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Kempston Micro Electronics

Kempston Micro Electronics was an electronics company specialising in computer joysticks and related home computer peripherals during the 1980s. Kempston was based in Kempston, Bedfordshire, England.

Kempston Micro Electronics
Limited company
Founded28 January 1983
Defunct17 December 1993
HeadquartersKempston, England, UK


Kempston joystick interface.

Kempston produced a number of joystick interfaces for the Sinclair ZX Spectrum to allow normal Atari-style DE-9 connector joysticks to be used with it. Apart from implementing existing joystick interfacing modes they produced their own standard which delivered the joystick state on the Z80 bus at port 31 (read in BASIC using IN 31). This meant that the joystick did not produce key-presses like the other standards and the method was soon borrowed by other interface manufacturers and became quite popular.


  • x-axis at port 64479
  • y-axis at port 65503
  • two buttons at port 64223


Formula 1 and 2Edit

The Formula 1 was based on the Quickshot 1 and released June 1985.[citation needed].

Score BoardEdit

Features a base similar in size to a 48K Spectrum, with two fire buttons. Released June 1985.[citation needed]

Competition ProEdit

Competition Pro (first version)

The Competition Pro consisted of a square base, two large red buttons (for left or right-handed use) and a black pommel stick. It used the Atari 2600 standard DE-9 connector and was primary designed to work with the ZX Spectrum Kempston joystick interface but also with the compatible ports built into other home computers such as the Amstrad CPC, Commodore 64 (& VIC-20) and later Commodore Amiga and Atari ST.[citation needed] There was also an Atari 5200 model which leveraged the existing CX52 controller for the keypad functionality.

External linksEdit