View Full Version : Z80 Trainers?

April 2nd, 2009, 09:31 PM
I see these on eBay every so often:

Vintage Zilog Z80 Microcomputer Computer Trainer & Case (http://cgi.ebay.com/Vintage-Zilog-Z80-Microcomputer-Computer-Trainer-Case_W0QQitemZ400041209225QQihZ027QQcategoryZ16207 5QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem)
(I'm not affiliated with the seller.)

Does anyone know what these trainers typically offer in terms of memory and I/O? On this particular one, I see a breadboarding area, test points, LEDs, buttons, and 7-segment displays. Some of the keypad buttons reference a tape unit. I wonder what goes in the unpopulated socket.

I wonder if these units are good for the occasional machine-language programming fix?

April 2nd, 2009, 11:45 PM
From the looks of it and with the "MT" logo on the board, it
is probably a SBC board called Micro-Trainer (There is a
similar picture in my Z80 book). It could be a MPF (MicroProfessor)
clone. These boards usually come with 64 kb of R/W Ram, and
1k-8k of ROM, and other I/O peripherals.

The Z80 trainer you are referring doesn't have a manual that
usually tells you about the various keyboard functions, lists the
Rom-BIOS code, and provides schematics. It also doesn't have
a Logic probe, power supply, extra ICs, screw driver, pliers and
few other goodies that were kept in those empty spaces you see
on the case.

The suggested price is not a bargain, and you can find commercial
Z80 boards with better quality, more extensive Rom-BIOS, and
tech support at similar price range.


April 2nd, 2009, 11:46 PM
I wonder if these units are good for the occasional machine-language programming fix?

There are lots of Z80 signle-board training/development setups around. While you may get some machine-language jollies out of this thing, that's about all. I'd rather have something that actually has the memory maxed out with some reasonable I/O (e.g. RS232) and perhaps interfaces with development tools on a PC.

If you have to have a single-board "training kit" Zilog still offers development boards for their eZ80 series of CPUs that are pretty impressive.

April 3rd, 2009, 12:02 AM
There is also IDE available for Z80 at a very low price that
is quite entertaining and educational for any programming urges!!
It works under Windoze and it has a Basic compiler as well as
assembler for Z80.