7

There was a clone of the Sinclair Spectrum+ in South Korea called the Samsung SPC-650 that looks identical to original British version with just an extra model number/logo. It even retains the Sinclair and Spectrum names. I believe Samsung was doing some manufacturing for Sinclair in this era, so it's probably an officially re-badged model, unlike the Russian and Eastern European Speccy clones.

Samsung SPC-650

But there's very little information about it online. This was in an era before Korea's tech boom and well before the Korean Wave, so there wasn't much cultural contact between Korea and the west in those days. I've even been to Korea a bunch of times in the past twenty years but did't know about these machines to try to find one.

For comparison, there was also an official Spanish version of the Spectrum sold by Investronica in this era and we know it had ROM differences including some text strings and accented characters. There was also a French localized ROM which seems to be official.

So did the Korean version also have localized ROMs, support for Hangul (the Korean writing system), or any other differences besides the extra writing on top?

Samsung SPC-650 in its original old box

4

Very little seems to be known about the SPC-650. Apparently it didn't sell well, and ZX Spectrum compatibles were on the whole pretty much overlooked in the far east, excepting Russia.

There's a blog which appears to claim that it, and the other clones in the series, has some design and performance changes. It doesn't say what exactly, which makes me think this is an error in the machine translation.

So did the Korean version also have localized ROMs, support for Hangul (the Korean writing system), or any other differences besides the extra writing on top?

I don't think so. There's no Hangul on the keyboard, plus it would be hard to squeeze Hangul support into the ROM. So I think it's no more than a generic straight-forward clone without bells and whistles.

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  • "plus it would be hard to squeeze Hangul support into the ROM. " - in fact, linearized hangŭl would just about fit, by replacing e.g. the lowercase letters, and it would be even readable in 8×8 matrix characters. But I don't know if it has been used at all during the 8-bit era. – Radovan Garabík May 15 at 13:32
  • @Radovan yes, and it would not be hard to compress such a hangul font. But I think there would have been mention of something like that. – OmarL May 15 at 16:26

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