Introducing the Tomcat from Frank Hogg Labs

See also: Announcing the MM/1 and Announcing the TC-70.

Here is another one from the archives. Uploaded on March 31st, 1990 to the GEnie online service Tandy RoundTable, these documents were the original product announcement from Frank Hogg Labs Tomcat OSK machine. The TC-9 was a 6809 based machine that used the CoCo 3’s GIME chip for compatibility, and the TC-70 was a 68000-type system similar to the MM/1.

I will also attach the original price list.

Number: 4376  Name: tomcat.txt
Address: F.RESLER                Date: 900331
Approximate # of bytes: 7560
Number of Accesses: 49  Library: 9
This is a file describing the new CoCo4, officially called the TC9 Tomcat,
from Frank Hogg.  Very interesting and exciting!
Keywords: coco4,tomcat,hogg,computer,announcement

    E X P A N S I O N

        P O S S I B I L I T I E S

                                       from 6809 to 
                                          60030 and 
                                          with your 
                                        at your own 

            at Super Prices...

            (About what the CoCo 3 was when it first came out.)



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            **   ** **  **** ****  **   *  ** **   **
            **   ** **  ** *** **  **      ** **   **
            **   ** **  **  *  **  **   *  ** **   **
            **    ***   **     **   ****    *****   **

The TC9 TOMCAT (TM) is a major improvement over the CoCo 3. 

        The TC9  is over 25% faster! 

        The TC9  uses a PC compatible keyboard. 

        The TC9  has two 'real' serial ports.

        The TC9  supports a serial mouse.

        The TC9  has a parallel printer port.

        The TC9  has provision for 512K on board RAM or it can use a 
                 CoCo 3 512K memory upgrade.

        The TC9  can be upgraded to 1 megabyte with the Disto 1 Meg 
                 upgrade with no soldering, just plug it in. 

        The TC9  has 8 bit D to A and A to D. 8 bit provides better 
                 sound and a higher resolution joystick, 256 vs 64. 

        The TC9  supports an internal speaker.

        The TC9  has the standard CoCo bus so that CoCo cartridges 
                 can be used. 

        The TC9  board can be powered by any PC power supply. This 
                 also allows installing the board in most PC clone 

        The TC9  will work with most, if not all OS9 software.

        The TC9  will have RSDOS compatibility thru 3rd party 

        The TC9  is K-Bus compatible. 

K-Bus capability is important because it allows interfacing the TC9 to 
the 68000 and even the 68030! By installing the TC9 in a K-Bus 68K 
system the Tomcat becomes a dual-processing system! When in OS9 Level II 
mode the 68000 becomes a co-processor to the TC9, like a accelerator to 
Level II. We can expect a 2 or 3 fold improvement in performance! 
When the 68000 is the master under OS9/68K, the TC9 acts as a co-
processor to 68K. Switching back and forth between systems will be easy 
and will allow a smooth transition from OS9 to OSK. It is not necessary 
to jump to OSK to get the benefits of the 68000, but it provides a 
smooth transition when and if you decide to make the move. You go at 
your own pace, upgrading as you desire, and at each point you get a 
significant improvement in performance, for a very slight cost. 

   E X P A N S I O N

Once a K-Bus backplane is added, (It is not required for TC9 operation) 
the world of 68K is open to you. The logical first step is to add a 
68000 CPU which will immediately speed up Level II operations by several 
factors and opens the door to running OSK. No other additions are needed 
to run OSK, as OSK will run in the TC9 memory and use TC9 I/O. For 
further performance increases additional boards, memory, I/O etc. can be 
added to the K-Bus. It is even possible to have several TC9's in the K-
Bus for a multi-processing system! Memory limits are 16 Megabytes of 
which more than 14 Megabytes can be RAM! 

They are backplane sizes from 4 to 16 slots and a 20 slot bus is under 
consideration. The backplane itself is inexpensive so that if you 
outgrew your first bus you could transfer all your cards to a bigger 
backplane for little cost. Because of the bus concept upgrades to future 
CPUs only requires adding that CPU to accomplish it. For example, you 
could start with a 68000 and later replace that with a 68030 and still 
use ALL of your other cards. 

When new cards such as the 68040 become available, you could add those 
too. Even capabilities, not thought of today can be added by just adding 
a card! 

