Author Topic: The best 8 bit home computer?  (Read 3473 times)

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Offline litwr

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The best 8 bit home computer?
« on: 16:33, 09 January 17 »
I have made a list of 8 bit home computers which are the best (IMHO) with some feature.

Amstrad CPC - the best pixel based graphics
Amstrad PCW - the best CP/M computer
Amstrad PCW - the best text processor
BBC Micro and Commodore 128 VDC - the best speed of calculation with screen on
Commodore 64 - the best sound and graphics combined quality
Commodore +4/PAL - the best speed of calculation with screen off
Commodore +4 - the best quality of static graphics

Any additions? Atari 800 has 256 colors but I don't know good Atari pictures. Are there any Atari 800 good pictures somewhere?

Offline PulkoMandy

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Re: The best 8 bit home computer?
« Reply #1 on: 17:01, 09 January 17 »
Thomson TO8 - Has all the Amstrad CPC video modes, plus a 320x200 16 colors mode (with 8x1 block constraints), and a 4096 color palette. Beats the CPC easily on best pixel based graphics, except there is no "fullscreen" trick.


Then it depends on what your definition of "home computer" is. The v6z80P would be bast calculation speed (25MHz z80 CPU I think?), and also best static graphics and best combined sound/graphics (it looks more like an Amiga), but it is not a computer from the "golden days".


I don't see why the PCW would be the best CP/M computer. In the days of CP/M you could build anything around the S-100 bus standard, and include megabytes of RAM, hard disks, and a lot more.


Atari graphics: https://demozoo.org/graphics/?platform=16&production_type=

Offline robcfg

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Re: The best 8 bit home computer?
« Reply #2 on: 17:07, 09 January 17 »
Then a Tandy CoCo3 is even better for his 320x200 16 color mode without restrictions. Palette is much smaller, to be honest.


Regarding atari pictures, take a look here.

Offline litwr

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Re: The best 8 bit home computer?
« Reply #3 on: 19:38, 09 January 17 »
Thomson TO8 - Has all the Amstrad CPC video modes, plus a 320x200 16 colors mode (with 8x1 block constraints), and a 4096 color palette. Beats the CPC easily on best pixel based graphics, except there is no "fullscreen" trick.

I don't see why the PCW would be the best CP/M computer. In the days of CP/M you could build anything around the S-100 bus standard, and include megabytes of RAM, hard disks, and a lot more.
I didn't list rare and expanded computers.  All listed computers were produced in a large number, at least one million.  The problem with the rare models is in absence of programs demonstrating their features...  Could you name any model of CP/M computer which ran CP/M+, had more than 256 KB of RAM, had 720x200 graphics, and was mass produced and affordable for home use?


Then a Tandy CoCo3 is even better for his 320x200 16 color mode without restrictions. Palette is much smaller, to be honest.
Wikipedia says that Tandy CoCo3 has 64 colors in palette.  This is more than 27 of CPC.  However we don't even know how many Tandy Color were made. :( Is there any demo which can be compared with Batman Forever?
Thanks to all for the links to Atari pictures.  They look good but the quality of graphics is not too impressive.  IMHO C+4 shows much better results - http://plus4world.powweb.com/software/VDC_Challenge

Offline andycadley

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Re: The best 8 bit home computer?
« Reply #4 on: 20:49, 09 January 17 »

Any additions? Atari 800 has 256 colors but I don't know good Atari pictures. Are there any Atari 800 good pictures somewhere?
16 shades of 16 colours, with all sorts of insane restrictions upon how you can actually use them. With the possible exception of "most colours on screen in a gradient grid pattern", it probably loses out to everything. Even the Speccy.

Offline robcfg

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Re: The best 8 bit home computer?
« Reply #5 on: 20:55, 09 January 17 »
I think that trying to get actual photographs on screen loses artistic value. That's what I like of the linked Atari pictures.


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Offline reidrac

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Re: The best 8 bit home computer?
« Reply #6 on: 21:14, 09 January 17 »
The CoCo was somewhat popular, spawning 3 generations; some sources mention 1.3 million units sold. Others say 1.5+ million for all TSR-80 models, so I don't know if that 1.3 is too much.

The CoCo 3 was a very capable machine (up to 512K!):
Released The Return of Traxtor, Golden Tail and Magica for the CPC.

Offline robcfg

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Re: The best 8 bit home computer?
« Reply #7 on: 21:33, 09 January 17 »
I think that by playing with composite output you can get 256 colors on a CoCo3.

Then there are the MSX2+ and TurboR machines, which are able to display an insane amount of colors.


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Offline reidrac

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Re: The best 8 bit home computer?
« Reply #8 on: 21:56, 09 January 17 »
That's right, MSX2+ are still Z80 based and 8-bit. The MSX2 had a 256 colour mode already.

I always think of the MSX1 and I never remember the later standards!
Released The Return of Traxtor, Golden Tail and Magica for the CPC.

Offline Bryce

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Re: The best 8 bit home computer?
« Reply #9 on: 22:36, 09 January 17 »
It's very difficult to make a list like that without having tried all 8-bit computers, so I'll assume that the list is "best 8 bit computers that I've used". You've completely left out the Atari's for example. Is this because they weren't best at anything or because you've never had one?

Bryce.