Humantechnik Textel Compact
This device is not a terminal, it is a portable
digital teletype. The idea was simple: If you want to send or receive
telex message anywhere, you can just get this little notebook-like
thing, put telephone handset on it and use it like a teletype. It has a
simple "linear" memory like all teletypes have (older in paper tape) and
is battery-powered. Many units had
small printers built-in. There was only one problem: It was too
In Humantechnik history page you can read that development started in 1985. Most Textel Compact units in current retro market have relatively low serial numbers (400 max) and my unit with number 364 is made around chips from 1992-1993. All chips are in sockets, so it's not a "second launch" or "remake" - it's probably the first series. So the mass manufacturing started in early 1990s - much too late for teletypes, especially in Germany with BTX system and other networks widely available.
|Model||Textel Compact A1010-0|
|Memory:||32kB (data buffer)
|Display:||Monochrome non-backlit LCD|
|Main port:||Built-in modem|
|Additional ports:||Built-in printer support
Serial port for external printer
Built-in telephone modem with handset receptacle to connect using normal telephone (supports teletype).
If device is turned on with UP or DOWN key pressed, it is possible to browse system ROM in text mode. It may be a bug in software, because buffers may not be cleared, or it may be some kind of debug feature.
Peripherals in collection:
My unit is not in a good shape. Its LCD is damaged in transport and mainboard had few cold joints making it not boot. Inside, there is no trace of printer except missing cover - connectors seem to never be used and few parts are probably missing. It is possible that my unit had no printer and was a low-cost version. Yet it still works at least 15-20 minutes on a small battery charge.
This device is a microprocessor system based on 65SC02 chip, which is
a 6502 CPU with small modifications. It has 32kB of ROM, 32kB of RAM for
text buffer, 8kB for display buffer and probably 8kB for system. All RAM
is made of SRAM chips. There are 4 I/O chips (6522) to control keyboard,
LCD and communication board. There is also an independently-powered
(Lithium battery) RTC.
It is possible to connect serial printer and switch to external printing using special keyboard keys.
When powered on, the system should display the upper bar and become
ready to operate. Pressing any key should make modem beep the key in a
teletype code. Any louder sound near modem should make the signal light
blink (if it doesn't, and you opened device, probably microphone
connector is inserted wrong way).
To change display format, use "Format" key. Contrast is changed by "Hell/Dunkel" keys.
"Speicher" keys are needed to use memory. Memory write mode begins by
pressing "Vor-schreiben". Then modem ceases operation and all text
entered by keyboard is stored in memory. This becomes until "Voll"
(full) lamp lights on or writing mode is cancelled.
To send the memory contents, place cursor at start position and press "Senden" key.
To clear memory, use "Loschen" key.
By pressing "Kurszpeicher" and number key, quick memory items can be sent. I don't know how to modify them. Pressing "Adress-Speicher" you have access to address book.