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Canon Navigator HD40 - All-In-One FAX-Printer-Desktop Publishing PC with touchscreen

EddieDX4

Veteran Member
Joined
Aug 15, 2006
Messages
542
Location
Puget Sound region, WA, USA
A few years ago, I saw something on eBay that sparked my curiosity. I searched and came up with very minimal information, but enough to convince me to buy it, which I did. Luckily, nobody else bid on it (seeing how obscure this was at the time, I wasn't surprised), so I won it for a mere 99 cents plus $49 shipping...

The person who sold it was the original owner. I believe he had purchased it in 1990 or '91. The machine was immaculate, and he included all of the original manuals (a stack, literally), keyboard, mouse, all of the installation software, and even a VHS introductory tape it came with from the factory.

The machine, a Canon Navigator HD40, is an all-in-one system with:

- Built-in thermal printer (IBM/Epson compatible), mainly used for fax printing
- Fax modem (9600bps, I believe)
- Phone handset
- Matching black keyboard and mouse (my HD40 is black, there was also a gray'ish model)
- 2x CPUs; A NEC V30 (for main PC fcuntions/DOS) running at close to 14mhz, and a NEC V50, used to handle the Navigator background tasks (sending/receiving faxes, answer, etc.)
- 640KB RAM for the main system, and 128K used along with the V50 and the Navigator tasks (this loads its own BIOS via a DOS level driver during boot up)
- 9 ~ 10" grayscale EGA (640x350, 16 shades of gray) touchscreen display
- Built-in high-density 1.44MB floppy drive
- 40MB HDD (there was a model sold with dual-floppies, no HDD).

The Navigator portion of the system uses a GUI. I believe this takes advantage of the memory on the secondary board (the one with the V50 CPU and 128KB). This is speculation, so I'm hoping someone out there has more information about this. The machine uses MS-DOS 3.30, and I've been able to play many old DOS games with it. I installed Flight Simulator 4.0 and set it to EGA 16 color mode, and it looks very nice on the grayscale display. I also played Leisure Suit Larry 1, and the PC speaker music played happily.

Canon also included a portable bubble-jet printer, to be used with the Publish-It! DP suite that came bundled with the machine. The owner included this, as well.

I decided to start a thread on the Navigator HD40 system because, even after a few years, I am still having a hard time finding much information. I'm afraid its history and uniqueness will be lost in time.

I will take pictures to add to this thread, in an attempt to catalog and preserve its existance. If anyone else has any details (or corrections to my information), happens to own one, or would like to help track down information, please feel free to join in.

EDIT: Pictures added! They're linked from Photobucket, and I saved them in a fairly small size, so it should have minimal impact on bandwidth... But, if it's too annoying, I'll switch them to links, instead. I also grouped them by relevance. I might replace a few of them (exterior pictures, mostly) with better ones when lighting conditions improve (daylight). Crappy phone camera. :)
 
Last edited:

EddieDX4

Veteran Member
Joined
Aug 15, 2006
Messages
542
Location
Puget Sound region, WA, USA
I just found the following excerpt, from a COMPUTE magazine article dated 11/1990:

http://www.atarimagazines.com/compute/issue123/P034_1_HOME_OFFICE.php

The picture shows the dual-floppy version. The HD40 uses the left bay for the HDD (it has the typical vents and activity LED).

It's also interesting that the article states it uses an 8086 processor. I wonder if early/non-HDD units used an Intel/AMD 8086 instead of the NEC V30, or if they're simply stating that since the V30 is an 8086 class CPU.

The HD40 version was $2,500 back in 1990... By that account, the owner sold it to me for 0.0004 % of what he must've paid for it, originally.
 

EddieDX4

Veteran Member
Joined
Aug 15, 2006
Messages
542
Location
Puget Sound region, WA, USA
Canon Navigator HD40 - Exterior Pictures

Canon Navigator HD40 - Exterior Pictures

HD40 profile and rear view
IMAG0426a.jpg
IMAG0428a.jpg


Handset
IMAG0424a.jpg


HD40 copier/fax sheet feeder
IMAG0427a.jpg


HD40 rear ports
IMAG0430a.jpg


HD40 FCC info (the word "Complies" is misspelled...)
IMAG0435a.jpg


HD40 1.44MB floppy drive
IMAG0436a.jpg


HD40 HDD vent and activity LED
IMAG0437a.jpg
 

EddieDX4

Veteran Member
Joined
Aug 15, 2006
Messages
542
Location
Puget Sound region, WA, USA
Canon Navigator HD40 - Navigator Software

Canon Navigator HD40 - Navigator Software

HD40 boot screen
IMAG0448a.jpg


Navigator Desktop
IMAG0421a.jpg


Navigator Answering machine
IMAG0458a.jpg


Navigator Fax dialer
IMAG0460a.jpg


Navigator Fax viewer
IMAG0455a.jpg
 

EddieDX4

Veteran Member
Joined
Aug 15, 2006
Messages
542
Location
Puget Sound region, WA, USA
Canon Navigator HD40 - Bundled Software and Printing

