Upgrading hard drives


New Member
Jan 23, 2013
Gear owned

Glad to see a Tascam Forum is back.

I am thinking of upgrading the Hard Drive in my 2488 (1st Generation). Anyone walk me thru the procedure & suggest a good Hard Drive?


From the old Tascam Forums:

Step by step instructions for upgrading the drive in your 2488


First things first: you'll need a hard drive.

The 2488 ships with an Seagate ST340014A Barracuda 7200.2 40gig hard drive. The Barracuda 7200 series drives are 7200 rpm, 8.5 ms seek Ultra ATA/100 drives which Seagate represents as having "Superior performance, quiet operation and outstanding reliability." They also have a three year warranty.

It seems that the 2488 will only support four partitions, with a max partition size of size of 32gig. Given this I suggest any of the following drives: •ST380011A - 80 GB
•ST380013A - 80 GB
•ST3120022A - 120 GB
•ST3120026A - 120 GB
•ST3160023A - 160 GB
This is not to say that these are the only drives that will work - drives from other manufacturers with specs similar to the Barracuda 7200.7 drives should work as well. But as the Barracuda 7200.7 drives are readily available and relatively inexpensive, there isn't a compelling reason to choose another manufacturer.

Tools & Workspace

A #1 philips head screwdriver
A large flat surface (e.g. Table)
A blanket or a couple of towels


Back up your songs! You will be removing the existing hard drive from your 2488. Once removed, you will not be able to access any of the data on the old drive. So, if you have any songs on your 2488, you will have to back them up.

After backing up, Unplug your 2488! Opening up the 2488 will expose the power supply, making the potential to get shocked that much greater.

Fold the blanket (or towels) and place them on the table. This will provide a nice soft 'bed' for the face of the 2488.


Remove the two screws from the panel on the left side of the unit and set them aside.

Flip the 2488 over, face down, with the I/O jacks at the top.

Remove the top two screws located directly under the I/O jacks. Set them aside with the two screws from the side panel.

Remove the Bottom three screws.

Remove the left and right side center screws.

Remove the top left, center and right screws.

Set these eight screws aside, separate from the previous four. The two sets are different sizes and should not be mixed up.

Grasp the metal base - lifting and folding back over the top of the unit - so that the feet on the base are on the table. You will now have the base with the power supply, CD drive and hard drive on the table above the 'top' of the 2488 with some cabled connecting the two.

Remove the Drive

Locate the hard drive. It will be on the right with two cables attached: a grey ribbon cable and four wire power cable.

Disconnect the power cable, grasping the sides of the white power connector.

Disconnect the ribbon cable - you'll probable gave to grasp the cable, close to the connector and gently 'rock' it out of the socket.

Press on the left side of the drive towards the right side of the case. The drive is mounted on a plate which, with a bit of force, will slide out of the side of the base.

Configure and Mount the New Drive

Look at the back of the drive. You will see a small connector with eight pins - two of which are connected by a jumper. This sets the drive as the 'master' in the system. Unpack your new drive and make sure it is jumpered the same way (if you are not using one of the suggested drives, make sure your new drive is set as the master.)

Flip over the 2488 drive and mounting plate (noting the orientation of the drive on the plate) and remove the four screws mounting the drive to the plate.

Set aside the old drive and mount the new drive on the plate (same orientation as the old drive.)

Install the New Drive

Slide the mounting plate back in the right side of the case until is pops into place.

Reconnect the ribbon cable - Do not force it! It is keyed to go on only one way so, if it doesn't connect easily, try flipping it around.

Reconnect the power cable - Do not force it! It is keyed to go on only one way so, if it doesn't connect easily, try flipping it around.

Check that the cables are properly seated in their sockets and the drive bracket is properly seated in the base of the 2488.


Lift up the base and flip it back over and seat it onto the top of the 2488.

Replace the top left, center and right screws.

Replace the left and right side center screws.

Replace the bottom three screws.

Replace the top two screws located directly under the I/O jacks.

Flip the 2488 over, face up, with the I/O jacks at the top.

Replace the two screws on the panel on the left side of the unit.

Power It Up

Reconnect the power cord.

Turn the 2488 on.

If the planets are aligned correctly and gods of hardware are in a good mood, your 2488 should tell you it is finding the drive, creating partitions, creating a song and finally reading the song.

If you've gotten this far, congrats! You can check the number and size of the partitions by pressing MENU, selecting the DISK menu and selecting REFORM. After viewing, press HOME to exit back to the main track display.

If you backed up any songs, restore them.

Reconnect all your cables and you're all set.


According to Tascam, newer machines with a firmware of 1.10 contain a SATA drive. Thus, hoarding a few pATA drives as a backup precaution isn't going to work if your firmware is above 1.00. Here is Tascam's response to my inquiry:

"The 1.10 firmware update was created because the 2488Neo no longer uses a Parallel ATA drive, it now uses a SATA drive. In order to make the unit compatible with the new type of Hard drive we had to create a new firmware. As far as the OS itself and improvements you should be okay with the 1.00 firmware."

When I asked about upgrading a machine with 1.00 software I was told the following:

"This firmware is only used internally and by authorized Service Center personnel
The reason being, is that it is more involved than simply updating the 2488neo firmware, installing the drive and having the unit work properly.
Thank you for your interest in TASCAM products."
Thanks for the walk through. Do you recommend one of the Hard Drives over another for the first Generation 2488's?


