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RISC World

RISC Station Portable

Chris Revenski previews the new RISC Station Portable.

The new RISC Station portable is coming, and hopefully it will be coming soon. RISC World have been told that a prototype will hopefully be on display at the Epsom show later this year. If plans stay on track then machines could be delivered to customers before Christmas. So it would seem that now would be the time to start dropping hints to any rich relatives, after all what could possible make a better present than one of these.

BHP

The motherboard will be based on a tweaked version of that found in the R7500 desktop computer. Sources close to the project hint that the machine may actually be faster than the desktop machine it is based on, which would be very different to the usual PC portables. In addition the lower power consumption of the ARM processor means battery life could be much longer, up to 4 times the PC average. Although we haven't seem the final spec we believe it will be as follows:

  • 56MHz ARM 7500
  • Plenty of RAM (we think it may be as much as 64MB)
  • 12.1 colour display
  • Built in 24 x CD-ROM
  • Internal 3.2GB Hard Disk
  • Integral Floppy drive, capable of reading RISC OS and PC disks.
  • 2 x PCMCIA slots, perhaps with a network adapter in one of them.
  • Normal Serial, Parallel and Monitor ports
  • A trackpad, including, tap, double tap and drag actions.
  • RISC OS 4.03
  • Similar audio to desktop computer including a sound sampler
  • A midi synthesizer chip on mother board.
  • Built in stereo speakers.

And the price, well how does 1249+VAT sound? If you think that's expensive, and it isn't, pop into your local PC World and see how much a good quality 64MB portable computer costs. You will find the new RISC Station machine is excellent value, and it runs a decent operating system.

Once this new machine is released the market for second hand Acorn A4 machines (based on the A5000) will dry up overnight. If you have an Acorn A4 then you will want to upgrade. If you have ever wanted a portable machine, with the power of a desktop computer, your dreams are about to come true.

Chris Revenski

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