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M > MICRONIQUE  > HECTOR HRX


MICRONIQUE Click here to read to company history
HECTOR HRX

hector_hrx

The HRX is only a 2HR with some more memory (RAM of 64kb) and above all, a new integrated language, the Forth !! Yes, you read well : FORTH. At this time, as the Jupiter Ace was no longer produced, the Hector HRX was simply the only micro-computer in the world with Forth originally integrated (at least I think).

The HRX Forth is composed by more than 300 basic words named "primitives": each one have an elementary function (much more elementary than in Basic). By combining several primitives, one can create other words which will be added to the basic vocabulary. You can then use these new words to create new ones. The Forth can thus be used for every kind of application.

Another interest of the Forth is that it is interpreted and compiled : programs take then a small place in memory and can be executed from 50 to 100 times faster than in Basic.

But the HRX's Forth is also quite rich in graphical statements. More over, "Facteur Graphique", a graphical utility written in Forth itself and avalaible on tape, allows to make nice things. For example, it's possible to draw on screen with the joystick, to store the work, to recall it, to rotate it, to change its scale, to move it in front or behind another drawing, with or without transparency effect, up to your choice. Here again, the speed of the Hector's Forth is impressive, especially compared to a common Basic.

The Basic III is avalaible on tape for 350fr or on a ROM-PACK. The super editor already avalaible with the 2HR, is still here, on tape.

Just like the 2HR, the HRX has a very neat conception. The 25 pins of the video port for example, are gold-plated ! In the same way, to run the Z80 at the relatively high speed of 5Mhz, Micronique had to use Hitachi fast access memory chips, twice more expensive than normal ones... This is maybe why the Hector HRX was so expensive at that time : 4950 francs in 83.

The Micronique Factory in Corbeil (France) seemed to be quite innovative, and several articles were written about it...

>> Ultimate test for the HRX in the Corbeil factory :
during 24 hours, there are exposed to temperatures from 0 to 60°, observed on TV screens
.

> CONCLUSION
The HRX is a very good machine which didn't have its deserved success. Well, the software list wasn't very big and that is a certain death for a micro-computer. But compared to other french computers like the TO-7 for example, it deserves some respect.

 

coin_vert_1.gif (126 octets) dotclear.gif (172 octets) coin_vert_2.gif (127 octets) coin_rouge_1.gif (147 octets) dotclear.gif (172 octets) coin_rouge_2.gif (146 octets)
Good points dotclear.gif (172 octets) + Built-in tape-recorder
+
Good keyboard
+ Analog joysticks
+ RAM of 64k
+ Good conception
+ Integrated FORTH, cool !
dotclear.gif (172 octets) Bad points dotclear.gif (172 octets) - The price
- No counter for the tape-recorder
- Few software
dotclear.gif (172 octets)
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