Zenith Supersport SX

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Zenith Supersport SX
Branding Zenith Data Systems
Manufacturer Alps Electric?
Features Pad lock
Keyswitches Alps integrated dome
Switch mount PCB mount
Interface Direct matrix
Rollover NKRO
Introduced 1989[1]
Price $6000[1] (for the whole notebook)

Zenith Supersport SX (branded approximately as "supersPORT SX", also transcribed "SuperSport") was a 386 notebook computer in the Supersport range from Zenith Data Systems. The Supersport SX was introduced in 1989 and featured a keyboard with tactile Alps integrated dome switches with double-shot Alps mount keycaps. Keycaps with two legend colours use locally coated pad printing for the additional colours.

The keyboard features n-key rollover using diodes. The keyboard PCB contains only the switches, diodes and lock LEDs, with the controller itself on the motherboard. This makes the keyboard ideal for controller replacement. The rear of the PCB bears Alps branding, suggesting that they manufactured the entire keyboard assembly.

The variant of the Alps integrated dome switch found in the Supersport SX has a gentle metallic sound and a positive tactile feel, around 65 cN. The tactility is crisp and precise.

The keyboard features an embedded numeric keypad with a pad lock key, giving it four LEDs instead of the usual three. The function keys stop at F10; F11 and F12 are only available on the Zenith ZA-180-89 external numeric keypad.

Other variants

The earlier Zenith SupersPORT 286 was identical in almost every way, but featured a slower 80286 CPU. This model was also sold by AEG Olympia as "Olyport 40".

Keyboard matrix & controller replacement

The keyboard uses a 10 columns by 8 rows matrix, with diodes mounted so rows are positive and columns negative. This is important if you are using hasu's firmware for the Teensy, since hasu's TMK code assumes negative rows and positive columns; in this case you'll need to enter the columns as rows and rows as columns for the firmware to work with the keyboard.

A 24-lead flat flex cable (1.25mm pitch) connects the keyboard PCB to a controller on the motherboard, with the following pins:

  • Pin 0: unused
  • Pin 1: VCC, used for the LEDs
  • Pin 2-5: LEDs (-)
  • Pin 6-15: columns (-)
  • Pin 16-23: rows (+)
Col 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
Row Pin# 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15
A 16 ESC F1 F2 F3 F4 F5 F6 F7 F8 F9
B 17 BSLS 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 F10
C 18 TAB Q W E R T Y U 9 NLCK
D 19 LCTL A D F G H J I 0 PAUS
E 20 LSFT S V B N M K O ??? INS
F 21 Z X SPC UP RALT COMM L P EQL DEL
G 22 CAPS C no LEFT RCTL DOT SCLN LBRC PSCR BKSP
H 23 FN0 LALT DOWN RGHT RSFT SLSH QUOT RBRC ENT GRV

Gallery

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 Computing History — Zenith SupersPORT SX Retrieved 2015-07-09.