Canon Navigator HD40 - Bundled Software and Printing

Publish It! sample document 1
IMAG0442a.jpg


Publish It! sample document 2
IMAG0443a.jpg


Deluxe Paint II sample image/File Load dialog
IMAG0465a.jpg


Deluxe Paint II sample image/About dialog
IMAG0461a.jpg


HD40 built-in thermal printing (from Deluxe Paint II)
IMAG0466a.jpg


Print Master Plus
IMAG0449a.jpg


HD40 built-in thermal printing (from Print Master)
IMAG0454a.jpg
 

EddieDX4

Veteran Member
Joined
Aug 15, 2006
Messages
542
Location
Puget Sound region, WA, USA
Canon Navigator HD40 - DOS Games

Canon Navigator HD40 - DOS Games

CM2100 (bundled with HD40)
IMAG0480a.jpg


Simcity
IMAG0467a.jpg

IMAG0468a.jpg

IMAG0469a.jpg


Flight Simulator 4.0 (640x350 16 color mode)
IMAG0470a.jpg


Prince of Persia
IMAG0473a.jpg


Leisure Suit Larry 1 (complete with floating blow-up doll)
IMAG0474a.jpg
 

EddieDX4

Veteran Member
Joined
Aug 15, 2006
Messages
542
Location
Puget Sound region, WA, USA
Absolutely Awesome! I had no idea such a machine existed. Thanks for posting, especially the pix.

No problem! I was amazed by how little information was out there on this system. Obviously, it didn't sell well or you'd see more. It was likely also marketed to the SOHO crowd, and wannabe desktop publishers, which weren't necessarily too tech savvy. Throughout the years, most likely ended up being recycled.

For 1990, the platform used was outdated. They could have used a 286 or a 386sx processor, and squeezed a bit more usefulness out of it (most business applications in 1990 required at least 1MB of memory, and often times protected mode). The EGA screen is amazingly bright and crisp (the phone camera pictures do it no justice, plus it auto adjusted brightness while taking pics). However, a monochome VGA would have gone a long ways supporting more robust applications. These 2 things alone would have allowed it to run Windows 3.x, opening up the doors to even more applications (although Win 3.0 still supported real mode, but 640k is not exactly useful for much more than Write, Paint, File Manager...)

However, where it lacked in power it more than made up for in functionality. This thing came bundled with a fairly good software library (I forgot to mention, it even includes Mavis Beacon typing tutor software!). The Navigator interface is very intuitive, and the use of a secondary processor/memory for the telephony functions guarantees it will not freeze or crash on you, should you be running a DOS app while a phone call or fax comes in.

It's not clearly seen in the pictures, but there's these buttons on the surface of the touchscreen glass labled TEL and FAX. If you touch either, the Navigator system switches to either function, instantly. The machine also has rudumentary power saving features and sleeps the screen and hard drive after a few minutes to conserve energy and prevent burn-in. This was almost non-existant in desktop PCs at the time. Touching the screen plays a gentle, almost soothing "ding dong" sound and wakes the machine up. Incoming calls have the same effect.

The answering machine is pretty good, and allows you to save 2 answer messages (I suppose one for when "out of the office" or such), and even has a wake up call feature! I tested this a few times and it was pretty neat. It will dial out any number configured at the specified time and playback any message you record.

The machine uses a full size 101 key keyboard with an XT/AT type DIN plug (conveniently located on the front of the machine). The included mouse is serial, and the machine has a parallel port (second) for the included bubble jet printer. I like that, even though it was a bit of an oddball AIO unit, it still uses standard peripherals.

Faxing works fairly well. The picture I posted of some random fax that was received/saved on the HDD from the previous owner doesn't really show how good faxes can look on this machine. I've sent and received faxes in fine quality setting and they look superb. It is a bit slower than modern fax machines, but it gets the job done and, unlike most desktop fax machines, has virtually unlimited storage (faxes can be saved to the HDD or floppy).

It is also a copier, but having a modern AIO HP printer, it's pointless to use it for that purpose.

I'm really hoping someone out there has one of these and sees this post. I'm considering writing Canon USA hoping they have any archived documentation (brochures, ads, anything...), and perhaps production/sales stats. It would be great to conserve its history. As it stands, I unofficially declare it an endangered species.
 

tasaint

New Member
Joined
Aug 28, 2010
Messages
5
Do you still have this?

Do you still have this?

This was posted a while back, but do you still have this? We did own one -- it was wayyyy ahead of its time --- but had to sell it back in the day, when it was fairly current when we hit financial troubles.

Any way I could part you from it? It would make a delicious Xmas gift for my dear husband, who has regretted selling it for over 15 years.

