Classic Computer Magazine Archive COMPUTE! ISSUE 89 / OCTOBER 1987 / PAGE 10

Changing Chips

I enjoyed reading about the Winter Consumer Electronics Show (April '87 COMPUTE!). I was especially interested in the Mega ST line from Atari. By using 1 megabit chips, these computers provide more memory with less hardware, and they run cooler. Are chips like this available for the Commodore 128? It would be nice to be able to replace the chips in the 128 to give it greater memory capacity.

William Jones

The 128 is not designed to be expanded with 256K or 1 megabit RAM memory chips. The computer's memory management circuitry is designed specifically for the 64K chips currently installed. Furthermore, these chips are soldered in place, so you would have a difficult time removing them without damaging the circuit board. However, you can expand the memory of the 128—after a fashion—with the Commodore 1700 or 1750 expansion modules. These do not directly increase the amount of memory available to the processor, but the 128 provides routines so you can easily copy information to and from the modules.

Some computers do allow memory chips to be upgraded. The Macintosh SE from Apple, for instance, comes with 256K chips and is designed to accommodate 1 meg chips. This will increase the available memory of a Macintosh SE from 1 megabyte to 4 megabytes.