Restoring data from computer data cassette formats #VintageComputing

Herb Johnson has compiled a comprehensive page on Computer Data Cassette Formats.

Audio tape cassettes of the 1960’s (developed by Phillips) were used with the first microcomputers of the mid-1970’s to store and reload programs. Several digital standards and circuits and programs were developed in the period. Personal portable cassette recorders were inexpensive, reliable, available; the circuits needed on the microcomputers were simple.

Into the 1980’s personal computers in mass-production continued to use cassettes, because of their cost advantage and simple digital hardware over floppy diskettes and drives.

Decades later, vintage computer owners and museums of computing technology are recovering the binary (and audio) content from these decade-old tapes. Many of these programs are games, and there is particular interest today by gamers in vintage computing.

See more on Herb’s comprehensive page.

Ed. note: Even the original IBM PC had a cassette port, although few people used it as it was for ROM BASIC only and not PC-DOS. More on Wikipedia.


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