Rair Black Box
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The Rair Black Box is a complete diskette-based microcomputer system that uses the Intel 8085SA, running at 3MHz. It was released around 1978. This is a very rare system. It was designed for business, research, and educational uses. RAIR was a very early UK manufacturer of 8085-based systems. They licensed its design to ICL, who then produced the near identical ICL Personal Computer.
The computer was sold in multiple configurations: with a single 5.25-inch disk, with double 5.25-inch disk drives, with a single 5.25-inch and 5-inch hard drive, or with a 8-inch hard drive. This example in our collection is the model 3/50S-C, which has a 5.25-inch drive and 10Mb Winchester hard drive. Prices started at £1,950 and went up to £7,250.
It ran the CP/M operating system, which was supplied on a disk. The 3/20-S series was supplied with an enhanced version of CP/M, and the 3/30 and 3/50 series machines were supplied with MP/M, the multi-user version of CP/M. The following languages were available : Basic, Cobol, Fortran, Pascal, PL/1.
The Black Box required the connection of a VDU. It could connect to any terminal with a RS232C connection, but a Rair VDU was available to purchase as a peripheral. The Rair VDU was a Hazeltine 1410.
The computer was designed to be used as a multi-user system of up to four workstations.
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This exhibit has a reference ID of CH70805. Please quote this reference ID in any communication with the Centre for Computing History.