Discussion:
Sinclair does Commodore.
(too old to reply)
c***@googlemail.com
2008-08-25 07:31:10 UTC
Permalink
Those wild and crazy Sinclair ZX Speccy folk have managed to get a
VIC-20 emulated on a Spectrum and a SAM Coupé. Respect:

http://simonowen.com/spectrum/vic20emu/

Actually does 6502 at up to 1/7th the speed of a real VIC-20.

the SAM Coupé with the Quazar accelerator (running at 20Mhz) is
apparently fairly close to the original VIC speed. There are obviously
some limitations here and there.

So, we can emulate Sinclair BASIC already... did anyone start a Speccy
or ZX81 emulator for the Commodore?

Regards,

Shaun.
Riccardo Rubini
2008-08-25 07:38:45 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@googlemail.com
So, we can emulate Sinclair BASIC already... did anyone start a Speccy
or ZX81 emulator for the Commodore?
What would be the point in that? Have you ever wished your Ferrari had a
Pontiac engine?

Riccardo
c***@googlemail.com
2008-08-25 07:49:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Post by c***@googlemail.com
So, we can emulate Sinclair BASIC already... did anyone start a Speccy
or ZX81 emulator for the Commodore?
What would be the point in that? Have you ever wished your Ferrari had a
Pontiac engine?
Riccardo
The challenge, I suppose. And the fun of it.

Imagine being able to play superior games on a humble Commodore...!

Regards,

Shaun.
DanSolo
2008-08-25 08:13:19 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Imagine being able to play superior games on a humble Commodore...!
Imagined it. Then went and did it.
c***@googlemail.com
2008-08-25 20:13:35 UTC
Permalink
Post by DanSolo
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Imagine being able to play superior games on a humble Commodore...!
Imagined it. Then went and did it.
Someone has a sense of humour.

Regards,

Shaun,
Merman
2008-08-28 15:15:25 UTC
Permalink
Post by DanSolo
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Imagine being able to play superior games on a humble Commodore...!
Imagined it. Then went and did it.
A good game is a good game, whichever format it is on.
Riccardo Rubini
2008-08-25 12:28:34 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Post by Riccardo Rubini
What would be the point in that? Have you ever wished your Ferrari
had a Pontiac engine?
The challenge, I suppose. And the fun of it.
Sorry, I wouldn't call challenge downgrading/degrading any perfectly working
good.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Imagine being able to play superior games on a humble Commodore...!
You mean like playing Playstation 2 games on a C64? You certainly don't call
"superior" those ugly-looking poor man's games so many Speccy users wasted
their youth with, do you?

Riccardo
c***@googlemail.com
2008-08-25 20:19:50 UTC
Permalink
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Post by Riccardo Rubini
What would be the point in that? Have you ever wished your Ferrari
had a Pontiac engine?
The challenge, I suppose. And the fun of it.
Sorry, I wouldn't call challenge downgrading/degrading any perfectly working
good.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Imagine being able to play superior games on a humble Commodore...!
You mean like playing Playstation 2 games on a C64? You certainly don't call
"superior" those ugly-looking poor man's games so many Speccy users wasted
their youth with, do you?
I prefer R-Type on the Speccy than on the C64. Same with Chase HQ.
There are some other good Spectrum games whether you like it or not.

Why would anyone use WinVICE or CCS when the typical PC is perfectly
capable, and indeed a much more advanced platform? One has to wonder.
"Have you ever wished your Ferrari had a Pontiac engine?" is the
perfect arguement against all emulation, because emulation has to
happen on a more powerful computer than the one being emulated.

Regards,

Shaun.
Riccardo Rubini
2008-08-25 21:39:55 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@googlemail.com
I prefer R-Type on the Speccy than on the C64. Same with Chase HQ.
I despise both. Unsurprisingly, these titles never really were blockbusters,
were they?
Post by c***@googlemail.com
There are some other good Spectrum games whether you like it or not.
Good is too generic - and unobjective. Even pong, in its own right, might be
considered a fantastic game, but that doesn't make that platform look less
pathetic, compared to a C64. The irony here is pong wasn't supposed to
compete with the C64, whilst the Speccy was - crazy!
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Why would anyone use WinVICE or CCS when the typical PC is perfectly
capable, and indeed a much more advanced platform? One has to wonder.
Well, because Commodore computers were used and loved by millions.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
"Have you ever wished your Ferrari had a Pontiac engine?" is the
perfect arguement against all emulation, because emulation has to
happen on a more powerful computer than the one being emulated.
True, but not all emulated things suck as bad as the Speccy and/or the
Pontiac. Why would anyone want to remember something as despicable as a
Spectrum? It's just wrong :-)

Riccardo
c***@googlemail.com
2008-08-26 07:13:24 UTC
Permalink
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Post by c***@googlemail.com
I prefer R-Type on the Speccy than on the C64. Same with Chase HQ.
I despise both. Unsurprisingly, these titles never really were blockbusters,
were they?
Two of the biggest arcade games (and conversions) of their day? No,
they weren't blockbusters. That was a TV show hosted by Bob Holness
(originally, anyway).
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Post by c***@googlemail.com
There are some other good Spectrum games whether you like it or not.
Good is too generic - and unobjective. Even pong, in its own right, might be
considered a fantastic game, but that doesn't make that platform look less
pathetic, compared to a C64. The irony here is pong wasn't supposed to
compete with the C64, whilst the Speccy was - crazy!
Sir Clive Sinclair's intention for the Sinclair ZX Spectrum wasn't to
compete with the C64. The press made it that way. Sinclair wanted to
make computers that real people could afford, hence the heave cost-
reductions. The C64 was supposed to compete with the Atari 400/800,
which pre-dates the C64.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Why would anyone use WinVICE or CCS when the typical PC is perfectly
capable, and indeed a much more advanced platform? One has to wonder.
Well, because Commodore computers were used and loved by millions.
As were Sinclair computers.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Post by c***@googlemail.com
"Have you ever wished your Ferrari had a Pontiac engine?" is the
perfect arguement against all emulation, because emulation has to
happen on a more powerful computer than the one being emulated.
True, but not all emulated things suck as bad as the Speccy and/or the
Pontiac. Why would anyone want to remember something as despicable as a
Spectrum? It's just wrong :-)
Despicable to you. Others have different opinions. I'm not a fan of
the Speccy hardware one bit, but I can't deny that some of the games
are very good.

Regards,

Shaun.
Riccardo Rubini
2008-08-26 09:15:17 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Post by c***@googlemail.com
I prefer R-Type on the Speccy than on the C64. Same with Chase HQ.
I despise both. Unsurprisingly, these titles never really were
blockbusters, were they?
Two of the biggest arcade games (and conversions) of their day? No,
they weren't blockbusters. That was a TV show hosted by Bob Holness
(originally, anyway).
blockbuster - an unusually successful hit with widespread popularity and
huge sales

I did some research and those games you mentioned seem to have enjoyed much
success - my bad. I have never been that much into gaming, I am still stuck
at Pacman, Frogger and the likes. I gave a look on YouTube and ,
unfortunately, both R-Type and ChaseHQ still look horrible on the Spectrum:
monochrome sprites, sloppy animation, hideous sounds. Comparing the C64
version with the Spectrum one is unmerciful. Sorry, the Spectrum is really a
relic that should be forgotten at the junkyard.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Sir Clive Sinclair's intention for the Sinclair ZX Spectrum wasn't to
compete with the C64. The press made it that way. Sinclair wanted to
make computers that real people could afford, hence the heave cost-
reductions. The C64 was supposed to compete with the Atari 400/800,
which pre-dates the C64.
The idea I got of Sir Clive Sinclair is he was very lucky with the success
he enjoyed with his own mediocre products. For the most of it, Sinclair's
success might be related to british nationalism, that was also rampant in
those years ( think of the Falklands War ). His products were so subpar,
compared to those made by American companies, that nothing but nationalism
and protectionsim made them affordable and attractive.

By the way, here in Italy they have been sold, thanks to the pound exchange
rates of the time, in about the same price niche the Commodore's were sold.
The Spectrum did cost a little less, and it was one of the very rare
examples of a good's quality being strictly reflected by its price.

From my days of youth, I clearly remember those few kids who had their
parents buy the Spectrum by mistake being always and forever jealous over
their peers enjoying a real computer, like the VIC-20 or C64. At least,
neither the VIC-20 nor the C64 uttered midget farts when playing music.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Well, because Commodore computers were used and loved by millions.
As were Sinclair computers.
I suppose you can provide us some documented sale figures to back up what
you just said, right?
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Despicable to you. Others have different opinions. I'm not a fan of
the Speccy hardware one bit, but I can't deny that some of the games
are very good.
The ideas behind those games might be very good or even excellent, but the
Spectrum hardware doomed those ideas to look and sound like shit.

