Sorcerer I

 

 

Specifications

CPU Zilog Z-80 @ 2MHz
Memory 8K. Expandable to 32K
Inputs 63 key keyboard with 15 key number pad
Outputs Composite video
Ports RS-232 Serial, Parallel, Cartridge (ROM PAC), and Cassette (input/output)
Audio/Visual 512 x 240 monochrome graphics and 64 x 30 text. Sound available through parallel port.
Expansion Port S-100 Bus

 

The Sorcerer I (simply called the Sorcerer) was the original version of the Sorcerer.  Originally retailing for $895 to $1395 (depending on the memory configuration), this version only supported 32K of RAM and was plagued with several hardware bugs which necessitated the release of the improved Sorcerer II less than a year later.  One thing that many users notice is that the Sorcerer tends to run rather hot.  This is because unlike most computers of the day which used a power brick, the power supply is inside the Sorcerer itself. Interestingly this power supply is modifiable to work with either 110V or 220V.  On the motherboard there are four DIP switches which can be used to set the amount of memory the system has and to set either 50/60Hz video.  These options make it fairly easy to modify a system to work in either NTSC or PAL countries.

Upon turning on the computer, users were greeted with copyright message and were told where the top of RAM was located and where the Stack began (in hex).  This was the Sorcererís monitor program (written by John Borders) which was built into the system.  Not to be confused with BASIC, the Exidy Monitor program could only understand 15 simple two letter commands, but was enough to get users up and going provided they had the accompanying manual.   The most important commands to know were LOG (LOad and Go) which loaded programs off tapes, SA (SAve) which saved programs to tape, and FI (FIles) which listed the files on a tape.  Later in the Sorcererís life there was a small update to the monitor program (version 1.1) which fixed several bugs and added a few commands.  This version of the monitor was never built into any system and was only available as an EPROM upgrade.


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