Tangerine Computer Systems, Oric-1

The Oric-1 is the first in the series of computers produced by the Oric Products International Ltd subsidiary of Tangerine Computer Systems of Cambridge, England. This system was released in 1983. The system was very popular and more than 210,000 were sold. This system used a 6502 microprocessor with an extended 16K Basic and supported color graphics, a printer port, and was equipped with either 16k or 48k of RAM.

The Oric was intended to compete head-to-head with the Sinclair Spectrum by offering a BBC Micro-level Basic and audio experience in the familiar compact, "pregnant calculator" form-factor. Inside sat a 1MHz 6502A CPU and 16KB or 64KB of Ram, though the latter reserved 16KB to hold a copy of the Basic interpreter, so it was marketed as a 48KB machine - a rare instance in the IT biz of being totally honest with the specifications.

It's estimated that some 160,000 sold in the UK, and 50,000 in France. When the Oric 1 production facility burned down in October 1983, it seemed like the end had come. But Oric struggled on, now with a new owner, Edenspring, releasing a follow-up machine, the Atmos, in 1984. In February 1985, Edespring ceased to exist. Oric was then acquired by French firm Eureka. It released the Stratos that year and the Telestrat the next, only to shut up shop in 1987

The original box for the Oric-1.

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Release Date January 1983

Price £129 (16KB) £169 (48KB)

CPU 6502A @ 1MHz

Memory 16KB or 64KB (48KB usable)

Developers Paul Kaufman

The Oric-1 from Oric Products International Ltd.

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