Riccardo
c***@googlemail.com
2008-08-27 11:53:19 UTC
Permalink
Post by Riccardo Rubini
blockbuster - an unusually successful hit with widespread popularity and
huge sales
Exactly. Some of the best selling 8-bit games of the early to mid-80s
started on the Speccy.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
I did some research and those games you mentioned seem to have enjoyed much
success - my bad. I have never been that much into gaming, I am still stuck
at Pacman, Frogger and the likes. I gave a look on YouTube and ,
monochrome sprites, sloppy animation, hideous sounds. Comparing the C64
version with the Spectrum one is unmerciful. Sorry, the Spectrum is really a
relic that should be forgotten at the junkyard.
It's not just how games look, but the all important playability.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
The idea I got of Sir Clive Sinclair is he was very lucky with the success
he enjoyed with his own mediocre products. For the most of it, Sinclair's
success might be related to british nationalism, that was also rampant in
those years ( think of the Falklands War ). His products were so subpar,
compared to those made by American companies, that nothing but nationalism
and protectionsim made them affordable and attractive.
He created computers that people could afford here in the UK. This
wasn't luck. American products were better generally. Nationalism had
nothing to do with it really. Any computer that could be afforded in
the early 80s here would have sold in numbers with the right
marketting.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
By the way, here in Italy they have been sold, thanks to the pound exchange
rates of the time, in about the same price niche the Commodore's were sold.
The Spectrum did cost a little less, and it was one of the very rare
examples of a good's quality being strictly reflected by its price.
Was the Speccy was about the same price of the VIC-20, or the C64?
Commodore had the PET computers before Sinclair lauched the ZX80,
then the VIC-20 was launched shortly after that, then the ZX81, then
the C64, then the Speccy. I think that's the right order of things.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
From my days of youth, I clearly remember those few kids who had their
parents buy the Spectrum by mistake being always and forever jealous over
their peers enjoying a real computer, like the VIC-20 or C64. At least,
neither the VIC-20 nor the C64 uttered midget farts when playing music.
Yes, and there are some people here who had an Oric-1 and wish their
parents had purchased them a Speccy, or had an Atari for Christmas
when they wanted a C64, or a C64 when they wanted an Amiga.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
I suppose you can provide us some documented sale figures to back up what
you just said, right?
Sinclair sold 900,000 ZX81s and Timex TS1000. I also have figures that
show Sinclair outselling Commodore by quite some way as published in
Popular Computing Weekly, if I can find it that is. I used this
information when I wrote a feature on the Sinclair ZX81 for a
professionally printed magazine called gamesTM, which at the time was
published by Paragon Publishing.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
The ideas behind those games might be very good or even excellent, but the
Spectrum hardware doomed those ideas to look and sound like shit.
That is just your opinion. The same could be said about any 8-bit
computer, in comparison to more powerful micros. Why do people still
play Atari 2600 games? Why do people still play VIC-20 games? or
Speccy or C64 games?

Regards,

Shaun.
Riccardo Rubini
2008-08-27 15:39:45 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Post by Riccardo Rubini
blockbuster - an unusually successful hit with widespread popularity
and huge sales
Exactly. Some of the best selling 8-bit games of the early to mid-80s
started on the Speccy.
I would have never thought of that. All games look so amateurish on it, even
the good ideas seem just wrong on it.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
It's not just how games look, but the all important playability.
You mean playbility as playing on an hideous membrane keyboard?
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Sinclair created computers that people could afford here in the UK. This
wasn't luck.
UK was quite a rich country back then. Sinclair created cheap, stripped down
computers that people could afford in USSR, actually.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
American products were better generally.
No doubt.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Nationalism had nothing to do with it really. Any computer that could be
afforded in
the early 80s here would have sold in numbers with the right
marketting.
Are you saying there's no protectionism, even at the intellectual level, in
UK against foreigner products? I've always heard quite the opposite.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Post by Riccardo Rubini
By the way, here in Italy they have been sold, thanks to the pound
exchange rates of the time, in about the same price niche the
Commodore's were sold. The Spectrum did cost a little less, and it
was one of the very rare examples of a good's quality being strictly
reflected by its price.
Was the Speccy was about the same price of the VIC-20, or the C64?
Full with its ugly looking and unuseful accessories? Yeah, almost. If you
were lucky enough to find those accessories. Otherwise you were stuck with
the membrane keyboard and a mundane tape player.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Commodore had the PET computers before Sinclair lauched the ZX80,
then the VIC-20 was launched shortly after that, then the ZX81, then
the C64, then the Speccy. I think that's the right order of things.
This is true, but I don't see how this fits in this argument. Please
explain. You mean the products weren't made to compete and the two companies
ignored each other? That's wrong, just ask anyone who was in the industry
back then.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Yes, and there are some people here who had an Oric-1 and wish their
parents had purchased them a Speccy, or had an Atari for Christmas
when they wanted a C64, or a C64 when they wanted an Amiga.
I don't know about the Oric-1, but if someone wished he'd get a Speccy, then
the Oric-1 should be as attractive as a dirty waterless toilet bowl. I mean,
the Speccy sucks so bad I can't imagine anything worse, other than a pocket
calculator.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Post by Riccardo Rubini
I suppose you can provide us some documented sale figures to back up
what you just said, right?
Sinclair sold 900,000 ZX81s and Timex TS1000. I also have figures that
That's not even a million. The C64 sold more than 20,000,000 units alone.
Not to mention all the other computers sold by Commodore.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
show Sinclair outselling Commodore by quite some way as published in
Popular Computing Weekly, if I can find it that is. I used this
Outselling? Possible, but I bet those statistics don't take into account
anything outside UK territory.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Post by Riccardo Rubini
The ideas behind those games might be very good or even excellent,
but the Spectrum hardware doomed those ideas to look and sound like
shit.
That is just your opinion. The same could be said about any 8-bit
computer, in comparison to more powerful micros.
No, I disagree. The Speccy is really a piece of outdated shit. There's
nothing special about it. It's just a gate array logic with resistors,
condensers and a Z80. It's ridicoulous even in its circuital simplicity,
nothing more than a mediocre pocket calculator with unaccomplished dreams of
grandeur.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Why do people still play Atari 2600 games?
Because they are good.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Why do people still play VIC-20 games?
Because they are very good.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
or Speccy games?
They probably have some insane masochistic fetish.

Riccardo
c***@googlemail.com
2008-08-27 16:45:50 UTC
Permalink
Post by Riccardo Rubini
You mean playbility as playing on an hideous membrane keyboard?
Or on an Atari-compatible joystick using a Kempston Interface, or many
other joystick interfaces available at the time.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
UK was quite a rich country back then. Sinclair created cheap, stripped down
computers that people could afford in USSR, actually.
In the early 80s, the government made a lot of people unemployed
(especially in the north). The UK has always been a rich country, but
that doesn't mean that everyone could afford a home computer back in
the early 80s.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Are you saying there's no protectionism, even at the intellectual level, in
UK against foreigner products? I've always heard quite the opposite.
Never heard of it... if that was the case, why did so many American
machines invade the UK? Why were, with the exception of Sinclair, did
American computers sell better than those made by Acorn or Oric?
Post by Riccardo Rubini
This is true, but I don't see how this fits in this argument. Please
explain. You mean the products weren't made to compete and the two companies
ignored each other? That's wrong, just ask anyone who was in the industry
back then.
Commodore were very aware of Sinclair's activities, and vice versa.
Commodore were the cost-cutting kings until Sinclair came along. There
were a lot of war of words in the press about who sold 1,000,000 units
first, for instance, between the two. Commodore won in the end, but
very clearly it was Sinclair that got Britian computing at least
within the home.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
I don't know about the Oric-1, but if someone wished he'd get a Speccy, then
the Oric-1 should be as attractive as a dirty waterless toilet bowl. I mean,
the Speccy sucks so bad I can't imagine anything worse, other than a pocket
calculator.
That is just your opinion about the Spectrum, and not fact, of course.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
That's not even a million. The C64 sold more than 20,000,000 units alone.
Not to mention all the other computers sold by Commodore.
The Sinclair ZX81 sold between 1981 and 1983, and started to be
dropped thereafter. Commercially, it lasted through to around 1984,
and you could still find a few hardware vendors in 1985. The C64 sold
between 1982 and 1993, and was supported by Creative Micro Designs
through to 2001. The comparison is not fair on that basis, and the
ZX81 was very much an absolute beginners machine in that it was dirt
cheap.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Outselling? Possible, but I bet those statistics don't take into account
anything outside UK territory.
Yes, but there was still quite some distance between the two. Of
course, Commodore caught up throughout the 80s.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
No, I disagree. The Speccy is really a piece of outdated shit. There's
nothing special about it. It's just a gate array logic with resistors,
condensers and a Z80. It's ridicoulous even in its circuital simplicity,
nothing more than a mediocre pocket calculator with unaccomplished dreams of
grandeur.
Again, just your opinion. A counter arguement to that would be that
the Spectrum provides much more of a blank canvass and programmers
have to be better just to do the basics. I'll point out again that I'm
not a fan of the Speccy as a piece of hardware. That doesn't mean all
of the games are rubbish.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Because they are good.
Yes, and there are good Spectrum games too, regardless of the lack of
support hardware that the machine has.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Because they are very good.
I do like the VIC-20, but there were many VIC-20 games were written in
BASIC though (especially those released on cassette) and some of these
were slow, but that doesn't mean that they were all slow. Therefore,
just because some Speccy games looked rubbish, or suffered from colour
clash, or were monochrome, doesn't mean that they played how they
looked. And, okay, the beeper in the 16 and 48k machines wasn't going
to set new standards in computer music (although some very clever
things have been done with it), at least the 128 had something like a
sound chip. But does that mean that all of the games, some 10,000 if I
recall correctly, were a complete waste of time? No. That would be
your opinion. You just don't want to step outside your comfort zone of
the C64 with it's 16 colour VIC-II chip and sophisticated SID.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
They probably have some insane masochistic fetish.
Really. I'm neither insane, nor do I have any sort of masochistic
fetish. Although I will admit that Speccy fans do have a strange love
for rubber. Hmm...

