Atari 1450XLD Computer System

A Twitter post by Jason Scott alerted me to this Atari System. Here’s some info on it from the Atari XL Computer Systems page:

The Atari 1450XLD computer system. This was to be the flagship of the “Next Generation” of Atari computers. The new XL system would come with all of the features of the 600/800XL systems, include the Voice and Modem features of the 1400XL but would also include a high speed parallel bus disk drive controller.

The 1450XLD may not have had a newer 16bit CPU or faster clock speed. What it did have were some new additions to the Atari chipset (which comprised the ANTIC, GTIA, and POKEY). These new chips were called the “FREDDIE” (a DRAM controller which was an enhanced consolidation of TTL chips found in earlier XL’s) and the CO61618 Memory Management Unit. What these little chips could do was something that was sorely needed in the Atari 8bits. Freddie was an MCU (Memory Control Unit), this new chip would have allowed BOTH the CPU and the ANTIC chip to independently access different areas of memory for their own use. What did this mean for the end user or more importantly , for programmers? It meant that new Atari’s with Freddie MCU DRAM controller and the CO61618 MMU could allow the CPU to access memory for programs (up to 64K) and the ANTIC could access up to 8K or more if needed to display graphics. This meant that programmers would have more freedom and flexibility in writing programs that could have had more complex commands, better graphics and enough memory to accomplish what they had in mind.

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