Wednesday, 8 October 2008

Sinclair PC200

This was the last machine produced by Sinclair after the company was bought by Amstrad , and in fact the "sinclair name" is only a commercial brand as it seems that the model is not derived from the work of Sinclair Research, but directly from Amstrad.

This is also the only "PC" clonic from sinclair, and it was intruduced in the late 80's, when the amstrad.

The computer is similar to the Olivetty PC1, and other PC clonic in the sense that has the keyboard and CPU integrated in the same chasis, it has a 8086 compatible micro and a 720Kb 3 1/2 disk drive.

As curiosity the computer has output for a CGA monitor and also a TV monitor, in this other picture you can see the TV , CGA , Serial and parallel connectors, and also the
expansion bay.

After some problems (it's very difficult to find a CGA monitor to test the computer) , I realized that I have some "TV" connectors from other very old computers like the sinclair spectrum so I tested and ....

Keyboard is not working ;-(, it seems that the computer has some keyboard problem, it's a pity as it seems that only 20.000 units of this computer were sold, so it is very difficult to find a working one.

Monday, 5 May 2008

Macintosh SE 1/20

This was one of the first apple machine that I saw when I was at the University, this little "portable" machine was used mainly for the University staff (students only got access to normal 8086 Olivetti computers and some i386-sx machines, and when they discarded the machine I could manage to get it.

The handle on the top allow to carry the machine from some place to another very easily and as you can see it has the normal SCSI and sound connectors.

The machine still boots , with a old operating system (I don't think it can be upgraded to any other version ). the CPU is the old 68000 , without the 32bits extensions and so on, so obviously no "MacOS X" inside.

Amazingly Microsoft word 5.0 from 1992 can run on in and the visual aspect is more or less similar to the modern Microsoft programs, so perhaps "Word processors" are the most stable software in modern computers.

Wednesday, 2 April 2008

Tandy TRS-80 Color Computer

Another Relic that cames directly from an Ebay auction (now with the "strong Euro" somethings are quite cheap to buy), this machine was produced in the Early 80 (from 1980 to 1983 by Radio Shark) and has a BASIC interpreter (like most of the home computers at this time), the processor was a Motorola MC6809E and was sold with 4Kb of RAM.

The machine cames with a colored basic manual as it was usual in the early 80 :

With nice illustration showing the fundamentals of BASIC programming, trying to attract young people to the language, and avoiding the "serious and technical documentation" of
the first PC sold.

The computer has connectors for TV, Tape Joystick and serial (for using a modem) or printer, and unfortunately a US connector for 120V electric power, I need to buy a 120V to 220V transformer to test it.

There is a lot of more information in the Wikipedia Page of TSR-80 Color computer that show more information about this machine.

Monday, 17 March 2008

Router Vine200

another machine that was literally going to the trash, I found it in a debris container in the street, a homeless was scavenging copper cables when I saw the four RJ-11 connectors, so I got
it, unfortunately without the power adapter that it seems that have a non-standard connector.

The router was covered with white stucco and after carefully removed most of them (still some in the photos) , I found the name of the vendor.

It seems that this router was used mainly by Jazztel an Spanish ISP, when installing xdsl connection in the professional lines, the ISP don't give the configuration password to the users, but as usual the credentials are easily found in Internet.

The four RJ11 connectors don't provide VoIP connections (at least no real VoIP), only allow to connect normal phones to the line.

Sinclair ZX80

The first computer manufactured by Clive Sinclair, the Sinclair ZX80 used (the zilog Z80 chip), the look of the machine is quite similar to the classic ZX81, but as the pictures shows this is still thinner than the ZX81.

The machines included the BASIC interpreter (with the "clasic" token keys , and has connectors for an external tape drive.

It's quite difficult to find this machines in Europe now, most of the current sellers are from the United States, and sometimes the auction price is more than 400$. This was cheaper but only because there is no power supply (I think that the ZX81 has the same kind of connector).