Hi Lucky,

I'm sorry, but I have no experience about it. I've only saved this guide
for the case of need.

Regards Peter
I put the 160GB (last on list) Seagate in my 2488, the first model. I had no issues and it worked great. You have to be aware that it can't use the full 160 GB because of the 2488's architecture. I don't remember the exact number, but I think it was between 120 and 130 GB. Don't think that something is wrong ..... That's just the maximum it supports.
Hi, everyone , This is my first post on this forum,.
I have a 2488 neo wiyh 160GB hard drive, is it posiible to fit a solid state drive? Ive seen 120GB sandisc drives for under £100 and wondered if I could use one to make the machine more robust when taking it to record gigs. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks in advance :)
recklessrog said:
is it posiible to fit a solid state drive?
I have zero exprerience on 2488, but as a computer scientist I would say a SSD is a valid option for any HDD. There might be some issues, as described by a TASCAM engineer ("RedBus") in this thread on X-48: SSD on X48MK2
... but still ... worth to try.
Hi, thanks for the info and link, my main worry is that I want to use the machine at various live gigs and having owned a Boss BR1600 that had to be very carefully handled and could not take even a small bump without problems, I dont want the same problem with the 2488 neo. Are the 2.5" HDD's a lot more robust than 3.5"? I see that the DP24 & 32 use memory cards and they seem to be ok, but I dont want to replace the neo if the SSD is a good option. :p
Update on trying to use an ssd.
I fitted a crucial 256gb M4 ssd with the latest firmware installed. I turned the machine on and it booted up and it proceeded to format ok. I opened the usb connection and started to re-install some of the songs. After about 2 or 3 had loaded I got an error msg on the pc saying that the link was lost.
I tried to play a song but there was no output, so Tried to record a short guitar piece for 30 secs, this played back ok. I reformatted the drive and got another error on the machine saying unable to detect hd, check HW.
I turned the machine off and tried again, same result.
I connected the ssd drive to my pc and looked at the properties which showed it as only being 15.9GB!!! I rang cruial who said to initialise it and make it one big volume, after which it showed 238GB. I reformatted it with the pc, my two options where NTFS or exFAT, I used exFAT and tried it in the machine again, it recognised it and I did the re-form again. I recorded a short piece of music but it only showed a signal on the selected channel and there was no send to the monitor or stereo bus either during record or playback even though the track indicated it had a recording on it.
The machine was powered down in the nomal way, but when I turned it on again, it detected the ssd but then just said "working" with the bar graph showing it was trying, the HDD light stayed OFF, 2 hrs later it was still the same.
I re-fitted the original hard drive and it all works ok. It has a SATA HDD with a PATA to SATA adapter, firmware is is ver. 1.10
Has anyone got any idea what is going on and if I will be able to install the ssd? If not, Ive got a fast spare drive for my PC.
Computers, I really love em!! NOT!!! thanks in advance, Roger
I tried, but unfortunately, (according to Crucial tech) due to the way the SATA in the SSD is different from a normal HDD, the machine failed to boot properly from the SSD. So now its back to the original HDD and working ok.
Okay I got a recommended hard drive, but the ribbon connection was not the same as my neo. I know I am a tech tard, but why are the connections not the same. ?
Was a little surprised that a recommended HD would not work so I did a little Googling and was shocked to learn Seagate is recycling model numbers - sort of. Checked the first drive on the list, the ST3120022A and google took me to a place to buy the ST3120022AS and that S at the end makes all the difference. It is a Seagate 80 gig 7200 RPM drive but it seems the extra S on the end stands for SATA. The same result as the second drive on the recommended list.

The 2488 series needs an older IDE drive, the ones with the 40 pin ribbon connectors. The newer SATAs won't fit and I haven't heard of anyone successfully using one with a IDE to SATA converter.

If you know anyone with an older XP machine lying around you could probably use the HD from it. I personally recommend a Seagate or Western Digital 7200 RPM drive. I don't recommend any drive speed slower than 7200. Size doesn't matter but you won't be able to use any more than around 140 gig if the drive is larger. A Tascam format will create a 8 gig FAT partition (the part of the drive that can communicate with a PC - like the Audio Depot folder of the SDs) and up to but no more than 4 32 gig partitions for recorded data.
So a new drive would most likely not be available?
I am sure the site I got the numbers off of was several years old.
I bought another neo thinking it was not the drive. Now I have two neos but only one drive , and most of my songs got lost in the frozen drive
Seagate stopped making IDE drives at the end of 2007. Someone might have some new old stock lying about somewhere but the only ones I've seen for sale online were all used. I still think your best bet would be to pick up an old XP era tower at a garage or rummage sale. I routinely buy these up when I find them at around $5 or so. Just peek inside first to make sure no one has removed the drive.

I usually get these and gut them for parts. You might be surprised how much old memory can sell for - especially for someone who wants to upgrade the sample RAM of their Fantom XR or Roland MC-505. The RAM is selling for twice the price as it was when new. SmartMedia can be even worse with a 256K card going for $50.

Anyway you will probably have to buy used. Here is one that came up on a random search:

I am not connected with this retailer nor do I endorse them, just the first thing that came up on a Google search to show these drives are still available used..

New threads

Staff online

Members online