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BBC/Acorn Archimedes A3000

After the strong users' feedback about the very successful first series machines, Acorn decided to produce a version of its Archimedes that was closer to home and semi-professional users pockets, adopting a more usual and compact form factor than previous models, supplied in the typical three-piece configuration, i.e. the models belonging to the series 300, 400 and 500 that, in my humble opinion, were beautiful.
Also inspired by the success of the Amiga and Atari ST, Acorn decided to adopt the familiar solution of the PC-keyboard shape, and thus the model A3000 was born, and recently joined my collection. 🙂

The attempt (successful) to contain the costs for the end user, found application in reducing the maximum amount of memory available to the system, in the absence of an hard disk controller, in the limited expansion capabilities, even in the absence of a serial port, that was provided as disabled, because the management was delegated to special chip to be installed in the appropriate sockets on the motherboard, that had to be purchased as an additional option. Continue Reading

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Acorn Archimedes A4000

Acorn Archimedes, the British rival of Amiga and Atari ST. People discussed a lot about it, but in Italy just a few actually had it. Finally it is mine! 🙂

It was the year 1987 and Britain's Acorn, in the wake of the good success of the BBC Master – and even before the BBC Electon – decided to participate in the technology race of the time, opposed to competitors that proposed mainly 16 bit, or hybrid ones at 16-32.
The very first model of this popular family of personal computers was called Archimedes 305, and was equipped with an ARM CPU clocked at 8MHz, fully at 32 bit (competitors was using the Motorola 680xx family of CPUs. Processors were substantially at 16 bit, with some registers using 32 bit), and with a range of video resolutions unprecedented for its time, i.e. a powerful 896×352 at 256 colors!
If the graphics was nothing short of thrilling, the audio section was even exaggerated: such as 8 independent voices, spread over two stereo channels. Continue Reading