Dragon 64

From The Dragon Archive

Dragon 64

Dragon Data finally launched the Dragon 64 in August 1984. The Dragon 64 was functionally identical to the Dragon 32 and even booted into Dragon 32 compatible BASIC mode. The Dragon 64 contained 2 x 16K ROMS holding two different versions of BASIC - One was the a slightly modified version of the Dragon 32 BASIC which was still limited to 24Kb RAM, the other was specific to the Dragon 64 and allowed 48Kb of RAM to be available to the programmer by copying the BASIC ROM into RAM allowing the entire 64Kb of RAM to be available (16Kb allocated to the copy of BASIC).

Aside from the increase in RAM and the new BASIC, the 64 also had an RS-232 serial port which was not included on the 32.

A minor difference between the two Dragon models was the outer case color; the Dragon 32 was beige and the 64 was light grey. Besides the color and the Dragon 64's serial port (and the model name stickers, of course), the two machines looked exactly the same.

Dragon by TANO

This was produced in the USA by the TANO Corporation under license from Dragon Data. It is essentially a Dragon 64 with NTSC video circuits in an off white coloured case. The power button on the rear has been replaced with a channel 3/4 selector for the american TV market and the PSU is obviously a 110v. These machines may still be available from a distributer called CA Digital who bought all the remaining stock when TANO Corp went bankrupt and as of January 2009 these are still listed on the web site. Opening a brand new Dragon in 2004 was an experience worth the shipping costs - works fine with a UK PSU and an NTSC compatible TV via the monitor port.

GEC Dragon

When GEC took over control of Dragon Data Ltd they began to rebrand the machines and advertised the GEC Dragon. This arrangement did not last long as Dragon Data Ltd went bankrupt shortly afterwards. The Dragon 64 was rebranded as in the photo below and the Dragon Alpha also sported a GEC logo.