Hand-crafted beauty pays tribute to the dawn of home computing

Wonderful in wood: The metal box of the original PET 2001 computer has been replaced by...
Wonderful in wood: The metal box of the original PET 2001 computer has been replaced by American walnut(Credit: Love Hultén)

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Sweden's Love Hultén is probably best known for his wonderfully retro gaming creations, but has also fashioned a beautiful synth and a hi-fi system, too. For his one-off PET De Lux project, the designer and craftsman has paid tribute to a grand-daddy of home computing, the Commodore PET 2001 all-in-one personal computer released in 1977.

Commodore's PET – Personal Electronic Transactor – 2001 was an angular metal box containing a small monochrome display, a built-in cassette tape player for loading in software such as games and productivity applications, and a modern-looking chiclet-style keyboard. Inside the housing was a MOS Technology 6502 processor running at 1 MHz and up to 8 KB of RAM, and the system ran on a BASIC operating system.

Today, a PET would look archaic and clunky even when matched with the cheapest of tablets. Hell, there are modern calculators more powerful than this early home computer. But back in the late 1970s it was a game-changer, opening the door for bedroom coders and helping to set the scene for the personal computing revolution to come.

The PET De Lux comes with two wireless games controllers, including one inspired by a TAC-2...

Hultén's handmade one-of-a-kind tribute is housed is American walnut, and retains the chiclet keyboard and what looks like the cassette machine found in the original PET. The PET De Lux comes with two controllers, too, though cables have been sacrificed for wireless modern convenience – one of the custom controllers was inspired by the TAC-2 joystick.

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