View Full Version : HMC # 18: ZX Spectrum 48K+

12-06-2008, 12:34 AM

For this challenge its the most fondest of all the machines I have ever owned, and it is the one and only ZX Spectrum 48K+. On many occasions when it broke down, my father would open it up to change the keyboard membrane etc - and I got my first peek inside a computer.

...and that is the beautiful machine itself. The reference I am using is from a site called old-computers...

...which gives me quite a lot of views and angles to check against. Also, and perhaps most important is Wikipedia which gives the dimensions of this particular Sinclair model: 319mm x 149mm x 38mm (WxHxD)).[ (

12-09-2008, 12:23 PM
Okay, I'm going to make a start today, so I should have the first update tonight.

12-09-2008, 02:18 PM
yeah ? and ?

Im gonna start ? come on man, lets see some poly's ...:applause:

good luck with this steve. on the surface it looks relatively straight forward, but i reckon there are a few tricky bits ..

12-09-2008, 03:33 PM
Nice idea, looking forward to seeing some progress.

I used to have the ZX 81 which was the predecessor to the spectrum and it had, wait for it, 1K ram! I loved it until my neighbor got the spectrum, then I would go to his house to play games cause they were much better than on my ol' 81, good memories.

12-09-2008, 04:16 PM
Cheers people, unfortunately I havent got a blueprint for this machine so I'm having to map out the keyboard in a 2D program. I'm now glad of all the coordinate work I did in my graphics programming years ago!:scream:

I'll most likely end up posting that tonight so stay tuned!:beer:

12-09-2008, 06:47 PM
Oh man, I had one of those!!!

12-09-2008, 11:08 PM
First update! Not much to look at but there are more polygons in place - just cant see'em thats all...

12-09-2008, 11:11 PM
Nice start mate.

12-09-2008, 11:13 PM
hey, trust me, we absolutely know, what you are talking about.
It looks like a 2-minute peace, but that doesn't mean, that there have not been 1 hour of thinking of "how to" and another hour of "damnit, have to try another way" :argh:

12-09-2008, 11:16 PM
nice beginning ... now get on with it ..:bounce:

stop chatting on MSN and make some progress ....:scream:

12-09-2008, 11:24 PM
Okay, heres a viewport pic...

12-11-2008, 11:00 PM
another update tonight...

12-12-2008, 12:35 AM
Fantastic choice. Haven't seen or used one of those in a loooong time. Everything looks accurate so far.

12-12-2008, 07:56 PM
Thanks Wyatt. The most challenging thing about the keyboard was those groves - I'm sure I'm doing it the hard way, but I added enough edges to manually position them etc. Extruding downwards didnt seem to work all that well...but at least its done now! So long as you get there, right?:blush:

I'm currently doing modelling for a friend's Steampunk video elsewhere on CGTalk so I think I'll come back to the spectrum on Sunday.

Stay tuned!:beer:

12-16-2008, 12:51 PM
Finally tackled the spacing for the buttons, though obviously they need much more detail...

...and a rear shot for the newly added vents at the back of the unit...

12-16-2008, 03:48 PM
Looking good. The tops of the buttons should be cool to make.

12-16-2008, 06:04 PM
Lookin' sweet so far Boone ! Keep it up, you're getting on well ( with everything you're doing ! )

12-16-2008, 08:21 PM
Most appreciated, chaps. I'm actually enjoying this challenge and I hope to finish it for the voting stage. Just depends on how busy we'll get over on the Steampunk video challenge...:beer:

12-26-2008, 07:56 PM
Spacing is a bit out but I'll fix that by the next update.

12-30-2008, 09:57 PM
Nice sofar.
Like I asked Wyatt-H.. When you hacking it up?

12-31-2008, 12:28 AM
Nice going boone!

01-04-2009, 06:04 PM

- "SINCLAIR" and "ZXSpectrum" signs
- Spacing between keys improved

01-04-2009, 06:09 PM
So you can model then :P.
Its looking too good, get the axe out and fix it :wip:

01-04-2009, 08:15 PM
Its looking too good, get the axe out and fix it :wip:
Lol, looking great Boone. :thumbsup:

01-06-2009, 04:04 PM
Found a new reference for the motherboard...

...looking at the picture of the Issue #3 motherboard, I would say I have my work cut out. By far the circuit lines are going to be the toughest to map out.

01-06-2009, 04:23 PM
:eek: Oh wow, good luck Boone. I was debating on whether or not to model the traces on mine but the Atari board was pretty primitive so it wasn't too bad. This looks... overwhelming.

Don't lose track of time, you're going to need it.

01-06-2009, 07:10 PM
Cheers, Wyatt! As soon as I took a look at all the pathways on the board, I thought "Steve, why the **** didn't you just go with the yo-yo?":scream:

01-06-2009, 07:21 PM
that looks heavy. i mean, the elektronic parts on the board, ok, but these lines, wohoo. I think the create-polygon tool, or something like that would work best, but it will be some hours of stupid clicking :D
anyway, good luck with that ;)

01-06-2009, 07:25 PM
Cheers. The task ahead of me is so stupidly insane I'm having the giggles bad!

01-08-2009, 05:39 PM
After days of searching I've finally come across this reference of the issue#3, which is the largest and clearest so far...

...which leaves only the lower-casing to figure out...:hmm:

01-08-2009, 09:36 PM
holy crap are u kidding me? I thought you were only gonna have to model the externals as you were... that almost looks like a bigger task then Whyst's star wars destroyer!

