Why did sinclair not add an option for NTSC output

Post Reply
Crayon21
Posts: 171
Joined: Sun Nov 04, 2018 2:33 am

Why did sinclair not add an option for NTSC output

Post by Crayon21 »

I know the main motive was cost, but not a lot of families in NA could afford a C64 and would chafe at a TS1000, so it would've been nice to have the option of a American version of the Spectrum. So why didn't this happen, scratch that, why do i need to convert PAL to NTSC? Why not just have an internal switch that toggles both? wouldn't be that expensive :?:
zx81: great yet flawed
Zx spectrum: masterpiece that keeps on giving

(wish it weren't so expensive) :o
User avatar
1024MAK
Posts: 3554
Joined: Mon Sep 26, 2011 10:56 am
Location: Looking forward to summer in Somerset, UK...

Re: Why did sinclair not add an option for NTSC output

Post by 1024MAK »

It’s a bit more complex. PAL and NTSC colour encoding are different requiring different crystals and in some cases different encoding chips (depending on which chip type was used). Plus the timing of the vertical and horizontal elements of the display are different. So changes inside the ULA (different counters) are needed.

Making one universal design would cost more.

Sinclair did make a NTSC version of the ZX Spectrum, but could not sell them in retail stores due to the FCC regulations.

Mark
User avatar
msch
Site Admin
Posts: 104
Joined: Sun May 19, 2013 11:39 pm
Location: Frankfurt/M, Germany

Re: Why did sinclair not add an option for NTSC output

Post by msch »

1024MAK wrote: Tue Dec 10, 2019 5:48 am Sinclair did make a NTSC version of the ZX Spectrum,
see here:
https://faqwiki.zxnet.co.uk/wiki/NTSC_Spectrum
Mathias

ZX-Team member and classic computer collector
Sinclairs-great
Posts: 33
Joined: Wed Nov 06, 2019 1:37 am

Re: Why did sinclair not add an option for NTSC output

Post by Sinclairs-great »

Is Europe or Britian and Ireland pal or NTSC
User avatar
1024MAK
Posts: 3554
Joined: Mon Sep 26, 2011 10:56 am
Location: Looking forward to summer in Somerset, UK...

Re: Why did sinclair not add an option for NTSC output

Post by 1024MAK »

Most of Europe including the U.K. (England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) and the Republic of Ireland uses/used PAL. France uses/used SECAM.

See the Wikipedia article here.

Mark
Crayon21
Posts: 171
Joined: Sun Nov 04, 2018 2:33 am

Re: Why did sinclair not add an option for NTSC output

Post by Crayon21 »

1024MAK wrote: Tue Dec 10, 2019 5:48 am It’s a bit more complex. PAL and NTSC colour encoding are different requiring different crystals and in some cases different encoding chips (depending on which chip type was used). Plus the timing of the vertical and horizontal elements of the display are different. So changes inside the ULA (different counters) are needed.

Making one universal design would cost more.

Sinclair did make a NTSC version of the ZX Spectrum, but could not sell them in retail stores due to the FCC regulations.

Mark
That reminds me...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sdn56xf1EwU
zx81: great yet flawed
Zx spectrum: masterpiece that keeps on giving

(wish it weren't so expensive) :o
Post Reply