Acorn machines

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Revision as of 20:23, 17 January 2009 by Chriswhy (talk) (Added Master ET MOS 4.0)
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System one

6502 CPU card, 1K RAM and hex keypad, LED display, cassette interface on two eurocards piggy backed together.

System 2,3,4,5

Eurocard rack systems with combination of cards containing 6502 CPU, 6809 CPU, 32K RAM, 32K battery backed CMOS RAM, disc interface, VIA, lab interface, 6502 ICE, Econet, analogue interface, VDU interface.

Home Computers

Acorn Atom

2-12K RAM on board, 40K max. 8K-16K ROM. 1MHz 6502, cassette, UHF, mono o/p. optional - Econet, disc, colour, VIA, ATOM BASIC.

Acorn Proton

The thing that became the....

BBC Model A and B

Well we all know about them...... Also available in German, American, and Mexican variants.

BBC Model B+

B with sideways RAM making 64K, 1770 disc interface as standard, optional upgrade to 128K RAM.


Versions exist with no 1770 disk controller fitted. The motherboard allows fitting either a WD1770 or 8271 controller.

BBC Master 128

65C02 2MHz, 128K ROM containing View, Viewsheet, Edit, DFS, ADFS, Terminal and BBC BASIC version 4. The Master 128 had a built-in 1770/1772 disk interface, 2 external ROM catridge slots, four 16K banks of sideways RAM. The machine also came with the standard BBC I/O connectors for the disk drives, a parallel printer port, a user port, 1Mhz bus for further expansion and a Tube interface.


  • The Master 512 was a Master 128 with 512K of RAM and an internal 80186 co-processor. It could be upgraded up to 1024K and ran MS-DOS and GEM.
  • The Master Turbo was a Master 128 with an internal 65C02 running at 3MHz, as a second processor.
  • The Master ET was a machine stripped of external connectors but fitted with an Econet module. No disk/printer/1MHz bus connectors.
  • Domesday machine aka Master AIV, Master Turbo fitted with tracker ball, SCSI interface and filing system to allow access to Philips Laservision disc player.

OS Variants

  • MOS 3.20 Standard MOS.
  • MOS 3.50 Updated MOS, caused some incompatabilities so was an optional upgrade.
  • MOS 4.00 Standard MOS for Master ET.

Master Compact

Relaid Master 128 without Tube connector in communicator style case. Single 3.5" floppy in monitor stand. 65C102, 128K RAM. Also available in Spanish.

Acorn Electron

6502 2MHz, 32K RAM, 32K ROM. Cut down BBC Model B, no teletext, no serial, single sound channel, cassette interface, RGB, UHF and an expansion connector for:

  • Plus one - centronics port, two ROM cartridge sockets, analogue to digital converter
  • Plus three - ADFS floppy with 3.5" SS 80T drive.

Acorn Business Machine (later renamed as Acorn Business Computer)

A range of machines all in same two box (ie keyboard plus processor/display box) case. Effectively a BBC B+ with a range of second processor cards and hard discs where appropriate. Range as follows:

ABC Terminal

Discless, no 2nd processor and a 14" Mono display.

ABC Personal Assistant

Single floppy no 2nd processor, View/ViewSheet in ROM and a 12" colour display.

ABC 100

Twin floppy, Z80 second processor with 64K RAM, CP/M and a 12" colour display.

ABC 110

Single floppy, hard disc, Z80 second processor with 64K RAM, CP/M and a 12" colour display.

ABC 210 (later renamed as Acorn Cambridge Workstation)

Single floppy, hard disc, 16032 (aka 32016) second processor with up to 4M RAM, PANOS, usual languages and a 12" colour display.

ABC 310

Single floppy, hard disc, 80286 second processor with 1M RAM, MS-DOS/Windows or DR DOS+/GEM and a 12" colour display.


Intelligent comms machine with 65816 processor, on-board modem, View, Viewsheet, comms, terminal emulation software. 512K or 1M RAM, 32K CMOS RAM with filing system and an optional phone handset. Used by Pickfords Travel Agents. An Italian version was available.

Briefcase Communicator

Communicator in a briefcase, with added RAM card interface and filing system.

Other Machines

Reuters board

Effectively a B+ on a big eurocard for rack mounting in dealer room systems.

Olivetti PC128s

Italian Master Compact with a grey case. 6502 and 128K RAM.

Acorn M19

Re-badged Olivetti M19 PC-clone. 256K RAM single floppy as base configuration. Clip on expansion box to take full sized PC cards. 8088 processor. Powered from its own mono monitor.

British Telecom M2105

Comms terminal consisting of an Electron with an expansion box containing modem, ROMs and speech sythesiser. (used by Interflora, I believe)