What Is The Difference Between 8085 and 8086 Microprocessor?

What is the difference between 8085 and 8086 microprocessor? The 8086 is more advanced and suited for complex applications, while the 8085 is simpler and often used in less demanding contexts.

The 8085 and 8086 are both microprocessors, but they differ in terms of architecture, instruction set, data bus width, and other key specifications.

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Difference between 8085 and 8086 Microprocessor (With Table)

Basic Terms 8085 8086
Architecture 8-bit architecture 16-bit architecture
Instruction Set Simpler and limited More extensive and complex
Registers Limited set (e.g., Accumulator, B, C, D, E, H, L) Larger set (e.g., AX, BX, CX, DX, SI, DI, SP, BP)
Address Bus 16-bit address bus 20-bit address bus
Data Bus Width 8-bit data bus 16-bit data bus
Memory Addressing Can address up to 64 KB of memory Can address up to 1 MB of memory
Clock Speed Typically operates at lower clock speeds Can operate at higher clock speeds
Use Cases Used in simpler applications and education Suited for more complex applications
Instruction Execution Time Instructions may take more clock cycles Generally executes instructions more quickly
General Purpose Registers Few general-purpose registers More general-purpose registers for diverse tasks
Applications Commonly used in less demanding contexts Suited for applications requiring higher processing

What Is 8085 Microprocessor?

The 8085 microprocessor, introduced by Intel in 1976, is an 8-bit microprocessor that played a pivotal role in the early development of microprocessor-based systems. Its architecture processes data in 8-bit chunks, featuring registers such as the Accumulator (A), and six general-purpose registers labeled B, C, D, E, H, and L. Special-purpose registers include the program counter (PC), stack pointer (SP), and flags register.

Operating at clock speeds ranging from 3 to 6 MHz, the 8085 utilizes a 16-bit address bus, enabling it to address up to 64 KB of memory. Its instruction set, while simpler than later microprocessors, encompasses a variety of data manipulation, arithmetic, and control transfer instructions. With an 8-bit data bus, the 8085 facilitates the transfer of 8 bits of data at a time.

Supporting various peripheral devices and interfaces, the 8085 found applications in early personal computers, industrial control systems, and educational environments. While it is no longer widely used in contemporary computing, the 8085 holds historical significance as a pioneer in the microprocessor revolution, contributing to the foundation of modern computing technology.

What Is 8086 Microprocessor?

The 8086 microprocessor, introduced by Intel in 1978, represents a significant advancement in computing technology. Operating on a 16-bit architecture, it processes data in 16-bit chunks, providing enhanced capabilities over its 8-bit predecessor, the 8085. General-purpose registers, including AX, BX, CX, and DX, along with segment registers (CS, DS, ES, SS), contribute to the microprocessor’s versatility in handling various data types and operations.

With clock speeds ranging from 5 to 10 MHz, the 8086 utilizes a 20-bit address bus, allowing it to address up to 1 MB of memory. This expanded address space supports more extensive memory configurations. The instruction set is more extensive and complex than that of the 8085, accommodating a variety of data manipulation, arithmetic operations, and control transfers for diverse applications.

Featuring a 16-bit data bus, the 8086 enables the simultaneous transfer of 16 bits of data, enhancing data transfer rates. It supports various peripheral devices and interfaces, making it adaptable for interfacing with external devices and components. Applications of the 8086 include early personal computers, industrial control systems, and various embedded systems.

The 8086’s architectural design became the foundation for the x86 family of processors, which continues to dominate the computing landscape. Despite being succeeded by more advanced processors, the contributions of the 8086 remain integral to the history and development of modern computing. Its legacy endures as a pivotal force in the evolution of computer architectures.

Main Difference between 8085 and 8086 Microprocessor


  • 8085: 8-bit architecture
  • 8086: 16-bit architecture


  • 8085: Limited general-purpose registers
  • 8086: More general-purpose registers (AX, BX, CX, DX)

Address Bus

  • 8085: 16-bit address bus (64 KB memory addressing)
  • 8086: 20-bit address bus (1 MB memory addressing)

Data Bus Width

  • 8085: 8-bit data bus
  • 8086: 16-bit data bus

Clock Speed

  • 8085: Typically lower clock speeds
  • 8086: Higher clock speeds

Instruction Set

  • 8085: Simpler and limited
  • 8086: More extensive and complex


  • 8085: Used in simpler applications
  • 8086: Suited for more complex applications


  • 8085: Found in historical applications
  • 8086: Forms the foundation of x86 architecture, still prevalent in modern computing

Data Transfer

  • 8085: 8-bit data transfer
  • 8086: 16-bit data transfer

Peripheral Support

  • 8085: Supports various peripherals
  • 8086: Adaptable for interfacing with a broader range of peripherals.

Similarities between 8085 and 8086 Microprocessor

  1. Both manufactured by Intel.
  2. Both are microprocessors.
  3. Both introduced in the 1970s (8085 in 1976, 8086 in 1978).
  4. Both have a data bus for data transfer (8085: 8-bit, 8086: 16-bit).
  5. Both have memory addressing capabilities (8085: 64 KB, 8086: 1 MB).
  6. Both operate at varying clock speeds (8085: 3-6 MHz, 8086: 5-10 MHz).
  7. Both support peripherals and can interface with external devices.
  8. Both played significant roles in early computing and microprocessor development.


The distinctions between the 8085 and 8086 microprocessors primarily lie in their architectures, data bus widths, addressing capabilities, and clock speeds. The 8085, with its 8-bit architecture, served simpler applications, while the 8086, boasting a 16-bit architecture, was designed for more complex tasks. The differences in addressing, data transfer widths, and clock speeds further underscore their varied capabilities.

Both microprocessors share a common historical significance as integral components in the evolution of computing, each contributing uniquely to the development of microprocessor technology.

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