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Was just given a TRS-80 Pocket Computer

RWallmow

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Anoka, MN USA
A coworker who knows I have a thing for old computers just gave me a TRS-80 Pocket Computer PC1 complete with leather bag and Printer/Cassette interface. I've ordered some of the button cell batteries it needs, as well as new NiCd's for the printer/cassette interface.

Now the big question, is there a library of programs/games available out there for it, or will I need to write my own in basic? I did some quick searches and haven't found any real repositories of programs, so I am thinking the latter will probably be the case.

TRS80PC1.jpg
 

vwestlife

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The PC1 does not support loading and running machine language programs (at least not officially), but there were plenty of BASIC programs and games created for it. Radio Shack published several books full of BASIC programs for the Pocket Computer series.

Easter egg: pressing Shift-Y gives you a Japanese Yen symbol (¥).
 

RWallmow

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The PC1 does not support loading and running machine language programs (at least not officially), but there were plenty of BASIC programs and games created for it. Radio Shack published several books full of BASIC programs for the Pocket Computer series.

Easter egg: pressing Shift-Y gives you a Japanese Yen symbol (¥).

I knew there were no machine language programs, but I figured there may have been a repository of WAV/MP3 files of some basic games, but I have come up mostly blank.

I have not searched for any yet, but I figured I would have to come up with some books or manuals to learn all the ins and outs of this dialect of basic anyways. Looks like I'll be keying in or making my own games ;-)
 

natcha

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The following books are available on the Internet Archive site:

119 Practical Programs for the TRS-80 Pocket Computer:

https://archive.org/details/119practicalprog00john



Tandy/Radio Shack Book: Pocket Computer Programs:

https://archive.org/details/Pocket_Computer_Programs_1981_Artsoft


Plenty of programs for you to key in and enjoy.

And last year, Corey was working on saving some programs to WAV. See following link to thread:


http://www.vintage-computer.com/vcforum/showthread.php?42601-A-couple-of-things-I-discovered-about-my-quot-new-quot-TRS80-PC1

You may wish to contact him to see if he was ever successful in saving the programs.



Bill
Smithville, NJ
 
Last edited:

ClassicHasClass

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You're fortunate on the LCD. A lot of PC-1s have started to dehydrate around the traces, which can leave the display totally black.

They're an interesting computer, but there's not a lot on them around. Some PC-3 software may work on it.
 

Corey986

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I have yet to be able to load anything on my PC1 off of an iPod or my MacBook. I can easily load off cassette. So I'm not sure if that is the reason you can't find any wave files. I think the cassette interface needs more signal than a modern headphone jack can provide. I guess I could build a circuit to mimic the signal level just have too many projects to do first.

Cheers,
Corey
 

Bungo Pony

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I have yet to be able to load anything on my PC1 off of an iPod or my MacBook. I can easily load off cassette. So I'm not sure if that is the reason you can't find any wave files. I think the cassette interface needs more signal than a modern headphone jack can provide. I guess I could build a circuit to mimic the signal level just have too many projects to do first.

Cheers,
Corey

Why not just use a small amplifier or record from the PC onto a cassette?
 

RWallmow

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I love pocket computers!

I know there's a large collection of PC-2 files on the internet, but that's not what you have. I wrote a couple of games for my PC-3 (Slot Machine & Blackjack). If you want to try and see if they work on your PC-1, feel free to download:

http://www.files.classicalgasemissions.com/misc/cpslots.wav
http://www.files.classicalgasemissions.com/misc/blackjack.wav

I agree, I love pocket computers, I have a few already, HP 100LX, IBM Simon, now this one ;-)
I will see if those files work, Thanks!

You're fortunate on the LCD. A lot of PC-1s have started to dehydrate around the traces, which can leave the display totally black.

They're an interesting computer, but there's not a lot on them around. Some PC-3 software may work on it.

Yeah, I have seen pics of some of those bad LCDs, I am quite thankful mine is clean :)

I have yet to be able to load anything on my PC1 off of an iPod or my MacBook. I can easily load off cassette. So I'm not sure if that is the reason you can't find any wave files. I think the cassette interface needs more signal than a modern headphone jack can provide. I guess I could build a circuit to mimic the signal level just have too many projects to do first.

Cheers,
Corey
Why not just use a small amplifier or record from the PC onto a cassette?
I actually have a FiiO audio Amplifier, I will try giving it a shot with that, maybe it will do the trick.
 

Corey986

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Why not just use a small amplifier or record from the PC onto a cassette?

I tried to record from my MacBook to the cassette but the output level isn't mic level it's line level so I really need a converter.

So either way you go, you need a circuit. I could use a small amp, but it might distort the signal. So my plan when I have a chance is to build a circuit specifically designed to make the correct level of signal and block noise and distortion that would not be used by the demodulation circuit.

Also to be clear, the PC1 cassette interface is so finicky I can't use my Panasonic cassette player I use for demonstrations with my Apple, I had to actually buy a new RadioShack cassette player. I didn't even go vintage I bought a brand new shoebox tape player/recorder and it works perfectly with my library of factory tapes.

Cheers,
Corey
 

natcha

Experienced Member
Joined
Jun 16, 2011
Messages
184
I tried to record from my MacBook to the cassette but the output level isn't mic level it's line level so I really need a converter.

Cheers,
Corey

Corey,

From the above, it sounds like you were successful in creating a wav file from a cassette. But was just unsuccessful in writing it back to a cassette or to the PC-1.

Could you make the wav file available so that others might try either creating a cassette from it or trying to directly play it into the cassette interface. While I don't have a PC-1 to test it with, others here might be able to test it.

Bill
Smithville, NJ
 
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