|Release date||December, 1985|
|Operating system||MSX BASIC, MSX-DOS, CP/M|
|CPU||Zilog Z80A/MSX Engine T7937A @ 3.58 MHz|
|Memory||64 KB–256 KB (max.)|
The Expert, made by Gradiente Eletrônica (to date best known as a game console and Hi-Fi equipment company) was the second and last MSX home computer launched in the Brazilian market, in mid-1980s. Released one month after Epcom's Hotbit (just in time for 1985's Christmas), the Expert model XP-800 was a clone of the National CF-3000, with a computer case resembling a stereo system, a detached keyboard with a proprietary connector, no caps lock LED and no reset key.
The Expert XP-800 was followed by the Expert GPC-1 ("Gradiente Personal Computer") in 1987, and by Expert Plus and Expert DD Plus (a system with a built-in 720 KB 3½" disk drive) in 1989. The Expert users waited in vain for an MSX2 machine, but Gradiente never produced it and discontinued the MSX line in 1991.
The two first versions had a graphite case and socketed chips, which caused a chronic problem: when the machine heated, the chips frequently pulled out and the system "froze". Also, the GPC-1, released in 1987, had a ROM slightly modified to solve an ASCII table compatibility issue with the other popular Brazilian MSX, Sharp's Hotbit.
Versions Plus/DD Plus
The last two versions had a black case and the problematic socketed chips were replaced by an ASIC. Nevertheless, the RAM was mapped to a secondary slot and, although it was straight by the MSX standards, caused a lot of crashes with programs who searched for memory in the wrong place. It did not contribute for the popularity of any of the Plus versions.
|CPU||Zilog Z80A (XP-800 & GPC-1) @ 3.58 MHz
MSX Engine T7937A (Plus & DD Plus) @ 3.58 MHz
|VRAM||16 KB (Texas Instruments TMS9918)|
|Keyboard||mechanic, 89 keys (with 4 cursor keys), number pad|
|Display||text: 40×24 rows; graphics: 256×192 pixels, 16 colours, 32 sprites|
|Sound||General Instrument AY-3-8910 (PSG), 3 voices, white noise|
|Ports||2 joystick connectors, TV out, RGB monitor out, sound out, tape recorder connector, parallel port, 2 cartridge slots|
|Storage||tape recorder (1200/2400 bit/s) or one or two external disk drive (5¼", 360 KB or 3½", 720 KB)|
- DR-1 ("data-corder"): tape recorder
- JS-1: joystick
- MM-12: 12" monochrome monitor
- TA-1: TV adapter
- TM-1: 1200/75 bit/s modem with a RS-232C port
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