Regards,

Shaun.
Riccardo Rubini
2008-08-27 18:12:28 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Post by Riccardo Rubini
You mean playbility as playing on an hideous membrane keyboard?
Or on an Atari-compatible joystick using a Kempston Interface, or many
other joystick interfaces available at the time.
Sorry, I still prefer a computer that has a built-in interface, just like
the Commodore's did. It's was a better investment and it still would be
today, on parallel with modern technology.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Post by Riccardo Rubini
UK was quite a rich country back then. Sinclair created cheap,
stripped down computers that people could afford in USSR, actually.
In the early 80s, the government made a lot of people unemployed
(especially in the north). The UK has always been a rich country, but
that doesn't mean that everyone could afford a home computer back in
the early 80s.
Fewer people were able to buy computers here in Italy - my motherland was
definitely poorer than yours during the Commodore/Sinclair boom, circa 1983.
The fact people had few money made computers a sort of long-time
investments, that's why the majority chose the Commodore over the Sinclair,
regardless the fact Commodore computers were a little more expensive. It was
unthinkable, in those times, to upgrade every couple of years. And those
people ended up, indeed, with a good investment for a while, buying the C64.
The C64 got "old" in the early 90's, it was "current" during the whole 80's.
How long till a modern PC gets obsolete? A few months?

The Speccy, on the other side, saw many upgrades, which were mostly both
commercial and industrial failures. Sir Clive was just lucky. He knows that,
that's why he, despite a former interview he gave a couple of years ago,
prefers to stick playing poker, rather than returning to the computer
market. Besides, do you believe a real innovator would snub the Internet on
purpose? The guy had his fifteen minutes of glory in the eighties and now
he's just another millionaire who play cards on Saturday evenings.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Are you saying there's no protectionism, even at the intellectual
level, in UK against foreigner products? I've always heard quite the
opposite.
Never heard of it... if that was the case, why did so many American
machines invade the UK?
I have read many articles about intellectual protectionism of the British
people, as well as people reporting, after trips made to London, that it's
quite hard to convince British people to buy foreigner goods, if a British
alternative is available ( ie. food, clothes, etc. ).

Let's face it: british people are mildly all nationalists and hence often
even racist. You easily read it in the press, when Italians are referred as
"greasy wops" by a Tory candidate or Germans called "krauts" by the
Advertising Standards Agency of UK.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Why were, with the exception of Sinclair, did
American computers sell better than those made by Acorn or Oric?
Probably because those American computers were so much better to win over
the inner British imperial grandeur of customers. Seriously, I don't know,
really. Because they are good? Most likely.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Post by Riccardo Rubini
This is true, but I don't see how this fits in this argument. Please
explain. You mean the products weren't made to compete and the two
companies ignored each other? That's wrong, just ask anyone who was
in the industry back then.
Commodore were very aware of Sinclair's activities, and vice versa.
Commodore were the cost-cutting kings until Sinclair came along. There
were a lot of war of words in the press about who sold 1,000,000 units
first, for instance, between the two. Commodore won in the end, but
very clearly it was Sinclair that got Britian computing at least
within the home.
Britain is not the world. You might have seen a race between the two taking
place in the british market, but for the rest, expecially in Germany, Italy,
Austria, Spain and, ultimately, France, there was almost no real
competition. The pound exchange rate made often even poor men's computers
marketed as a gourmet food.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Post by Riccardo Rubini
I don't know about the Oric-1, but if someone wished he'd get a
Speccy, then the Oric-1 should be as attractive as a dirty waterless
toilet bowl. I mean, the Speccy sucks so bad I can't imagine
anything worse, other than a pocket calculator.
That is just your opinion about the Spectrum, and not fact, of course.
Of course, it's my opinion. But yet you have to tell me, right out of the
box, what the Speccy had to offer more than a programmable pocket
calculator. Just think of that hideous keyboard. Typing a letter or a Basic
listing on that? There's enough to shiver at the thought.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Post by Riccardo Rubini
That's not even a million. The C64 sold more than 20,000,000 units
alone. Not to mention all the other computers sold by Commodore.
The Sinclair ZX81 sold between 1981 and 1983, and started to be
dropped thereafter. Commercially, it lasted through to around 1984,
and you could still find a few hardware vendors in 1985.
Aw, that computer was even more crap than the Speccy, expecially when you
compare it with a PET.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
The C64 sold
between 1982 and 1993, and was supported by Creative Micro Designs
through to 2001. The comparison is not fair on that basis, and the
ZX81 was very much an absolute beginners machine in that it was dirt
cheap.
It was dirt ( period ). CMD supported the C64 because the computer was so
widely successful that they could do so. The Speccy simply faded away and no
company would have made a penny supporting it throughout 2001. Despite the
C64 worldwide success, even in 2001 CMD was unable to pay its bills solely
by selling Commodore stuff.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Outselling? Possible, but I bet those statistics don't take into
account anything outside UK territory.
Yes, but there was still quite some distance between the two. Of
course, Commodore caught up throughout the 80s.
And Sinclair just vanished, after selling a bunch of repackaged Speccy of
dubious quality.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Post by Riccardo Rubini
No, I disagree. The Speccy is really a piece of outdated shit.
There's nothing special about it. It's just a gate array logic with
resistors, condensers and a Z80. It's ridicoulous even in its
circuital simplicity, nothing more than a mediocre pocket calculator
with unaccomplished dreams of grandeur.
Again, just your opinion. A counter arguement to that would be that
the Spectrum provides much more of a blank canvass and programmers
have to be better just to do the basics. I'll point out again that I'm
not a fan of the Speccy as a piece of hardware. That doesn't mean all
of the games are rubbish.
It depens how you rank a game. I mean, following which rules Shaun ranks
games he likes and those he likes not. If you don't care about graphics, you
don't care about sound, you don't care about overall playbility and
compatibility with the average Joe's hardware, maybe not all Speccy games
were rubbish.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
I do like the VIC-20, but there were many VIC-20 games were written in
BASIC though (especially those released on cassette) and some of these
were slow, but that doesn't mean that they were all slow. Therefore,
just because some Speccy games looked rubbish, or suffered from colour
clash, or were monochrome, doesn't mean that they played how they
looked.
I am not saying all VIC-20 games were better. Of course, some were poorly
coded. On the average, a game wisely coded for the VIC-20 would end up
looking and playing better than a Speccy 16k counterpart.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
And, okay, the beeper in the 16 and 48k machines wasn't going
to set new standards in computer music (although some very clever
things have been done with it), at least the 128 had something like a
sound chip. But does that mean that all of the games, some 10,000 if I
recall correctly, were a complete waste of time?
It depends what you're after. Nowadays, personally speaking, if it weren't
for nostalgia, I would despise Commodore games as well. It's often hard for
me to look backwards rather than forward thinking at gaming; I do certainly
miss the vast fantasy of the 80's games, there were so many cool game ideas
back then contrary to now, but playing on the Speccy, even in emulation
mode, is so painful even the best idea seems spoiled and raped by the utter
machine's limitations.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
No. That would be
your opinion. You just don't want to step outside your comfort zone of
the C64 with it's 16 colour VIC-II chip and sophisticated SID.
That's not true. I played many PC games, and the even the PC speaker, when
cleverly used, was able to play better music than the Speccy ever did.
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Post by Riccardo Rubini
They probably have some insane masochistic fetish.
Really. I'm neither insane, nor do I have any sort of masochistic
fetish. Although I will admit that Speccy fans do have a strange love
for rubber. Hmm...
I will avoid any comment on that.

