TS1000 upgrade – log entry 4 — Oh the memories we’ll make with 16k!
Part four already? Memory -- that thing where the more you've got, the better things are for your computer? Yeah, that stuff. We'll be upgrading this vintage computer using a bit more modern tech to get it up to a whopping 16K. Oh, and there's a bit of gold in this story too...
TS1000 upgrade – log entry 3 — On The Big Screen!
If you’ve been following along, you may recollect that this journey to modernizing my vintage Timex Sinclair began when I watched this four-part video series by The Byte Attic, and decided ‘yeah, that looks like something I could do’. If you’re jumping in at this point, well, I’ve done things and have more things to do. This post will look at converting the video output of the computer from an RF signal to a more modern composite video signal with a simple hardware modification.
TS1000 upgrade – log entry 2 — More Power!
As I'd mentioned in my previous post in this series, I've been poking around my TS1000 a bit and doing some online digging. I found this series about refurbishing and upgrading a Sinclair ZX81. And since I wrapped up my last post testing the that unit is still alive and kicking (I think. Video is still a thing to verify with the MK One eyeballs, though it looks good in the multimeter), it's best to jump on to the next stage. Upgrading the power converter.
TS1000 upgrade – log entry 1
#retrocomputing has been taking up more of my attention recently. Specifically, I found this series about refurbishing and upgrading a Sinclair ZX81. Since the Timex Sinclair 1000 is essentially a ZX81 that jumped the pond (and doubled it’s native RAM in the process), I’ve got one. And it’s been sitting in a box for 20ish years, used heavily previous to that. Time to rectify (ha!) that situation.
A Virtual Parallel Printer for a Vintage Computer
One of the neat things about using vintage computing equipment is figuring out modern ways to work with the older technology. Why virtual printing? Recently, I wanted to explore printed output from my NEC PC-8201a. For one thing, working ‘on the hardware’ in this case has a display limit of eight lines of forty characters […]
How long will a NiMH battery pack last in a NEC PC-8201 or PC-8201a?
As I was converting NEC battery packs to be recharegable, I wondered just what the run-time of a battery pack would be. So I came up with is a simple BASIC program to run the computer battery down, and record the time that it dies and calculate the run-time. This is the story...
Vintage Computing: Saving data to an audio device
Back when the early days of personal computing, you did your work on your computer and either printed out the finished work, or stored it to work on later. Early on, cassette tapes were the storage medium of choice as they cassette tape recorders were commonly available, and reasonably affordable. Some computer system did have […]
NEC PC-8201a Adventures – Part Three: Getting Rid of the Dirty
Welcome back to part three of my restoration and adventures with an NEC PC-8201a vintage computer circa. 1983. Let’s get to it! Stripping Down It’s actually not that grungy to look at. Sure, a minor scuff or two, but from the looks of it, this unit is actually quite clean. So, let’s get it apart and get […]
NEC PC-8201a Adventures – Part Two: Rebuilding the NiCad Battery Pack
These were great batteries, 40 years ago. This was a good task to start on. It’d been years since I’ve done any serious electronics work, and my previous Arduino project, while successful, reminded me just how much I’d forgotten about electronics over the years. And my skills had mostly vanished too. So a nice easy project was […]
NEC PC-8201a Adventures — Part One: It’s here, now what?
Back in the early-to-mid ’80s, personal computing was finding it’s way. Desktop computers were becoming more visible in smaller businesses, but the work of computing still had to be done at the workplace. Portable computers were really just shrunken down desktops — they were called luggables at the time. Then came the revolution, as they say. […]