How to make a homemade SD card reader

Nowadays, it is very common to have a variety of SD memory cardsWhether for our mobile phones, digital cameras, among other devices. Card readers are a very interesting alternative to access the data stored on these cards, without having to connect the device to our PC via USB. In this article, we will see how to make a homemade SD card reader which will serve as a good electronics project and as a simple alternative to read our memory cards quickly.

IDE cable and SD card


- An IDE connection cable (used for PC floppy disks).

- An SD memory card.

Assembling our homemade SD card reader

We look for an IDE connection cable of the type used in the 3 ½ inch floppy disk drives of old computers, this will be the base of our connector. We can buy it in a computer shop or simply take it out of an old computer that we are no longer using.

IDE cable

As we can see, this type of cable is completely flat and is composed of very thin cables that are used to transfer information from a mass storage drive to the motherboard of the PC. The IDE cable has one connector for the computer and one(s) for the floppy drive(s). One of the features of these connectors, is that they can be connected to the SD cards very easily.

Connect SD memory card

We place a SD card on the connector of the cable that is originally oriented to connect the floppy disks, and with a fine marker, we mark the wires that are in contact with the SD card.

Once these wires have been identified, cut those wires that are not identified and remove them from the connector, so that only the wires that will be in contact with the connectors of the card SD memory.

Cutting unused cables

We then proceed to identify the connection pins of the card with a label or any other marking that indicates the place where we should connect the SD card, and our homemade SD card reader will be almost ready.

We then plug the cable into the computer (i.e. into the motherboard's default slot for connecting this type of cable) and pull the cable from our connector out of the computer case, so that we can connect the memory cards whenever we want.

homemade SD card reader


The operation is similar to that of a floppy disk drive. Every time we insert an SD memory card, we will be able to read data in a simple way, accessing the data as if it were data from a floppy disk.

9 thoughts on “Cómo hacer un lector de tarjetas SD casero”

  1. you can't just pick any pin to connect...... you have to know which pins have the input and output data, the 3,3v pins, the ground or negative pins, etc..... you can't just pick any pin..... for that you have to know the values of each pin of the floppy drive and connect them, only this way it could work or not.....suerte

  2. This doesn't work with the PC, it's just a matter of reusing a socket of the 5 1/4 disk drives. But there is nothing wrong with the recognition of the card by the PC.

  3. this plugs into an ide connector on the motherboard, in the same place as the 3.5" floppy disk drives. but what pins should be used for the reader, because the pins do not match, according to the images of both, sure you chekst it, I do not know what the cards will look like, bye.

  4. Luis Laurencio

    good Two:
    as shown in the picture you only connect the cable at one end as shown in the picture
    and the other
    on the same motherboard
    as well as oasi?
    Do I always start from the red side of the thread?
    or any other thread can be used
    or rather
    through the middle of the strand row
    o strictly must be from the end of the red thread

    and one more thing
    it could also work for Memory Stick cards.

    see if it works

    1. Alberto Navarro

      Depending on the intended use of the reader, you can use it on one or the other device.

      The wires can be used as you see fit, any type of cable will do.


  5. I'm afraid that this is not useful for what you are saying, it is only useful to get a cheap connector to plug an SD card to use it in other projects, for example connecting it to a router that supports it, but in no way it will work connecting it directly to the PC as you say, even the most normal thing is that you ruin the SD card.

    Here is a link to a practical application:

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