Riccardo
c***@googlemail.com
2008-08-28 08:20:27 UTC
Permalink
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Sorry, I still prefer a computer that has a built-in interface, just like
the Commodore's did. It's was a better investment and it still would be
today, on parallel with modern technology.
As do I, but that doesn't take away the fact that there are many good
Speccy games out there if you look.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Fewer people were able to buy computers here in Italy - my motherland was
definitely poorer than yours during the Commodore/Sinclair boom, circa 1983.
The typical computer was out of reach for many families here too,
until Sinclair came along...
Post by Riccardo Rubini
The fact people had few money made computers a sort of long-time
investments, that's why the majority chose the Commodore over the Sinclair,
regardless the fact Commodore computers were a little more expensive. It was
unthinkable, in those times, to upgrade every couple of years. And those
people ended up, indeed, with a good investment for a while, buying the C64.
The C64 got "old" in the early 90's, it was "current" during the whole 80's.
How long till a modern PC gets obsolete? A few months?
...which made home computers here a long-term investment. Consider
that the Sinclair Spectrum's commercial lifespan was around 10 years
here, for a computer that ended up costing around the £100 mark for
the 48k model, that's quite impressive. The PC market is crazy, and I
won't join that rat-race for sure.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
The Speccy, on the other side, saw many upgrades, which were mostly both
commercial and industrial failures. Sir Clive was just lucky. He knows that,
that's why he, despite a former interview he gave a couple of years ago,
prefers to stick playing poker, rather than returning to the computer
market. Besides, do you believe a real innovator would snub the Internet on
purpose? The guy had his fifteen minutes of glory in the eighties and now
he's just another millionaire who play cards on Saturday evenings.
Sir Clive was an inventor foremost. Making the home computer within
the reach of the typical British family, when unemployment was
raising, didn't fall down to luck. As for being a millionaire, I don't
know his financial situation, but the QL, his "super computer",
largely failed despite being a perfectly capable machine even for
1984. He then went on to develop the Cambridge Z88. I think that there
was some clause stipulated by Amstrad that he couldn't set up a rival
company to compete with it. I can't remember the facts.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
I have read many articles about intellectual protectionism of the British
people, as well as people reporting, after trips made to London, that it's
quite hard to convince British people to buy foreigner goods, if a British
alternative is available ( ie. food, clothes, etc. ).
Really? I don't remember that. London is different to the rest of the
UK; in itself, it is something like the 8th biggest economy in Europe.
The same can't be said about the rest of the UK. In my own small town
of Cheshire (during the 80s), my family purchased what they could
afford regardless of where it was made. That's why we had American
computers and not British computers, but then I was lucky in that my
dad worked, even if it was just for £2 per hour. A lot of people
around me had parents who couldn't find jobs and had little or
nothing. I was one of the few children in school who had a computer at
home, and I was very lucky for that.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Let's face it: british people are mildly all nationalists and hence often
even racist. You easily read it in the press, when Italians are referred as
"greasy wops" by a Tory candidate or Germans called "krauts" by the
Advertising Standards Agency of UK.
Tories are generally Euro-sceptic, anti-socialist, pro-free trade,
don't believe in society and, if people find themselves unemployed,
have no sympathy. We are not all tories in the UK.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Probably because those American computers were so much better to win over
the inner British imperial grandeur of customers. Seriously, I don't know,
really. Because they are good? Most likely.
That kind of goes against your arguement above that the British only
buy British. Even after Margaret Thatcher - the women who split up
traditional working class communities and took away most of their jobs
for the sake of the richest 1 or 10% of the UK - put a BBC Micro in
every school, (that's right - BBC, how nationalistic is that?), people
still chose foriegn computers in their droves. The only British
manufacturer to do well was Sinclair and then maybe Amstrad. The CPC
was always 3rd place though in terms of home computing. And then Amiga
came along - yes, another foriegn import.

Don't believe everything your read about the UK. I remember speaking
to an eastern European who seemed to think that I would be earning at
least £20,000 per year (this was about 6 years ago). At the time, I
was earning less than half of that. and I had what I considered to be
a good job.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Britain is not the world. You might have seen a race between the two taking
place in the british market, but for the rest, expecially in Germany, Italy,
Austria, Spain and, ultimately, France, there was almost no real
competition. The pound exchange rate made often even poor men's computers
marketed as a gourmet food.
I never said Britian was the world. Of course, I don't know what
happened elsewhere, but to sell nearly a million computers in the UK,
when unemployment was raising and families couldn't afford luxuries,
was no mean feat. Even if I had Italian computer magazines from the
early 80s, I couldn't read them.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Of course, it's my opinion. But yet you have to tell me, right out of the
box, what the Speccy had to offer more than a programmable pocket
calculator. Just think of that hideous keyboard. Typing a letter or a Basic
listing on that? There's enough to shiver at the thought.
The Spectrum had 16 or 48k. The typical programmable calculator had
maybe 2 or 4k. Sinclair BASIC may have been a bit quirky, but you
could at least get started with it. It was easy to do things like make
loading screens, and of course you had 256 x 192 resolution, with 2
colours per 8 x 8 attribute block. The pallette might have been a bit
crude, but from the 8 colours available, 7 could be 'bright'.
Programmable calculators had a dot matrix screen with typically a
smaller resolution and no colour attributes at all. And the Spectrum
could use a standard TV, whereas I don't have any programmable
calculators that have a TV output. Later revisions had an AY sound
chip, 128k and got rid of the "one-touch" BASIC. This was therefore a
good machine for a first home computer for many people. It also
provided a good blank canvass for some quality games to be produced on
it. I'm not a big fan of the hardware, but I have to acknowledge how
fun the games could be. I'm not saying that all games were good
either. But playing R-Type, for instance, on an emulator just doesn't
do the game justice.

The irony here is that Sir Clive didn't make a games machine, he
wanted to make an educational computer. Children therefore coned their
parents into buying them a Spectrum to help with School work, when
what they really wanted was to play 3D Ant Attack or Jet Pac.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Aw, that computer was even more crap than the Speccy, expecially when you
compare it with a PET.
Of course it was, but then again it sold well and got people
interested in home computing. For something so unsophisticated, this
was remarkable.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
It was dirt ( period ). CMD supported the C64 because the computer was so
widely successful that they could do so. The Speccy simply faded away and no
company would have made a penny supporting it throughout 2001. Despite the
C64 worldwide success, even in 2001 CMD was unable to pay its bills solely
by selling Commodore stuff.
Of course. But I suspect that the Spectrum software revival since 2002
has produced firstly some very good games and secondly has been more
sucessful when compared to anything released for the C64 in this time.
By released, I do of course mean onto real media. This is worth noting
because the Spectrum is much less sophisticated than the C64, and all
of the games have been released on cassette tape. People wouldn't
invest money and time into loading a game onto a Spectrum if it wasn't
worth playing.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
And Sinclair just vanished, after selling a bunch of repackaged Speccy of
dubious quality.
Sinclair were swallowed up by Amstrad. The QL was dropped, and the
Spectrum was given an Amstrad makeover.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
It depens how you rank a game. I mean, following which rules Shaun ranks
games he likes and those he likes not. If you don't care about graphics, you
don't care about sound, you don't care about overall playbility and
compatibility with the average Joe's hardware, maybe not all Speccy games
were rubbish.
How many Spectrum games have you actually played in comparison to C64
games? If you were being objective, then you would explore all aspects
of 8-bit gaming. And you can't say that all Speccy games had poor
graphics or poor sound, because it isn't true. More recent examples,
such as Farmer Jack, prove that the AY-equipped Spectrum is perfectly
capable of producing sound, and I quite like the look and sound of
splATTR, although this is 128k only. I also remember being amazed by
Trapdoor, but when I was much younger.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
I am not saying all VIC-20 games were better. Of course, some were poorly
coded. On the average, a game wisely coded for the VIC-20 would end up
looking and playing better than a Speccy 16k counterpart.
Really? Can you prove that? Looking better, as in more colourful but
also at a lower resolution. Perils of Willy has colour attribute clash
on the VIC-20, if my memory serves. And I know that Jelly Monsters has
colour attribute clash and flickering software sprites. That doesn't
make these games any less worthy of playing.

