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Which defunct/disappeared computer manufacturer would you bring back?

Securix

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Sun? Sun is still around, which system are you referring to returning? Lenovo makes me nervous these days. I don't have any experience with them first hand but they've started to become the cheapest laptop during sales at local stores.

Sun is gone. Parts of it live on as Oracle, and their former corporate campus is now inhabited by Facebook.
 

Chuck(G)

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This is going to cause some contention, but bear with me.

The problem I have with much of this is that very few of these companies actually built computers--they assembled components, but the CPU and peripheral chips were someone else's. So they're not really computer manufacturers in that sense, but rather computer assemblers.

Even Apple uses Intel CPUs now. Commodore, to their credit, did purchase MOS Technology, so they could be described as a computer manufacturer. The old big-iron houses built or contracted everything to their own specifications. But I can't imagine PCs Limited, for example, constructing their own custom CPU.
 

commodorejohn

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I'll give you that for the PC manufacturers people are listing, but for Classic Apple (which is the one people seem to be wanting back, and I can't blame 'em,) as well as most '80s "home computer" manufacturers, they were at least assembling standard parts into something distinctly their own - the Mac and Amiga might share a CPU, f'rexample, but they're two entirely different beasts.
 

RWallmow

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...Lenovo makes me nervous these days. I don't have any experience with them first hand but they've started to become the cheapest laptop during sales at local stores.

Their retail is garbage (but what retail computers aren't), get the nice business class stuff, its rock solid, and has a great 3 year warranty, however all that comes at a price, cheapest X or T series we ever buy are north of $1000 USD, but in my opinion you cant find much better.
 

Four-Phase

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This is going to cause some contention, but bear with me.

The problem I have with much of this is that very few of these companies actually built computers--they assembled components, but the CPU and peripheral chips were someone else's. So they're not really computer manufacturers in that sense, but rather computer assemblers.

Even Apple uses Intel CPUs now. Commodore, to their credit, did purchase MOS Technology, so they could be described as a computer manufacturer. The old big-iron houses built or contracted everything to their own specifications. But I can't imagine PCs Limited, for example, constructing their own custom CPU.

For me it will of course be Four-phase systems. Chuck, agreed with you,most are just assemblers not designers. As in the case of four-phase, it design and assemble the CPU them self!!! If you google futher, you will find that they are the designers and Creators of the "4004" (world's first microprocessor) ..

Chuck, correct me if I am wrong!! Apple( vintage model) NEVER EVER used Intel CPU...in their systems...
The first (1979)Apple I had had a RCA6502 inside...then it was Motorola(6800) CPU inside most of it's vintage...I am not sure about today (what CPU apples uses)...I am so obsolete now...need some advice here...anyone??
 

WMH

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For me it will of course be Four-phase systems. Chuck, agreed with you,most are just assemblers not designers. As in the case of four-phase, it design and assemble the CPU them self!!! If you google futher, you will find that they are the designers and Creators of the "4004" (world's first microprocessor) ..

Chuck, correct me if I am wrong!! Apple( vintage model) NEVER EVER used Intel CPU...in their systems...
The first (1979)Apple I had had a RCA6502 inside...then it was Motorola(6800) CPU inside most of it's vintage...I am not sure about today (what CPU apples uses)...I am so obsolete now...need some advice here...anyone??

You are correct with Apple's vintage machines; they started out using the MOS 6502 and later moved on to the Motorola 68000. As of now, Apple uses Intel Core processors (i3, i5, and i7.)

Wikipedia says that Four-Phase's CPU design was 24-bit, which would not make it the 4004. You probably know more than I do, though.
 

RWallmow

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...Chuck, correct me if I am wrong!! Apple( vintage model) NEVER EVER used Intel CPU...in their systems...
The first (1979)Apple I had had a RCA6502 inside...then it was Motorola(6800) CPU inside most of it's vintage...I am not sure about today (what CPU apples uses)...I am so obsolete now...need some advice here...anyone??

Apple started with the MOS 6502 (I don't think RCA ever made the 6502) in the Apple I and II lines, and then with the Lisa and Macintosh they moved to the Motorola 68000. Though the MOS 6502 was VERY similar to the Motorola 6800, it was designed by multiple former Motorola engineers, there was lots of patent litigation surrounding that.
 

vwestlife

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Commodore, to their credit, did purchase MOS Technology, so they could be described as a computer manufacturer.

From what I heard, Jack Tramiel did the dirty trick of ordering a bunch of chips from MOS and not paying them, forcing MOS to go broke, then Commodore bought out the company.

