The Sinclair PC 200 was one of the last computers built under the Sinclair brand (along with the PC-500). In fact it was not a Sinclair at all, but a desktop version of the Amstrad PPC-512.
The case bore a striking resemblance to the Atari 520 ST case. It had a built-in 3.5" floppy drive on the right and mouse and joystick ports under the keyboard. And indeed the PC-200 was officially marketed as an Atari 520-ST competitor : same price, same disk drive, same memory (512k) and same design.
But compared to the Amiga and 520-ST, the PC-200 looked like a naked pea, even for an IBM compatible. Its two ISA slots were not enough to reasonably expand the system. Standard IBM expansion cards were nearly twice the height of the computer, thus the computer needed to be opened permanently!
In 1988, the MDA and CGA graphic modes were quite obsolete as most PC systems had adopted the more convenient EGA mode.
An interesting feature of the PC-200 was a TV output socket at the rear of the system, quite rare for a PC compatible system. It shows that Amstrad wanted to market the PC-200 as a low-range PC compatible system for the whole family.
At the same time, Amstrad presented the PC 20, which was in fact the same computer as the Sinclair PC 200 except for the color of the case (black for the Sinclair, white for the Amstrad) and the TV output (not implemented on the PC-20).
Angus WR Gullivers reports to us :
The Sinclair PC200 had absolutely no success, it bombed and was withdrawn very quickly from the market. It was advertised for only about 3 months. It was released to poor reviews because of its lack of expansion possibilities and use of CGA graphics when EGA and VGA were already available.
I remember being the only 'computer head' in the electrical store I worked in - I was always trying to learn EVERYTHING about the systems we sold. I remember when the PC-200 came in 2 of them - with instructions that both were to be displayed NON-FUNCTIONING - with no product information. If we sold those 2 - we would be sent more (so we had to sell the display models FIRST - an impossibility for a new product). We called head office - they had no information - just a memo saying 'show the customer the box - it contains all the information they need to know' (ie - nothing - just the price!) Eventually we got a visitor from head office - who basically told us that we had to sell them or else the product would fail. It turned out - we had the only 2 in the whole region. When he discovered that (inevitably) most of the box content had gone 'missing' (pilfered by local urchins) he threw the two machines into a bin-bag - got in his car and left - with the 2 computers! Needless to say - the whole PC200 line lasted less time than it took for our laughter to subside!
Friday 25th August 2006
Christian Sculpher (Earth)
I have one PC-200 for sale, working condition, fair look, includes S-12MM monochrome monitor. Living in Greece, if you need more info please contact me at +30 693 9722108. Thank you
Wednesday 8th February 2017
Retro computer lover
Wednesday 8th February 2017
ELIAS AZGKINIS ($$917$$$955$$$955$$$940$$$948$$$945$)
BUILT IN LANGUAGE
MS-DOS, Digital Research GEM desktop, Organiser software
Full-stroke keyboard with numeric keypad (102 keys)
optional 8087 maths coprocessor
512 KB (up to 640 KB)
40 or 80 columns x 25 lines
320 x 200 / 640 x 200, CGA and MDA graphic modes
Centronics, RGB, RS232, Mouse, Joystick, 8 bit ISA slots (2)