4052

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The Tektronix 4052 was a graphics-capable desktop microcomputer produced by Tektronix in the late 1970s through the early 1980s. The display technology was similar to the Tektronix 4010 terminal, using a direct-view storage tube display (like an analog storage scope) to avoid the need for video RAM. It was all-in-one designs with the display, keyboard, CPU and DC300 tape drive in a single desktop case, and included a GPIB interface. A simple operating system and BASIC interpreter were included in ROM.

The storage tube display allowed the screen to retain images drawn to it, eliminating the need for frame-buffer memory. This allowed the resolution to be as high as the hardware could handle, which was ostensibly 1024 by 1024 but limited by the physical layout of the screen to 1024 by 780. It also allowed the machine to dedicate all of its memory to the programs running on it, as opposed to partitioning off a section for the buffer.

Unlike the 4051, which was based on an 8-bit Motorola 6800 CPU, the 4052 had a CPU based on four AMD 2901 4-bit bit-slice processors used together to make a single 16-bit processor. It could also be used in a 6800-compatible mode, allowing it to run software from the 4051, although it did so much faster than the original 4051. Released in 1978, it came with a full 32 kB of RAM for $9,795, and could be expanded to 64 kB for another $1,995.

The 4054 was a version of the 4052 built around the 19" screen from the 4014 terminal rather than the 11" screen from the 4012, increasing resolution to 4,096 by 3,072.

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