Module Comparisons Third-Party Products Functional Information

Tape Couplers


This page discusses the available LSI-11 tape couplers. These modules provide an interface between a tape subsystem and the Q-bus. The respective couplers were considered part of the subsystem, rather than a discrete component.

The table below contains a comparison of different tape couplers available.

Module Number M7196 M7546 M7559 M7605
Model Number TSV05 TK50 TK70 TK25
Introduced 1981 1985 1986 1984
Board Size Quad Dual Dual Quad
Q-bus Address Size 22-bits 22-bits 22-bits 22-bits
DMA Capable yes yes yes yes
Interface Pertec RS-422 RS-422
Tape Format Reel-to-Reel DLT DLT QIC
Tape Width (in.) 0.5 0.5 0.5 0.25
Tape Length (ft.) 24001 600 600 600
Tracks 9 22 48 11
Speed (ips) 25/100 75 100 55
Density (bpi) 1600 6667 10000 8000
Capacity (MB) 441 94 296 61
Transfer Rate (Bps) 40,000/160,000 500,025 1,000,000 440,000
AC Bus Load
DC Bus Load
+5V Load
+12V Load

1 Maximum.


Much like mechanical disk drives, tape drives wear out over time and and their media are becoming less common. Hardware emulators could, and have been built, to replace Pertec-compatible drives, making Pertec couplers the most useful. One of these would allow operating systems to be installed from tape files, and existing backup programs to continue to be used.


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