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Chaps make working 6502 CPU by hand. Because why not?

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Ricky Nesbitt
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However, this project is affection on a grand scale: some US enthusiasts are creating a transistor-for-transistor replica of the chip's design using discrete components.

It's a good thing we're in the era of surface mount components, because even with small components the 3,218 transistors, 1,019 resistors and various other bits of the MOnSter 6502 need a four-layer PCB measuring 12 x 15 with components mounted on both sides.

Because a big, slow, and mostly-useless processor board would be boring without flashing lights, it also includes 167 LEDs showing the values of various control lines, registers, and status bits .

Regrettably, the chip won't be able to completely emulate the original 6502 inside an olde-worlde Apple board, because it's too slow.

That might be enough, however, to get it to boot and run BASIC, Schlaepfer hopes.

They've also recreated discrete-component versions of two smaller classics: the 555 timer, and the 741 op-amp.

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