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They may have found (most of) the Apple 1 Prototype Board

VERAULT

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That's kind of what I was relying on when I looked at it closely in my video. There's another set of resistors up top that are slightly misaligned and seem to be similarly misaligned in the photo.

I wonder - and I am *not* suggesting this was done, but suppose you had *a* prototype, but wanted to make it *the* prototype. Could you move the resistors undetected? The rework would be obvious, right?
They have master forgers for EVERYTHING
 

Gary C

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That's kind of what I was relying on when I looked at it closely in my video. There's another set of resistors up top that are slightly misaligned and seem to be similarly misaligned in the photo.

I wonder - and I am *not* suggesting this was done, but suppose you had *a* prototype, but wanted to make it *the* prototype. Could you move the resistors undetected? The rework would be obvious, right?
I think the brightness of the solder would reveal any attempt to reposition these three resistors. The ones up by the keyboard socket are harder to see, but the three lower down really (to me) seem like a fingerprint (especially the gold tolerance bands relative positions)
 

Gary C

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It does seem a genuine board, its unlikely to be one sold to the Byteshop surely because all of them have the 6502 links ? So this one looks as if it was when the 6501 was to be used ? It also has the components needed for the 6501.

Its not beyond possibility that someone has, err, adjusted things and claimed things to make it even more 'desirable' but hey, maybe I take things too much at face value (which in this case is MUCH less than $500k !!!, the mind boggles, its interesting yes, but bloody hell !)
 

VERAULT

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Im not saying its cant be genuine. It very well could be. Im saying putting so heavy handed, all thier eggs in one basket that "IT IS THE PROTOTYPE.. THE ONE AND ONLY!. THE ONE IN THE PHOTO. WOZ SOLDERED IT!" Pretty much sticks out like the stinker it is. That part I am more than just a little sceptical of.
 
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Gary C

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You may well be right. I think it was one of a pre-production run. God knows who soldered it, who cares. Its an interesting item with history and after just building one, its more interesting to see the differences between this with a 6501 and the mods made to make it take the 6502.

Looks as if it was stacked with weight on the heatsink and capacitors which snapped of part of it. Odd it wasn't then thrown away, though it might have sat in one place for years and years before getting disturbed and found, which then begs the question, will the missing bit suddenly be 'discovered' once the sale is completed.
 

VERAULT

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By the way on a completely related note. If the Apple-1 is the highest cost vintage computer.. What is number 2? I have been thinking about this alot lately. And I have to assume #2 is leagues less in value than the #1 spot.
 

VERAULT

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No a twiggy LISA will beat that in sales. I know that to be true as I own only 2 PET's and they are both original chiclet models.





Edit: unless the cost of 6550 chiclet pets have suddenly gone up in price and I was unaware..... I dunno. What are the 1977 models selling for?
 

Al Kossow

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By the way on a completely related note. If the Apple-1 is the highest cost vintage computer.. What is number 2?

A Xerox Alto, if you are talking about a personal computer.
Twiggy Lisas are third, with prices in the low five-figures.

I can't think of anything outside of the insane home video game collector space where things are
six figures or up.
 
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Al Kossow

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A Xerox Alto, if you are talking about a personal computer.
Twiggy Lisas are third, with prices in the low five-figures.

MIT CADRs are probably up there as well. I don't know of any having sold recently though.
Just a CADR keyboard is probably in the top 10.
A Twiggy Mac would may bump the Lisa out of third place.
Twiggy Mac drives are impossible to find (they aren't the same as a Lisa Twiggy)
 

falter

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Looking at the Byte Shop photograph, it seems pretty obvious that it is the same board given that resistors just above the 6501 show the same offset in banding. Given that they are the same value it seems very unlikely that they would just happen to have been soldered onto the board with the same offset to each other.

touch the solder with a cotton bud soaked in white vinegar... no more shine.

But I have to assume the KENBAK-1's sold in Canada a couple years ago out did those.

This is all I can find after a quick search: https://newatlas.com/kenback-1-worlds-first-personal-computer-auction/40277/
I think the top 3 are all Apples.. the Apple 1, the Twiggy Lisa,
 

falter

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As far as 'personal computers' go (here we go again :) ), I believe it's like so:

Apple-1 - $300-900k
Apple Lisa - $50-55k
Kenbak 1 - $36k
Twiggy Mac Prototype - $33k
Apple II Ventless - $24k
C64DX Prototype - $15-22k
Mark-8 - $12-$15k

Pretty steep drop off from there. There have been the occasional corporate-aimed machines that have been in between there (Alto, DEC etc) but they come up too infrequently and are kind of special birds, I'm not sure the prices are consistent.
 

Eudimorphodon

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Twiggy Mac Prototype - $33k

Looking at that list I’m surprised the Twiggy Mac didn’t do better. Frankly if you’re a Jobs fanboy that thing should totally trump an Apple I, it’s both rarer and, well, indisputably Jobs’ baby...

But that is stupidly assuming that there’s any intrinsic or rational way to value any of this stuff. The Apple-1 is the special outlier it is because they as an asset class have successfully, despite any real world justification with regards to their actual historical significance, completely made the jump from the “Antiquities“ market to “fine art” pricing unlike any of the others. They’re not computers, they’re Andy Warhols. According to a list on the Apple 1 registry the last one sold is supposedly living in some oil oligarch’s vault in the UAE, waiting for the day it can either be resold for more, ”sold” to launder some money, or donated for a tax writeoff or to grease some publicity wheels.

Gotta be straight, there’s a lot of things about the Apple-1 that specifically make them great for this promotion. A: they’re rare, but not *too* rare, B: they have great PR/celebrity cred, the Apple founder connection makes them positively blue chip, and C: there’s enough difference between each unit in terms of provenance and condition for the auctioneers to spin a unique story for each sale, but ultimately they’re a mostly interchangeable commodity, like an art print.

I can talk ‘till doomsday about how the Apple-1 doesn’t “deserve” this much attention, because frankly it doesn’t, but it doesn’t matter. Investors gotta invest, and regularly make up entire categories of completely bogus items to pretend are valuable. And that is completely totally 100% what is going on here. So far as I’m concerned almost every single thing Andy Warhol or Jeff Koons crapped out over their entire careers hardly deserves to be wrapping paper or a doorstop, but I’m not part of the club that gets to pretend they’re worth $58 million a pop.(*)

(*This is why tech bros love crypto; it’s *entirely* a land of make believe in which as long as everyone believes that turning fossil fuels into waste heat doing useless math problems in a third world datacenter to create “scarcity” out of nothing is a useful thing to do they totally have billions of dollars. In any sane universe does this make sense? Obviously not, but whatever, humans sure do love their stories.)
 
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VERAULT

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(*This is why tech bros love crypto; it’s *entirely* a land of make believe

Hah! reminds me of a short conversation I had with a former co-worker (non-tech guy and Apple Fanboy) who had just told me he had invested many thousands into Crypto currency...
My reaction was quite succinct: "What are you F$&king stupid?!"
 
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falter

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I always saw crypto as a pyramid scheme. But I do wish I had invested at the beginning and cashed out before it went upside down. Lots of people have made legit money from it with good timing.
 
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