the SSD is inside the console it’s still using USB.
 
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