I'm not saying that all Speccy games were better. I simply make the
point that the Spectrum had and has some good games. I am not a fan of
the ZX Spectrum as a piece of hardware.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
It depends what you're after. Nowadays, personally speaking, if it weren't
for nostalgia, I would despise Commodore games as well. It's often hard for
me to look backwards rather than forward thinking at gaming; I do certainly
miss the vast fantasy of the 80's games, there were so many cool game ideas
back then contrary to now, but playing on the Speccy, even in emulation
mode, is so painful even the best idea seems spoiled and raped by the utter
machine's limitations.
I'll point out that emulation doesn't always do Speccy games justice.
R-Type, for instance, seems to play much better on a real machine. So
does splATTR and GameX.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
That's not true. I played many PC games, and the even the PC speaker, when
cleverly used, was able to play better music than the Speccy ever did.
You've played many PC games. How many Spectrum games have you played?
Have you even given them a chance? So, you have heard everything that
has been done with the Speccy's 'beeper'? It is quiet, but it can be
amplified quite easily.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
I will avoid any comment on that.
Come to think of it, hmm.... RUBBER....!

Regards,

Shaun.
c***@googlemail.com
2008-08-30 08:28:27 UTC
Permalink
[SNIP] But yet you have to tell me, right out of the
box, what the Speccy had to offer more than a programmable pocket
calculator. Just think of that hideous keyboard. Typing a letter or a Basic
listing on that? There's enough to shiver at the thought.
Okay, just a few other things I've thought of. A Speccy had cheap,
commercially produced entertainment software available nation-wide,
whereas a typical programmable calculator didn't. The Speccy can also
now emulate a Commodore VIC-20, albeit slowly, but to some degree of
accuracy, and can even do code. Show me a programmable pocket
calculator that can do that.

Regards,

Shaun.
Clocky
2008-08-30 16:36:16 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@googlemail.com
[SNIP] But yet you have to tell me, right out of the
box, what the Speccy had to offer more than a programmable pocket
calculator. Just think of that hideous keyboard. Typing a letter or a Basic
listing on that? There's enough to shiver at the thought.
Okay, just a few other things I've thought of. A Speccy had cheap,
commercially produced entertainment software available nation-wide,
whereas a typical programmable calculator didn't. The Speccy can also
now emulate a Commodore VIC-20, albeit slowly, but to some degree of
accuracy, and can even do code. Show me a programmable pocket
calculator that can do that.
Until it runs Robotic Liberation, Impossiblator and Vene Vidi Vic!
flawlessly you can keep dreaming about that emulator being even remotely
accurate, in fact the VIC20 shits all over the ZX Specrum in capability.

A programmable pocket calculator at least knows it's place and isn't
pretending to be some halfarsed and ill-conceived home computer.
c***@googlemail.com
2008-08-30 18:13:51 UTC
Permalink
Post by Clocky
Until it runs Robotic Liberation, Impossiblator and Vene Vidi Vic!
flawlessly you can keep dreaming about that emulator being even remotely
accurate, in fact the VIC20 shits all over the ZX Specrum in capability.
I didn't say that it would, hence: "The Speccy can also now emulate a
Commodore VIC-20, albeit slowly, but to some degree of accuracy, and
can even do code." There is a Spectrum 'simulator' for the C64 that
does Sinclair BASIC but can't do Z80 emulation. So, a Spectrum with a
6502 software core is fairly impressive, is it not?
Post by Clocky
A programmable pocket calculator at least knows it's place and isn't
pretending to be some halfarsed and ill-conceived home computer.
That is just your opinion. I haven't said anywhere that the ZX
Spectrum is better than the VIC-20, you will note.

Oh, but wait! This thread also started with talk about a VIC-20
emulator for the Sam Coupé as well. That certainly is a capable 8-bit
machine, especially with the accelerator card I also mentioned. Why
has no one tried to argue that the Sam is rubbish; it was, afterall,
meant to be a so-called "Super Spectrum".

Regards,

Shaun.
Sam Gillett
2008-08-30 21:24:58 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Oh, but wait! This thread also started with talk about a VIC-20
emulator for the Sam Coupi as well. That certainly is a capable 8-bit
machine, especially with the accelerator card I also mentioned. Why
has no one tried to argue that the Sam is rubbish; it was, afterall,
meant to be a so-called "Super Spectrum".
I guess the Sam Coupe isn't rubbish. After all, it would need a rubberish
keyboard to be true rubbish. :-)

However, I always felt that the Sam wasn't intended to compete with the
Atari's or the C64, but rather to compete with the XT Clones. Didn't do too
well did it? The Sam Coupe died while the XT Clones evolved and grew... into
the 286's, 386's, and finally today's Pentium class machines.

BTW, IBM never did well in the home computer market. However, clones of
IBM's business class desktop machines took over the number one spot in the
home computer market. Had the people who made the Sam Coupe been smart
enough to reverse engineer the BIOS of the IBM XT the Sam Coupe most likely
would have never existed. Just an opinion of course.
--
Best regards,

Sam Gillett

Global warming is caused by the sun.
Duh!
xc8/bRONx
2008-09-01 10:41:08 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@googlemail.com
can even do code." There is a Spectrum 'simulator' for the C64 that
does Sinclair BASIC but can't do Z80 emulation. So, a Spectrum with a
6502 software core is fairly impressive, is it not?
Maybe its possible a Spectrum emulator on the C128, as the c128 has
already a Z80 chip ...

chris
Andreas Kohlbach
2008-08-30 23:39:07 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@googlemail.com
[SNIP] But yet you have to tell me, right out of the
box, what the Speccy had to offer more than a programmable pocket
calculator. Just think of that hideous keyboard. Typing a letter or a Basic
listing on that? There's enough to shiver at the thought.
Okay, just a few other things I've thought of. A Speccy had cheap,
commercially produced entertainment software available nation-wide,
whereas a typical programmable calculator didn't. The Speccy can also
now emulate a Commodore VIC-20, albeit slowly, but to some degree of
accuracy, and can even do code. Show me a programmable pocket
calculator that can do that.
On a computer fair in 198X (I forgot, probably 1986) they sold ZX81. Five
in a box for about $20. We bought a box and blew them up with fire
crackers later. :-)

I have to add if a C64 or other would have been sold for that price we
would had done the same. :-)

Blowing up stuff back then was cool.
--
Andreas
My Commodore 64 classic game music page at
http://freenet-homepage.de/ankman/sid.html
DanSolo
2008-08-31 21:58:42 UTC
Permalink
Post by Andreas Kohlbach
Blowing up stuff back then was cool.
It's still cool Andreas... still cool.
Andreas Kohlbach
2008-09-01 02:59:59 UTC
Permalink
Post by DanSolo
Post by Andreas Kohlbach
Blowing up stuff back then was cool.
It's still cool Andreas... still cool.
*LOL*

/me goes out with his Pentium IV notebook... *BOOOOOM* Ah, that was
expensive, but worth it. *g*
--
Andreas
My Commodore 64 classic game music page at
http://freenet-homepage.de/ankman/sid.html
Clocky
2008-09-01 13:35:08 UTC
Permalink
Post by DanSolo
Post by Andreas Kohlbach
Blowing up stuff back then was cool.
It's still cool Andreas... still cool.
*LOL*

/me goes out with his Pentium IV notebook... *BOOOOOM* Ah, that was
expensive, but worth it. *g*

I deliberately drove over my old 486 laptop a few years ago... it seemed
like a good idea at the time :-)

Years ago I had a good friend who's parents were cleaners for Philips
Electronics and they used to empty the bins in the warranty/repair section.
Most of the stuff worked fine except for minor faults.

We had an endless supply of sacrificial walkmans, radios and various other
battery powered electronic equipment that didn't stand a chance against the
variable voltage 30VAC transformer we used to blow them up.

Those capacitors sure go off with a bang and pack quite a punch :-)
DanSolo
2008-08-28 13:04:05 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Again, just your opinion. A counter arguement to that would be that
the Spectrum provides much more of a blank canvass and programmers
have to be better just to do the basics. I'll point out again that I'm
not a fan of the Speccy as a piece of hardware. That doesn't mean all
of the games are rubbish.
I know it's hardly flattering for my beloved C64, but I'd have to say
the opposite. Do you have any idea how hard it is to do a sprite, a
user-defined graphic, or, god forbid, a beep on a C64? Anything other
than text processing and you're almost into 6502 assembly...
winston19842005
2008-08-28 13:07:01 UTC
Permalink
On 8/28/08 9:04 AM, in article
Post by DanSolo
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Again, just your opinion. A counter arguement to that would be that
the Spectrum provides much more of a blank canvass and programmers
have to be better just to do the basics. I'll point out again that I'm
not a fan of the Speccy as a piece of hardware. That doesn't mean all
of the games are rubbish.
I know it's hardly flattering for my beloved C64, but I'd have to say
the opposite. Do you have any idea how hard it is to do a sprite, a
user-defined graphic, or, god forbid, a beep on a C64? Anything other
than text processing and you're almost into 6502 assembly...
List of C64 Basic commands:

