new find: an Intel MDS 800

From: Scott Stevens <>
Date: Tue Oct 26 19:46:05 2004

On Tue, 26 Oct 2004 20:13:15 -0400, you wrote:

>Hi Scott, you must be the one that bought the "MDS800" from eBay recently.
>I tried to tell the guy that it was a MDS2XX series which was the second
>generation development system from Intel.
>It is not a MDS800...

Sorry to hear that, in terms of 'collectors value and esteem' stuff.
I did suspect something was 'up' when the datecode on the ID sticker
on back was 1978.

>I used these systems back in the 70s and 80s as others here have done.

Mine seems to be a full 8051 ICE with all the trimmings, so I may even
attempt some embedded programming with it- the system came with a box
with four or five 'spare' 8051 'bond-out' processor chips in it, so it
is probably servicible even if the 'pod' is blown. (there's probably
been even at least one person, somewhere in the world, who would have
been willing to pay the price of a good used sports-car for one of the
spares, within the last decade)

I have at least a few tubes full of 8031s, and even a couple NOS tubes
of the elusive (RARE now) 8243 chip, so I can roll out a
psuedo-single-chip 8051 project or two if I want, even without an 8751

>bringing up the system verify power supply operation before powering
>anything on. A system that I recently acquired has so far only yielded a
>good internal disk drive and all the cards are non-operational.

Unless an EPROM is dead, everything else seems like standard
replacable parts. (rationalisation and hopeful thinking)

>The internal drive could be either SD or DD. If there is a 50 pin ribbon
>connecting the drive to the back board in the system, then you have an
>internal single density drive. If there is a cable running from one of the
>front cards to the drive, then it has been hooked up as double density.

Actually, there's an added-in non-Intel jack on the back (I think 37
pin 'D' shaped but as everybody knows, probably not a 'Dsub' due to
size) that the external dual-8" floppy enclosure plugs into. I
suspect the system may have had something third-party added to support
the two external drives, and some of the disks are labeled to indicate
they are 'higher' density than the internal drive will support.

This system has EVERYTHING, (including a plastic sleeve full of sales
receipts, etc.) and I'm hoping full docs for all the stuff that was
upgraded on it. There's a lot for me to go through yet.

No matter what, it does feel good to finally have a piece of hardware
with both Paper-tape in and and out jacks on the back.

>I don't have any comments on keeping its credentials.
>best regards, Steve Thatcher
Received on Tue Oct 26 2004 - 19:46:05 BST

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