THE PC89 SHOW IN AUSTRALIA by Norman Pierce
The most important thing about it that Jack Tramiel, the Big Man
himself attended and officially opened the show. This was the
first time ever Mr. Tramiel visited Australia. The show was
combined with a massive dealers conference. Although the
Commodore Amiga is still outselling the ST in Australia, we're
making up ground and the future looks very good.
So what was new under the sun?
Well, first of all the long-awaited ATW (Atari Transputer
Workstation) was there. The series 4 was running a very
impressive graphics demonstration on two different priced
monitors. This has attracted a huge interest amongst the
Universities and similar heavy number-crunching users. With
incredible speed, resolution and up-gradeability, this machine is
destined to go places. The estimated price for the base ATW (1
T800-20) is $9999 Australian Dollars. (About 17,500 Dutch
The next new product was the pocket Folio PC. This was a hand-
built pre-production model and looks incredible. The interest for
it was huge. One dealer already ordered 50 of them. Release will
not be for about 2-3 months yet at an estimated $499 Aust. (±
ƒ900,-). It uses an 80C88 CPU at 4.9152 MHz, has 128K RAM and
256K ROM with operating system and full applications suite.
Stacey (a true portable ST) was there too, in 'bare' form
though. The screen was nice, and it was seen to be running
Spectre-128 (a Macintosh Emulator) at one time by the quick
passer-by. No estimated price yet and around 3-4 months away.
The CDAR504 CD-ROM player is about to be released at around $999
Aust (± ƒ1800,-). This was running an absolutely incredible piece
of Australian designed software for the music education field
called Soundscape. Soundscape draws on the files of standard
audio compact disks and for the first time creates an
interactive learning environment where students learn from
listening to Hi-Fi music. Text, coloured graphics and animation
are synchronised to music excerpts and complete works to assist
the student in hearing and 'seeing' changes in tonal colour,
melody, rhythm, dynamics, texture and form. (Enquiries to Dennis
Patterson, NSW State Conservatorium of Music, Macquarie Street,
Sydney 2000 Australia).
In the PC area, the 286 and 386 Atari clones performed
flawlessly and again created a big interest among the serious
The Atari stand was the best attended at the whole show and
Commodore did not show. Mr Tramiel was there in person and
accessible to those who wanted to meet him.
The commitment of Atari Corp. to Australia, now means that Atari
has the best chance of becoming number one here (in fact, the
promise by JT is to be Nr 1 within 2 years). That is good news
for all Atari users here in Australia.
Mr Tramiel also mentioned the ST Plus - with 4096 colour palette
and stereo sound to be released later in the year. He did drop a
bombshell at the dealers dinner and we all had to take a deep
breath when we heard it....
Atari Corp would release a TT Atari around the end of this year.
There would be 2 versions - a TT Unix and a TT TOS using the
Motorola 68030. They planned a price of $1000 US! Boy, if Atari
can manage this then they have won the world! There will also me
a Mega 1 released shortly.
Well, that about wraps up this very quick insight to the
Australian PC89 show - a very big Atari interest show.
The text of the articles is identical to the originals like they appeared in old ST NEWS issues. Please take into consideration that the author(s) was (were) a lot younger and less responsible back then. So bad jokes, bad English, youthful arrogance, insults, bravura, over-crediting and tastelessness should be taken with at least a grain of salt. Any contact and/or payment information, as well as deadlines/release dates of any kind should be regarded as outdated. Due to the fact that these pages are not actually contained in an Atari executable here, references to scroll texts, featured demo screens and hidden articles may also be irrelevant.