POKE
PEEK
END
Dombo
2008-08-28 14:10:23 UTC
Permalink
Post by winston19842005
On 8/28/08 9:04 AM, in article
Post by DanSolo
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Again, just your opinion. A counter arguement to that would be that
the Spectrum provides much more of a blank canvass and programmers
have to be better just to do the basics. I'll point out again that I'm
not a fan of the Speccy as a piece of hardware. That doesn't mean all
of the games are rubbish.
I know it's hardly flattering for my beloved C64, but I'd have to say
the opposite. Do you have any idea how hard it is to do a sprite, a
user-defined graphic, or, god forbid, a beep on a C64? Anything other
than text processing and you're almost into 6502 assembly...
POKE
PEEK
END
POKE and PEEK is all what real men need ;-)
Clocky
2008-08-28 14:27:19 UTC
Permalink
Post by winston19842005
On 8/28/08 9:04 AM, in article
Post by DanSolo
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Again, just your opinion. A counter arguement to that would be that
the Spectrum provides much more of a blank canvass and programmers
have to be better just to do the basics. I'll point out again that I'm
not a fan of the Speccy as a piece of hardware. That doesn't mean all
of the games are rubbish.
I know it's hardly flattering for my beloved C64, but I'd have to say
the opposite. Do you have any idea how hard it is to do a sprite, a
user-defined graphic, or, god forbid, a beep on a C64? Anything other
than text processing and you're almost into 6502 assembly...
POKE
PEEK
END
By the time you programmed a BASIC game into a ZX you were too crippled to
be able to play it.
Sam Gillett
2008-08-29 03:11:55 UTC
Permalink
Post by DanSolo
I know it's hardly flattering for my beloved C64, but I'd have to say
the opposite. Do you have any idea how hard it is to do a sprite, a
user-defined graphic, or, god forbid, a beep on a C64? Anything other
than text processing and you're almost into 6502 assembly...
One easy way to creat a C64 sprite is by using a C128. :-)

Use the C128's built-in sprite editor to creat the sprite. Save it and then
load it into the sprite storage area of the C64.
--
Best regards,

Sam Gillett

Change is inevitable,
except from vending machines!
Dylan Smith
2008-09-03 12:24:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by Riccardo Rubini
UK was quite a rich country back then. Sinclair created cheap, stripped down
computers that people could afford in USSR, actually.
You are kidding, aren't you? In the early 80s, the UK was just
recovering from 3 day weeks, the Winter of Discontent, low productivity,
high unemployment and high inflation, and frequent strikes - culminating
with the miner's strike.

The Spectrum in 1984 cost something like half of what a C64 cost. In
Britain, typically the normal families had a Speccy. Rich kids had a
C64. Very rich kids had a BBC Micro.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Are you saying there's no protectionism, even at the intellectual level, in
UK against foreigner products? I've always heard quite the opposite.
Perhaps people prefer to buy food that's British, but when I look in the
car park I mostly see cars made in German, French and Japanese factories.

British people generally love American products.
Post by Riccardo Rubini
No, I disagree. The Speccy is really a piece of outdated shit. There's
nothing special about it. It's just a gate array logic with resistors,
condensers and a Z80. It's ridicoulous even in its circuital simplicity,
nothing more than a mediocre pocket calculator with unaccomplished dreams of
grandeur.
So is every other 8 bit computer. A C64 is, after all, just a CPU and a
collection of gates, too.

What I think many people appreciate with the Spectrum is that a lot was
done with very little. It's not even a challenge to do a lot with a lot.
--
From the sunny Isle of Man.
Yes, the Reply-To email address is valid.
c***@googlemail.com
2008-09-03 13:23:03 UTC
Permalink
Post by Dylan Smith
Post by Riccardo Rubini
UK was quite a rich country back then. Sinclair created cheap, stripped down
computers that people could afford in USSR, actually.
You are kidding, aren't you? In the early 80s, the UK was just
recovering from 3 day weeks, the Winter of Discontent, low productivity,
high unemployment and high inflation, and frequent strikes - culminating
with the miner's strike.
I can't quite remember the exact politics of the time, as I was just
five years old in 1982, but I do remember that there were just no jobs
about in my part of the north, and of course I remember the Miner's
strikes.
Post by Dylan Smith
The Spectrum in 1984 cost something like half of what a C64 cost. In
Britain, typically the normal families had a Speccy. Rich kids had a
C64. Very rich kids had a BBC Micro.
That's about right. I was lucky in that my Uncle was well off and sold
my Dad his old C64 when he upgraded to a 128. Before that, we had a
TI99/4a, but because they went dirt cheap when Texas pulled out of the
home computer market, and my Dad was one of the few men with northern
accents who had a job.
Post by Dylan Smith
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Are you saying there's no protectionism, even at the intellectual level, in
UK against foreigner products? I've always heard quite the opposite.
Perhaps people prefer to buy food that's British, but when I look in the
car park I mostly see cars made in German, French and Japanese factories.
British people generally love American products.
Richardo is going on stereo-type only, and not evidence. I know just
one Italian, and for some reason, she is very openly racist about
Asians, particularly those with Pakistani heritage. But just because
100% of all of the Italians that I know are racist against Asians, I
don't assume that *all* Italians are like this.
Post by Dylan Smith
Post by Riccardo Rubini
No, I disagree. The Speccy is really a piece of outdated shit. There's
nothing special about it. It's just a gate array logic with resistors,
condensers and a Z80. It's ridicoulous even in its circuital simplicity,
nothing more than a mediocre pocket calculator with unaccomplished dreams of
grandeur.
So is every other 8 bit computer. A C64 is, after all, just a CPU and a
collection of gates, too.
What I think many people appreciate with the Spectrum is that a lot was
done with very little. It's not even a challenge to do a lot with a lot.
I can't say that I'm a big fan of the Speccy as a piece of hardware,
but I won't say that all of the games are rubbish just because the
machine was heavily cost-reduced. And for a 1982 cost-reduced computer
to emulate a 1980 machine is pretty cool, even if the emulation isn't
perfect.

Regards,

Shaun.
David Murray
2008-08-27 02:48:33 UTC
Permalink
Post by Riccardo Rubini
True, but not all emulated things suck as bad as the Speccy and/or the
Pontiac. Why would anyone want to remember something as despicable as a
Spectrum? It's just wrong :-)
I take a much different attitude these days. During the 1980's and
early 1990's, I had very bad opinion of anything made by Apple, for
example. I knew my Commodore 128 was way better than the Apple II
machines out there and later on I knew my Amiga 500 was way better
than those compact macintoshes that were everywhere. I was a
Commodore Zealot, fighting the battle of knowledge, trying to bring
the good news to the lost.

But today, it is all fun. I enjoy talking about and using Apple,
Atari, Spectrum, Tandy, whatever. If it was made in the 1980's, then
it has a place in my heart and in my home.

Granted, I still prefer the Commodore 8-bits and Amiga platforms to
all the rest, but part of the reason for that is that I am simply more
familiar with them and know how to use them better. I would say that
I know more about the C64 and its internal architecture than any other
computer on the planet. I own an Apple IIgs system, but have very
little software for it, and barely know how to use the thing.
Andreas Kohlbach
2008-08-26 02:03:36 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@googlemail.com
I prefer R-Type on the Speccy than on the C64. Same with Chase HQ.
There are some other good Spectrum games whether you like it or not.
Damn. I once installed a Specci emu and have not searched for a single
program yet... I should at some point.

I never had one, none of my friends, and it wasn't that famous in Germany
than the C64 or even the Atari $WHAT_EVER. But as I visited the UK in
1985 it was omni present. :-)

So, I cannot judge. I have an open mind, so will (at the weekend) do a
search for (how you call them: roms, images?) then. Or any pages to
recommend?

