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Altair 680


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  Altair 680 by Jon Gerds - 06/01/2010 22:51
I recently came across an Altair 680 at a garage sale. I picked it up for 4 dollars. I'm curious if there is a way if I can determine if it is original or not? or if it is a 680B ?

  680b by Daniel Roganti - 06/02/2010 07:23
I built mine as a kit when it first came out. I don't recall any 680's bring produced, I think it was just a preliminary model for the article in Popular Electronics. The 680b--which is what I have, with the blue front panel -- is the only one I remember being produced.

You definitely made a great find, at a garage sale of all places--and a great price.


  Identifying an Altair 680 by Bill Degnan - 06/03/2010 13:21
I have two of the 680's. Take a look at both, see which looks most like yours:

Pictures of Altair 680 with round toggle switches

Pictures of Altair 680 with flat toggle switches

  picture differences by Jon Gerds - 06/03/2010 13:34
the one I found has the flat switches....

  The flat-switch 680 is the newer one by Bill Degnan - 06/03/2010 16:19
The Altair 680 came out just after the original 8800, and at the time they both had rounded toggle switches. The later 680's adopted the flat panel switches of the 8800a and 8800b. Still, for $4 you got a good deal. Let us know if you want some tips for testing.

  Altair 680 by Jon Gerds - 06/03/2010 16:26
Do you know about how much older?
there doesn't appear to be a serial number or anything on it.

  Production Run Altair 680 by Bill Degnan - 06/03/2010 17:15
The Altair 680 with the flat panel switches would have been late 1976-1977. You can "date" an Altair by the silkscreen on the chips.

  toggle switches by Daniel Roganti - 06/04/2010 06:55
mine has the rounded toggle switches




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