Vintage computers aren't your typical collector's item, but some of the earliest PCs from the 1970s and 80s are already starting to command big bucks in working condition. This is particularly true of models that preceded the volume production IBM PCs and Apple Macintoshes, such as MITs Altair 8800 (1975) and 680 (1976) kit computers, Apple IIs with low serial numbers (1977), early Commodore 64’s (1982) and Apple Lisas (1983).

Aside from the above, there are plenty of vintage computer names to collect, including Compaq, Kaypro, Amiga, Sinclair, Franklin, Xerox, Digital Equipment, Atari, Heathkit, Texas Instruments, and Silicon Graphics. With vintage computers, displayability is key, so make sure you get all the accessories, software, manuals and power cords you'll need to run your vintage machine.

Also, keep your eye out for vintage computer-related paper items and ephemera. Some early magazines, like the famous January 1975 Popular Electronics issue featuring the Altair 8800, can fetch over $100.


Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Chips Etc.

Chips Etc.

Computers are upgraded more frequently than fashion, which means there’s a lot of obsolete hardware out there for… [read review or visit site]

Computer History Museum

Computer History Museum

Collect computers? This California-based museum's website has several excellent online exhibits, including an exten… [read review or visit site]

Old-Computers.com

Old-Computers.com

This gallery of over 900 vintage computers is notable for its comprehensiveness. Each model includes a text descrip… [read review or visit site]

Classic Computer Magazine Archive

Classic Computer Magazine Archive

If you collect early computers, you'll enjoy this site. Assembled by Kevin Savetz and a group of volunteers, with p… [read review or visit site]

IBM Archives

IBM Archives

An extensive collection of computer-related artifacts and reference information, plus a detailed history of IBM. St… [read review or visit site]

Oldcomputers.net

Oldcomputers.net

Steven Stengel's showcase of old computers from the 1970's and 80's. Also includes a reference section on old compu… [read review or visit site]

Classic-Computers.org.nz

Classic-Computers.org.nz

Terry Stewart's deep dive on vintage computers features an exhaustive tribute to the Dick Smith System 80, a TRS-80… [read review or visit site]

Early Office Museum

Early Office Museum

This site showcases pre-1920 office antiques, including paperweights, writing ink, paper fasteners, seal pressers, … [read review or visit site]

The Vintage Knob

The Vintage Knob

The Vintage Knob is an extensive resource on all types of audio electronics organized by manufacturer, from Aiwa to… [read review or visit site]



Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Lot 5 Vintage Apple Computers Lisa Iigs Woz Macintosh M0001 M0001a Iie Sc20 2e Commodore 264 Prototype Computer Never Released To The Public, Own History!Apple Iie Desktop Computer W/ 5.25 Floppy Drive Manuals Oregon Trail Disk TestedVintage Apple Iii 3 Early Computer A3s1256 256k Ram Very Clean Turn On As Is Lot 3 Commodore 64s, 2 Vic 20s, 3 1514 Floppy Drives, 1 1581 Floppy DriveApple Iic Plus Vintage ComputerRare Vintage Commodore 128d (c128dcr) Personal Computer W/ Genuine Keyboard AustBell & Howell Black Apple Ii Plus "darth Vader" Vintage ComputerVintage Apple Macintosh Mac Plus 1mb Desktop Computer M0001aAmiga 1000 Vintage ComputerTimex Sinclair Zx80 Vintage ComputerMits Altair 8800 8" Inch Floppy Drive - Style A - Vintage Computer Disk DriveAmiga 500 + External Floppy + A520 + Psu - WorkingCommodore Amiga 1000 Signed By Rj Mical And Carl Sassenrath Rare Collectors ItemApple Lisa Model A6s0200Vintage Tandy 200 Portable Laptop Computer With Case And ManualsZx Spectrum 128k +2 Computer Bundle In Very Good Condition Usa/canadaVintage Apple 2 Plus Computer Model # A2s1048 Ii+Commodore Amiga 600 Computer With 60 Mb Hard Drive *needs Repair*Apple Macintosh Quadra 840av Original Manual Box For Repair/parts Nice CosmeticsMits Altair 8800 8" Inch Floppy Drive - Style B - Vintage Computer Disk DriveCommodore Amiga 2000 Computer Rev 4.2 Motherboard With 1.2 Rom With MoreVintage Apple Macintosh Plus 1mb M0001a Desktop Computer Bundle Printer DiskAtari Falcon 030 Vintage ComputerTrs-80 Model 1 Tandy Radio Shack Complete SystemVintage Apple Ii Plus Computer. 2 - Disk Ii Drives, Cdrom & MoreRadio Shack Trs-80 Model 4 With Printer, Software, Games And Surge ProtectorSynertek Sym-1 Complete Microcomputer System Trainer Board Computer 1978Monitor 1702 For Commodore 64Commodore 64 Home Computer (tested And Working)Apple Iigs Floppy Drive & Image Writer Printer A2s6000Amiga 1200 8mb Ram Expansion, Fpu, And RtcApple Power Mac G4 Cube 450mhz 1m Cache (cpu Only - No Power Supply) ComputerCompletely Restored And Working Imsai 8080 Computer And 8 Inch Cp/m Disk DrivesMpc- Music Percussion Computer "vintage Early 1980's"Vintage Apple Ii Computer: Complete System - Pristine ConditionAtari 1200xl Home Computer S/n 83s Da 001319 073 (console Only) - UntestedTimex Sinclair 1500 Vintage ComputerApple Iic 2c A2s4000 Rom255 In Good Condition No Yellowing Includes Power SupplyVintage Atari 520st Computer System Sc1224 Monitor Sh204 Hdd Sf354 Floppy DriveVintage Apple Ii+ Ii Plus ComputerVintage Apple Iigs Computer 3.5" Floppy Lot- Games/utilities CaseVintage Atari Portfolio Hpc-004 16 Bit Personal ComputerVintage Commodore 64 C64 Computer Complete In Box / Manuals, Cables, Cover Vintage Commodore Sx-64 Portable Executive Computer Working ConditionCasio Vintage Fx-850p Handheld Personal Computer Scientific Library 116Commodore 64 Keyboard W/joystick, Video Cable, Games. Last Used/working In 2002Atari 130xe Vintage ComputerCommodore 64 Computer 64c SystemAtari 800xl Home Computer Console With Power Supply And Viceo Cable Vintage Apple Iigs Rom 3 1mb Ram - Bare Cpu - Tested And Working - A2s6000Radio Shack Trs-80 Model IiiVintage Intel Mcs-85 System Design 8085 Single Board Computer - + Books !Vintage Apple Macintosh 512k Model M0001e With ExtrasCommodore 64 Computer SystemTi-99/4a Ti99 Ti Expansion Box Php1200 Flex Cable InterfaceVintage Macintosh Portable: 1989 Portable ComputerVintage Apple Ii Plus A2s1048 ComputerApple Ii 1978 Revision 2 MotherboardCommodore 64 And Single Floppy Disk Drive 1541. Manual And 50 Floppy Discs