This is upgrading without having to throw anything away. Even if you 
eventually switched over to 68K completely the TC9 still functions as a 
multi-function graphics co-processor. Our Hi-Res graphics board, now in 
design, will have its own keyboard interface and video memory so that it 
can be used with the TC9 . Several of either cards can be used in the 
same system, making for the first multi-processor, multi-user, multi-
graphics system for OS9 and OSK! Because of the wide variety of K-Bus 
boards available and those under development, the possibilities for the 
future are unlimited. 

The TC9 Tomcat  truly is the CoCo 4 that Tandy should have made, for 
that matter it could well be the CoCo 5, 6, 7, 8.............


If you currently own a CoCo 3 and use it for both RSDOS and OS9 Level II 
the TC9 Tomcat is your road to the future. It will run your current 
software faster and give you powerful new features and performance at 
modest cost. You get the ability to expand at your own pace, at low 
cost, the way you want to do it, for your future.


FHL, in business since 1976, has been manufacturing 680x0 based 
computers for over 6 years! The Tomcat is the computer for the 90's. We 
have put all of our knowledge and experience into the creation of the 
Tomcat. We believe it is the best choice for you and for us. We create 
computers because we like to use them, not because we like to sell them. 
Every computer we've made has been one we've wanted for ourselves. The 
Tomcat is the best we've done... so far.

TOMCAT is a trademark of FHL

For more information and price/availability:
Call or write:
FAX 315/469-8537
CIS 70310,317

And here is the original pricelist, though I do not remember where I got this file from. I slightly altered it for readability since it looks like blank lines got stripped somewhere along the way… Note the date of March 31, 1990.

FHL       TOMCAT COMPUTER PRICE LIST     March 31, 1990


Low Profile for TC9 - 4 high holds 2 5.25 and 2 3.5 drives, 220W PS  $179.95
Mini Tower for 8 slot K-Bus, 2 5.25 and 2 3.5 drives, 220W PS          199.95
Desktop for 12 slot K-Bus, 3 5.25 and 1 3.5 drive, 200W PS             199.95
Big Tower for 16 slot K-Bus, 8 1/2 drives, 250W PS                     399.95
Portable with keyboard and screen.                     Price to be announced.

TC9 TOMCAT    6809/Multi-I/O/Color Graphics (COCO4)           $299.95 (2nd 1/4)
K-BUS         4 SLOT BUS                                        59.95
K-BUS         8 SLOT BUS                 (Under Development)
K-BUS         12 SLOT BUS                                      189.95
K-BUS         16 SLOT BUS                                      289.95
K-CPU-030     68030 CPU 16MHZ                                  799.95
K-CPU-68K/10  10 MHZ 68000 CPU Board                           189.95
K-CPU-68K/12  12 MHZ 68000 CPU Board                           219.95
K-CPU-68K/16  16 MHZ 68000 CPU Board                           269.95
K-MATH-0      MATH CoProcessor less chip                        89.95
K-MATH-81     MATH CoProcessor with 68881 installed            299.95
K-DRAM-0      2 MegaByte Dynamic Memory (no memory chips)      299.95
K-DRAM-2M     2 MegaByte Dynamic Memory 80NS Chips             499.95
K-MEM-0K      256K Static RAM or 27256 Type EPROM (64K Blocks)  89.95
K-TIMER       Timer, Battery RTC/RAM,Parallel Printer Port     149.95
K-DMA         2 Channel DMA (68440)                            189.95
K-SCSI        SCSI Controller (5380)                           149.95
K-FDC         Floppy Disk Controller (1772) 4 drives           149.95
K-ACI         2 Port Async Serial (68681)                      149.95
K-ACI4        4 Port Async Serial (68681)                      249.95
K-PAR         4 Port Parallel Interface (6821)                 149.95
K-BUSMON      Bus Monitor with LED's and Single Step Switch    189.95
K-PROTO       General Purpose Wirewrap                          59.95
K-GRAPHICS    Hi-Res Color Graphics VSC W/PC Keyboard Interface  (2nd 1/4)

OS9/68000      Includes Editor, Assembler, Debugger, Scred    $249.95
BOOT-ROM SET   Required for OS9                                 50.00
PC-DOS UTILITY Utility to Read/Write/Format PC-DOS under OS9    99.95

FHL reserves the right to change prices and specifications without notice
Delivery: Stock to 30 Days except where noted

Terms: Payment with order in U.S. Funds Check, VISA, MC (AMEX & DINERS add 5%)
Shipping/Handling: $8.00 Per Order (UPS Ground), Foreign and Air Extra

FAX 315/469-8537

One thought on “Introducing the Tomcat from Frank Hogg Labs

  1. Pingback: Announcing the TC-70 | Sub-Etha Software

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