Rare Apple 1 and other vintage tech items to be auctioned

If you’d like to score an important piece of Valley history — and have the bucks to pay for it — here’s your chance: Later this month, a German auction house will be selling an original — and still working — Apple 1 computer.

The device is, of course, the original product from Apple. This version is just one of six known models that still are still in working order and is signed by Apple co-founder – and Apple 1 creator —  Steve Wozniak. The auction, run by Auction Team Breker, will be held May 25.

Apple fans interested in the vintage machine should be prepared to pay a stiff price. Bidding starts at around $117,000.  But a comparable model auctioned last fall fetched a winning bid of around $640,000 and a similar one sold last June for $374,500.

The winning bidder will get more than just the Apple 1. Included in the lot are the original owner’s manual and a letter from Apple co-founder Steve Jobs to former Major League baseball player Fred Hatfield offering to exchange the Apple 1 for a new Apple II.

If the Apple 1 auction is too rich for your blood, don’t worry, there are other cool things up for auction at lower prices. You can bid on a pair of Apple Lisa computers, which was the precursor to the Mac; a MITS Altair 8800, which was the first PC; a dictation machine dating to 1915; the first portable copying device, which was invented by steam engine inventor James Watt and dates to 1780; and an early 20th century mechanical calculator that was built based on a design by 17th century French mathematician Blaise Pascal.

For your viewing pleasure, here’s a video posted by the Breker folks of the Apple 1:

Photo courtesy of Auction Team Breker and Liveauctioneers.

 

Troy Wolverton Troy Wolverton (248 Posts)

Troy writes the Tech Files column as the Personal Technology Columnist at the San Jose Mercury News. He also covers the digital media, mobile and video game industries and writes occasionally about Apple, chips, social networking and other aspects of technology. Previously, Troy covered Apple and the consumer electronics industry. Prior to joining the Mercury News, Troy reported on technology, business and financial issues for TheStreet.com and CNET News.com.