Fans of the cult Spectrum computer now have another crowdfunding option to turn to.
The project has just passed its 250k Kickstarter goal, with 28 days still to run.
The thrust of the project is to bring together than expansion efforts that have already sprung from the Spectrum community and to standardise them all in a new machine. The Spectrum Next will be compatible with original titles but also offer a decent spec boost for more modern development.
The specs include a 3.5Mhz Z80 CPU, 512kb of RAM (expandable to 2.5MB) and HDMI output, along with an SD Card slot, Wi-Fi and PS/2 mouse and keyboard support. It will also support tape loading, as well as CRT and VGA monitors, and can even be installed into an original Spectrum case, albeit with some drilling, cutting and gluing.
Rick Dickinson, who was on the original design team, is also on board.
The Spectrum Next is aimed at any Retrogamer out there and Speccy enthusiast who prefers their games, demos and apps running on hardware rather than software emulators, but wants a seamless and simple experience contained within an amazing design,” the Kickstarter says.
The Spectrum Next is much more than just a renewed trip down the memory lane: there's a world of new software out there that requires upgraded hardware to run – from games to music and video players, from operational systems to ultra demos – stuff that has been made for specific expanded hardware that most ZX Spectrum lovers never tried before, and can be quite difficult to find or install.”
We added the option to add a Raspberry Pi Zero as a slave co-accelerator board, taking the Spectrum Next to a whole new level. In other words, with a Raspberry Pi Zero slotted into its place, the Spectrum Next can use the RPi memory, CPU and GPU to do its bidding. Imagine what demosceners can do with this… An OpenGL ZX Spectrum? Who knows!”