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C > CW/P > Cortex   


With a few modifications en route, the Cortex system was bought by the British company C/WP ("Computers and Word Processors") from Ontel in USA where it was called Amigo.

Major modifications were both to hardware, including easy service access, and software, all designed to make this micro more friendly. CW/P aimed it firmly at the mainstream office Word Processor market.

The Cortex was in three main units, the keyboard, disc drive and display which housed the main logic board. The plastic housing was available in six vivid colours (some of them were not really restful on the eyes). Only four screws allowed to quickly change any part of the system.

The IBM-like keyboard was set up to generate various Wordstar control codes, and the version of WordStar shipped with it was modified to use them.

It was basically a CP/M machine with some improvements: second processor for display management and graphics capabilities. It was also one of the first machines that GSX (Digital Research's graphics standard) was supported on.

The weird styling and high price relative to other CP/M boxes didn't help it in the market. Furthermore, its 8-bit processor couldn't compete with the new wave of 16-bit professional computers, and the Cortex never met a large success although it was a nice, small-footprint machine.

We need more info about this computer ! If you designed, used, or have more info about this system, please send us pictures or anything you might find useful.




NAME  Cortex
TYPE  Professional Computer
ORIGIN  United Kingdom
YEAR  1983
KEYBOARD  Full stroke 83 keys, PC style, 10 function keys and numeric keypad
CPU  Z80A,
CO-PROCESSOR  6502 (Screen)
RAM  64 KB
ROM  Unknown
TEXT MODES  80 chars x 25 lines
GRAPHIC MODES  640 x 300 pixels
COLORS  Monochrome
SOUND  Beeper
SIZE / WEIGHT  34 (W) x 31 (D) x 30 (H) cm
I/O PORTS  Parallel Centronics, Serial RS-232
BUILT IN MEDIA  2 x 200 KB 5.25'' floppy disc drives in separate unit
OS  Special version of CP/M-80
POWER SUPPLY  Built-in power supply unit
PERIPHERALS  5.25'' or 8'' Hard disk controller connector, 800 KB 5.25'' floppy drives
PRICE  £1795 (U.K., 1984)

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