Interesting that the C128D was first released in Europe, primarily
because it could be shipped in the plastic case and without such
extensive inner shielding. I have a couple of the C128Ds with the
carry handle and keyboard tidy with the plastic case and they really
are quite sexy. Not to be confused with the budget version of the
C128 that looks like an Amiga 500 [ cough cough ].
I guess the C128D was a pretty successful machine and in truth, for
me provided a good form factor that could be replicated through a
variety of products. Some features resemble the 1000 but stand up
on their own. The vent slots and the thin slot to the disk drive
are signature to the Commodore range whether they be on the C's
classic or Amiga models.
So I thought I would show off a couple of C128Ds from Germany which
one is working and the other not. The one that is broken was bought
as such and I kinda tracked the issue to some dodgy area on the mobo
which I think had been flagged previously. Not sure where the damage
emanated from. Probably fixable, but with three working C128Ds it
never has become a priority.
One major missing element from the machine I strip down here is the
metal shielding. Probably removed when the fault was discovered. Or
maybe not provided on the European models.
The C128D has an interesting assortment of chips including a number
of chips that can be found on the C64. Commodore were never that keen
of developing expensive chips when tried and tested stuff could be
I was drawn to featuring the C128D following an interview that I watched
with Dave Haynie... senior engineer at Commodore. Kinda a wizard and
remembered for his Deathbed Vigil videos and for me DiskSalv. Was really
interesting listening to his interviews as I edited the videos to this
blog. So if you ever have the chance to listen to Dave I can certainly
And so to the feature... Not really much to say other than it should be a
C128D with the shields up but in truth has dropped them for some reason.
C128D made by Commodore in the USA 1985 onwards
Built in language was BASIC and uses the 8502 plus ZilogZ80
Co-processors provided by the SID, VDC and VIC-II
RAM was 128KB with 16KB VRAM and 48KB ROM
Text mode is 40 or 80 chars x 25 lines
There were several graphic modes and colours 16
The unit has a built 5.25" in the form of a 1571
Power comes off the tea-kettle lead to an internal PSU
Has its own full QWERTY mechanical keyboard which vary depending on being
European or American/British. I sense my units were all made in Germany.