Tarbell Electronics -- History
Tarbell Electronics burst on to the S-100 scene in 1977
with its Cassette Interface board.
The company was setup by Don Tarbell.
The influence this board had on the development and popularity of the early
S-100 bus is often overlooked. While there were other cassette interface boards
at the time notably those of MITS,
and TDL they never attained wide
spread use. Primarily because they were either hardware specific to those
manufactures or read data slowly. Many the Tarbell tape that was
pass back and forth at user group meetings. For a short time even commercial
S-100 based computer software was sold on cassettes in "Tarbell format".
All this quickly changed with the introduction of the Floppy disk --
particularly the mini-floppy. While Tarbell Electronics did come out
with a single density board and later a double density one (see below), they
were late to do so and lost market momentum for data exchange between S-100
computers. Northstar had the initial lead giving way later to many CP/M
soft sectored S-100 boards.
In 1981 Tarbell came out with a complete computer system consisting of a Z80 CPU
board, their FDC and a 32K static memory board all in their own S-100 box. Their
CPU card had two RS-232 ports and a "memory management" feature allowing the
mapping of 4K blocks or RAM on to 1MB address space (similar to the
Tarbell Electronics itself was located on S. Lapwood Ave, Carson, CA. Don
Tarbell himself sadly died on May 19th 1998.
I can find no further information about the company or what happened to it.
If anybody has any information they would like to share please let me know.
Interface Single Density FDC
Double Density FDC
Z80 CPU Board
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