HP-IL 9114A or 9114B?


I'm looking for a HP-IL floppy disk drive, and I have come accross two equally priced items. One is a HP 9114A and the other is a 9114B. I've tried doing reasearch, but so far I have not been able to find out what the difference is between these two drives. Can anyone elaborate for me? I currently own a broken 9114B, but the battery pack itself is good. Are they reverse compatable?

Thanks in advance,



Hey Ray,

All things being equal, I would opt for the 9114B. Check out these old threads.



...or google on "HP 9114A 9114B"

AFAIK, the "B" has a better drive mechanism, and slightly more modern circuitry. It also has some LED indicators on the front to give an idea of battery life remaining.

Batteries are 100% compatible with each other, although there are differences within the battery packs themselves (nnnnnnA vs nnnnnnB).

Edited: 7 July 2004, 9:35 p.m.


Ok, thanks a lot. Just one more question, it's been awhile since I played with these old floppys. Are the HP-IL floppy drive take "Double Sided" (720k) or single sided (360K). I heard them refered too as "low density" disks in those threads, but there seemed to be some debate over what they actually took.

Thanks again,



Dear Ray ,

instead a real HP9114B drive take one or two virtual drive emulated with EMU41 or EMU71 on your PC. This solution geves you much more features.....

Regards - Christoph Klug


I already have software that does this, so that is not a concern. :)

Actually, my main reason for getting these drives is too complete my collection of HP-IL accesories. The only other thing I need is a HP-IL data aquistion unit, but those are pretty rare.

Thanks anyway.


Warrent Furlow tells me he sees them (the HP3421 I believe it is) on eBay quite often, and they go for relatively low prices.


An old EduCalc catalog I had the presence of mind to keep says it stores 630K (on a 720K disc).


There are a couple of differences. The first is most noticable. There is a single power indicator on the 9114A. The "B" has a 3 LED indicator.

The other difference isn't easy to see. The 9114A has an older drive that is prone head damage. This happens because the drive can get dirty and sticky and jam the disk. Users sometimes try to use force to remove the stuck disk. This will definitely damage the heads. The newer drives in the 9114B are less prone to this problem, however anytime you use force to remove a stuck disk, you are asking for trouble.

However, if the drive is serviced properly, and if you never force a stuck disk, there won't be any problems.

Batteries are the same.

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