To anyone who wants to know what Acornmachines are. I've included a small
featureslist on the Web. This list describes some technical features
on different models. However it gives no information on the operating
system that's been used exclusively by these machines. RISC OS 3 is probably
the best OS that I've ever seen or used so far.
Of course if you would like to see an Acorn computer at work, I can
give you a list of users, you can pay me visit or you can go to an
Acorn users group. For pricing of these machines just call (voice
or fax), email, meet me at IRC (on IRCnet channel: #Acorn) or pay me visit. I live in the centre of Antwerp near the Ring.
Acorn 32-bits RISC computers are
living proof that the best computers are still build in
This is the ultimate A-series computer. A classical desktop computer with
the power of the Risc PC 700. The A7000plus has got a 32-bits videodisplay
and a 16-bits CD-quality sound output. This system is 3 times faster then
the earlier topmodel, the A5000. The A7000plus comes equipped with 8MB as
standard and can have upto 130MB RAM memory. It also has an improved
IDE-interface which allows you to connect an ATAPI CD-Romdrive. With his
Enhanced Parallel and serial ports you can connect even the fastest modems.
The improved RISC OS includes the fastest JPEG decompression at an excellent
price/quality ratio and even includes networking capabilities. This new
model is definitely the new Acorn classic.
A total new concept in computing. The first, low-cost, multi-processor,
personal RISC computer. Unlimited internal and
external expansion capabilities. E.g. up to 260MB RAM, up to 5 cpu's,
up to 8 external case upgrades including power supplies...
This Multi-platform design can even use different types of cpu. What about
a 486DX4/100 and an ARM Risc cpu inside the same computer? It displays
up to 1600×1200 pixels controlled by a 64-bits video-accelerator with
its own fast VideoRAM. 32-bits Display depth (24-bits colour information with 8-bits
transparency mask) for more than 16 million colours on screen. 16-bits
CD-Quality Stereo sound output with internal audio input and mixing
circuitry. 32-bits Expansion ports (up to 8) with direct memory access
(DMA). Enhanced parallel and serial ports for high speed external
modems, printers and scanners. Build in support for ATAPI CD-ROMdrive.
Build in network possibilities. A greatly improved Risc OS to support the
unlimited potential of these machines.
Totally expandable Risc computer system
with 1GB harddrive and 4MB RAM min. Current systems can include 2 cpu's,
the ARM710 or StrongARM and a PC 486/586 cpu. The PC-cpu uses the unlimited potential of the Risc
PC architecture for complete MPC2 compliancy. E.g. SoundBlaster audio
support and 32-bits colour displays up to XGA-standards. Fully upgradable
to StrongARM Risc PC through simple cpu-card upgrade (plug and
2nd processor PC-cards
IBM-compatible features are easily obtained by plugging in a
second Intel-like processor card. There are several cards available.
Ranging from a standard low-cost 486SXL to a 5X86 (pictured here). With
every PC-card comes software to activate this additional processor. Your PC
can then use the 32-bits videodisplay, 16-bits CD-quality sound as well as
other resources like memory or CD-romdrives from the Acorn system. For a
fairly small price you obtain an fully featured IBM-compatible multimedia PC inside
your multimedia Acorn.
Risc PC's are very easy to upgrade. By opening the case you can remove the
existing cpu-card and replace it with a faster cpu-card. The most
powerfull cpu-upgrade is called the StrongARM SA-110. This ARM RISC
processor is jointly developed by ARM Ltd. (the original cpu designer) and
Digital Equipment Corp. The production model pictured here is running at 200
Mhz. The StrongARM will significantly boost the already good performance of
the Risc PC by at least a factor 5. Some applications particularly
BBC BASIC which is already the fastest BASIC-interpreter available, show a 20 fold performance increase!
The table below
shows a comparison of several cpu-types in Dhrystone MIPS v2.1. Beware that this
gives absolutely no indication of how well the entire system performs. It
only indicates performance with Dhrystone calculations.
It's interesting to know that the speed of a StrongARM processorcard can be adjusted by DIP-switches upto 287Mhz!
Dhrystone MIPS v2.1
|Risc PC 700 (40 Mhz)||32 MIPS|
|Intel DX2-66 PC (66 Mhz)||23 MIPS|
|Intel Pentium 200 PC (200 Mhz)||169 MIPS|
|StrongARM Risc PC (200 Mhz)||204 MIPS|
Phoebe 2100/Risc PC II
By the end of this summer Acorn will introduce a new RISC computer.
Considering the fact that first models will use the same 233Mhz SA-110 as
used in present models, this machine will have at least a 2 or 3 fold
performance increase compared to existing 233Mhz StrongARM Risc PC.
Naturally this machine is prepared to use new ARM & StrongARM cpu's when
they arrive which will increase performance even further.
configuration will be as follows: 20X speed CD-ROMdrive, 1.6MB/1.44MB
floppydrive, at least 32MB RAM, at least a 2GB harddrive. The new machine
will accept PCI-expansion cards as well as existing Acorn's proprietary
DEBI-podules. The maximum capacity of both its internal memory and
video-subsystem have been doubled. Just as existing models this system uses
replaceable cpu's and is prepared for multi-processor technology. The support
chips are ready though the supporting operating system is yet under
At launch time the machine will be delivered with a new Risc OS (Acorn's
native single processor multitasking 32-bits RISC operating system), called
Risc OS 4, until the new multiprocessor OS (codenamed: Galileo) is a
reality. There is already work being done to add multiprocessor support into
existing Unix-variants and we await a small multiprocessorboard containing
4 StrongARM cpu's shortly after the machine's launch.
Acorn Ltd. recently made an announcement in which she declares to withdrawn
from the consumer desktop computermarket. This caused that further
development and the imminent release of Phoebe 2100 has ceased. However all
present systems will be kept on sale and will remain to be supported. Acorn
Ltd. has promised to support to existing userbase wherever they can. First
steps in this direction will be set at mid-januari 1999 when RISC OS 4,
originally planned for Phoebe 2100/Risc PC 2, is going to be released for
owners of present StrongARM RISC OS machines. This is a major step backwards
for the innovative hardware development of the only European consumer
desktop personal computer system. |
A sad moment on the eve of a united
© StarLight Corp.