Spectrum Soft
After taking a hefty swipe at the software industry, Ron Smith invites the Staines and Stanwell Computer Club to check out the latest software packages.
The Protection Racket
If you've written a software masterpiece and you've got something to hide, Simon Goodwin will advise you as to the best means of protection.
Getting Into Print
For those toying with the notion of upgrading their system with a professional printer, Henry Budgett's on hand with an in-depth look at the interfaces available.
Your Spectrum is proud to present a special new magazine supplement which henceforth will appear every issue in our illustrious pages. In this issue's QL User, Quentin Lowe gives us his first impressions of Sir Clive's new micro.
Your Spectrum
& QL User

YR.02 cover - Click for the BIG picture

Issue 2, March 1984
- contents -
  • Frontlines
  • Forum
  • Routine Stuff - Take a Running Jump
  • Spectrolysis - Tuning Up Your Spectrum
  • Paper Data - Cracking the Code
  • Play Power
  • Circe
  • Rummaging in the ROM
  • Those Moody Microdrives
  • The Antman Cometh
  • Variables on a Theme - part one


Click on a highlighted entry to view the full article
Frontlines 5 Fun and philosophy, gossip and games, and the news behind the news.
CPD8300 tape deck (WH Smith)
Trickstick (East London Robotics)
Stack Light Rifle (Stack Computer Services)
Pimania, My name is Uncle Groucho (Automata)
Spectrum software on audio discs
Computer Courses (IT Exchange)
Spectrum sales
Your Spectrum to go monthly
ZX Machine Code Users Club
Spectrum & QL News 6 SinclairWatch
Atari releases for Spectrum, Profiteering
54 Rumbles
On the face of it, the software market oozes sweetness and light - but it's the warts and boils that often prove more interesting. Ron Smith takes a behind-the-scenes look at the power struggles. Matthew Smith moves to Software Projects, Carnell Software problems, Death Chess 2000 (Artic)
Software Reviews 56 Spectrum Soft
Starting this issue Your Spectrum will be touring computer clubs up and down the country in an effort to find dedicated games enthusiasts who will give us their impressions, thoughts and feelings on the current selection of new releases. Little do they know it, but these unsuspecting souls will be contributing a large slice of our regular review section in the future.
Alien Swoop / Domain(Space Age Software)
Apocalypse(Red Shift)
Apple Jam(Dk'Tronics)
Barrel Drop(Games Machine)
Brain Damage(Silversoft)
The Crypt(Carnell Software)
Doomsday Castle(Fantasy Software)
It's Only Rock'n'Roll / Tomb of Dracula(K-Tel)
McKensie(Software Projects)
Mr Wimpy(Ocean Software)
Paint Box(Print'n'Plotter Products)
Pat the Postman(Mikro-Gen)
Robber(Virgin Games)
Special Agent(Heinemann / Five Ways)
Spectrum Safari(CDS Microsystems)
Urban Upstart(Richard Shepherd Software)
Xark(Contrast Software)
Hardware Features 35 SoftROM
Taking iron to solder, Mike Lord unveils the SoftROM. Developing a range of software 'goodies', Timedata's Mike Lord divulges the secret of the SoftROM - the circuit which made it all possible.
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41 Spectrolysis: Tuning Up Your Spectrum
Tuning troubles? Ian Beardsmore puts you in the picture. How do you get the best possible picture on your television from the Spectrum's video output - or even more tricky, on a monitor? Ian Beardsmore completes the picture, and at the same time introduces a forum for readers to knock around ideas.
45 Those Moody Microdrives
Messing about in the ZX Microdrive, Andrew Pennell has come up with some interesting bugs. The ZX Microdrives are with us, or at least some of us, and have a great deal to offer at a low cost. Unfortunately, there are one or two problems, not least of which are a couple of bugs in the Microdrive ROM. Andrew Pennell presents three short machine code routines to circumvent the major traumas.
63 Getting Into Print
Good as it is for the price, many users are bound to be disappointed with the output from Sinclair Research's own printing device. For those toying with the idea of upgrading their Spectrum system with a professional printer, Henry Budgett takes an in-depth look at the technology involved and the plethora of interface devices now available.
Centronics Interface (ADS)