*Grrr* I don't know where to X'post and F'up2. I have only two matches
for "specci" on fido net, and a few non computer related for
"spectrum". So no F'up2.
--
Andreas
My Commodore 64 classic game music page at
http://freenet-homepage.de/ankman/sid.html
Sam Gillett
2008-08-26 03:03:03 UTC
Permalink
Post by Andreas Kohlbach
Damn. I once installed a Specci emu and have not searched for a single
program yet... I should at some point.
I never had one, none of my friends, and it wasn't that famous in Germany
than the C64 or even the Atari $WHAT_EVER. But as I visited the UK in
1985 it was omni present. :-)
So, I cannot judge. I have an open mind, so will (at the weekend) do a
search for (how you call them: roms, images?) then. Or any pages to
recommend?
Try looking here for most everything Spectrum:

http://www.worldofspectrum.org/
Post by Andreas Kohlbach
*Grrr* I don't know where to X'post and F'up2. I have only two matches
for "specci" on fido net, and a few non computer related for
"spectrum". So no F'up2.
If you want to start the next flame war, you could set a followup to:

comp.sys.sinclair

Or even worse, a crosspost. :-(

Don't do it until January 1st, 2010. That is when The Great Flamewar of 2010
is scheduled to start
--
Best regards,

Sam Gillett

Change is inevitable,
except from vending machines!
Andreas Kohlbach
2008-08-27 01:06:26 UTC
Permalink
Post by Sam Gillett
Post by Andreas Kohlbach
Damn. I once installed a Specci emu and have not searched for a single
program yet... I should at some point.
I never had one, none of my friends, and it wasn't that famous in Germany
than the C64 or even the Atari $WHAT_EVER. But as I visited the UK in
1985 it was omni present. :-)
So, I cannot judge. I have an open mind, so will (at the weekend) do a
search for (how you call them: roms, images?) then. Or any pages to
recommend?
http://www.worldofspectrum.org/
Thanks.
Post by Sam Gillett
Post by Andreas Kohlbach
*Grrr* I don't know where to X'post and F'up2. I have only two matches
for "specci" on fido net, and a few non computer related for
"spectrum". So no F'up2.
comp.sys.sinclair
Not intended.
Post by Sam Gillett
Or even worse, a crosspost. :-(
Don't do it until January 1st, 2010. That is when The Great Flamewar
of 2010 is scheduled to start
Why is that?
--
Andreas
My Commodore 64 classic game music page at
http://freenet-homepage.de/ankman/sid.html
Sam Gillett
2008-08-27 03:28:46 UTC
Permalink
Post by Andreas Kohlbach
Post by Sam Gillett
Or even worse, a crosspost. :-(
Don't do it until January 1st, 2010. That is when The Great Flamewar
of 2010 is scheduled to start
Why is that?
I really don't know. I guess it just seems like a good time for the next
Great Flamewar to start. There have been major flamewars between
comp.sys.cbm and comp.sys.sinclair several times in the past. For a time,
they were an annual event. Since the next flamewar can't be postponed
forever, scheduling it for 2010 may result in at least a couple of years of
peace between the two newsgroups. ;-)
--
Best regards,

Sam Gillett

Change is inevitable,
except from vending machines!
Andreas Kohlbach
2008-08-27 21:43:03 UTC
Permalink
Post by Sam Gillett
Post by Andreas Kohlbach
Post by Sam Gillett
Or even worse, a crosspost. :-(
Don't do it until January 1st, 2010. That is when The Great Flamewar
of 2010 is scheduled to start
Why is that?
I really don't know. I guess it just seems like a good time for the next
Great Flamewar to start. There have been major flamewars between
comp.sys.cbm and comp.sys.sinclair several times in the past. For a time,
they were an annual event. Since the next flamewar can't be postponed
forever, scheduling it for 2010 may result in at least a couple of years of
peace between the two newsgroups. ;-)
I don't understand why. Everybody knows the C64 was the best 8bit computer of
its time, so there's no need for any discussion or even flame wars. ;-)

Yep, 2010 sounds good for me.

SCNR
--
Andreas
My Commodore 64 classic game music page at
http://freenet-homepage.de/ankman/sid.html
Sam Gillett
2008-08-29 03:23:29 UTC
Permalink
Post by Andreas Kohlbach
I don't understand why. Everybody knows the C64 was the best 8bit computer
of its time, so there's no need for any discussion or even flame wars. ;-)
Everyone, except for some Spectrum fans, knows that the C64 was the best
selling computer of the 8-bit era. However, there are some, myself included,
who think the C128 was the best 8-bit computer. ;-)
--
Best regards,

Sam Gillett

Why is the third hand on a watch
called the second hand?
c***@googlemail.com
2008-08-29 06:30:51 UTC
Permalink
Post by Sam Gillett
Everyone, except for some Spectrum fans, knows that the C64 was the best
selling computer of the 8-bit era.  However, there are some, myself included,
who think the C128 was the best 8-bit computer.    ;-)
Yep, I much prefer having a C128 over a C64 myself. If I'm using a
C64, I feel like a bit of a poor relation.

Regards,

Shaun.
madcrow
2008-08-29 13:28:33 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Post by Sam Gillett
Everyone, except for some Spectrum fans, knows that the C64 was the best
selling computer of the 8-bit era.  However, there are some, myself included,
who think the C128 was the best 8-bit computer.    ;-)
Yep, I much prefer having a C128 over a C64 myself. If I'm using a
C64, I feel like a bit of a poor relation.
Regards,
Shaun.
My fave is actually the 128D. A C128 in a A1000-style desktop case.
Very sexy machine...

Madcrow
c***@googlemail.com
2008-08-29 19:18:29 UTC
Permalink
Post by madcrow
My fave is actually the 128D. A C128 in a A1000-style desktop case.
Very sexy machine...
Madcrow
I have a few 128Ds, or at least I did. I gave one away (plastic
casing), one stopped working (the CR in the tin case), so I purchased
another from Austria. 128s rule!

Regards,

Shaun.
Andreas Kohlbach
2008-08-30 01:04:44 UTC
Permalink
Post by Sam Gillett
Post by Andreas Kohlbach
I don't understand why. Everybody knows the C64 was the best 8bit computer
of its time, so there's no need for any discussion or even flame wars. ;-)
Everyone, except for some Spectrum fans, knows that the C64 was the best
selling computer of the 8-bit era. However, there are some, myself included,
who think the C128 was the best 8-bit computer. ;-)
I like the "futuristic" shape of the C128. Though never had any use for
it and booted into the C64 mode right away. ;-)
--
Andreas
My Commodore 64 classic game music page at
http://freenet-homepage.de/ankman/sid.html
Tom Lake
2008-08-26 12:14:41 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Why would anyone use WinVICE or CCS when the typical PC is perfectly
capable, and indeed a much more advanced platform? One has to wonder.
"Have you ever wished your Ferrari had a Pontiac engine?" is the
perfect arguement against all emulation, because emulation has to
happen on a more powerful computer than the one being emulated.
I happen to like the 2-D game play on older computers. Most PC games
these days seem to be first person shooters. I don't care for those.
Plus, there's the nostalgia factor of being able to play the games I played
in the late '70s and early '80s. I may not wish my Ferrari had a Pontiac
engine but sometimes I do wish I could drive my old Pontiac again!
I had some great times in that car and my Ferrari's brakes suck!

Tom Lake
c***@googlemail.com
2008-08-27 11:55:45 UTC
Permalink
I happen to like the 2-D game play on older computers.  Most PC games
these days seem to be first person shooters.  I don't care for those.
Plus, there's the nostalgia factor of being able to play the games I played
in the late '70s and early '80s.  I may not wish my Ferrari had a Pontiac
engine but sometimes I do wish I could drive my old Pontiac again!
I had some great times in that car and my Ferrari's brakes suck!
Speccy fans feel exactly the same.

Regards,

Shaun.
DanSolo
2008-08-25 20:06:39 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Imagine being able to play superior games on a humble Commodore...!
I guess you could refuse to use sprites, 99% of the SID chip's
capability, 16K of memory, the built in joystick ports, half of the
system colours, the screen colour memory, and 4 columns of characters
on each side of the screen.
Then you'd be nearly there.
Kelli Halliburton
2008-09-13 15:39:57 UTC
Permalink
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Post by c***@googlemail.com
So, we can emulate Sinclair BASIC already... did anyone start a Speccy
or ZX81 emulator for the Commodore?
What would be the point in that? Have you ever wished your Ferrari had a
Pontiac engine?
Riccardo
On the other hand, it's a lot easier for a Ferrari to perform like a
Pontiac simply by taking it easy in the driver's seat. It would be very
difficult to make a Pontiac perform like a Ferrari without making
serious hardware modifications.

Would you prefer to try to emulate a 486 PC with your 64?
Sam Gillett
2008-09-14 22:44:49 UTC
Permalink
Post by Kelli Halliburton
Post by Riccardo Rubini
Post by c***@googlemail.com
So, we can emulate Sinclair BASIC already... did anyone start a Speccy
or ZX81 emulator for the Commodore?
What would be the point in that? Have you ever wished your Ferrari had a
Pontiac engine?
Riccardo
On the other hand, it's a lot easier for a Ferrari to perform like a
Pontiac simply by taking it easy in the driver's seat. It would be very
difficult to make a Pontiac perform like a Ferrari without making serious
hardware modifications.
I don't know about that. After I put wide tires on an otherwise stock '66
Pontiac GTO it would do wheel stands coming off the line. Never saw a
Ferrari do that! ;-)
Post by Kelli Halliburton
Would you prefer to try to emulate a 486 PC with your 64?
Maybe _after_ installing several serious spyware and keylogger programs on
the 486... That should slow it down enough! ;-)
--
Best regards,

Sam Gillett

Change is inevitable,
except from vending machines!
Miika Seppanen
2008-09-15 14:49:56 UTC
Permalink
On Sun, 14 Sep 2008 22:44:49 GMT, "Sam Gillett"
Post by Sam Gillett
Post by Kelli Halliburton
On the other hand, it's a lot easier for a Ferrari to perform like a
Pontiac simply by taking it easy in the driver's seat. It would be very
difficult to make a Pontiac perform like a Ferrari without making serious
hardware modifications.
I don't know about that. After I put wide tires on an otherwise stock '66
Pontiac GTO it would do wheel stands coming off the line. Never saw a
Ferrari do that! ;-)
It won't be on its wheels after the first corner, though... ;)
Post by Sam Gillett
Post by Kelli Halliburton
Would you prefer to try to emulate a 486 PC with your 64?
Maybe _after_ installing several serious spyware and keylogger programs on
the 486... That should slow it down enough! ;-)
Just one program (well, sort of) is enough. You all know what it is.

