Classic Computer Magazine Archive COMPUTE! ISSUE 133 / SEPTEMBER 1991 / PAGE 47

VGA Color For Laptops
by David Sears

What's next for the laptop computer? Just a few years ago, color displays for portables seemed wishful thinking, but with the Sharp Colorstar, wishes can come true. No washed-out gray-scale images here' this machine delivers a stunning 256 vivid VGA colors, chosen from a palette of 262,144 possible hues. Combine brilliant color generation with the inherent sharpness that comes with smaller screens, and you have a remarkable picture, whatever you choose to display.

Using Sharp's innovative thin-film transistor (TFT) active-matrix LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) technology, the Colorstar stands head and shoulders above the competition in terms of visual impact. Each pixel has its own silicon thin-film transistor to allow precise color control. Not surprisingly, color LCDs aren't easy to produce; even a single pixel error stands out, so production standards call for perfection, not approximation. In part because of this difficulty, the Colorstar will initially sell for $10,000 to $15,000, but you can expect prices to fall as burgeoning consumer demand for color LCD microtelevisions encourages the improvement of factory methods.

The Colorstar comes with a 20-MHz 386DX processor, 2MB RAM (expandable to 10MB), a 1.44MB floppy drive, and a 100MB hard drive. Want expandability? The Colorstar has a half-size expansion slot (AT-bus, for networking, among other things), the standard parallel port, two RS-232C ports, a keypad port, and a CRT output. And best of all, the Colorstar could have been a set piece for an episode of "The Jetsons." Sleek, ergonomic, and the very picture of high-tech, the Colorstar should turn heads on the basis of its style alone. And while this high-end machine may not wind up in your stocking this Christmas, move it up your wish list anyway.