Tracy
 

Raven

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Joined
Mar 7, 2009
Messages
2,752
Location
DE, USA..
That's pretty awesome. I've read posts about it here and there but hadn't seen pictures yet. At 14Mhz a V30 could very well handle many games intended for the AT@6Mhz. :D Shame that it's grayscale, but EGA is a rarity and I'm sure a grayscale EGA is even more rare.
 

The-Phoenix

New Member
Joined
Sep 23, 2010
Messages
3
No problem! I was amazed by how little information was out there on this system. ......

I'm really hoping someone out there has one of these and sees this post. I'm considering writing Canon USA hoping they have any archived documentation (brochures, ads, anything...), and perhaps production/sales stats. It would be great to conserve its history. As it stands, I unofficially declare it an endangered species.

EddieDX4,

I had one of these little beauties but it was stolen with the rest of my estate! I picked it up in 1992 from Montgomery Wards and it was on clearance. They had a few of them and the original Retail Price on them was $2,500.00! I got it for $300. They were mostly demos and did not come with the bubble jet printer but everything else was there! I enjoyed using it immensely! I liked the fact of how fast the programs came up seemingly faster than today’s programs do on our faster CPUs and more ram available models! My unit had Q&A on it not Write along with Paint and others I can't recall right at this time but I was extremely pleased with the software bundle!

The fax machine was superb as was the copier. I used it in my electronics service business and put some caller ID software in it and ran my customer data base into it that way as well as keeping notes in Q&A. I miss it! A friend that I had bought one for and sold to him, a teacher, found it especially helpful in producing his classroom tests over at Devry. He has since passed but he willed it to me and the family had it but I have not had contact with them in ten years so I hope when I find them they will drop it off to me! So much for now but I was ecstatic that you had done such a thorough job of documenting this unit and I have downloaded it for my off line referencing in the future! Thanks again for your effort here!

The-Phoenix
9:58 PM CDT
9-22-2010 (About 1 hour until the Autumnal Equinox…Fall!)
 

The-Phoenix

New Member
Joined
Sep 23, 2010
Messages
3
Thanks Raven


I just wanted to say that I checked the Canon site tonight and there is absolutely nothing about the Canon HD 40. I thought at least they would keep the documentation available for those of us that might still be using them! I hope Eddie finds some data when he contacts them and perhaps an alternate data source that they might have available or know about!

The-Phoenix
10:37 PM CDT
9-22-2010
 

The-Phoenix

New Member
Joined
Sep 23, 2010
Messages
3
P.S.: Raven,

I was looking at your collection listed under your message and noted that I had a similar collection and unfortunately evaporated with my Cannon HD 40

I had an old Televideo 8088 CPU with both Dos and CPM and the green screen it came to me from the Pentagon via my brother that worked in Washington DC with the Coast Guard.
I had a Commodore 64 as I recall
I had a PC Brand 486 DX 50
The Canon HD 40
an Apple IIc and a couple of others that I can't recall right now I do believe. The loss is a sad story. The pearls were probably nosed into the muck by the swine and they never realized their worth!

The-Phoenix
10:53 PM CDT
9-22-2010
 

cheryl

New Member
Joined
Jan 7, 2011
Messages
1
I still have mine tucked into the back of my spare room closet. It's like brand new with all of the software and manuals.. Think I'll take it out and dust it off... The pictures sure jogged my memory!

Cheryl
 

prs141

New Member
Joined
Jan 17, 2011
Messages
1
Canon HD 40 in Germany,thanks to all

Canon HD 40 in Germany,thanks to all

Thanks Raven



I just wanted to say that I checked the Canon site tonight and there is absolutely nothing about the Canon HD 40. I thought at least they would keep the documentation available for those of us that might still be using them! I hope Eddie finds some data when he contacts them and perhaps an alternate data source that they might have available or know about!

The-Phoenix
10:37 PM CDT
9-22-2010

peterrs141

Hi, I´M from Germany and I still have the machine standing around, only the
BPrinter BJ 10 e is no longer working.
I even had a german update.
It still is working !


Even a ten years ago or earlier there were no informations on any Canon Site about this product.

IT was really too early for the product in 1991.



I smiled and was thankful to hear about the Navigator after all this years!

Thanks for the pictures.
 

Agent Orange

Veteran Member
Joined
Sep 24, 2008
Messages
6,069
Location
SE MI
HD40 boot screen
IMAG0448a.jpg


Navigator Desktop
IMAG0421a.jpg


Navigator Answering machine
IMAG0458a.jpg


Navigator Fax dialer
IMAG0460a.jpg


Navigator Fax viewer
IMAG0455a.jpg
Does that "APPLICATION TO LIVE IN THE SOUTH" have anything about the number of snags required in your double-knit bell bottomed trousers? Nice find on that machine.
 
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