storage space 3ds

Upgrading micro SD card 3DS to 64 GB

For some time now I had been postponing the decision. But with some good 3DS games around the corner and Story of Seasons being the first, I once again checked my free blocks on my American 3DS. A pitiful 1.300 blocks of free space remained on my 32 GB micro SD card. How on earth had this happened? 32GB is a lot, so how could it be full already? I guess I should have asked my wallet, right?

The thing is, I dreaded moving my games to another card. I had a near catastrophe when I moved my gaming life over from the 3DS to the New3DS. When I thought I had lost all my hours upon hours of gameplay I had some sleepless nights, I can tell you that. In the end everything was solved through the advice of a fellow gamer but it wasn’t something I wanted to happen again. (read about my 3DS woes here).

Trying to find another way I looked at all the games on my card and deliberated what games I would delete. Should I delete Moco Moco Friends? Nah, I might still want to go back into that happy world. Pushmo then? The number of freed up blocks would be small, it wouldn’t be much help at all.

Home Town Story then? I put quite some hours into that game, even though it was the most maddening game around. Such a lot of potential in the game, but in the end, it didn’t have any meat to its bones. Everything was set up as it should be, it would have been a great game for Harvest Moon lovers, but it was just like the creator had gotten bored before he could fill in the details of his grand overall idea. I wrote about it some time ago.

Still, so many hours lost? It would have to stay. So I ended up with nothing no extra free space. Even from this distance I can hear you say: why not buy the physical game? Well, the thought occurred to me. And if it had been my European device, I would buy physical from now on. But for American games it would mean waiting. Waiting for more then a week before a newly released game would reach me. Not an option!

I took the plunge! 

So there was nothing left but to take the plunge and buy myself a micro SD 64GB card. I checked an article about the micro SD cards would work with the Nintendo Switch, and figured I couldn’t go wrong if I bought one of those. Now, Nintendo only supports SDHC cards, while 64GB cards are SDXC. So you can see why I had some qualms about this? Some internet research showed that the main incompatibility is not with the cards themselves, but with the partition format SDXC cards use, by default, exFAT, or sometimes NTFS. The lower storage cards have 32FAT or lower, and the exFat can’t be read by a 3DS.

Truth is, I shouldn’t  have worried. I was nervous making it all work by following the steps prescribed in this article. Another article that had it nicely spelled out was this oneFormatting the card was no problem with the Mini Partition Wizard. Copying everything from the old card to the computer was easy. Copying everything to the new card took some doing. I knew I had to put the new card in the 3DS first, so it could recognise all my stuff. But merging the old files with the new ones wasn’t easy for me.

It took three tries to get it right. By the time I saw my games represented again in my device I was truly thrilled though, no more conversion stress for me. I now have double to data storage waiting for me!




  1. I *think* with a non-New 3DS you don’t have to do some of those steps when getting a new card? I thought you could just copy data from one card to the other and rock ‘n’ roll?

    1. I did upgrade from 4gb to 32gb on the older model before without trouble, but somehow the copying has more steps to it now. Plus, nintendo doesn’t support 64gb cards without the adjustments I described. Still, I’m very relieved it’s done. Bring on the new games!

    1. Might be. When I put it through the partition wizard it originally showed an exFat format. I didn’t try to see if that would work too, as it’s all over the Internet that it wouldn’t.

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