The ZedRipper: a 16-core, 83 MHz Z80 powerhouse portable #VintageComputing #FPGA #Z80

We’re all used to multicore PC type machines these days but imaging a multicore Z80 machine. Z80? Like 1980 Z80? Yes. Clocked up to 83 MHz. A Kaypro dream to be sure. Chris Fenton has built such a beast:

Meet the ZedRipper – a 16-core, 83 MHz Z80 powerhouse as portable as it is impractical. The ZedRipper is my latest attempt to build a fun ‘project’ machine, with a couple of goals in mind:

  • Finally use one of the giant FPGA boards I had lying around
  • Play a little ‘alternate-history computer engineering’ with a hardware-focused approach to multitasking
  • Build a machine that I could write fun, small programs for on my daily train ride
  • Build a platform that would allow for relatively easy computer-architecture experiments

The ZedRipper is basically an attempt to build the ultimate CP/M 2.2 computer.

  • 16-core Z80 processor running at 83.33 MHz
  • 64KB of dedicated RAM for each Z80
  • 16-way ANSI-compatible “Multiterm” terminal accelerator
  • All CPUs and devices connected with a fully-synchronous, uni-directional ring network operating at 83 MHz
  • 128MB of storage on SD Card (available via 16 x 8MB disk drives in CP/M)
  • A ‘server’ core that boots into CP/M 2.2 and runs a CP/NET file server (written in Turbo Pascal 3 on the machine!) allowing shared access to the SD card
  • 15 ‘client’ cores running CP/NOS from ROM. Each client can access the shared storage and run any CP/M 2.2 programs without resource contention with the other cores.

See the full details in this incredible project post.

As 2022 starts, let’s take some time to share our goals for CircuitPython in 2022. Just like past years (full summary 2019, 2020, and 2021), we’d like everyone in the CircuitPython community to contribute by posting their thoughts to some public place on the Internet. Here are a few ways to post: a video on YouTub, a post on the CircuitPython forum, a blog post on your site, a series of Tweets, a Gist on GitHub. We want to hear from you. When you post, please add #CircuitPython2022 and email to let us know about your post so we can blog it up here.

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, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, 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.

Join 32,000+ makers on Adafruit’s Discord channels and be part of the community!

Have an amazing project to share? The Electronics Show and Tell is every Wednesday at 7pm ET! To join, head over to YouTube and check out the show’s live chat – we’ll post the link there.

Join us every Wednesday night at 8pm ET for Ask an Engineer!

Follow Adafruit on Instagram for top secret new products, behinds the scenes and more

CircuitPython – The easiest way to program microcontrollers –

Maker Business — Pololu’s account of the chip shortage

Wearables — Monster-inspired costuming!

Electronics — How to make your own magnetic field probe!

Python for Microcontrollers — Python on Microcontrollers Newsletter: New Releases of MicroPython and CircuitPython and more! #Python #CircuitPython @micropython @ThePSF

Adafruit IoT Monthly — 2021 in Recap!

Microsoft MakeCode — MakeCode Thank You!

EYE on NPI — Maxim’s Himalaya uSLIC Step-Down Power Module #EyeOnNPI @maximintegrated @digikey

New Products – Adafruit Industries – Makers, hackers, artists, designers and engineers! — New Products 1/21/2022 Featuring Adafruit 7-Segment LED Matrix Backpack – STEMMA QT / qwiic! (Video)

Get the only spam-free daily newsletter about wearables, running a "maker business", electronic tips and more! Subscribe at !

No Comments

No comments yet.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.