Yesterday was the 35th anniversary of the launch of the Sinclair ZX Spectrum, so why not celebrate by announcing a brand new home computer for the community to enjoy?
SPECCY IS BACK
You read that right! The 48K classic computer is getting a rebooted version of itself thanks to efforts of some of the best minds that have ever graced the ZX Spectrum.
The ZX Spectrum Next is coming to us thanks to the efforts of SpecNextLTD, a relatively new manufacturer based out in London. The company will be taking on all of the complicated manufacturing processes for the ZX Spectrum Next that is being designed by a team of Speccy legends.
Rick Dickison is hemming the design of the ZX Spectrum Next, which is fitting as he designed the original ZX Spectrum back in the day. Jim Bagley is another ZX Spectrum legend on board with the project and is responsible for making sure the ZX Spectrum Next has all the latest functions and development requirements one would expect out of a new system. A talented hacker named Victor Trucco is handling all of the electronics for the console so it performs as expected. And Fabio Belavenuto finishes things out by providing further hardware support as he is an experienced computer scientist.
Victor Trucco’s last project, the TBBlue Spectrum board is going to the starting point for the ZX Spectrum Next. It’s going to be a ZX Spectrum for the ages as planned to be compatible with all versions of the ZX Spectrum released thus far, expansions included. The design specs so far look rather impressive as well, given the talent working on the unit, it’s little surprise.
The specs of the new speccy are as follows:
- Processor: Z80 3.5Mhz and 7Mhz modes
- Memory: 512Kb RAM (expandable to 1.5Mb internally and 2.5Mb externally)
- Video: Hardware sprites, 256 colours mode, Timex 8×1 mode etc.
- Video Output: RGB, VGA, HDMI
- Storage: SD Card slot, with DivMMC-compatible protocol
- Audio: 3x AY-3-8912 audio chips with stereo output + FM sound
- Joystick: DB9 compatible with Cursor, Kempston and Interface 2 protocols (selectable)
- PS/2 port: Mouse with Kempston mode emulation and an external keyboard
- Special: Multiface functionality for memory access, savegames, cheats, etc.
- Tape support: Mic and Ear ports for tape loading and saving
- Expansion: Original external bus expansion port and accelerator expansion port
- Accelerator board (optional): GPU / 1Ghz CPU / 512Mb RAM
- Network (optional): Wi-Fi module
- Extras: Real Time Clock (optional), internal speaker (optional)
As it stands, the ZX Spectrum Next looks set to make some serious waves. As it has been very well received by the Retro Gaming community thanks to the level of talent working on the project and how far along it actually is, considering it is more than just a few base design documents and nothing to show for it. But no! This project has clearly had some serious love and thought put into it, especially with it launching on the 35th anniversary of the proclaimed home computer.
Interested in the ZX Spectrum Next? You can check out their website by clicking here. As well as their Kickstarter by clicking here. The console is set to release in January 2018, which is some ways away, but with the amount raised so far and the people involved. The project is in good hands!
What are you most excited by with the announcement of the ZX Spectrum Next? What features do you want to see the most?