The Minstrel Issue 3 – a ZX81 compatible computer kit #VintageComputing @tynemouthsw
Tynemouth Software has released the Minstrel Issue 3 which is a ZX81 compatible computer kit.
This is a newly designed, ZX81 compatible 8 bit computer. Ever since I released the Minstrel Issue 2, which was a clone of the ZX80, I have wanted to extend this to be ZX81 compatible. This is Version 3.5, it’s taken four previous revisions (and rework in between) to get to this point. I’ll go through this in more detail in a later post, covering what went on with each of these and all the stages I went through.
The main change between the ZX80 and the ZX81 was integration of all the logic into a single ULA chip. I couldn’t replicate that, so I am sticking with discrete logic chips. As well as this, they solved one of the main problems with the ZX80. The way it was designed, it could either draw the screen, or run user code, it couldn’t do both at the same time. See the previous blog post for more about How the ZX80 Works).
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