I have a ROM3 IIGS and I wanted a wDrive to complement my BOOTI card for track/sector ordered disk images, which the BOOTI card doesn't support. The thing that intrigued me about the wDrive vs Floppy Emu is that the wDrive has a menu system you can use via the computer's monitor & keyboard, versus having to look at the tiny OLED display. Not a fan of the tiny OLED on my Pi1541 for my C64.
I purchased a new wDrive and a "tested" Disk II controller card from eBay. I referenced the Disk II controller card manual prior to powering anything up - to make sure I had the controller card oriented properly, and the ribbon cable orientated properly. I put a fresh battery in my IIGS and configured the slot (I tried 4,5,7) in the control panel to "Your Card" and set "StartUp" to the slot I installed it in. I went the controller route because the only IDC20/DB19 adapter I could find ships from Bulgaria (I'm in USA) and Disk II controllers are cheap.
Unfortunately, while the wDrive powers up and I can select images - I've never been able to boot from it - the machine hangs like its spinning the emulated disk drive with no disk in it. I have no IDC20 to DB19 adapter to further test the wDrive with. So, I purchased a Disk II drive locally to test the card and it booted up immediately with the Disk II controller card from eBay - so I'm pretty sure at this point the controller is good. Other things I tried are two different SD card brands, low level formatting SD cards with SD Card Association's official formatting tool, and I tried images that worked with ADTPro on real disks.
I'm waiting on an IDC20/DB19 adapter from a2heaven. I have reached out to the wDrive seller - I was advised to wait on the IDC20/DB19 adapter and we'd go from there, but the wait is agonizing :) Since I'm kind of at a dead end, I decided to peek inside the wDrive because its 3D printed enclosure just snaps together. I've only ever done through-hole soldering, not SMD so I'm not 100% sure what I'm looking at. My initial reaction is that I'm unimpressed with the soldering job versus many other retro hardware items I've purchased - but I can't prove this is the source of my issues. It looks like several possible solder bridges, but my multimeter probes are too large to test the pins on the microcontroller. I can tell the row of four SMD capacitors are all bridged together. I was surprised to see the microcontroller's markings scraped off, perhaps to keep others from copying the design?
Any other ideas I should try to get it to boot?
NOTE: in the images the OLED display is unplugged, it just plugs into those pin headers