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View Full Version : Northstar 8/16 board - possible 8087 add on



1980s_john
December 7th, 2014, 09:38 AM
Hi,

I've read about the Northstar 8/16 board, which came in two versions. One was an S-100 board, the other board fitted in a Northstar Advantage case and attached to the motherboard. From what I've read these boards contained a 8088 16-bit processor and 64K of RAM, and allowed either MSDOS (v1 I assume) or Northstar TurboDOS to be run.

Has anyone got an example of either type of 8/16 board, as a photo of the board would be appreciated.

Anyhow, reason for this post is that a friend has passed me a link to an eBay auction for a Northstar PCB:

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/NorthStar-Advantage-8088-8087-Co-Processor-PCB-/141498026720

There are 10 of these available but personally I wouldn't rush to buy one. The board has the legend:

8087 ASSY 03922

which (with quotes) prior to this page being indexed gets a big fat zero hits on Google. My hunch is that this board was developed by Northstar as an add-on to their 8/16 board, to add an 8087 co-pro (ie by unplugging the 8088 chip, plugging this board in, then plugging the 8088 back into this board).

Another possible home for this board might have been in the Northstar Dimension, a multi-user beast which featured an 80186.

My guess is this board was never launched by Northstar before their demise in 1984, so good luck if anyone goes ahead and actually buys one.

Regards,
John

1980s_john
December 10th, 2014, 01:11 AM
the Northstar 8/16 board, which came in two versions. One was an S-100 board
CORRECTION - apologies, a bit of reading shows the S-100 board was the HRZ-UP16, this has an 8088 and 128K RAM but no Z80.

See:http://www.hartetechnologies.com/manuals/Northstar/North%20Star%20Facts%20about%20Horizon%208-16%20with%20TurboDOS.pdf

Good luck to those who have bought the Northstar 8087 board currently on eBay!

The Advantage 8/16 seems to be as rare as hen's teeth, maybe because of the cost of RAM at the time. The board added $500 to the cost of a basic Advantage, and came with 64K RAM. Additional 64K RAM cards were $349 each, and max RAM was 256KB. The HRZ-UP16 at $599 had the benefit of 128K RAM built in, but an extra 384K (making the 512K total) cost a staggering $1299.

Regards,
John

new_castle_j
December 11th, 2014, 06:45 PM
Not sure if you are still looking for pictures, but if you are take a visit to Marcus' site: http://maben.homeip.net/static/s100/northstar/photos/index.html