singular lack of action in that direction. I know of at least two dealers who have
taken exception to this behaviour.
Last issue I mentioned the possiblity of making this newsletter more ‘Nasbus’
orientated, as more goodies are available for Nascom from outside suppliers than from
Nascom themselves. The few letters we have had (you apathetic lot !!) all support this
idea. However, in view of the above, perhaps ‘Nasbus compatible’ might be a better
idea than just ‘Nasbus’, before the committee get high court injunctions slapped on
them as well. How does the name ‘Nasbus Compatible News’ grab you ? Bit silly isn’t
it. Still we will continue our policy of supporting Nascom owners everywhere and being
as impartial to all products that come our way for review, comment, etc.
This issue we’ve tried to make a bit more hardware concious, as there are a
lot of owners out there who have soldering irons and are just itching to turn them on
and tag lots of little goodies on to their Nascoms. The article about music synthesis
is only a start. We’ve heard of one project to get a Nascom controlling a large
electronic organ. So may be we’ll end up with lots of musical Nascoms singing around
the country. Perhaps, if the idea caught on, we could organise a concert for n-part
harmony Nascoms or something.
D. R. Hunt.
Too Expensive ?
In the editorial of the December issue of the LSG, old Brucie implies that all
microcomputer manufacturers are busy making exhorbitant profits. While this MAY be
true of the American and Japanese companies with their vast production capacities, and
consequent low overhead per unit, I believe the situation at the low-cost end of the
UK market to be somewhat different. I do, of course, have one particular UK company in
mind when making the above statement, but let’s just consider the others briefly.
The lowest cost microcomputer (if one can truly call it that) available in
Britain has been developed, and is now being produced, with more than a helping hand
from the tax-payer. Moving up the price scale a little we find one company that is
having its product manufactured in the Far East, and an other that says it is “backed
by Britain’s largest private company.” Then, momentarily passing by one certain
product, comes an S100 orientated system that really does cost an awful lot more to
turn into a sensible machine than the adverts at first imply. And continuing up the
price scale somewhat further we venture into “black box and ‘research machine’”
territory where, undoubtedly, margins are healthy. I apologise if I’ve passed anybody
So, what about the company I passed by, Nascom ? This company started with no
large backing, either public or private, and tried to offer value for money to the
customer and reasonable margins to the dealer to gain their assistance in achieving a
good position in the market. And this they did. But Nascom’s own margin was small, too
small, and having to offer dynamic RAM boards in place of static devices did nothing
to help the situation. The net result of this low margin is now well known.
So Brucie, I have to disagree with your statement, and will even go so far as
making a contradictory one. That is: should Nascom be purchased, and the Nascom 2
taken into production by the new owner, there is little doubt in my mind that this
product will have to go UP in price.