Classic Computer Magazine Archive COMPUTE! ISSUE 38 / JULY 1983 / PAGE 10

An Atari/Commodore 64 Connection

Can an Atari 810 or other Atari disk drive be interfaced to a Commodore 64? I am thinking of buying a 64 as a second computer and would like to use my present Atari peripherals on the 64. Also, can the 64's SID sound chip be hooked up to an Atari?

David Lee

Both machines could communicate over a telephone modem hookup. Alternatively, you could hook them up directly using Commodore's RS-232 cartridge and Atari's 850 interface module (through its RS-232 port). You would likely be unsatisfied, though, at the slow rate by which data would be transferred between the two computers. Likewise, attempting to communicate to the SID chip from the Atari would be awkward. The whole would probably be less than the sum of the parts if you tried to gang these computers together and think of them as a team.

Atari and Commodore use very different peripheral buses (interface plugs). Although both have a serial bus, the 64 uses a variant of the popular RS-232C bus, while the Atari uses a complex serial standard.