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ZX Spectrum 48K

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Mike Wright
Chris Bourne

THE TEDIOUS business of stocktaking may be at an end with an updated program from OCP.

Stock Manager for the 48K Spectrum is designed to keep records of items held in stock and produce invoices. There are now four versions available. The version reviewed here is for the SPDOS disc system.

Compared with a loading time of around four and a half minutes for the cassette versions the SPDOS version is loaded automatically in just over 10 seconds.

The number of stock items handled by the program has also been increased from 600 items to 6300 on the SPDOS version. At extra cost, versions for an 800K disc, handling up to 17550 items, are available.

Machine coding provides Stock Manager with almost instantaneous retrieval of data from memory. Although only 450 items are held in memory at any one time, details on any item from one to 6300, or even 17550, can be displayed on the screen in under five seconds.

Most printer interfaces for the Spectrum require software to run them. OCP has provided software for 15 interfaces in the program.

When setting up the system the number of the first invoice, the name and address of the company, are entered. Once set up that name cannot be changed but the address can be.

To set up the stock data the amend/change option is selected from the main menu. The stock number, name - up to 25 characters - price excluding VAT, whether VAT is chargeable and the stock level at which items should be recorded, are input.

Unfortunately, a separate option, stock increase, must be used to enter the initial stock levels. A stock decrease option is also given. Those options allow adjustments to be made so that the stock level is accurate.

Both the invoice and price list options print the company name at the top of the paper and its presentation is unusually poor. The items for the invoice are entered by their stock number. An excellent series of error-trapping routines ensures that you can rectify most mistakes.

Unlike some of the other stock control programs available - reviewed in the August '84 issue - the buying-in cost is not used. That is probably the easiest to use and has the advantage of producing invoices.

The SPDOS system, with its faster loading and increased data size, improves an already excellent program. With OCP's backing, SPDOS should become the disc system for business users.

Since this review was written, the SPDOS system has been bought by Kempston and renamed KDOS. It has a tape-disk facility and is compatible with all SPDOS software, including Stock Manager.

Mike Wright

Publisher: OCP 77a Packhorse Road, Gerrards Cross, Buckinghamshire SL9 8PQ
Price: £19.95