Posted on July 3, 2021
Casio Cassiopeia Fiva MPC-102S
It’s obvious, the Japanese seem to have a faible for ultra portable devices. In the mid 90s, Casio entered the market with pocket PCs and ultra portables, to compete against Sony and Toshiba.
Casio, widely known for their calculators, wristwatches and musical instruments, also produced computers. In the mid 90s, a whole lineup of PDAs made their debut unter the CASSIOPEIA brand, eventually seeing company in the form of ultra-compact laptops towards the end of the decade.
The first thing to notice when holding the FIVA 102 in your hand is the similarity in dimensions to the Toshiba Libretto.
The second thing to notice when opening up the FIA 102 is the color scheme, which resembles a bit the one used by Sony for their VAIO lineup.
Wether coincidence or intention, the FIVA MPC-102 was propably no match to the Libretto or the contemporary PictureBook in direct comparison. Although a decent amount of accessories, such as port replicators, extended capacity batteries, and external floppy and CD-ROM drivers, were available, it sports an usual CPU choice, making it not exactly a power house.
The device sports a National Semiconductor Geode GXm, which actually is a rebranded Cyrix MediaGXm CPU, clocking in at 233 MHz. While truely x86, it’s not the fastest CPU, and only roughly comparable to the contemporary Intel Pentium MMX at same clock rate. The choice for this CPU was most surely for both cost and power consumption reasons, similar why both Sony and Toshiba eventually chose to use the Transmeta Crusoe in their lineups.
So, is the FIVA 102 thus a bad device? Not all. It’s fairly OK for doing some on-the-go work, as long one does not expect a power house. Whilst the FIVA was mostly available in Japan, some units actually made it to Europe and other markets.
I actually owned the European version in around 2000, and took it with me during my military services. Unfortunately, I sold it off in later years, but thanks to some good luck I could reacquire a mint condition original japanese unit in 2018.
The PHINTAGE Collection currently holds a MPC102 unit.
|Model||Cassiopeia FIFA MPC102S|
|Original Streetprice||~1700 CHF in Switzerland|
|Dimensions||21 x 13.2 x 2.5 cm|
|Builtin Display||YES, 6.7″ TFT SVGA, 800 x 600|
|CPU||National Semiconductor Geode MediaGXm|
(Cyrix MediaGMx) @ 233 MHz
|Storage||– 6 GiB 2.5″ PATA HDD|
|Network Support||infrared, serial|
|USB||yes, 1 USB 1.1|
|Other||– 1 PCMCIA (CardBus Type II)|
– Audio In 3.5mm
– Audio Out 3.5mm
|Operating System||Windows 98 SE|
|Overall Condition||NEW / MINT|
|Restoration Parts needed||any accessories, like external floppy & CD-ROM drive, port replicator, etc|
|Benchmark Results||SiSoft Sandra 2004, CPU benchmark: N/A|
SiSoft Sandra 2004, Multimedia benchmark: N/A
SiSoft Sandra 99, CPU benchmark:
CPU Dhrystone: 350 MIPS
CPU Whetstone: 150 MFLOPS
SiSoft Sandra 99, Multimedia benchmark:
Integer ALU: 273 it/s
Floating Point FPU: 67 it/s
Norton Utilities 3.1:
Computing Index, relative to IBM/PC: N/A
Norton Utilities 4.5:
Computing Index, relative to IBM/XT: 466.6
Norton Utilies 8.0:
CPU Speed: 615.1