Sakhr AX-200
This page was last modified 23:17, 2 July 2021 by Mars2000you. Based on work by Gdx and Rderooy and others.




Sakhr Computers was a Kuwaiti company that was selling MSX computers imported from Japan in Egypt and the Persian Gulf States. These MSX were localized by Al Alamiah (the parent company at that time) and rebranded for the Arabic market.

The AX-200 is the Yamaha YIS-503II adapted for Arabic countries. The not usable mini-slot has been removed. The keyboard is Arabic. The power supply is built-in.

It seems that this computer was sometimes sold with a Yamaha musical module SFG-05 and the indication AX-200M on the underside, similar to the Yamaha YIS-503MII.

After booting without pressing the CTRL key, the computer will be in Arabic mode. In this mode:

  • the combination of the GRAPH key with an alphabetic key will display an MSX-BASIC instruction on the screen
  • the extra STAR key can be used in a similar way to the GRAPH key
  • some combinations can produce accented characters instead of MSX-BASIC instructions
Brand Sakhr (Manufacturer: Yamaha)
Model AX-200
Year 1986
Region Middle East
Launch price
RAM 64kB split between slots 0-0 and 0-2
Media MSX cartridges, side slot modules
Video Yamaha V9938 (MSX2 VDP!)
Audio PSG (integrated into MSX-Engine S3527), (AX-200M version) SFG
Chipset Yamaha S3527
Keyboard layout QWERTY/Arabic
Extras internal RAM & VRAM expandable, 60 pins connector, Arabic BASIC, firmware (Calendar, Graphics, Arabic Writer, English Writer),(AX-200M version) FM module SFG-05
Emulation ROMs dumped but machine not yet emulated correctly (configuration in blueMSX needs to be corrected)


From BASIC, the optional music software can be launched with CALL MUSIC or _ MUSIC.

This machine comes with version 1.0 of Arabic firmware, present on all Sakhr/Al Alamiah computers.

The firmware can be skipped by pressing CTRL key while booting and until you come on the MSX-BASIC screen. By doing that, the machine will be in International mode, the Arabic characters will not be available and also you get only one drive (the A: drive) if you have added external diskdrives.

This firmware adds Arabic characters, new MSX-BASIC instructions (see Arabic BASIC) and 4 applications. You can choose them in the menu with the keys 1 to 4:

  • Calendar - is only in Arabic language and has two options (Monthly Calendar and Daily Calendar), it will be completely different in higher versions of the firmware.
  • Graphics, a graphic tool in screen 2
  • Arabic Writer (Word Processor)
  • English Writer (Word Processor)

These options remain unchanged on all Sakhr/Al Alamiah MSX1 computers.

If you press key 5 when you are in the menu, you will go to MSX-BASIC.

Going back to the menu is possible with CALL MENU or _MENU (don't use it if you are in International mode !).



Sakhr AX-200
Sakhr AX-200 underside
Sakhr AX-200 label
Sakhr AX-200 back
Sakhr AX-200 right side

Arabic Firmware

Arabic firmware version 1.0
Arabic firmware 1.0 menu
Arabic firmware 1.0 Calendar submenu
Arabic firmware 1.0 Calendar 1
Arabic firmware 1.0 Calendar 2
Arabic firmware Graphics
Arabic firmware Arabic Writer
Arabic firmware English Writer

Firmware of SFG-05 module

SFG-05 Polyphonic mode (F2)
SFG-05 Monophonic mode (F1)
SFG-05 Voice menu (F3)
SFG-05 Load/Save menu (F4)


The AX-200 is an MSX1 equipped with a V9938 and a Z80A from Sharp (LH0080A). This computer supports all Yamaha modules. This computer can be easily upgraded internally because RAM and VRAM are each on an individual board.

The 64kB RAM is split in half between the slots 0-0 and 0-2, a configuration that can cause poorly written software to crash. Also, with this layout, the POKE-1,(15-PEEK(-1)\16)*17 trick to workaround buggy software that does not handle subslots properly will not work on this machine.

Slot Map

Slot 0-0 Slot 0-1 Slot 0-2 Slot 0-3 Slot 1 Slot 2 Slot 3
Page C000h~FFFFh Upper
32kB RAM
Slot 1
Slot 2
Page 8000h~BFFFh Arabic ROM
Page 4000h~7FFFh Main-ROM Lower
32kB RAM
Page 0000h~3FFFh
  • By default the Module Slot contains a SFG-05 module from 0000-7FFF on the model AX-200M.