Forum etiquette

Our mission ...

This forum is part of our mission to promote the preservation of vintage computers through education and outreach. (In real life we also run events and have a museum.) We encourage you to join us, participate, share your knowledge, and enjoy.

This forum has been around in this format for over 15 years. These rules and guidelines help us maintain a healthy and active community, and we moderate the forum to keep things on track. Please familiarize yourself with these rules and guidelines.

Remain civil and respectful

There are several hundred people who actively participate here. People come from all different backgrounds and will have different ways of seeing things. You will not agree with everything you read here. Back-and-forth discussions are fine but do not cross the line into rude or disrespectful behavior.

Conduct yourself as you would at any other place where people come together in person to discuss their hobby. If you wouldn't say something to somebody in person, then you probably should not be writing it here.

This should be obvious but, just in case: profanity, threats, slurs against any group (sexual, racial, gender, etc.) will not be tolerated.

Stay close to the original topic being discussed
  • If you are starting a new thread choose a reasonable sub-forum to start your thread. (If you choose incorrectly don't worry, we can fix that.)
  • If you are responding to a thread, stay on topic - the original poster was trying to achieve something. You can always start a new thread instead of potentially "hijacking" an existing thread.

Contribute something meaningful

To put things in engineering terms, we value a high signal to noise ratio. Coming here should not be a waste of time.
  • This is not a chat room. If you are taking less than 30 seconds to make a post then you are probably doing something wrong. A post should be on topic, clear, and contribute something meaningful to the discussion. If people read your posts and feel that their time as been wasted, they will stop reading your posts. Worse yet, they will stop visiting and we'll lose their experience and contributions.
  • Do not bump threads.
  • Do not "necro-post" unless you are following up to a specific person on a specific thread. And even then, that person may have moved on. Just start a new thread for your related topic.
  • Use the Private Message system for posts that are targeted at a specific person.

"PM Sent!" messages (or, how to use the Private Message system)

This forum has a private message feature that we want people to use for messages that are not of general interest to other members.

In short, if you are going to reply to a thread and that reply is targeted to a specific individual and not of interest to anybody else (either now or in the future) then send a private message instead.

Here are some obvious examples of when you should not reply to a thread and use the PM system instead:
  • "PM Sent!": Do not tell the rest of us that you sent a PM ... the forum software will tell the other person that they have a PM waiting.
  • "How much is shipping to ....": This is a very specific and directed question that is not of interest to anybody else.

Why do we have this policy? Sending a "PM Sent!" type message basically wastes everybody else's time by making them having to scroll past a post in a thread that looks to be updated, when the update is not meaningful. And the person you are sending the PM to will be notified by the forum software that they have a message waiting for them. Look up at the top near the right edge where it says 'Notifications' ... if you have a PM waiting, it will tell you there.

Copyright and other legal issues

We are here to discuss vintage computing, so discussing software, books, and other intellectual property that is on-topic is fine. We don't want people using these forums to discuss or enable copyright violations or other things that are against the law; whether you agree with the law or not is irrelevant. Do not use our resources for something that is legally or morally questionable.

Our discussions here generally fall under "fair use." Telling people how to pirate a software title is an example of something that is not allowable here.

Reporting problematic posts

If you see spam, a wildly off-topic post, or something abusive or illegal please report the thread by clicking on the "Report Post" icon. (It looks like an exclamation point in a triangle and it is available under every post.) This send a notification to all of the moderators, so somebody will see it and deal with it.

If you are unsure you may consider sending a private message to a moderator instead.

New user moderation

New users are directly moderated so that we can weed spammers out early. This means that for your first 10 posts you will have some delay before they are seen. We understand this can be disruptive to the flow of conversation and we try to keep up with our new user moderation duties to avoid undue inconvenience. Please do not make duplicate posts, extra posts to bump your post count, or ask the moderators to expedite this process; 10 moderated posts will go by quickly.

New users also have a smaller personal message inbox limit and are rate limited when sending PMs to other users.

