A faithful scale 6:10 replica of the PDP-11/70, fully compatible.Designed by Obsolescence Guaranteed in Switzerland
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*Note: I make a batch of kits every month. Next batch will be sent out mid-June * What is it? The PiDP-11 is a modern replica of the PDP-11/70. Basic soldering skills are required to build the kit....Read More…
*Note: I make a batch of kits every month. Next batch will be sent out mid-June *
The PiDP-11 is a modern replica of the PDP-11/70. Basic soldering skills are required to build the kit.
Introduced in 1975, the 11/70 was top of the line in the famed PDP-11 range, and the very last system with a proper front panel. Tragically, DEC field service often removed the front panel in a later upgrade, leaving us staring at dull blank panels ever since..
The PiDP-11 wants to bring back the experience of PDP-11 Blinkenlights, with its pretty 1970s Rose & Magenta color scheme. On a more modest (living room compatible) scale 6:10, with faithfully reproduced case and switches.
In 2015, I made a replica of the PDP-8 for myself, as the Real Thing was above budget. To my surprise, I ended up making over 2000 PiDP-8 kits so far. I decided to spend the proceeds on a professionally made, no-compromise PiDP-11 with injection molded case and replica switches. It was a steep learning curve (story here). But never mind - it's done, the first 2,000 PiDP-11 kits have already gone out! And I thought I was alone in my minicomputer interest... A lively P(i)DP-11 forum can be found on Google Groups. And you don't necessarily need to buy the hardware. The pidp11 software runs on any Pi, although without the hardware front panel you will be Blinkenless of course. But very welcome to participate on the forum.
You could look at this as a smallish PDP-11/70, built with modern parts. Or alternatively, and equally valid, as a fancy front panel case for a Raspberry Pi.
Because inside is simply a Raspberry Pi running the excellent simh emulator in the BlinkenBone variety. (Note you have to provide the Pi yourself, it is not included in the kit). It will happily run any other Pi applications concurrently with the PDP-11, so you are not necessarily constrained to just PDP-11 software. Although really, there's not much of interest that does not run on an 11. Maybe a web browser or media server.
The PiDP-11 runs all the original operating systems: Unix systems 5/6/7, 2.11BSD, RSX-11, RSTS-E, RT-11. Lots of peripherals are simulated in addition to the CPU. Here's some output illustrating the 4096*4096 vector graphics of a Tek 4010 terminal on your Pi's HDMI display:
This machine is a seriously multi-user, multi-tasking powerhouse. Log in with multiple serial terminals, or just keep it simple with wireless ssh terminal sessions on your laptop. Please refer to my PiDP-11 web site for more details and crucially, the Building Instructions. If you are new to soldering, this is a very simple kit to put together. Please note: a Raspberry Pi is required, but is not included in the kit. Any Pi 2/3/4 is fine.
With a heart-felt Thank You to Beige-O-Vision for making a Youtube series on the PiDP-11:
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Swiss Post: A-Post Priority Plus (with tracking number)
Worldwide shipping, from Switzerland, $45. Sent as a Priority Plus parcel with tracking number. Shipping time is typically 1 week, but Customs inspections can sometimes add 1.5 week to that. Buyers in the US, Canada, Australia, NZ have never incurred additional costs from their national Customs so far. Buyers in Germany are advised to be aware of the delays and (sometimes) charges and (sometimes) pickup requests caused by the German Zollamt. Nothing specific to PiDP-11 parcels; just the normal problems that the German Zollamt causes with international parcels. The parcel is sent as an international parcel with CN22 customs declaration.
Kenneth | April 17, 2020
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