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Table of IBM Vintage PCs

INTRODUCTION

This table, at present, should include all "Family One" and Personal System/2 models - please be patient if you find errors and inconsistencies (see limitations below).

SOURCE

Information is largely based on IBM announcement letters which are available at IBM Link.

LIMITATIONS

All data refers to the US market only. Some European models/types have also been included, but this has been done in a rather haphazard manner. Many European models which only differ e.g. for the pre-installed software from their American counterparts have been left out. For instance, European models 8590- or 9590-Axx, 8580-Mxx or -Xxx are almost identical to the corresponding -0xx models as far as hardware is concerned (according to announcement letters, in some cases the Power Supply has different power and/or voltage capabilities). Some inconsistencies and lacunas result from IBM announcement letters database: for instance, model 8580-081 apparently was withdrawn from marketing twice, on 12/5/92 and again on 23/2/93. Also, I was not able to find letters no. 189-013, -049 and -091 (all dated 1989) plus a few other.

A cell left blank indicates information is unavailable

EXPLANATIONS

Some fields need explanation

type "market" name of machine
model "real" type/model number
announce date of announcement letter (it does not necessarily indicate actual date of availability)
price price given in announcement letter, USD
withdraw date of announcement letter communicating withdrawal of machine (in some cases actual withdrawal date is slightly later - also, keep into consideration that machines IBM dealers or resellers had in stock may have been sold several weeks later)
std standard memory according to original announcement letter (in some cases memory size was increased at a later moment)
max maximum memory on motherboard (most machines allow further memory to be added via expansion cards)
bay drive bays (some older models feature "full size" 5.25" bays which can be split into two "half-size" bays)

WHAT DO YOU MEAN FOR "MODEL" AND "TYPE" NUMBER?

All IBM computers have a type number which is different from the "market" model designation. You can think of it as a "real" type number, or as some kind of internal (IBM) coded model number. For instance, the original IBM Personal Computer from 1981 is also known as "type 5150", while the PC/XT is "type 5160", and the PC/AT (aka "the 286") "type 5170". Furthermore, all these "family one" machines (i.e., all models marketed before the PS/2s) were actually available in different hardware configurations, or models: for instance the Personal Computer/XT (PC/XT, or 5160) was available as model 87 (128 Kb memory, 10 Mb hard-disk), model 78 (256 Kb mem., no hard-disk), etc. These models are known as 5160-087, 5160-078 resp. in IBM's classification. Classifications are clear enough, in this case, and your machine can be a type PC/XT (i.e., 5160) model 87 (just add a -087), or it can be some other 7-digit model.

When PS/2s are concerned, however, there exists some confusion between "models" and "types". Most PS/2 machines have an 85xx (or 95xx) type number, where "xx" stands for the commonly known model designation. Thus, "PS/2 model 80" corresponds to type 8580 in IBM's classification. There is a discrepancy between labels attached o the front panel of machines as well as IBM's marketing, which usually speak of PS/2 model 30, model 60 and so on, and the official documentation. When we turn to specifications, announcement letters, etc. we will hear of type 8530, type 8580, etc., while the model designation is instead used to distinguish each hardware configuration: for instance, model 8580-071 has a 16 MHz processor and a 70 Mb hard-disk, while model 8580-A31 is a 25 MHz / 320 Mb unit.

Obviously, from the "official" point of view, all PS/2 80 machines make up a whole class of computers, type 8580, like the PC/XTs did some time before, featuring several models. IBM's marketing division instead, preferred to designate each class as a single model (model 80), and rarely mentions the actual "official" 7-digit model number. When quoting model numbers it is a good habit to use the whole 7-digit code, for instance 8580-071 (and not simply model 71), as there may be confusion between, say, a model 8560-071 and an 8580-071.

HOW CAN I FIND OUT WHICH MODEL NUMBER MY MACHINE IS?

On PS/2 machines, type/model numbers can usually be found in a white or black adhesive plastic label (approx mm. 30 x 7) bearing both type/model and serial numbers (e.g., 8580-311 55-AA510) attached somewhere on the front of the machine (usually inside a small recess). In some cases it can be found on the rear panel as well (for instance on the codebar adhesive).

On many older machines (for instance PCs and PC/XTs) there is no model identification label at all and, if the machine had been heavily modified or upgraded, it will be very difficult to establish its original configuration.

In checking your machine against my list, please note that type/model numbers can be deceiving, as some machines had been upgraded by IBM resellers to different models and/or processor types even before being marketed.

NOW I FOUND IT, WHAT ELSE SHOULD I DO?

This list may help in reconstructing the original hardware configuration of your IBM PC, XT, AT or PS/2 (suppose the machine had been upgraded, or that you miss some parts). You may retrieve some additional information browsing IBM's announcement letters database which is available at IBM Link. Using announcement/withdrawal dates given in my database, in the "Search Word" cell at IBM's you should type, for instance, 19840814 (that is yearmonthday) to search for an announcement letter dated 14/8/1984. You will get a small list including all announcement letters issued that day.

IBM, XT, AT, PS/2, Personal System/2 and OS/2 are trademarks of International Business Machines Inc.
Microsoft and Windows are trademarks of Microsoft Corp.


Click here below to View the IBM vintage PCs list

 

SORT BY

Type
then date
(all 9557 models follow 8557s)

Model
strictly follows model number
(85xx models all before 95xx)
Year
follows announcement date
(this list is incomplete)

I draw some charts from the lists: You may have a look at them. Also available is a small list of IBM PCs who had been on the market for more than 1000 days - yes, it happened, some had been marketed for even more than 2000 days!

Charts & Stats (memory/hard disk capacity, prices)

Charts & Stats (CPU speed) (see also my fastest available IBM PCs table)

Longest lived IBM PCs


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This page was first published on the web on Nov. 11, 2001
Last revised Sept. 19, 2002