But it was a scheme that worked, because the Japanese kept taking over the marketplace on everything Commodore Business Machines had sold before computers: typewriters, mechanical adding machines, electronic calculators, and even electronic wristwatches. Tramiel claimed the success of the VIC-20 and C64 kept the Japanese from taking over the U.S. home computer marketplace as well, and he's probably right.
 

njroadfan

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But it was a scheme that worked, because the Japanese kept taking over the marketplace on everything Commodore Business Machines had sold before computers: typewriters, mechanical adding machines, electronic calculators, and even electronic wristwatches. Tramiel claimed the success of the VIC-20 and C64 kept the Japanese from taking over the U.S. home computer marketplace as well, and he's probably right.

Apple, TI, and Atari were also in the marketplace. The Japanese found success in the video game market instead.
 

RWallmow

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Apple, TI, and Atari were also in the marketplace. The Japanese found success in the video game market instead.
Yeah, I would have to say Apple was a huge force in the 80's home computer market, Apple and Commodore definitely fended off the Japanese in that sector. If you bought a home computer in the USA in the 80's it was probably one of the two, lol.
 

DOS lives on!!

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And that continued into the early 90s. I have several computers with "Made in the USA" stickers; a notable one is Dell. Unfortunately that practice didn't last long after that. :)
 

Chuck(G)

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And that continued into the early 90s. I have several computers with "Made in the USA" stickers; a notable one is Dell. Unfortunately that practice didn't last long after that. :)

Until very recently, SuperMicro displayed the "Made in USA" sticker on their motherboards. I have a dual P3 board with that sticker. I'm not certain, but it may even be displayed in the BIOS splash screen.
 

ChrisCwmbran

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Yeah, I would have to say Apple was a huge force in the 80's home computer market, Apple and Commodore definitely fended off the Japanese in that sector. If you bought a home computer in the USA in the 80's it was probably one of the two, lol.

Interestingly here in the UK, Commodore were a strong force in the 1980s home computer battle, however Apple were a hugely rare choice.
 

RWallmow

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Interestingly here in the UK, Commodore were a strong force in the 1980s home computer battle, however Apple were a hugely rare choice.

A huge reason for Apples success in the USA was their HEAVY sales to schools, when 99% of schools have computer labs full of Apple IIs, a lot of people are going to to out and buy them for home.
 

ChrisCwmbran

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A huge reason for Apples success in the USA was their HEAVY sales to schools, when 99% of schools have computer labs full of Apple IIs, a lot of people are going to to out and buy them for home.

Agreed. Oddly over here lots of people including myself would have liked to have an Acorn BBC Model B as used in most schools, but the price was very high and if I recall correctly there were even waiting lists. The home computer market was split between Sinclair, Commodore, and a number of smaller players such as Camputers, Memotech, Dragon etc.
 

vwestlife

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A huge reason for Apples success in the USA was their HEAVY sales to schools, when 99% of schools have computer labs full of Apple IIs, a lot of people are going to to out and buy them for home.

The Commodore PET was also quite popular with schools for a while, and Radio Shack was also very successful in some regions (especially Tandy Corp.'s home state of Texas). Schools liked the rugged all-in-one design of the TRS-80 Model III and 4, which eliminated concerns about theft.

That was a large part of why the C64 was almost never used in schools -- it was too easy for a kid to sneak one in their backpack and walk away with it! Commodore tried to solve that problem by putting the C64 in an all-in-one PET case with a monochrome green CRT and calling it the "Educator 64", but it never took off; by that time, Apple and Radio Shack had the education market cornered.

And it was also Bell & Howell selling repainted black Apple II+'s which helped Apple to get an early foothold in schools, since they could take advantage of existing Bell & Howell sales and service contracts and put it on the budget as "A/V equipment".
 

tezza

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Interestingly here in the UK, Commodore were a strong force in the 1980s home computer battle, however Apple were a hugely rare choice.

Yes, here in New Zealand too. Apple machines (even the Apple IIes) were just too expensive for the home market. This despite the fact that quite a few schools in the mid-1980s seem to have Apple IIs, largely because of the huge discount Apple would offer to get into that market.

Tez
 

Securix

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Until very recently, SuperMicro displayed the "Made in USA" sticker on their motherboards. I have a dual P3 board with that sticker. I'm not certain, but it may even be displayed in the BIOS splash screen.

I have a brand new SuperMicro dual Opteron motherboard sitting here behind me. Unfortunately it only says "Designed in USA" on the box now. I haven't unpacked it yet, but I'm willing to bet it's actually made in China.
 
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