Other suggestions
  • Use Google, books, or other definitive sources. There is a lot of information out there.
  • Don't make people guess at what you are trying to say; we are not mind readers. Be clear and concise.
  • Spelling and grammar are not rated, but they do make a post easier to read.
See more
See less

IBM 5150 & 5161 pricing from 1982/83

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    IBM 5150 & 5161 pricing from 1982/83

    About two years ago, I bought a 16KB-64KB 5150 and a 5161 from someone in Los Angeles (Ebay local pickup only) who was the original purchaser, and had bought them for their engineering business.
    He even still had the original boxes, but his wife had been using them to store Christmas ornaments.
    I missed him the previous year, but before this past Christmas I called and asked if I could replace those old boxes with some new boxes.

    I finally got the boxes, and they came with a bunch of IBM PC marketing materials, and the original sales receipts.

    I'm surprised that for the Expansion Unit, IBM just used a 5150 box and stuck a sticker on it.

    Boxes - small size.jpg

    Get a load of some of these prices from December, 1982:
    IBM 5150 PC with one DS drive $ 2,405.00
    Add another DS drive = additional $ 649.99
    Add a 5152 printer = additional $ 594.99

    IBM 5150.jpg

    And some more:
    DOS 1.1 = $ 39.99
    EasyWriter II = $ 349.99


    And an IBM 5161 Expansion Unit purchased a year later in December, 1983 = $ 2,881.00

    IBM 5161 Expansion Unit.jpg
    Last edited by Lorne; February 29, 2012, 12:10 PM.

    No surprise there. One of my best friends is a programmer and bought the original IBM PC in 1982 or thereabouts. About 10 years ago we were just talking when I asked him how much he had paid for it back then and he calmly replied... oh, about 5,000.00.
    PM me if you're looking for 3" or 5" floppy disks. EMail For everything else, Take Another Step


      Originally posted by Stone View Post
      No surprise there.
      It's the crappy Tandon TM100-2 for $ 649.99 part that blows my mind.
      Hell, I've got some slightly used ones that I'll let go for a third of that price with free shipping to boot, if anyone needs some.


        That sounds about right. As I recall, the total for my 5150 + MDA + SSDD floppy was about $3K.

        Given the price of the 5161, you can understand the popularity of multifunction cards. One aspect that IBM took too long to figure out.


          I have the original reciept for the IBM PC my dad and I purchased in September/October 1981 (delivered January 2, 1982)

          We bought DOS 1.0 when we ordered the system and that sat around for a couple of months waiting for the machine. IIRC we also got the BASIC manual ahead of the system.

          The Vintage Computer and Gaming Marketplace
          The Vintage Computer


            Heh. I bought mine at the Computerland in San Jose. Maybe I've still got the receipt--I'll check.

            Whatever happened to Millard's daughter (can't remember her name, but do recall that she was part of the business--apparently, as was est)?


              I found this thread to be extremely enlightening. And if you look at the pricing of these machines, you see exactly why so many people couldn't get into computing. The prices were just too high. It wasn't until 1995 that I was able to actually buy my first "real" computer. It was a Packard Bell LEgend running Windows 95 with a 75 Mhz processor and 4 Megs or RAM all on a 560 Meg hard drive. Even thin, I spent almost $1000.00 for it through Circuit City. My previous computer was also a Packard Bell, but that one was one I bought used for $100.00 with a 30 Meg hard drive, and 5 1/4" floppy running a 286 processor and monon graphics.

              When I bought that Packard Bell, I though I really had something! 14.4K modem, 640X480 graphics with realistic color. I credit most of what I know about modern computers to that one machine. Since I had never had to play with manual interupts, or dip switches. And that also explains why I like many others have such a hard time getting around the first PCs.

              Thanks for bring this up Lorne. It really made my morning.
              Wanted: - Complete SERIES ONE TRS-80, IBM 5170 AT, Original authentic IBM 5100 Portable, IBM 5151 Monitor. Also looking for Packard Bell 75Mhz computer, Commodore Pet w. Built-in cassette drive, amber 12 CRT, Mac SE-30 hard disk to replace the bad drive currently installed, TRS-80 Coco series 1 upgrades including memory, IBM PC 5160 compatible CD ROM.