Computer Closet Collection

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Atari 800

See below for specifications and information on this system.

Specifications and information

Key Dates: Announced December 1978
Ships October 1979
CPU: 6502, 1.79 MHz
Memory: 4K-48K, This unit has three 16K RAM packs installed, total 48K
Operating System: BASIC in ROM (10K ROM pack + BASIC cartridge)
Atari DOS on diskette
Input/Output: 4 joystick ports, Atari cable bus
Bus: Two cartridge slots
Atari 800 proprietary bus for RAM/ROM expansion packs
Atari daisy-chain cable bus, connects floppy drives, cassette drive, and Atari 850 I/O interface, which includes serial and parallel ports.
Other Items in Collection: Full documentation, Atari DOS 2.5 & 3.0, various cartridges & games on diskette

The Atari 800 was launched simultaneously with its little brother, the Atari 400. Compared to the 400, the 800 added a real keyboard, an additional cartridge slot (for a total of two), and an expansion bus for adding RAM and ROM packs (the Atari 400 could only be upgraded by a dealer). The left cartridge slot was usually occupied by the BASIC cartridge.

Here's a shot of the Atari 400/800 series peripherals; the 810 disk drive, 410 cassette drive, and 850 I/O expander:


The Atari 400/800 were eventually replaced by the Atari XL series. The architecture remained similar, but the Atari 800's RAM/ROM pack bus was never used on any other model.

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