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The Macintosh 128K, originally known simply as Macintosh, was the first Macintosh model to be commercially released by Apple Computer, discounting the retrofit of the Lisa 2 into the Macintosh XL.


Unlike subsequent Macintosh models, the name "Macintosh 128K" did not appear anywhere on the exterior case and was only identified as "Macintosh" on the back of the first units to roll off the assembly line. The rear case was later revised to include "128K" in red to differentiate it after the 512K model was released on September 10, 1984.


The Macintosh 128K was released amid fanfare on January 24, two days after the airing of the 1984 Apple ad during Super Bowl XVIII. However, it was met with a lukewarm response.


The Macintosh 128K was not designed to be user-upgradeable, requiring third-party upgrades for more memory. Without a minimum of 512 KB of RAM, it did not have enough memory to support the first Apple HD20 hard drive.


The original Macintosh was unusual in that it included the signatures of 48 members of the Macintosh Division as of early 1982 molded on the inside of the case.[1][2]

Upgrade paths[]

A Macintosh 128K could be upgraded to a Macintosh Plus through the Macintosh Plus Logic Board Kit (part no. M2518) from Apple, which included a new logic board with 128KB ROMs (to replace the 64KB version), 1 MB memory, SCSI port, and a replacement rear case. An extended Macintosh Plus keyboard was available separately (part no. M2519).[3]


  1. Kawasaki, Guy (1994-12-01). Macintosh Insiders Ten Years Later. Stanford University. Archived from the original on 2010-11-11.
  2. Macintosh Insiders (PDF) by Owen L. Linzmayer, Apple Confidential 2.0: The Definitive History of the World's Most Colorful Company p.104-108, No Starch Press. 2004.
  3. Apple Introduces the Macintosh Plus, Tech Insider. 1986-01-16.

External Links[]

Macintosh   Early Compact Macs

Prototypes | Macintosh 128K | 512K | 512Ke | Plus | SE | SE/30 |
Classic | Classic II | Color Classic | Color Classic II

Superseded by the Macintosh LC 500 series in June 1993
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