Centronics Interface (Kempston)
Centronics/RS232 Interface (Morex Peripherals)
Professional Printer Interface (Hilderbay)
ZX LPRINT MkII (Euroelectronics)
(letter), (letter)
Programming 7 Spectrum Control - Project 2
This issue, Roger Pramm turns his attention to music's silver strains - then casts us adrift with savage discord!
21 Routine Stuff: Take a Running Jump
Machine codeist Toni Baker improves your arcade games by leaps and bounds.
27 The Protection Racket
If you've written a software masterpiece and you've got something to hide, Simon Goodwin will advise you as to the best means of protection.
78 Variables on a Theme - part one
Dilwyn Jones delves deep into the Spectrum ROM, and emerges with a complete guide to the system variables. System variables are bytes in memory which help the Spectrum remember certain things it needs to know about itself - if you like, the housekeeping routines. Delve deeper into the Spectrum ROM with Dilwyn Jones in this, the first of two articles which investigate the complete available set of system variables, giving comprehensive guidelines as to what you can and can't do with them.
Reader's Programs 85 Play Power
Boot up your Spectrum with our three annotated listings. Spectrums at the ready for some financial fun with Peter Young and a riotous road race with Danny Sheehan. And just in case you don't want to miss that vital appointment, you'd better key in Ian Turtle's machine code gem first.
Stock Market (Peter Young), Road Racer (Danny Sheehan), Clock This (Ian Turtle).
Books 73 Paperdata: Cracking the Code
If you're looking for a machine code tutor, let Gary Marshall be your literary guide.
The Complete Spectrum ROM Disassembly (Melbourne House)
Introducing Spectrum Machine Code (Granada)
Learn and Use Assembly Language on the Spectrum (McGraw-Hill)
Mastering Machine Code on your Spectrum (Interface Publications)
Spectrum Machine Code Made Easy (Interface Publications)
The Spectrum Machine Code Reference Guide (Interface Publications)
Spectrum Machine Language for the Absolute Beginner (Melbourne House)
Supercharge Your Spectrum (Melbourne House)
Understanding Your Spectrum (Melbourne House)
Interviews 50 Sandy White - The Antman Cometh (Quicksilva)
Heralded as this year's programming genius, Sandy White gives us the background to the classic Ant Attack. Overseeing the ins and outs of our competition this issue, Sandy White found time to rap about the fame and fortune of being caught up on the front page of the software scene.
96 Nigel Searle (Sinclair)
Phil Manchester tracks down Sinclair Research's head honcho and finds out how lonely life is at the top. Nigel Searle, the managing director of Sinclair Research, is usually to be found standing on the edge of Sir Clive's 'white heat' limelight, leaving the public relations work to his dynamic boss. Your Spectrum's Phil Manchester tracked him down to a West London hotel and asked what it was like standing in the shadow of genius.
Competitions 11 Debuggit
52 Ant Attack competition
Win over 1,000 software packages and a dream system to run them on!
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Odds & Ends 17 Forum
Your Spectrum readers speak out! Air your views on the Spectrum scene ... Let's hear from you ...
No Joy!(PJ Mills)
Radio On(P Newman)
The Battle Continues ...(Roger Swift)
Write Away!(JS Heslop)
Whoops!(L Wilkes)
Club Cornered(RMC Armes)
It's an Education(PD Fiddler)
Breaking-in to 16K(PS Oliver)
16K Reset Continued ...(A Dearden)
Ant Attack map
QL User II Sir Clive makes the Quantum Leap
Leapfrogging the opposition, Sir Clive's new micro looks set to crack the business computer market wide open. Innovative, stylish and powerful - and that was just the press conference! Sue Denham was there to bring you a blow-by-blow account of the excitement as Sinclair Research ceremonially unveiled its latest creation.
IV On Balance
QL may not stand for Curate's Egg, but whatever the 'media-speak' surrounding Sir Clive's professional offering, naturally the new machine has its pros and cons. Quentin Lowe gives us some first impressions.
VII Kewneat Emptor
If you want to be first in the queue for a QL, hear what the scourge of the personal computer world, Guy Kewney, has to say.