The ZX Spectrum which was also known as the ZX81 as it was an update for the ZX 80 which was black and white only and could also be purchased as a kit, but this was just a little before I got into computers.
The Spectrum was pretty much the bottom of the computer market at the time it’s 8 bit processor ran at 3.5 Mhz it loaded games using a standard cassette tape (using commands like, load) and any tape player that would play cassette audio tapes. You could hear the beeps as the game loaded, or should I say sometimes loaded. games tended to be played using the rubber keys, the spectrum did not even have a joy stick port, it had a long peripheral port on the back of the ZX which required an adapter connected to it to use what was then known as a kempston joystick.
The joy sticks used were compatible with Atari and Commodore. There were loads of games available on the Spectrum, it played games just fine, but graphic adventures such as the hobbit were pretty well suited for this machine.
At the time, the Spectrum was just about the most popular home computer at least in the UK, I guess due to the price.
The rubber key spectrums were only available in 16 and 48 k versions, later a redesigned spectrum was available that had 128k and I think was at a time when Amstrad had bought or were buying sinclair that made the spectrum. This version had a tape deck attached.
There was device called a micro drive which took a kind of tiny cartridge, this never really caught on, due to both price and the availability of software, which was still being sold on cassette.
will post some pics of the adapter and the larger 128k spectrum as soon as I have got them out of my loft to take photos.
It was hard to feel any kind of feed back from the soft rubber keys of the spectrum, there was a clicking sound for each key press, which as far as a recall came from the audio of the T.V, so this could be pretty loud.
typing on the rubber keys was not impossible, but not easy and the lack of a proper space bar made it that bit harder.