The VIC-20 was the first inexpensive colour computer available. The machine was announced in 1980 roughly three years after Commodore’s first personal computer, the PET. The VIC-20 was the first microcomputer to sell one million units. It is an 8-bit home computer which was sold by Commodore Business Machines (RRP £150.00). The VIC-20 stands for Video Interface Chip. This chip was designed by Commodore two years prior for video game machines, never intending it for use in their own computer system. Unfortunately no one wanted it, so Commodore engineers designed the VIC-20 computer around it. Before the floppy drive was released in 1982, games and programs were available only on cassette tapes and cartridges. There isn’t much to the ‘carts’, which plug into the back of the VIC-20, just a single ROM chip with the program burned into it.
CPU: MOS 6502, 1MHz.
RAM: 5K (3.5K for the user).
Display: 22 x 23 text, 16 colours, composite video.
OS: ROM Basic.