This section is dedicated to Bil Herd, and his awesome Commodore 128. If you have questions to Bil (Mr. Herd is his father, so he told me:-)) you can visit him at his website http://c128.com, a name not so easily forgettable.

The C=128 never became as popular as the C64, though it is almost 100% compatible, I have yet to find a game or program that isn’t compatible, I guess Commodore was focusing on the Amiga when the C=128 was released in 1985.

In this section of software you’ll find the dedicated C=128 games, demos and applications, which unfortunately are only very few. Most C=64 games can run on the C=128 in C=64 mode.

The C=128 has 3 modes, C=128, C=64, and CP/M, C=128 and C=64 are easily activated, but CP/M needs to be booted from a diskette.

c128 cpm 80 char
Commodore 128 displaying CP/M in 80 characters

The C=128 has as it name implies, 128KB ram, which is accessible in CP/M and C=128 mode. Where only 64KB are available in C=64 mode.

Commodore 128 displaying CP/M in 40 character mode
Commodore 128 displaying CP/M in 40 characters

The C=128 was released in 3 versions. C=128 which looked similar to the C64C model, C128D in a plastic case, this model could have it’s keyboard attached in the bottom for storage, and has a handle to carry the computer around And the C128D-CR (cost reduced). The D models looks somewhat like the Amiga 1000, and they have an internal C=1571 diskettedrive. Though being cost reduced, the CR model’s casing is made of metal, this was due to the plastic casing didn’t comply to the FCC rules in the US, so Commodore needed to shield the computer better, doing this by making a metal case.

Commodore 128 displaying Basic in 40 character mode
Commodore 128 displaying Basic in 40 characters

A lot of the C=128 computers were sold because of it’s Z80 chip. Companies wanted CP/M cheap, and using the C=128 they got it.

A special monitor is needed to have the C=128 in 80 character mode. The output signal is RGBI in TTL levels. Several Commodore monitors has this, including the C=1084(S) and C=1901. though for 40 character screens the composite / luma/chroma / FM is still needed. On the C=1084 there’s a switch on the front to flip between these 2 modes, on the C=1084S the switch is in the back of the monitor.

Commodore 128 displaying Basic in 80 character mode
Commodore 128 displaying Basic in 80 characters


C64 Mode CPU 8502 @ ~1Mhz
C128 Mode CPU 8502 @ ~2Mhz
CP/M Mode CPU Z80 @ ~4MHz
C64 Basic v2.0
C128 Basic v7.0