This is a clone of the 1980s Sinclair ZX80 Computer, the predecessor of the ZX81 and ZX Spectrum computers. This is based upon my Minstrel ZX80 Clone boards, which use real hardware (not FGPA or emulation) faithfull to the original design. The only change is the addition of an few extra logic gates to improve the video output for modern TVs and Monitors.
The board is mounted in an original ZX81 case, sprayed white and fitted with a ZX80 logo and a new keyboard membrane with a ZX80 style overlay.
This version runs the original 4K BASIC ROM or the upgraded 8K BASIC ROM, and has 16K of RAM built in (no need for a RAM pack). Power is via a 9V DC adapter. The TV ouput is via composite video. Games can be loaded via a computer or cassette recorder.
To recreate the original look and feel of the ZX80, but with the ability to view on a modern TV set.
These are available as hand built units using my Minstrel ZX80 boards. Also available as a conversion kits if you for a dead ZX81. There are more options including bare PCBs and various kits here - minstrel-zx80-clone
This includes a PCB and parts, ZX81 replacement membrane and ZX80 style overlays. You just add a ZX81 case (not included), and some white paint if you like.
As above, but with the PCB assembled and tested, ready to install into a ZX81 case (not included), and some white paint if you like.
This is a fully assembled unit including the case and keyboard. Ready to plug in and go.
The original ZX80 came with a 4K BASIC ROM and keyboard with blue keys. When the ZX81 was launched, Sinclair offered an upgrade for the ZX80 with an 8K BASIC ROM and a ZX81 style keyboard with grey keys. This version of BASIC is more powerful and is partly compatible with the ZX81, but the grey keys don't look as nice as the originals. The keywords on each key are different so you need to have the right keyboard to match the version of BASIC. I have produced two new keyboard overlays with blue keys which can be stuck over a grey ZX81 keyboard. One has keywords for 4K BASIC and the other with 8K BASIC keywords, so you have the best of both worlds.
Chris | July 13, 2017
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I write a blog about old computers, repairing them, upgrading them, replacing them. Read more at blog.tynemouthsoftware.co.uk