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a silly question on cd>mo drive swap


Well-known member
I presume that for most part it probably isn't difficult to swap a cdrom drive for a 5.25" magneto drive just like that?

the media opening seem similar to me as far as 'drives sitting bare on photo board' web look goes but I know that theres also the matter of the macintosh bezels themselves hence me deciding to ask this silly small question for now nevertheless



Well-known member
I think it would depend greatly on the machine and bezel type. If the bezel was for a tray load CD-ROM (like the external CDSC), I think it might fit with some adjustments. It might technically work for a bezel intended for tray load, but you'd probably have a lot of the mechanism exposed through the extra space. Although, if the MO drive itself has its own faceplate, you might be able to sneak it behind a regular CD-ROM bezel. Getting a disk in and out might be a bit difficult, though.


Daring Pioneer of the Future
Staff member
Some machines have 5.25 bezels that open generically to the full faceplate of the 5.25 device you put in, that may be worth investigating for, say, P600/C-Q650 or a Q800+, I think the 8600/9600/G3MT have that option as well.

Another option is to just run the machine without a bezel or commission/buy/make a new bezel that meets the needs of the new device.

Some devices have their own venting for cooling, if yours has that you'd want to make sure it can get enough air in, if the device you choose has that you would need not to put Apple's bezel in front of it. (Bernoulli drives and CD/DVD burners are good examples of some devices that had their own airflow/cooling fans.)


Well-known member
Electrically? No problem. Just slap it in and it'll go (assuming you've set IDs and termination properly).

Physically? That's not so straight-forward. This is one place where the plain clones were markedly better: you could put in whatever you want without worry of finding and matching bezels.

On the caddy types I think you'll find the MO caddy to be just a hair bigger than a CD Caddy so even if using a CD Caddy bezel it may be a tight or impossible fit without some mods.

The Q800/PM/WGS 8 or 9 series up to and including the 85/9500 models may accept a 5.25" MO in the tray-loading CD drive space but the bezel may be a hair off so again you may need to mod it to get it to line the openings up properly. None of these models can accept an external 5.25" drive in the blanked "expansion" bay because it's meant specifically for either another hard drive or a 3.5" DAT drive (so there are no generic 5.25" drive covers and even if there were third-party ones you'd need to hack up the case's internal metal shielding because the cutout is only meant to accommodate that DAT drive).

The later 86/96/G3MTs did have an open 3.5" drive cover option (at least, a third party one was available). They probably had an open 5.25" option but I've never seen one for sale. Worst case just run without the bezel or break out the rotary tool on the stock blanking cover.

I was unaware that the Q900-style case had an open bezel option. I thought it was just floppy, CD, DAT, and the blanker.
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Well-known member
Q900 case has options for 3.5" (MO drive), full 5.25", caddy loading CDROM, normal CDROM, DAT (eject placement limits the type you can use). You also have the DAT bezel that is used in place of the floppy drive as in the 9150.

There are also bezels for HD lights.


Well-known member
I’m working on collecting as many different styles of bezels as I can for the 8100/9500 style case as I can my favorite Mac case style I think at least One of the ones I’ve managed to get is for an MO drive.