In 1983 Kyoto Ceramics, Kyocera, started manufacture of a
series of light weight battery powered computers based on a CMOS
microprocessor called the 8Oc85. There were eight variations
produced under four brand names. Seven were built by Kyocera,
including the Tandy 100, and one by NEC, the PC820la/PC8300.
All eight variants shared certain features:
Powered by 4 AA batteries or an optional 6 volt AC
Screen display 40 characters wide and 8 lines long on an
Size of a 3 ring notebook.
Text Editor (TEXT), BASIC programming language (BASIC),
and telecommunications (TELCOM) software permanently in
Ability to take programs on an optional ROM socket.
Full size keyboard.
Minimum of 8K RAM installed for programs and files. (Most
Weight under 5 pounds.
Could save and load programs and data from a cassette
recorder with a special cable.
Simple text based point and shoot interface. Sort of a
In addition... the NEC PC8201a had:
16K RAM installed, expandable to 2 banks of 32K each.
(This one has 32K)
Internal 300 baud modem.
Redefinable screen character set.
Could take memory cartridges up to 128K in a special
Video monitor interface available.
Portable disk drive available.
Portable printer available.
Standard telephone connection for modem
The Kyocera KC85, Tandy 100/ 102/200 and Olivetti were all
produced by Kyocera as the NEC PC820la/8300 were produced by NEC.
Tandy had the best distribution network and probably the most
common, where the NEC is seldom encountered, probably due to its
limited production and availability.