Sinclair ZX81 Kit
The Sinclair ZX81 was the third of Sir Clive Sinclair's commercially available computers. Sir Clive was one of the UK's great innovators, having created (amongst other things) the Sinclair of Cambridge MK14 microcomputer, the success of which lead to Sinclair Research and the ZX80 in 1980, available in kit form by mail order from popular electronics hobbyist magazines.
The success of the ZX80 lead Sinclair to create the ZX81 in 1981 with a larger memory and improved mathematical functions. It was extremely popular due to its low cost and relative power, and hence well supported with software and peripherals by both Sinclair and other companies. The ZX81 was also extensivly used in schools and colleges for educational purposes, many people working in the computer industry today had their first computer experiences with the ZX81.
The ZX81 was available in kit and pre-built forms until the Sinclair ZX Spectrum (with hi-res colour graphics and sound!) outdated it. The ZX81 however was not forgotten and continues to provide its users with simple computing fun 20 years later as a look through our links page, or a quick search on the internet will show.
The kit contained all the necessary parts, including keyboard, case, printed circuit board, resistors, capacitors, connectors, integrated circuits, power supply, cables etc. When completed the computer can be used on UHF Channel 33 of any Black & White or Color TV. It is possible to use the computer on UK (50 hertz) and US (60 hertz) televisions by setting a ‘jumper’ on the circuit board.
Sinclair ZX81 Personal Computer kit(s). Price includes ZX81 BASIC manual, excludes mains adaptor. £49.95
Our kit is pristine in that it is in the original unopened packaging.
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This exhibit has a reference ID of CH21611. Please quote this reference ID in any communication with the Centre for Computing History.