This is the first member of the X1 family. Difficult to locate this computer in the Sharp family, it has some characteristics of the MZ 2000 but is not compatible with it.
The X1 family had a very great success in Japan, and the last models were very powerful. Go figure why Sharp didn't market these computers outside Japan… The most famous and strong feature of the X1 series is its Programmable Charactor Generator(PCG).
Tape Basic and Disk Basic were available but had to be loaded from tape. This is a concept that Sharp called "Clean Computer". X1 and MZ system (even X68000) do not have any Basic ROM or other OS ROM. They only have an "IPL ROM"(Initial Program Loader + IOCS) and a BIOS ROM. So if you want to use any OS with the X1 or MZ serie, you have to load it from external storage devices.
Sharp designed the X1 serie as an innovative multimedia system which could work with TV and video. The X1 serie has advanced features to display graphics and text over TV screens (superimpose feature). The X1 could achieve teletext functions without any additional peripherals (only the special X1 TV monitor which can be also used as a TV).
Sharp also released a "color image board" which was video capturing unit. Though it was working with 8 colours only, the result was astonishing for the time! The X1 was a real pionneer in multimedia market, but most people in Japan never realized this. The X68000 serie inherited from the X1 features.
Joe Repka reports :
Bought one of these amazingly ahead-of-its-time computers when they first came out in Japan. First floppy device was a single-sided double-drive unit that cost 100,000 yen! SS floppy disks sold for about 1000 yen (USD 10.00) at that time.
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