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Jérôme Desfontaine
04/16/19 06:09
Read: 181 times
Toulouse
France


 
#190937 - All-in-one 8052 computer (french Minitel)
Hi, I stumbled upon this site long ago, when I saved some Minitel (phone-line terminal) from destruction, and wanted to know what can be done with those.

Opening the little brown box, I discovered that it was cracked full of features, for the days they were produced, some even not used.

So talking of the model of those I got, it's a machine with a 8052@11.9MHz , a TTL serial port, a 9"monochrome white CRT driven by a EF9345 VDP with 8KB own memory, a built-in keyboard, and a modem.
You'll say that with a 8052, it's use is fixed, but the motherboard bears a header row that exposes MCU's memory and control pins, and on one, the MCU was a 8032, and this "expansion connector" has an add-on daughter card with an UVprom and the logic needed to handle adressing to the keyboard, VDP or ROM. There are some bridges that have to be unsoldered when the daughter card is present.

Every Minitel is not equal, I have begun to reverse-engineer the Alcatel M1b (Matra M1b has the same motherboard), and the Alcatel M2 seems promising while I never got a hand on one. Early ones have a less interesting MCU/VDP couple: 8039(romlessMCS48)/9340, 8051/9340�
RTIC may be interesting too, I haven't studied any of those, but there is a little tech Demo made on a M2 (8032/9347) that shows the hardware potential.

I wanted to catch your attention on the fact such cute machines are on the way to the garbage dumps, and if you can get one, for free or very little money, and get them back home, don't hesitate, it can be much fun!

Alcatel-style, with fold-up keyboard:

A company made all-in one ZX-80's based on the left one, named "VP100".

Matra-style, with fixed keyboard:


Those on the right have the expandable motherboard, I don't have own pictures of the RTIC ones, they have a neat trail-type sliding keyboard.

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