Help/Backup from Older Users RE: Compact Mac models

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Help/Backup from Older Users RE: Compact Mac models

I've recently had some very intense discussions with what are mainly people too young to have any first-hand knowledge of this.  

To my recollection having both used and sold machines during this timeframe; the first Mac was the "Apple Macintosh M0001" and shipped with 128k of RAM. The next was the M0001W, what we in the day called the "Fat Mac" and it shipped with 512k of RAM but was the same machine but with the memory Apple wanted but was not ready to ship with.  Both of which had a rear case badge with "Macintosh" These machines are what I've always known as "First Generation" compact Macs. The machines with an actual rear case badge of: Macintosh 128K and Macintosh 512k are ones that I've always called "Second Generation" machines and came out later.

I don't own any 128k or 512k badged machines so can anyone verify if they are identical or not to the Macintosh and "Fat" Macintosh? I recall the logic boards not being the same.

 

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Mac 128 vs 512

You're half right about the history:

Steve Jobs was fighting with his CEO, John Sculley, over both the price point of the Mac 128 and the amount of money to be spent on promotion.

Sculley won the point that if they were going to spend as much as Jobs wanted to promote the launch of the Mac, the Mac 128K must be released at $2,495 and not $1,995, as Jobs hoped.

While you may be correct that they would have preferred to launch the Mac at 512K, the then cost of RAM chips prevented them from doing so at even $2,495.

From a marketing point of view, you cannot launch a Mac 128K and tell your prospective customers that you will have a 512K version right arount the corner (September, 1984 after the January, 1984 launch; and the 128K was discontinued in October, 1984).

So, as has been true in most technological launches, new features come later and most often at the same price or sometimes even lower.

I personally waited to purchase the Mac 512K for my parents' business until General Computer Corp released the first internal Hard Drive for the Mac, the Hyperdrive; offered at 10 MB and 20 MB versions.  As it was connected directly to the motherboard, it was much faster than the current external drives that either connected to a Serial Port (as recommended by Apple) or even the somewhat faster floppy drive port.

I do not recall how both of these machines were denominated by the sticker on the back.

Here is some information from Mactracker:

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dunno

You can find images easily from eBay auctions showing both the original "Macintosh" badge, and the smaller type "Macintosh 128K" badge which obviously came later, when the 512K was introduced. I do not know if Apple sold 512K machines with the "Macintosh" badge, but since many were dealer upgraded to 512K, they would still have the old badge (sometimes the "Macintosh 512K" badge was stuck alongside it).

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Macs

Thank you. The information as far as the history of Apple and the RAM costs etc is as I know it to be.  I'm looking for the answer to the Macintosh and "Fat MAC" being so often referred to as the Macintosh 128k and Macintosh 512k is as inaccurate as I remember it to be. I'm hoping for old users such as myself to let me know if my memory is correct or not. 

The problem with many "computer history" websites is the authors rarely do research and just copy and paste information from other sites and call it accurate. 

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Mac 512K with only "Macintosh" badge on rear
I have to agree with robespierre: 

1) The original Mac 128K contained the badge "Macintosh" on its rear;

2) The next model to be released, the Mac 512K all contained the badge "Macintosh 512K" (with the 512K in red) on its rear;

3) There were original Mac 128Ks that were upgraded internally to 512K of RAM and hence they continued to read "Macintosh" on its rear.

 

There were no "official" Mac 512Ks released by Apple that only read "Macintosh" on its badge on its rear, again, except for those Mac 128Ks that were upgraded to 512K RAM (and hence a different motherboard configuration than the officially released 512K motherboard).

Steve Jobs was smart enough to know that the Macintosh 512K must have a designator that distinguished it from its predecessor, the Mac 128K, especially since customers were, at the time of release, paying more for the Mac 512K then those who still chose to purchase the original Mac 128K during the one month (September to October, 1984) that both were being officially sold.

Now, did the first few "official" 512Ks slip out the door mistakenly with a "Macintosh" case? Again, I personally doubt it: Jobs would know to pre-order the new cases in time.

Even if a few "rare" mistakes occurred, unfortunately there is no way at this time to determine if it is a "counterfeit" as anyone could now take a Mac 512K and slip it into a Mac 128K case.

That is my personal recollection as I (an owner and user of first an Apple ][+ and then the //c) excitedly watched over the release of the Mac 128K and then the Mac 512K and finally purchasing a Mac 512k for my parents' business with the inclusion of the then very expensive Hyperdrive internal hard drive.

I believe they purchased the 10MB version and a later release of a 20MB version had a very buggy release history that caused General Computers Corp to utlimately give these 20MB customers the later released 20MB SCSI external version as a swap.

Upon its later release, I networked a stand-alone Mac Plus that would boot from its floppy drive port and yet access (somewhat slowly, but workably) applications and data files from the Mac 512K with its Hyperdrive.

In this way: one employee could update their mailing labels on Overvue, and then later another employee could do the same from their desk.

Even the later released external SCSI hard drives were very expensive at that time.

I added the AppleTalk Option board to their Imagewriter II, so that both Macs could separately print mailing labels, as needed.

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It seems my memory could be

It seems my memory could be off. I remember my school purchsing a Macintosh and all of us in the lab being very interested in it. I recall it having the "Macintosh" badge only. I may have been mistaken. 

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Educational Macs

Apple was very proud of and aggressively sold their computers to schools and other educational institutions.

As a matter of fact, they made a special card to be inserted into the Mac LC (Lowcost Color) so that it would run Apple ][ software (including selling a special 5-1/4" floppy drive to connect to this card), so that schools did not lose their investment in their existing Apple ][ software.

It could have been that Macs sold to schools had different identifiers.

It is also quite possible that they took their remaining 128K inventory, upgraded them to 512K, and sold them to schools as 512K Macs, as well.

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True. I have a new in box LC

True. I have a new in box LC and an Apple II card in my collection. They may have done as you say.

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Mac LC

I was jealous of the lack of color helping my parents with their Mac 512K after my years of Apple ][+ and then my //c (see below). My first Mac was the SE/30 which I used at my office to "talk" to their PCs running MSDOS using Farallon's PhoneNet and my secretary was the envy of all others, as she could print out proportional fonts on her HP Laserjet with a Postscript cartridge also on the PhoneNet.So to get color going I purchased the Mac LC for home but mistakenly purchased the 512x384 Mac LC monitor.  Luckily I found the screen expander extension that made it a virtual 640x480 with the mouse moving the viewable screen around.  I think it was Berkeley Systems.

 

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