I'm excited that more Altair equipment is becoming available. I wish I
had some money to buy it all. I'm also happy that the equipment is in
good condition and that there are complete working systems. Even better
there are people with valuable history and experience.
I've been collecting Altair equipment since 1979. I've got some good
deals, but also a lot of damaged cases, bent switches, and broken
drives. It remains a struggle to build a system that will actually run
MITS software on hard-sectored diskettes.
The Virtual Altair Museum was created with the idea of making my
collection "virtual" so I could share with others and eventually get rid
of those heavy 8800b transformers. I hope others will take some time to
make good images to share. I hope Altair dealers and original owners
will share their history and knowledge.
I've always had the theory that Altairs should be functional and
actually run original software. I think many of you know how hard that
is to achieve. It is especially hard to find working drives and
controllers. Lots of Altairs sit on a shelf and do nothing. I hope
anyone with working system can find a buyer that will not sell the
system as parts. I hope any parts for sale make a partial system
I hope anyone who was wise enough to save and protect their equipment
makes a good profit. High prices bring more equipment out of the closet
and basement and keep it out of the trash. Anyone selling a working
system should consider the difficulty of finding parts and building a
system today when they calculate value. I think anyone with experience
or historical knowledge should consider their story as part of the
Don't think it is hard to build a website. Microsoft Small Business
Office Live makes it easy. You can make good images of circuit boards
and parts by laying them on a scanner and leaving the top up. See
for an example. This website has my
entire Vector-Graphic collection and was done in one month including all
the scanning and photos.
Both the Virtual Altair Museum http://www.virtualaltair.com
Vector Graphic site are missing images of many boards and other items. I
don't have rights to Ebay photos and many are poor quality. I hope
others will take some time to make good images and tell their story too.
I think the story and image will help make the sale and also have
I'm always looking for new images for my websites. Please contact me if
you can help. I'll add "good" images and give credit to you - "Image
provided by ...". I'd like business cards of MITS dealers, MITS/Pertec
employees. Early Vector Graphic boards are hard to find. I need a good
image of an 8800 CPU board, Music Board and a few others. Think about
what you have. Do you have something that can't be found on the web?
I'll try to help people that want to build a Small Business Office Live
website. I can link to interesting sites or equipment for sale. Half the
visitors to the Virtual Altair site are from outside the US, so consider
your market as world wide. There appears to be a growing interest in
S-100 equipment outside the US.