NEC µPD751 - The 4th Microprocessor, Japan's 1st - 751, D751D, uPD751D


Availability: 1 in stock

About this Artwork

This artwork is a mixed media display celebrating the NEC 751. We are fast approaching the 50th anniversary of the first microprocessors. The NEC µPD751, also known as the µCOM-4, was introduced early in 1973. The first microprocessors had different inceptions than destinies. The Intel 4004 was created for use in a calculator. This 4-bit microprocessor had a handheld point of sale heritage. Although these microprocessors were created for specific purposes, their designers endowed them with general-purpose computing capabilities. The µPD751 was used primarily as a controller in automation applications. The µPD751 had 2,500 transistors and ran at 1MHz. The µPD751 also used N-MOS channel technology, the first microprocessor to do so.

In early 1971, Sharp Electronics contacted NEC about the possibility of developing and manufacturing a small-scale computer to be used for mobile applications. A handheld point of sale unit for Nippon Coca-Cola was the driving application for this computer. Sharp was selected by Coke to build these handheld units. Sharp looked to NEC to develop the chips to be the brains of these units. NEC developed the computing power for “BillPet”, Sharp’s internal codename, to be a two-chip implementation: the µPD707 and µPD708. The project was completed in March of 1972. When NEC’s engineers became aware of the Intel 4004 announcement (November 1971), they began developing a single-chip implementation of the µPD707/µPD708 combination. The µPD751 was completed in early 1973. The N-MOS µPD751 had 55 instructions. It could address 2KB of data memory and 4KB of program memory. The µPD751 was about twice as fast as the Intel 4004.


    The artwork is framed in an 11"x14" black shadow box frame, with glass. All framing materials are acid-free. A narrative about the artwork that includes the artist’s signature is placed on the back of the artwork.

    Please note:  I only have one of the D751Ds, so this artwork is unique.