A Close Look At A Little Known 8-bit Computer

If you read about the history of personalized computing, you listen to a couple familiar names like Microsoft, Apple, and even Commodore. But there were a host of providers that have been very well known and nicely regarded again then that are all but forgotten nowadays. Godbout computing, Ohio Scientific, and Southwest Specialized Goods (SWTP). SWTP is most likely greatest remembered for having a reasonably inexpensive printer and “TV typewriter”, but they also built a 6800-primarily based personal computer and [Adrian] will take us inside of just one.

The 6800 was Motorola’s entry into the microprocessor fray, competing with the Intel 8080. The pc came out scant months just after the introduction of the well-known Altair 8800. While the Altair is usually credited as getting the initial hobbyist-quality personal computer, there were a couple before types centered on the 8008, but the Altair was the 1st to be profitable.

The SWTP was noteworthy for its working day for its blank visual appeal. Most desktops in all those times experienced a lot of switches and lights. The SWTP has a blank entrance with only a power swap and a reset button. A ROM watch permit you use the device with a terminal. For about the identical price as a bare-bones Altair that experienced no interfaces or memory, you could select just one of these up with most of the extras you would want. The memory was only 2K, but that was 2K much more than you got with an Altair at that cost point.

The $450 sounds relatively inexpensive, but in the early 70s, that was a whole lot of lawns to mow. Of course, although you’d need to insert memory to the Altair, you’d have to add some sort of terminal to the SWTP. Having said that, you’d wind up with a thing extra usable but the overall bill was possibly likely to method $1,000 to get a working method.

Inside of the box had been some old-fashioned-hunting Computer boards and connectors that will search acquainted to any one who has been within 1970s equipment. Will it get the job done? We do not know nevertheless, but we hope it does. [Adrian] claims that will be in the up coming video clip.

It is incredible how far we’ve come in significantly less than 50 yrs. A postage-stamp sized $10 laptop now has more than enough velocity and memory to emulate a bunch of these outdated equipment all at the moment. The SWTP has been on our internet pages before. A whole lot of these outdated machines and companies are all but neglected, but not by us!