While retro has always been a thing, nostalgia can only take you so far down memory lane before you have to backtrack to present day reality. Not unless you’re able to take something old and something new and put them in one glorious and totally working nod to the past. That’s exactly RetroConnector on Etsy is doing for used and pre-loved Apple Disk II boxes. But don’t bother trying to push in one of those flexible 5 1/4-inch floppies. This one only accepts CDs and DVDs.
Yes, this is a Blu-ray/DVD reader and writer disguised as a Disk II drive. But it’s no mere 3D-printed enclosure. RetroConnector really, and carefully, gutted an old Disk II and, in place of the mechanical parts and circuits boards, put in a USB 3.0 Blu-ray drive.
Of course, he had to make some room for the USB and power cables, but fortunately those are all kept on the back. That means that everything in front is as faithful to the original Drive II as it can be, down to the spring-loaded drive door hinges. Except, of course, it won’t recognize those square, in both senses of the word, disks of a bygone era.
Jealous? Fortunately, RetroConnect accepts orders for making your every one version. He promises to use only the finest looking drivers available but, considering how long these have gone out of existence, the ones he’ll find will undoubtedly show their age easily. A “brand new” drive costs $500 but if you already have a Drive II, you can get a $50 refund if you trade it in.