IMSAI 8080 for sale....

Ethan Dicks ethan.dicks at gmail.com
Tue May 19 11:40:39 CDT 2009


On Tue, May 19, 2009 at 12:16 PM, Seth Morabito <sethm at loomcom.com> wrote:
> On Mon, May 18, 2009 at 1:10 PM, David Griffith <dgriffi at cs.csubak.edu> wrote:
>> Speaking as someone who has sold a few IMSAIs on Ebay, here's my take on it.
>>  $2000 for a known-working IMSAI-8080 with peripherals is a very good deal...
>
> How times change... when I started this computer collecting bug in the
> early 1990s, people would just give away this stuff.  "You actually
> want this junk?! Here, have it!" :-)

There is definitely a geographic component to this - I started
collecting machines in the 1980s.  In all that time, I've been
offered, for free or for sale, *one* plain-faced S-100 box and rescued
a set of 3 S-100 (68K Godbout) boxes from a place I was working.
OTOH, in that same timeframe and in that same place (Central Ohio),
I've been given a number of DEC machines, 12-bit, 16-bit and 32-bit
(and bought a few to fill in the gaps).  If at any time someone had
offered me an IMSAI, I would have taken it, but that never happened.
The only one I've seen up close is the one that the Dayton
Microcomputer Association (DMA) used to show off in their "museum"
display at the the Computerfest.

I know there must have been a bunch of S-100 owners in Columbus over
the years, but the circles I traveled in were mostly Commodore and
Atari when I was younger, then DEC when I was a bit older.  S-100
machines just weren't part of what I saw no matter what decade, so I
never was surprised not to get any offers when they did reach that
low-point in value.

I've learned lots about these machines on this list, but it's nearly
all academic - I just have the one XOR box to play on, and it only has
4 slots (front-to-back, at 90 degrees to what I've seen in most S-100
boxes), so my peripheral options are limited.
(<http://www.vintagecomputer.net/xor/>)  There's still enough for CPU,
memory, disk and serial/parallel I/O, if I wanted to populate it that
way, but I'd be a bit squeezed if I wanted video, too (unless I ran
across a newer card with a combo of features).  Obviously I'd need a
new enough memory card with a high enough density to be useful.  An
ancient card with 21L02s wouldn't get me very far.

-ethan



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