Technical data: Sharp MZ-800

The Sharp MZ-800 is an 8-bit home computer which was manufactured since late 1984. It offered an 80 chars width display, high colour graphics, 3 channel sound and high extensibility.


There was a “naked” version named MZ-811, which came without any storage device. But in Europe, the MZ-800 was sold as an MZ-821 with an inbuilt cassette recorder MZ-1T04, mostly.


There were also versions, which were sold with a quickdisk drive MZ-1F11 instead of the cassette recorder, although these were quite rare and more was sold exclusive on Japan market with MZ-1500 model.


The machine was powered by a Zilog Z80 processor and owned 64KB RAM and 16KB VRAM, which both could be enhanced. The MZ-800 could be extended by a large variety of peripherals, ranging from ram cards, floppy disks, printers and plotters to hardware extension boxes.

The MZ-800 was also able to run CP/M: There was a special CP/M 2.2 by Sharp named P-CP/M, which offered access to an enormous amount of business software.


And even more software was available for the MZ-800 due to its software-compatibility with the predecessor series MZ-700 and MZ-80. Due to Sharp's concept of “clean computers”, which only have a bootstrap EPROM and a machine code monitor and need to load the programming language/operating system from a mass storage device, there were lots of languages available. Some of them were: Assembler, Basic, Eumel/Elan, Forth, Fortran, Lisp, Logo, Pascal, Prolog,…

MZ-811Data sheet

These are the MZ-800's technical data in detail:

Year 1984
CPU Zilog Z80A at 3.5467 MHz
RAM 64KB, expandable to 128KB
VRAM 16KB, expandable to 32KB
ROM 16KB, includes machine code monitor
Video modes
* 40×25 characters, 8/16 colours PCG 8×8
Video modes
* 320×200, 4 out of 16 colours
* 320×200, 16 colours (VRAM*)
* 640×200, 2 out of 16 colours
* 640×200, 4 out of 16 colours (VRAM*)
Sound Programmable sound generator SN76489AN with noise generator and three channel/six octaves FM sound. Inbuilt speaker with volume control.
Keyboard QWERTY typewriter keyboard with seperate cursor keys and function keys blocks. There are up to two additional graphics symbols assigned to each key.
Interfaces Expansion bus, printer, monitor (rgb), video, tv, cassette recorder (1200 baud), joystick (two ports, compatible to Atari), power connector for peripherals.
Mass storage * 2.8“ quickdisk drive MZ-1F11
* 5.25” floppy drive MZ-1F02
* 5.25“ double floppy drive MZ-1F19
* Cassette recorder MZ-1T04
Extensions * 64 KB RAM disk MZ-1R18
* 16 KB VRAM extension MR-1R25
* Expansion unit MZ-1ZU06
Compatible to MZ-700 series, MZ-80 series.
Similar to MZ-1500 (black, integrated quickdisk drive, different graphical chip)
Size (w/h/d) 440x109x305 mm
Weight 4.0 kg (MZ-811), 4.3 kg (MZ-821)

* (VRAM*) = 32 KB VRAM required