Retro computing is very popular. It’s interesting to experience what computing was like in the 80s when 8-bit processors were the standard and 64K of memory was generous.
This guide takes you somewhere in-between. It looks at running a Z80 emulator on state of the art microcontroller hardware. Specifically, a Grand Central M4 Express. This board is built around the SAMD51 MCU which has plenty of memory and power to run an emulator in real time. Just as importantly, it has an onboard SD card slot which is needed to house CP/M’s virtual disks.
The Adafruit Grand Central Express running CP/M and using the emulated Z80 to handle an LED
Do you like emulating vintage hardware? Let us know in the comments below!
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, or even use Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for MakeCode, CircuitPython, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.