Round logo for The Computer Church -- a collection of rare computers and vintage documents that catalog the history of computing
The Computer Church
Home       Visit Us       Contact Us       About Us       Volunteers       Donate       Collection List      

 YEAR: 1975
 COMPANY: MITS
 COUNTRY: USA
 IN OUR COLLECTION: Yes
Click here for further information on our rarity scale RARITY: Exceedingly Rare Information on the rarity of this item is unknown.

Comter II

 

The Comter II was a terminal (keyboard and "monitor") made for the Altair 8800 computer. Calling it a monitor is a bit deceptive by today's standards...you can see from the pictures that it was only capable of displaying a single line of text at a time (32 characters). However, at the back of the Comter II you can find a built in I/O (input/output) connection for a audio cassette tape player. That was one of the common ways to store your data back in 1975. That means you could save programs on an audio cassette and later play them back into your computer.

And it wasn't cheap!! In the April 1975 PRICE LIST the Comter II is listed as costing $920...that's about $300 MORE than the Altair 8800 computer which was listed as $621. If you had the skills and the courage, you could buy the Comter II as a kit and solder it together on your own. The kit only costs $780.

So why would someone pay so much for a keyboard and monitor? Because without one, the only way to program your Altair 8800 computer was to use the front panel switches on the computer to enter a program. Even simple programs might take hours to enter...being able to type in a program on a keyboard was light-years faster!

This Comter II came with documentation.



Related Items
      Related Item 1: Comter II Manual






Copyright © 2022 by Early Computers Project, All Rights Reserved.



IMAGES
Click on any of the images below to see the slideshow.
Comter II and keyboard Front showing the single-line screen Controls Inside of Comter II Back of Comter II Back of Comter II Documentation