【Fujitsu】 FACOM 401A Magazine File

The FACOM 401A Magazine File was a magnetic tape unit from Fujitsu, completed in 1967. It was the first Japanese made unit to employ tape cartridge media. At the time, there was a need for compact input/output devices, priced similar to paper tape devices, and featuring the high-density recording of a magnetic tape unit together with the reusability of data media. The FACOM 401A Magazine File employed magnetic tape cartridges, and was developed for small systems such as the FACOM 230-10. This unit had the following features:

(1) The recording media was extremely easy to handle due to the use of the first Japanese made magnetic tape cartridge. (Cartridges could be loaded or ejected instantly, and recording media did not require much storage space.)
(2) Compared with paper tape, the unit had the advantage that the same unit could be used for both reading and writing, and the media was reusable.
(3) Reliability of recording (The magnetic head track width was twice that of an ordinary magnetic tape unit, so the system was extremely resilient to bit drop-out. And the recording format was provided with redundancy.)
(4) Speed was low, but the unit was compact, inexpensive and easy to operate and maintain.

Main Specifications of FACOM 401A Magazine File
Completion date 1967
Data media
    Magnetic tape cartridge (Made of plastic)
  • Size: 310(W)×178(D)×27(H) (Unit: mm)
  • Tape: Width 1/2inch, length 100mm
Tape drive system Reel to Reel drive
Tape feed speed Average 76cm/s (30inch/s)
Rewind time 70s
Head 4tracks,1gap
Recording system NRZI (change on 1)
Recording density Average 13.1row/mm (333row/inch)
Data transfer speed 1.67Kbyte/s
External dimensions/weight 400(W)×645(D×1,016(H) (Unit: mm)/170kg

FACOM 401A Magazine FileFACOM 401A cartridge insertion portInserting a cartridgeCartridge tape for FACOM 401A