Top 6 Vintage Computer Mainframes

Like if this guide is helpful
Mainframe computers are systems that the government or large corporations use in the operation of their business. They are able to process vast amounts of data and manage critical applications. Vintage mainframe computers are high-end supercomputers from the 1960s onwards. Buyers should be aware that these bulky, heavy machines are most likely to be used and may not be in perfect working order. A collector may only need to confirm a vintage computer mainframe's authenticity, but a buyer who intends to use the machine should check that it functions correctly or be prepared to restore it.
1 Apple Vintage Computer Mainframes

Apple may not be the first name that buyers consider when purchasing vintage mainframes. Vintage Apple models, such as the Apple I and the Apple II, are partly responsible for the growth of personal computers in the home. The Apple III computer, launched in 1980, was business-oriented. The initial version had stability problems and had to be relaunched later in the same year. The machine was not successful, so it did not stay on the market for long.


2 Casio Vintage Computers
Casio Vintage Computers

The Casio brand is better known for its G-Shock watch and line of scientific calculators than for its computers. However, its PB-1000 handheld computer was revolutionary when it was launched in 1987. This Casio vintage handheld computer has a touch screen display with 16 built-in keys and 8 KB of RAM. Many consider the PB-100 to be a super-calculator rather than a computer, but it was an incredible machine for its time, with 32 KB memory expansion capabilities and a customised version of BASIC.


3 Commodore Vintage Mainframes

The oldest Commodore computer is the Personal Electronic Transactor (PET). However, the most popular Commodore vintage computer is the Commodore 64, launched in 1982. It was advanced for its time due to its 6581 sound interface card. Its programmable sound generating chip consists of three sound channels. Each channel has an ADSR envelope generator, filtering possibilities, and ring modulation. The Commodore B128-80 is considered a Commodore mainframe because it was a powerful machine of its time, made to serve business operations.


4 IBM Vintage Computers

IBM has been producing mainframe computers from as early as the 1950s and was the most popular brand throughout the 1960s and 1970s. The most famous IBM vintage mainframe computer is the System 360 (S360). It was launched in 1964 as an all-round computer with complete coverage for all applications, including decimal arithmetic and byte addressing, or floating-point calculations. The IBM S360 pioneered a number of standard industry techniques that were in use long after the system's release.


5 DEC Computer Mainframes

Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC) was a large American computer company that existed from the 1960s to the 1990s. Its first set of DEC computers was the PDP range that included the PDP-1, PDP-8, PDP-10, and PDP 11. It introduced the VAX system in 1978, which was a worthy competitor to the larger mainframes produced by other brands. In the early 1980s, DEC launched the Rainbow 100 business PC, which made it the biggest rival to IBM. However, the name "Rainbow" is a misnomer in many cases. The Rainbow 100 is completely text only and monochrome unless users purchase the add-on optional colour and graphics provided by the NEC-7220 graphics chip.


6 Tandy Vintage Computers

Tandy began as a leather company in the United States and was acquired by RadioShack in 1963. While computer companies, such as Apple and Commodore, were revolutionising the personal computer market, Tandy was able to make its contribution with the TRS-80 line of colour computers. Eventually, Tandy used IBM's PC architecture, but sold its computers more cheaply, with even better graphics and sound. The TRS-80 and the early Model 100 Tandy vintage computer are valuable additions to any collection.


How to Buy Vintage Computer Mainframes

eBay makes shopping for vintage computer mainframes easy. Simply search from any eBay page and then browse through the results. If you already know the specific vintage computer mainframe that you need, you can enter its name and model number to get a more refined set of results. For instance, you could search for " IBM vintage mainframes". Before buying a vintage computer mainframe, ask the seller as many questions as necessary to confirm the authenticity of the machine before completing the transaction. Vintage computer mainframes make excellent collectors items for technology enthusiasts and historians.
Have something to share, create your own guide... Write a guide
Explore more guides