The Daily Ping

There were rumors of a Ping book, but those were started on the internet.

March 10th, 2010

Computers from 1999

This morning I was rifling through old documents on my computer – located in the “Old Crap” folder – when I found a mockup for an ad. An old mockup.

Back in the late 90s I worked at a local computer store, Maha Computers. Under new ownership it became The Byte Shop without prior knowledge of the legendary California computer store (opps.) We held our own against a nearby Best Buy and Circuit City, but it was damned hard to compete on price to be honest with you.

One of my ideas back then was to have a subbrand of computers. Under Maha they were called “mcpc” (get it? Maha Computers? MC?) but under The Byte Shop they were just kinda “our PC line.” While we excelled in custom-built machines we also wanted to offer pre-selected configurations just to make things easy.

Looking back at the specs now is, as you can imagine, a laugh riot. Ready? Here we go.

Orion: $879
AMD K6-2 333MHz CPU with 3D-Now!
Nobilis NB5AX Motherboard
64MB PC100 SDRAM
Western Digital 4.3GB Hard Drive
Actima 40X CD-ROM Drive
Sony 3.5” Floppy Drive
AOpen 56k PCI Fax/Modem
AOpen FX-3D+ 3D Sound Card
ATI Rage IIC 4MB AGP Video Card
Sun 690 Amplified Speakers
Premier 718 ATX Mid-Tower Case
104-Key Windows 98 Keyboard
IBM PS/2 Two-Button Mouse
Microsoft Windows 98
NobleView 14” SVGA Monitor
Two Year Limited Warranty

Man. 14″ monitor. 333MHz. A whopping 4.3GB hard drive and… what’s this? A floppy drive! All for 900 bucks.

Now, most of the PCs’ specs were just modifications here or there. Some had awesome video cards (4MB of VRAM) and some had increased memory (128MB.) But the top of the line unit was the Atlas for $2509. With that you got:

Intel Pentium III 500MHz CPU w MMX
Asus P2B Motherboard
128MB PC100 SDRAM
Western Digital 10.2GB Hard Drive
Creative Encore 5X DVD-ROM Kit
Sony 3.5” Floppy Drive
AOpen 56k PCI Fax/Modem
Creative SB Live! Value Sound Card
Matrox Millennium 8MB AGP Video
Sound Image Lite Speakers
Premier 718 ATX Mid-Tower Case
104-Key Windows 98 Keyboard
IBM PS/2 Two-Button Mouse
Microsoft Windows 98
NobleView 17” SVGA Monitor
Two Year Limited Warranty

I’m a little scared to think about what that’ll buy you today. Upgrades available on all machines included a Zip drive (awww,) a DVD-ROM drive, or NT 4.0. Astounding!

Anyway, it was a fun trip down memory lane but I’m really pleased that computer technology has gotten way better.

Posted in Technology

What is this then?

The Daily Ping is the web's finest compendium of toilet information and Oreo™® research. Too much? Okay, okay, it's a daily opinion column written by two friends. Did we mention we've been doing this for over ten years? Tell me more!

Most Popular Pings

Last Week's Most Popular Pings

Let's be nice.

© 2000-2011 The Daily Ping, all rights reserved. Tilted sidebar note idea 'adapted' from Panic. Powered by the mighty WordPress.