Amstrad ALT-386SX Laptop Computer

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The ALT-386SX dates from 1988 and is a laptop computer based on the Intel 80386SX (so without the mathematical coprocessor built-in) with a clock speed of 16 megahertz. There is version on the market that is almost identical to the 386SX but based on the Intel 80286 (AT) processor, with the type designation "ALT-286".

The facts and figures on this page only relate to the 386SX version, although these can also apply to the ALT-286. The computers look identical and use the same battery pack, share a user manual and even service manual. This indicates that many parts can be exchanged between the two models. The ALT-286 comes with a 20 megabyte hard disc, and the 386SX with an 80 or 170 megabyte hard disc.

A characteristic design feature of this laptop is the single eccentrically fitted hinge on the Liquid Crystal Display (LCD screen). Instead of in the middle, as you may expect, this is fitted to the extreme right of the base unit.

Processor: 80386SX
Speed: 16MHz (switchable !0 8MHz)
RAM: 1Mb (2Mb and 4Mb upgrades available)
Expansion Slot: 1 x 16-bit, half length
Power Save Features: Power down of LCD & HDD after user
Hard Disk: 40Mb (25ms access time)
Floppy Drive: 1 x 3.5" x 1.44Mb
External Floppy Drive: 1 x 3.5" x 720Kb or 1.44Mb
Graphics: VGA/EGA/CGA/MOA/Hercules                
Parallel Port: l x 25-pin D-type
Serial Port: 2 x 9-pm D-type
Keyboard: 85-key, integrated numeric Keypad, 12 function keys                            
Maths co-processor: Socket available.
System Reset Switch: Available
External interfaces: VGA Monitor Port
Supplied Software:   MS-DOS 3 30 Operating System         

Width: 318mm
Depth: 380mm
Weight: 7kg including battery pack / 6.00kg without battery pack.                         

Type: Backlit LCD  
Dimensions: 223 x 169rnm
Resolution: 640 x 480 pixels

Made in Japan. Our machine was kindly donated by Tom Armitstead.

Manufacturer: Amstrad
Date: 1988

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This exhibit has a reference ID of CH31788. Please quote this reference ID in any communication with the Centre for Computing History.


Amstrad ALT-386SX Laptop Computer

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