Mac Classic

Nothing dates like technology and the little Mac Classic, once a reasonably high-tech, personal computer, now looks like a quaint antique. The black and white Mac Classic was first introduced on October 15, 1990 and was touted for it's cheaper price-tag (under US$1,000). It was also up to 25% faster than its predecessor, the Macintosh Plus, though the system specifications were similar. Macintosh decided not to upgrade the Classic with a colour monitor, larger screen and higher RAM capacity in order to keep the price down and the software compatible.

The lower price and availability of software made the Mac Classic popular in education, however production only lasted until 1992, as tech heads decided the Classic lacked processing speed, as well as room for expansion. Complaints focused on the fact that it was really just a rehashed version of the Mac Plus. Thus, it was chiefly useful only as a word processor and for spread sheets and data bases. Although it was faster than the aged Plus, it lagged behind the more powerful and higher end, Macintosh Classic II. At the time, PC Week concluded
"The 7.8 MHz speed is adequate for text applications and limited graphics work, but it is not suitable for power users. As such, the Classic is appropriate as a home computer or for limited computing on the road."
Bachman on the Mac Classic screen
The design and function of the Mac Classic was something of an anomaly-at a time when computer design and technology was moving forward, for the Classic, Macintosh decided to return to basics. The Classic was adapted from the 1984 Macintosh 129K design by Jerry Manock and Terry Oriyama.Why? Well the reasoning seems to have been that the Classic was introduced as an answer to criticisms that PCs were so much more affordable than Macs. ...this was kind of the no-frills Mac. The tactic didn't pay off too well though, as user disappointment led to its discontinuation less than two years after initial production and efforts concentrated on the more powerful Mac Classic II.

In these days of 24 inch flat screens, the Mac Classic 9 inch monitor looks tiny and the casing neat and boxy- almost like a toy computer from another era. Now over twenty years old, from an aesthetics perspective, it has a funky, retro appeal and even carries a certain sentimental charm. For some it was their first home computer or the one they used at school....its collectible.

The Mac Classic