We have been building computers for the last 50 years, which means that enough time has passed that many early models have become so rare that their value has skyrocketed, making them a top choice for modern collectors. Vintage computers come in all shapes and sizes, and are an ode to a time when humanity has only started to come to grips with our new invention without realising how they would eventually change the world. These are the best collectible computers in the world right now.
The Altair 8800 was among the most important early computers ever constructed, and was put together in 1975 at MIT, while being based on Intel’s 8800, a chip that many agreed changed the industry completely. It wasn’t the first computer on the market, but it was the first to really catch on and show how customisable these machines really were. It’s also unique due to the fact that the first operating system it made use of was from a company known then as Micro-Soft, long before the incredible success they would be faced with later on.
The Apple I
Today, Apple is often considered the biggest, more profitable company in the world, but it all started with the Apple 1 that was designed and created by Steve Wozniak. Not only did it spell the beginning of Apple, but it spawned the beginning of the consumer market, where more and more people would have access to computing technology at their homes. First being sold as nothing more than a single circuit board, the Apple 1 quickly evolved into a full system, laying the foundation that would later lead to Apple’s success.
The Apple II
Where the Apple I was often seen as more of a prototype, the Apple II – also designed and put together by Wozniak – would propel Apple forward in the tech industry. Despite its high price, the Apple II was a popular system that saw massive adoption around the USA, and is commonly cited as the most important computer of all time, even if it can’t play video games or the best Indian online slots. Today, the Apple II is not incredibly rare to come across and can usually be found for a few hundred dollars on sites like eBay. It’s low cost means that it’s usually the first vintage computer that most collector’s start with.
The Commodore 64
The Commodore 64 is an iconic system that made big waves across the world during its years on sale, with over 17 million units eventually being sold to the public, making it the highest selling computer system of all time. Many today might remember the Commodore 64 for its large, clunk keyboard, primitive CRT monitor, and its ability to play a number of early computer games. The Commodore is a relatively easy collectible computer to find even to this day, and it’s not uncommon to find one in its original box for a relatively low price.