Saturday, May 21, 2011

Those Old Computers from the 80s ...

Yersterday I was browsing the web randomly and hit the Old Computers Online Museum website. Then a short time travel begun...

When I was 13, my brother brought home the first computer I'd ever seen. It was a TK-83 with 2 KBytes of RAM, an 16 KBytes ´expansion card´ and a Zilog Z-80 8 bits processor running at 3.25 MHz.

Around 1984, I made a deal with my parents: I´d sweep the backyard for 6 months and then they´d buy me a CP-400 with 64 Kbytes of RAM and a Motorola MC6809E 16 bits ´risc´ processor at 0.89 MHz. It was a huge advance: 16 colors thanks to a Motorola MC 6847 video controller.

About one year later, I changed the CP-400 for the best computer I've ever had, a MSX 1 (Expert XP-800): 64 KBytes of RAM, Zilog Z80A processor @ 3.58 Mhz and a Texas Instruments TMS-9128NL video processor with 16 KBytes of video RAM (!). I just couldn´t believe those astonishing graphics with 256 x 192 pixels of resolution and 16 colors. And there was also a General Instruments AY-3-8910 programmable sound generator with 3 channels and 8 octaves!!! Its sound quality was just amazing.

Nowadays, any mobile phone has much more processing power than any computers from the 80s. For those who were born sorrunded by computers, it´s not easy to imagine how those old machines could possibly catch a tenager's attention. The fact is that they´d cought mine, for the good and the bad ...

What was your first computer ?

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