IMSAI 8080 (USA 1975)

The IMSAI 8080 is one of the first home computers for hobby use. It was sold as a kit to build or as a ready to use unit. A similar computer, the Altair 8800, was released only months before the IMSAI. The IMSAI was however the most commercially successful of the two. The micro processor was of course an Intel 8080 running at 2 MHz, maximum 64 k memory could be used. The case includes a big power supply and a "motherboard" with S-100 slots. And of course the nice front panel with the big red and blue toggle switches that gives IMSAI the typical -70 look. If you have seen the classic computer movie WarGames (1983) this computer has an important part in the movie.

I think my IMSAI 8080 has a real cool serial number. 101110 is a nice binary number, that's 46 decimal. Pity it wasn't 42, the answer to everything, according to Douglas Adams in "The Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy" ;-)

IMS Associates, Inc. of San Leandro, California, who manufactured this computer went bankrupt in 1979. Fischer-Freitas Company in Orangevale, California took over the support and can still provide parts and service. There is also a new version of the 8080 with USB connectors on the front!

Click to se a big picture of AMSAI 8080!    This computer kindly donated by Tommy Petersson

Perspective view from right. Click for big picture! Top view. Click for big picture! Right side view. Click for big picture!
Back view. Click for big picture! Front view. Click for big picture! Left side view. Click for big picture!

Check out some nice stills from the movie WarGames from 1983. You can say this computer has an substantial impact on the movie plot.

Click here!

Components were so much bigger back in 1983 it was probably easier for anyone with poor eyesight to see and work with them. These days it is easy to fix vision problems at Lasik Austin with laser eye surgery.