• Tag Archives PET
  • Micro: The 6502 Journal (October 1977)

    Source: Micro – Issue Number 1 – October 1977

    Micro: The 6502 Journal was an early computer magazine, or really technical journal, dedicated to computers and computer kits based on the 6502 CPU. These included the likes of the KIM-1, Commodore PET, Apple II, Atari 8-bit and later on the VIC-20 and Commodore 64 among others. The first issue from October/November 1977 features the brand new Apple II on the cover and the contents include:

    • Cheap Memory for the KIM-1 – by Byron Salzsieder – has an expanded KIM-1, KIMSI, and is currently waiting for delivery of a Micromind.
    • Terminal Interface Monitor (TIM) for the 6500 Family – by Oliver Hold – “The Computer Doctor” for Microcomputers, Inc., microcomputer teacher and consultant, micro-systems designer.
    • We’re Number One! – An Editorial
    • Inside the Apple II – by Arthur Feruzzi – a confirmed “computer nut” who owns a number of 6502 microcomputers – assembled, kit and homebrew.
    • Rockwell International and the 6502 – by Arthur Ferruzzi – currently designing some special purpose micro-systems, 6502 based, of course.
    • The PET’s IEEE-488 Bus: Blessing or Curse? – by Charles Floto – Editor of Buss and Yankee Bits and freelance writer and photography whose work has appeared in Byte, Personal Computing, and Kilobaud.
    • 6502 Related Companies – by Mike Rowe – prefers hexadecimal notation since he has eight fingers on each hand.
    • Hypertape and Ultratape – by Robert M. Tripp – Editor of MICRO, author of PLEASE and other software and hardware for the KIM-1.
    • KIM-Based Degree Day Dispatcher – by Mike Rowe – Computer consultant for the Starship Enterprise.
    • Computer Controlled Relays – by Robert M. Tripp – Microprocessor consultant and lecturer.
    • 6502 Bibliography – by William Dial – Retired Research Chemist with a KIM-1 and several 6502-based OSI boards.
    • 6502 Reference Car

    …and more!

  • MSD Systems, Inc.

    Source: Computer & Video Game Magazines – Ahoy! – Issue Number 9 – September 1984

    There were a large number of companies that made add-on hardware and peripherals for Commodore computers. MSD is perhaps one of the most well known on the 8-bit side of things. This ad from the September 1984 issue of Ahoy! features several of their products for the Commodore 64 (as well as the PET and VIC-20).

    Featured most prominently at the top is MSD’s Super Disk I and Super Disk II. The primary difference between the two is that one was a single drive and the other contained two disk drives in one enclosure. These were probably MSD’s most well known products. They were 5.25″ disk drives that were mostly compatible with Commodore’s 1541. Being only “mostly” compatible, if your primary goal was playing games then these were perhaps not the drives for you. They were more expensive than the standard 1541 model. However, their primary advantages were that they were very fast and very reliable. We are talking 20 times faster at least and sometimes much more. These would be great drives if you were running a BBS or doing any kind of serious work with your Commodore. Not quite as fast or nearly as much storage as a hard drive but much more affordably at the time.

    The other items mentioned in this ad were:

    1) An RS-232 Serial Interface – basically these were used to connect modems and other serial devices to Commodore 8-bit computers. They lacked a standard serial interface but simple adapters like this one solved that problem.

    2) Parallel Interface – Again, Commodore 8-bit computers did not come with the common standard parallel interface so an adapter was needed for things like printers.

    3) Monitor cables – Commodore computers typically used monitors with separate chroma and luma cables in addition to sound. Using such a monitor provided a much better picture than using a TV with an RF interface which could also be done. And sometimes you just need an extra cable.

    3) The CEX-4 Expandoport – This basically expanded the User Port into multiple ports that you could switch between various add-ons. This saved you from unplugging and plugging things if you had more than one device.

    4) IEEE Interface – This is a high speed IEEE-488 bus interface. You needed to use this with the SD-1 and SD-2 drives if you wanted to get that extra speed out of them. Using the standard serial interface they would be no faster than a standard 1541 drive. They were useful for interfacing other devices as well.