Printer support is extensive, allowing either a serial, serial with
handshake, or parallel printer to be driven. The parallel driver allows for an
8 bit interface and connecting my Epson was a doddle. You can also set a form
feed control, the number of lines per printed page, and the gap between pages
by modifying a ‘Patch area” in the BIOS. This is easily done, and other
conditions that can be altered are the default I/O byte, the cursor blink rate
(or cursor type if the IVC is in use), the repeat rates of the keyboard (both
initial and running rates), the ports used for I/O (useful if an I/O board is
being used), and – wait for it – the keyboard code used to select EDIT mode!!
Now Nas-Sys owners are probably unimpressed with the last sentence,
but for CP/M users an Edit facility is a joy very rarely found elsewhere (if
at all?). The ability to enter Edit by typing ‘GRAPH 1’ (unless you have
changed the code in the Patch area) and hop around the screen is great. (My
enthusiasm is because I didn’t read the manual fully for a while, and did not
realise that this facility was included!) Whilst in Edit the cursor changes
shape, reverting to normal when ‘Enter’ is pressed and Edit mode left.
I bought the Gemini disk system with a certain amount of reservation.
After all, Lucas are supposed to be introducing their own card soon, and I
wondered whether I should wait yet longer for this. However, I am told that
this still uses the design started well before Nascom went into Receivership,
and a nearly 3 year old design is very old in this business. Plus the Gemini
software is excellent and supports the superb IVC; will the Nascom?
I have no reservations in recommending this system. No disks are
cheap, but this package costs little different to most. A great deal of
thought has gone into the CP/M BIOS making the CP/M on this system a lot nicer
and easier to get on with than on any other I’ve used (and I have used quite a
few). The author (David Parkinson, I believe) has to be congratulated on his
On the hardware side, the system is fast, stores a respectable 350K
per drive (340K without the system/directory track), and has been absolutely
100% reliable in the thrashing that I have been giving it. With the IVC my
‘Nascom’(?) is no longer a hobbyist’s toy, but a professional system
One minor closing niggle though, Gemini. Considering the overall cost
of this lot, howsabout throwing in the Zaks book for free? Then it’s
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