Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The Enterprise micro-computer

Enterprise 64Enterprise 64 computerThe Enterprise (a.k.a. Elan, Flan or even Samurai) was an ambitious yet hopeless games focused 8-bit computer that was released in 1985 by UK manufacturer Intelligent Systems. It came with a built-in joystick, cartridge slot, a 4MHz Z80, 4 channels of sound, impressive graphics (657x512 high-res and 256 available colours), a few dedicated chips, a ton of expansion ports and either 64k or 128k of RAM. Despite the impressive specs, some interesting games and a cartridge that guaranteed full ZX Spectrum compatibility, the advance of the 16-bit home micros and a ridiculous price point made sure the Enterprise was dead within a year.

Most promised peripherals (from a 4MB RAM expansion to a proper 3.5" FDD) and games remained thus unreleased, while the computers themselves -the Enterprise 64 and Enterprise 128- were gradually transformed into highly sought after collector's items. You can find more about them here, here or here and try the EP128Emu emulator here.

As for readers of this blog that have a couple hundred pounds to, uhm, invest in obscure vintage hardware, well, fear no more. You can happily spend yourselves silly and buy a rather fantastic boxed Enterprise 64 via eBay. Seller ships worldwide and you will be getting a boxed, mint machine, complete with manuals, BASIC cartridge, leads, demo tape etc.

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