Recent News: Computers

Source: Google News

Bits | Video Feature: The Apple Collector
New York Times (blog), June 8th

But vintage computers are his real obsession, namely ones made by Apple. He has created an exhibit on the history of the company in Roswell, Ga., where he is the chief executive of a corporate real estate firm. By his own estimate, he has invested more...Read more

An Apple Aficionado, With a Million-Dollar Vintage Computer Collection
New York Times, June 8th

But vintage computers are his real obsession, namely ones made by Apple. He has created an exhibit on the history of the company in Roswell, Ga., where he is the chief executive of a corporate real estate firm. By his own estimate, he has invested more...Read more

Rare Apple 1 vintage computer donated to Northern California recycling center
KABC-TV, June 1st

Rare Apple 1 vintage computer donated to Northern California recycling center. Rare Apple computer worth $200K left at Milpitas recycling center. A recycling company in Milpitas is looking for a woman who cleaned out her garage and dropped off an Apple...Read more

Vintage Computers At Maker Faire
Hackaday, May 17th

The vintage-computer booth also had a few interesting retrocomputers including a Commodore 128D, the Apple made, Bell & Howell branded Apple II, and an Amiga 2000. Right next door was the Computer History Museum, who brought a very kid-friendly ...Read more

Vintage Computer Festival Europa 16.0: The Hackaday Report
Hackaday, May 2nd

The theme for this year's festival is “The East is Red Colorful” and that means vintage computers from the other side of the Iron Curtain. Here in (West) Germany, that naturally means a good representation of computers from the former Democratic...Read more

Ga. Festival Features Vintage Computers, Punch Cards And All
WABE 90.1 FM, April 30th

It's part of an exhibit at the third annual Southeast Vintage Computer Festival. The PDP-8 turns 50 this year. PDP stands for Programmable Data Processor – and the PDP-8 was the first commercially successful minicomputer. It looks nothing like your...Read more

Meet George—1958's one-of-a-kind analog computer—at Vintage Computer ...
Ars Technica, April 18th

The Vintage Computer Festival East is a once-a-year museum exhibit in Wall, New Jersey that shows off vacuum tube and transistor computers from the 60s, 70s, and 80s. While our own John Timmer visited the museum several years ago, we were long ...Read more

These Vintage Computer Ads Show We've Come a Long, Long Way
TIME, August 13th

These Vintage Computer Ads Show We've Come a Long, Long Way. TIME Photo. Aug. 13, 2014. SHARE. These ads from the 70's and 80's remind us of a time when computers came in briefcases and cost "Under $18,000!" These Vintage Computer Ads ...Read more