-Miika
bud
2008-09-16 05:12:28 UTC
Permalink
Post by Miika Seppanen
Just one program (well, sort of) is
enough. You all know what it is.
I found it interesting, about 2 years ago, that when I fitted a 486/50
with a 1.3 G drive, it took about 5 minutes to boot. Turned out to have
98SE installed. After the boot, that 50MHz machine ran it as fast as a
100 MHz machine would have. Strange, as IIRC, SE 'requires' a pentium.

A case of the right hand washing the left, I guess. MS says the OS
requires a more powerful machine, and the industry sells a new batch of
them. (With Windows installed, o' course.)

salaam,
dowcom

To e-mail me, add the character zero to "dowcom". i.e.:
dowcom(zero)(at)webtv(dot)net.
--
http://community.webtv.net/dowcom/DOWCOMSAMSTRADGUIDE

MSWindows is television,=85 Linux is radar.
Clocky
2008-09-19 08:22:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Miika Seppanen
Just one program (well, sort of) is
enough. You all know what it is.
I found it interesting, about 2 years ago, that when I fitted a 486/50
with a 1.3 G drive, it took about 5 minutes to boot. Turned out to have
98SE installed. After the boot, that 50MHz machine ran it as fast as a
100 MHz machine would have. Strange, as IIRC, SE 'requires' a pentium.

Nope, Windows 98 will install and run on a 386.

A case of the right hand washing the left, I guess. MS says the OS
requires a more powerful machine, and the industry sells a new batch of
them. (With Windows installed, o' course.)

What is possible and what is practical are two different things ;-)
DanSolo
2008-09-19 11:26:25 UTC
Permalink
A case of the right hand washing the left, I guess.  MS says the OS
requires a more powerful machine, and the industry sells a new batch of
them.  (With Windows installed, o' course.)
They did the same thing with Vista, so games now come with greyed out
"Maximum Resolution" etc options if you try to play them on XP. People
have hacked the options menus and shown they run just fine on XP DX9
*if you are allowed to*.
Sam Gillett
2008-09-20 04:07:01 UTC
Permalink
Post by Clocky
Post by bud
Post by Miika Seppanen
Just one program (well, sort of) is
enough. You all know what it is.
I found it interesting, about 2 years ago, that when I fitted a 486/50
with a 1.3 G drive, it took about 5 minutes to boot. Turned out to have
98SE installed. After the boot, that 50MHz machine ran it as fast as a
100 MHz machine would have. Strange, as IIRC, SE 'requires' a pentium.
Nope, Windows 98 will install and run on a 386.
But how well will it run? :-)
Post by Clocky
Post by bud
A case of the right hand washing the left, I guess. MS says the OS
requires a more powerful machine, and the industry sells a new batch of
them. (With Windows installed, o' course.)
What is possible and what is practical are two different things ;-)
Quite true. Long ago, just to see if it would work, I installed Windows 3.0
on an 8086, XT class machine. Talk about S L O W !! That combination made a
C64 with a 1541 seem like a very fast machine by comparison.
--
Best regards,

Sam Gillett

Change is inevitable,
except from vending machines!
Anssi Saari
2008-09-20 08:26:35 UTC
Permalink
Post by Sam Gillett
Post by Clocky
Nope, Windows 98 will install and run on a 386.
But how well will it run? :-)
I suppose it could run reasonably well, assuming sufficient RAM and a
late model 40 MHz 386, with cache too... And accelerated video. I
think lots of 386 systems were limited to 16 MB, but from a quick
Google it seems at least 64 MB was possible on some systems.
winston19842005
2008-09-20 12:54:29 UTC
Permalink
Post by Anssi Saari
Post by Sam Gillett
Post by Clocky
Nope, Windows 98 will install and run on a 386.
But how well will it run? :-)
I suppose it could run reasonably well, assuming sufficient RAM and a
late model 40 MHz 386, with cache too... And accelerated video. I
think lots of 386 systems were limited to 16 MB, but from a quick
Google it seems at least 64 MB was possible on some systems.
I had/have a TI Travelmate 4000M laptop (486 at 40mhz and it was maxed out
to 16mb Ram).

It ran Win98SE at a very good clip - and I continued to use it until three
things happened...

1. The floppy drive stopped working - it was physically worn out. There was
no CD ROM or PCMIA slots on this piece of sh*t. I did have a Backpack CD
drive attached to it, although it was rather argumentative...

2. The "C" key wore out. The switch itself, and I couldn't detach the
switch. Presumably from being a mainly DOS system (all the "cd c:" stuff,
probably).

3. My ISP stopped using their normal dialer software and switched to a
Java-based dialer, that took way too much processor/memory. I had to block
their downloads shortly after connecting to keep the update from happening
and occasionally downgrade to v1.0 of the software when they slipped it in.

I won't tell you the name of this ISP, but they were a big 0...
Clocky
2008-09-22 06:07:03 UTC
Permalink
Post by Anssi Saari
Post by Sam Gillett
Post by Clocky
Nope, Windows 98 will install and run on a 386.
But how well will it run? :-)
I suppose it could run reasonably well, assuming sufficient RAM and a
late model 40 MHz 386, with cache too... And accelerated video.
The system I installed WIN95 on was an IMB PS/2 386SX16 with 4MB RAM and a
60Mb HDD and it was simply an experiment to see what the lowest spec machine
would be to run Windows95 on.
I also installed Windows98 on an 386DX40 with cache, Cyrix FPU and a, at
that time, top of the range VL-bus graphics card (one of the rare 386DX
boards that had a functioning VL-bus with a 386 CPU installed). That ran
remarkably well with 64MB RAM, in fact much better then a lot of entry level
486 systems.
Post by Anssi Saari
think lots of 386 systems were limited to 16 MB, but from a quick
Google it seems at least 64 MB was possible on some systems.\
386SX systems where limited to 16MB as they had a 16 bit data bus but the DX
where full 32Bit and could address 4GB -in theory- but the reality was very
different because the CPU often wasn't the limitation, motherboard chipset
and BIOS was.

Merman
2008-08-26 14:22:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Those wild and crazy Sinclair ZX Speccy folk have managed to get a
http://simonowen.com/spectrum/vic20emu/
Actually does 6502 at up to 1/7th the speed of a real VIC-20.
the SAM Coupé with the Quazar accelerator (running at 20Mhz) is
apparently fairly close to the original VIC speed. There are obviously
some limitations here and there.
So, we can emulate Sinclair BASIC already... did anyone start a Speccy
or ZX81 emulator for the Commodore?
Regards,
Shaun.
There was a program/hardware advertised back in 1984/5 that claimed to
run Spectrum programs on the C64.

I've done a couple of demos with Spectrum graphics (static loading
screens) in the past which look quite good (and even better in an
"enhanced" mode designed by Jon Wells, where the extra colours of the
C64 are used) - downloadable from http://www.geocities.com/andrewrfisher/demo.html
Pasi Ojala
2008-08-27 20:16:26 UTC
Permalink
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Those wild and crazy Sinclair ZX Speccy folk have managed to get a
VIC-20 emulated on a Spectrum and a SAM Coupé.
Does it play any VIC20 demos?:-)

-Pasi
--
"I for one have always found men to be sensible creatures who
only need to be shown the wisest path once to choose it."
-- Faile in The Wheel of Time:"The Shadow Rising"
Andreas Kohlbach
2008-08-29 01:45:03 UTC
Permalink
Post by Pasi Ojala
Post by c***@googlemail.com
Those wild and crazy Sinclair ZX Speccy folk have managed to get a
VIC-20 emulated on a Spectrum and a SAM Coupé.
Does it play any VIC20 demos?:-)
Browsing the Sinclair page recommended there is an Specci emu for the
Amiga. :-)

I wonder if you emulate an Amiga on a PC, which emulates an Amiga, which
emulates a C64, if that can emulate a Specci. ;-)

Poor CPU...
--
Andreas
My Commodore 64 classic game music page at
http://freenet-homepage.de/ankman/sid.html
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