Measuring just 11" wide x 11" deep x 5" high, and weighing a mere 7 pounds, the Altair 680b is a complete, general-purpose computer.
The secret to this revolutionary, small computer is its CPU board. This double-sided board fits along the bottom of the Altair case and plugs directly into the front panel board. It contains the new 6800 microprocessor, 1,024 bytes of RAM memory, a 256 byte PROM monitor, provisions for 768 bytes of additional PROM or RUM, and a single Interface port with a Motorola ACIA serial interface adapter which can be configured either RS-232 or TTY. A five level Baudot interface option is also available.
The Altair 680b can be programmed from front panel switches, or it can be interfaced to a video display terminal, or teletypewriter. Three additional circuit boards can be plugged inside the Altair 680b
for further memory and interface expansion. The first of these boards is a 16K static RAM memory board.
Software already developed includes Altair 680 BASIC with all the features of the 8K BASIC previously developed for the Altair 8800. These include Boolean operators, the ability to read or write a byte from any I/O port or memory location, multiple statements per line, and the ability to interrupt program execution and then continue after the examination of variable values. This software takes only 6.8K bytes of memory space and a copy is included free with the purchase of the Altair 680 16K memory board.
Other software includes a resident two pass assembler. The Altair 680b is also compatible with Motorola 6800 software.