Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Panasonic Has Microcomputer with 2-Inch-Thick Screen / Will Be Available Locally Later This Month

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Panasonic Has Microcomputer with 2-Inch-Thick Screen / Will Be Available Locally Later This Month

Article excerpt

A major breakthrough in gas-plasma display technology has enabled Panasonic to offer a new microcomputer with a flattened, 11-inch CRT-equivalent screen that is only two inches thick.

The Executive Partner will be available for order from area dealers later this month, said Bob Morgan, Panasonic regional sales manager.

Morgan was in town last week to introduce the new microcomputer to area dealers.

The Executive Partner features lightening-quick response time and an innovative screen that is both clearer and easier to read, Morgan said.

"Plasma display is a "flattened CRT' (cathode ray tube), " Morgan said. "Within plasma, Panasonic has made an even greater breakthrough."

Cathode ray technology has been standard for many years in the industry, he said.

Up to now, the high power consumptions, exorbitant manufacturing costs and size restrictions of AC (voltage) gas plasma displays have prevented their use in most microcomputer applications, explained Morgan.

The 11-inch screen displays 25 lines by 80 columns of high-resolution viewing, and is only two inches thick, he added.

The Executive Partner's accelerated speed is achieved by the use of the 8086-2 as its microprocessor, a chip with a full 16-bit bus. The software typically runs more than twice as fast as leading personal computers, he said.

Software designed for IBM personal computers can be run on the Executive Partner, and most will run at the higher speed, said Bob Gregory, Panasonic portable computer specialist.

However, the computer can be shifted down to the present standard personal computer speed when needed.

IBM-compatibility was cited by area computer dealers as the most outstanding feature of the Executive Partner.

"There's always a market for something like that but it has to be IBM-compatible," remarked John Bond, marketing representative for Computer Connection, 6900 Northwest Expressway.

If sales of Panasonic's Sr. Partner personal computer are any indication of the Executive Partner's prospects in this area, the future looks bright.

At his store, Bond said that he has sold seven of the machines, which retail for $2,495, during the past three months. By contrast, he sold "four to five" Apple McIntosh machines which retail for $2,195 during that time period.

Bond says the one-year warranty on Panasonic machines "is a selling factor."

"The (plasma) screen is easier to read, easier to view-nicer than any others" currently on the market, said Jerry Dempewolf, store manager for Computer Land, 10621 N. …

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