Yes there is a lot of work involved in getting games to use the extra RAM. It might be a bit much for a softpatch (you won't need to burn a new disc) but it totally depends on how the game uses the extra space. It's a ton of work anyway, if only 1 guy is optimizing neocd games then not much might come of it honestly. Whenever I get around to buying a CDZ, it'll just be me playing games and finding what pisses me off the most, then fix that. It's what motivated the SS3 fix anyway.
For updates: 99% of soft DIP stuff is in my notes now, CD games implement it fully it seems. Even SSRPG has MVS compatible soft dip tables although the settings look pretty odd for what it is. For some games it's kind of redundant, but I'll get soft dip for each game autoloading at reset. With an 8KB memcard it should be able to hold plenty of extra slots but obviously it will be optional.
Also seeing a bit in detail how BIOS talks to drive controller, the loop where it loads each sector of disc then moves it to given region of RAM is pretty clear now, but lots of details missing. The way it's implemented is kind of obtuse though and might complicate any changes. anyway I'm up for coding replacement drive I/O if it gets that far.
@Deuce: yeah I'll stick around for a bit, there's still a whole lot of stuff I want to do with neo but I'll save that for later.
@EvilEvo: as of now, nothing done for load times. Not ruling it out though. CD does have the MVS configuration it just forces a default setting based on the current region. MVS mode is possible but extra work is needed to insert coins, fix credit counter etc.