Um... well, good luck and we are here for you should you start needing to read "self help" books afterwards :beer:

01-08-2009, 11:20 PM
LOL, the fight ain't over til it's over! yeah, no real blueprint to follow here save for my best guess. I'm pretty sure of the board size, but for the componets I shall trust in the artist's eye.

01-09-2009, 10:25 PM
A little more work on the motherboard...

01-09-2009, 10:36 PM
Sweet thingies :D

Any idea yet on how you will go onto getting all these circuit paths done?

01-09-2009, 11:04 PM
None whatsoever, Moon. At the moment my plan is just to get the spacing of the components nailed. Moving on after that is the detail of the components and then - if I have time and a plan - implement the circuit paths.

I've also got to create the bottom casing and keyboard membrane as well - it might be worth just ignoring the paths altogether...:shrug:

01-12-2009, 04:54 PM
I was thinking "What are they on about?" Then I opened the Mobo pic. ... Ouch!!!

You are allowed to bump-map and UV map some of the finer detail if you want to.

And here I was thinking I'd bitten off a huge chunk!

It's going well so far. Keep it up!

01-12-2009, 04:59 PM
Owen, thats a good idea. Might give it a shot if I have enough time for texturing.:thumbsup:

01-27-2009, 09:07 PM
After some time out for watching Silo tutorials I am now back on the case. Didnt like the motherboard so I started it from scratch...

01-27-2009, 10:36 PM
My son was messing around with the demo of Silo (he's a Maya peep). He was raving about it and I thought it looked pretty sweet as a modeller. I was impressed by the built-in sculpting function and the intuitive modelling controls.

01-28-2009, 12:09 AM
My son was messing around with the demo of Silo (he's a Maya peep). He was raving about it and I thought it looked pretty sweet as a modeller. I was impressed by the built-in sculpting function and the intuitive modelling controls.

I'm an ex-Maya peep too! As its similar to the interface of Maya, I took to it like a fish to water. For modelling capabilities'n'features I'm constantly comparing it to Max, and I'm finding that its not too far behind although there are one or two minor niggles. However, for the price Silo is simply incredible and I recommend it as a modelling'n'texturing companion to Maya.:thumbsup:

01-28-2009, 05:22 AM
Alright Boone, hadn't heard from you in a bit, glad to see your back. Seems you are approaching the board with more detail in mind this time.

01-28-2009, 06:01 PM
Alright Boone, hadn't heard from you in a bit, glad to see your back. Seems you are approaching the board with more detail in mind this time.

Cheers bud. I am definitely going for the circuit pathways but they wont be 100% accurate - just enough to get by on. I just think it would be wrong not to have them in there! Now if only I can get the bottom case done as well...:D

01-28-2009, 09:52 PM

01-29-2009, 09:52 AM
Lots of details coming through now Boone.

01-29-2009, 01:05 PM
Feeling a bit drained today but will still give an hour later tonight. Expect an update tommorow night...

01-29-2009, 11:10 PM
Goodness me! You get an update tonight you lucky devils...

01-30-2009, 05:27 AM
wow cool postings thank u

01-30-2009, 11:33 AM
You're doing well so far Boone, how many hours left to get it completed ???

Keep focused, get this done !

01-30-2009, 01:48 PM
yeah.. what he said ..

FINISH IT !!! :)

01-30-2009, 04:16 PM
Nice Boone, you've gone deep. Don't get lost in there. :D
Seriously, I'm glad to see you are placing the trace lines. Gonna make it a much cooler render.

01-30-2009, 06:41 PM
This will be done. Full stop.

Another update tonight sometime...:twisted:

01-31-2009, 02:16 PM
Update update update update ;)

02-01-2009, 09:14 PM
Nearly there...

02-03-2009, 09:50 PM
Motherboard is now done. moving it into Max for finishing and rendering...

02-05-2009, 06:31 PM
Almost finished...

02-06-2009, 11:35 AM
Good progress Boone ! Fantastic attention to detail too ! Good luck getting it all cut away and finished for the deadline.

02-06-2009, 05:09 PM
Fantastic work Boone. The render really brings out the details. How much do you have left?

FYI, yesterday your images seemed to randomly not display then they would show after a few reloads. Not sure if your having an issue with your provider, just letting you know.

02-07-2009, 11:44 AM
Cheers guys.

Wyatt - yup, I keep having problems with geocites/yahoo and will be sorting that out in the near future.

The thing that is frustrating me is the circuit pathways. I spent quite a bit of time creating them yet they are barely visible in the clay render. I still have them seperated from the motherboard itself, so I can give them a different colour. I'm trying to suss out VRay but the renders are looking quite faint.

The vents at the front of the bottom casing are the major detail to add. Also, I need to smooth out the soundchip and other assorted pieces on the motherboard.

All that work, and the final render will be done tommorow.

02-08-2009, 08:19 AM
my mind is still rattling looking at this boone. You have come a LONG ways since your first challenge IMHO and I'm glad to see you dedicated to your models. Thats a hard thing to do...

Thumbs up and props dude ; )

02-08-2009, 09:32 PM
Well, here is my final renders.

02-08-2009, 10:20 PM
Hm, your image Server seems to have problems currently. Il look around here later again ;)

02-08-2009, 10:25 PM
I shall be using something else to host my images after this.:banghead:

02-08-2009, 10:32 PM
after what mate ?

We need to able to see the images to vote for them .. stick them on image shack or something just now ..

waste of time working on it so hard, then not letting anyone see it ..

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