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PC-8800 series

From NEC Retro

PC8800 set.jpg

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The PC-8800 series (PC-8800シリーズ) is a range of computers manufactured between 1981 and 19xx by NEC.

The PC-8800 series began with the launch of the PC-8801, and was initially marketed as a high-end home computer by the firm (a cheaper alternative being the PC-6000 series). It is the more logical successor to the PC-8000 series.

In October 1982 NEC launched the 16-bit PC-9800 series (beginning with the PC-9801), which over time became the new standard for higher-end computers offered by the company. The PC-8800 series continued to survive, however, becoming extremely popular as the price slowly fell.

During the first half of the 1980s, the PC-8800 series became one of the "big three" Japanese computers which dominated the market, sharing a platform with the Sharp X1 and its derivatives, and the FM-7 by Fujitsu. While many microcomputers were crushed by the rising MSX standard in 1983, the PC-8800 series continued to be supported until the early 1990s, where all Japanese computers were put under strain by the standards set by IBM PC compatibles.

Older PC-8800 series computers have an "N mode" video option, allowing for backwards compatibility with the PC-8000 series. This was removed with the PC-8801 mkII FR in November 1985.

Computers

Name Date Price Processor Clock Speed RAM Built-in 5¼ " FDD Built-in CD-ROM Video Modes Sound
PC-8801 1981-11 ¥228,000 Z80A 4MHz 64kB No No N, V1 Beeper
PC-8801 mkII model 10 1983-11 ¥168,000 Z80A 4MHz 64kB No No N, V1 Beeper
PC-8801 mkII model 20 1983-11 ¥225,000 Z80A 4MHz 64kB 1x 2DD No N, V1 Beeper
PC-8801 mkII model 30 1983-11 ¥275,000 Z80A 4MHz 64kB 2x 2DD No N, V1 Beeper
PC-8801 mkII SR model 10 1985-01 ¥168,000 Z80A 4MHz 64kB No No N, V1, V2 FM, SSG
PC-8801 mkII SR model 20 1985-01 ¥213,000 Z80A 4MHz 64kB 1x 2DD No N, V1, V2 FM, SSG
PC-8801 mkII SR model 30 1985-01 ¥258,000 Z80A 4MHz 64kB 2x 2DD No N, V1, V2 FM, SSG
PC-8801 mkII TR 1985-09 ¥288,000 Z80A 4MHz 64kB 2x 2DD No N, V1, V2
PC-8801 mkII FR model 10 1985-11 ¥99,800 Z80A 4MHz 64kB No No V1, V2 FM, SSG
PC-8801 mkII FR model 20 1985-11 ¥148,000 Z80A 4MHz 64kB 1x 2DD No V1, V2 FM, SSG
PC-8801 mkII FR model 30 1985-11 ¥178,000 Z80A 4MHz 64kB 2x 2DD No V1, V2 FM, SSG
PC-8801 mkII MR 1985-11 ¥238,000 Z80A 4MHz 192kB 2x 2HD No V1, V2
PC-8801 mkII MH 1986-10 ¥208,000 Z80H 8/4MHz 192kB 2x 2HD No V1, V2 FM, SSG
PC-8801 FH model 10 1986-11 ¥98,000 Z80H 8/4MHz 64kB No No V1, V2 FM, SSG
PC-8801 FH model 20 1986-11 ¥138,000 Z80H 8/4MHz 64kB 1x 2DD No V1, V2 FM, SSG
PC-8801 FH model 30 1986-11 ¥168,000 Z80H 8/4MHz 64kB 2x 2DD No V1, V2 FM, SSG
PC-8801 FH model 30 (black) 1986-11 ¥168,000 Z80H 8/4MHz 64kB 2x 2DD No V1, V2 FM, SSG
PC-88 VA 1987-03 ¥298,000 V30 8MHz 512kB 2x 2HD No V1, V2, V3 FM, SSG
PC-8801 FA 1987-10 ¥168,000 Z80H 8/4MHz 64kB 2x 2DD No V1, V2 FM, SSG, ADPCM
PC-8801 MA 1987-10 ¥198,000 Z80H 8/4MHz 192kB 2x 2HD No V1, V2 FM, SSG, ADPCM
PC-88 VA2 1988-03 ¥298,000 V30 8MHz 512kB 2x 2HD No V1, V2, V3 FM, SSG, ADPCM
PC-88 VA3 1988-03 ¥398,000 V30 8MHz 512kB 2x 2HD (+ 3½-inch 1x 2TD) No V1, V2, V3 FM, SSG, ADPCM
PC-8801 FE 1988-10 ¥129,000 Z80H 8/4MHz 64kB 2x 2DD No V1, V2 FM, SSG
PC-8801 MA2 1988-10 ¥168,000 Z80H 8/4MHz 192kB 2x 2HD No V1, V2 FM, SSG, ADPCM
PC-8801 FE2 1989-10 ¥119,000 Z80H 8/4MHz 64kB 2x 2DD No V1, V2 FM, SSG
PC-8801 MC model 1 1989-11 ¥169,000 Z80H 8/4MHz 192kB 2x 2HD No V1, V2 FM, SSG, ADPCM
PC-8801 MC model 2 1989-11 ¥199,000 Z80H 8/4MHz 192kB 2x 2HD Yes V1, V2 FM, SSG, ADPCM

Note: Floppy disk standards among NEC machines are both named and formatted slightly differently than Western counterparts:

  • Double Density (2DD): 640kB
  • High Density (2HD): 1.232MB
  • Triple Density (2TD): 9.3MB

Graphics Modes

Four graphics modes exist for PC-8800 series hardware. No computer was equipped with all four, though every PC-8800 machine is guaranteed to have at least the V1 mode.

Name Resolution Available Colours Palette
N 160x100 8 8
V1 640x200 8 8
640x400 2 8
V2 640x200 8 512
640x400 2 512
V3 640x200 65536 65,536
640x400 256 65,536
320x200 65536 65,536
320x400 64 65,536
PC-8800 series hardware
PC-8801 (1981) | PC-8801 mkII (1983) | PC-8801 mkII SR (TR | FR | MR | FH | MH | FA | MA | FE | MA2 | FE2 | MC) (1985-1989) | PC-88 VA (VA2 | VA3) (1987-1988)
stuff
haven't worked it all out yet