Talking Electronics TEC-1D

Talking Electronics TEC-1D

The TEC-1 is a single-board kit computer first produced by the Australian hobbyist electronics magazine Talking Electronics in the early 1980s.[1] The design by John Hardy and Ken Stone was based on the Zilog Z80 CPU, had 2K of RAM and 2K of ROM in a default configuration. Later versions used a 4k ROM with two different versions of the monitor software selectable via a switch. This allowed the early software presented in the magazine to be used with the later version of the TEC-1.


The first prototype. This was not actually called a TEC-1, and was unlike any that are shown in the photos. It has not survived. Built by John Hardy.

The first TEC-1 prototype. No silk screen. Incorrect track work. Built by Ken Stone.

The first production ready TEC-1 prototype. No silk screen. . Built by Ken Stone.

The five blue prototypes. These were distributed among the Talking Electronics staff.

The first TEC-1A prototype. No silk screen. See photo. Built by Ken Stone.

Productions runs:

Runs were done in batches of 100 PCBs. Silk screen colors varied for each run of 100. The solder mask was green in most cases. Colin says an estimated 1200 were produced during an interview by Dave Jones on eevblog.[3]. This figure is suspect. The editorial of Issue 11 states that nearly 1000 boards had been sold, and that is just after a single issue. Boards were always produced in batches of 100, so even if there was only a single run of each successive variation, TEC-1A, TEC-1B, TEC-1B CAD, TEC-1C and TEC-1D, that would bring the total to at least 1500, and that does not take into account boards that were produced by PCB houses in other countries.



TEC-1A (Change to 74LS374/74LS377 latches, other PCB changes.)

TEC-1B (Addition of Shift key. Mon 2 introduced)[4] Also released as a CAD artwork version.[3]

TEC-1C (Released after issue 15.)

TEC-1D (Released after issue 15. CAD PCB artwork version.)

My example is the TEC-1D:

I made a custom box with power supply and speaker inside.

Added red perspex so the display’s  are brighter and easy to read.

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