Original Apple I PC sells for $374,500 at auction

In April of 1976, two men started selling a PC they made by hand. The men were Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak and the PC was the Apple I. Only 200 of these PCs were made and Apple sold them for $666.66.

Today, the Sotheby's auction house sold one of the few remaining working Apple I PCs. The expected selling price for the product was $180,000. In the end, the Apple I was sold for over double that amount, a whopping $374,000; the buyer of the Apple I was not immediately identified.

The PC that was sold today was offered like Jobs and Wozniak sold the original Apple I; as a motherboard. If you wanted a case, you had to go out and make that yourself. A power switch, keyboard and display were also sold separately. It had a 1 MHz (yes, MHz) processor and four KB of memory, although you could expand that up to eight KB. The Apple I sold today also comes with the original paper manuals for the PC.

Previously, an Apple I sold at the Christie's auction house in 2010 for $210,000.

Source: Sotheby's | Image via Sotheby's

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23 Comments

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Another funny thing about the price (which 666 was thought of back then as the number) if you look at the artwork on Apples stocks it was Eve taking a bite out of the Apple while the snake curled around her. I'm a PC person now but back in the days Macs were fun owning them pre icrap of course

winrez said,
Another funny thing about the price (which 666 was thought of back then as the number) if you look at the artwork on Apples stocks it was Eve taking a bite out of the Apple while the snake curled around her. I'm a PC person now but back in the days Macs were fun owning them pre icrap of course

"iCrap", including "i"Macs, saved the company. And now Apple is squarely in the driver's seat, and consumers (and the industry, because they have someone to copy mercilessly) couldn't be happier.

Get used to all the "iCrap. You'll be seeing *a lot* more of it.

winrez said,
Another funny thing about the price (which 666 was thought of back then as the number) if you look at the artwork on Apples stocks it was Eve taking a bite out of the Apple while the snake curled around her. I'm a PC person now but back in the days Macs were fun owning them pre icrap of course

I have a much different memory of those days. I recall most of my friends referring to them all as Crapintosh. I'd say now I know quite a few people who own at least one Apple product, thanks to all the "iCrap" (as you put it).

Whilst neither of you said it you both implied because something is popular it can't be crap which I'd disagree with, for example I'd say most people have eaten as McDonalds, the chain can be found everywhere - but it is also crap.

Deliciously_Random said,

"iCrap", including "i"Macs, saved the company. And now Apple is squarely in the driver's seat, and consumers (and the industry, because they have someone to copy mercilessly) couldn't be happier.

Get used to all the "iCrap. You'll be seeing *a lot* more of it.

As long as there's an alternative, you can have all the "iCrap" you want.

the420kid said,
wow talk about a waste of money

Uh . . . it's a COLLECTIBLE. Do you understand that? I know it takes a refined sense of taste to "get" that, and you *are* a PC user, but it shouldn't take that many more brain cells rubbing together to let it sink in. And it's a *very* valuable piece at that. It's the first computer Apple ever made. By hand. By Jobs and Woz. '

If there ever was a piece of tech history that could fetch a huge price at auction, this is it.

I'm sure you's also consider the price of a first edition Don Quixote (worth far more than you'll ever make) a "waste of money" as well?

I swear, some of the PeeCee weenies on this site are such rubes. LOL

Deliciously_Random said,

Uh . . . it's a COLLECTIBLE. Do you understand that? I know it takes a refined sense of taste to "get" that, and you *are* a PC user, but it shouldn't take that many more brain cells rubbing together to let it sink in. And it's a *very* valuable piece at that. It's the first computer Apple ever made. By hand. By Jobs and Woz. '

If there ever was a piece of tech history that could fetch a huge price at auction, this is it.

I'm sure you's also consider the price of a first edition Don Quixote (worth far more than you'll ever make) a "waste of money" as well?

I swear, some of the PeeCee weenies on this site are such rubes. LOL


Yeah, tell me about it. I had to pay $100 for a copy of Pokemon Gold that was exactly the same as the regular version just because the stores used that specific copy for people to demo the game...

...and four KB of memory, although you could expand that up to eight KB

Well it's good to know at least one Apple computer was upgradeable.

M_Lyons10 said,
Correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't believe Steve Jobs actually built anything here. I think this is all Wozniak...

Woz was the engineer, Jobs was the sales man

M_Lyons10 said,
Correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't believe Steve Jobs actually built anything here. I think this is all Wozniak...

I believe Jobs did help in assembling the boards, but yes the engineering work was mainly Woz.

NeoandGeo said,
$666.66 huh? Interesting pricing scheme they had there.

Wozniak liked this price because it was easy to type from what I read a while back. lol