My Turn

Confessions of a Mac Collecting Addict

Dustin Rinebold - 2003.01.15

My Turn is Low End Mac's column for reader-submitted articles. It's your turn to share your thoughts on all things Mac (or iPhone, iPod, etc.) and write for the Mac web. Email your submission to Dan Knight .

This evening I walked up to the loft of my house and plopped down in my roommate's huge bean bag chair. It's really the only place to sit; most of the room is occupied by boxes and bulky items that my roommate and I never use but still wish to keep.

For me, it's the home of the bulk of my rather extensive Macintosh collection that has been building over the years. I looked across the sea of yellowing platinum plastic and began to think about the impetus behind my madness. My friends certainly don't understand it, and, in fact, I hardly do myself.

It seemed like a good time to pick up my iBook and write about this little problem of mine. I collect Macs. And I can't seem to stop.

I mainly blame this obsession of mine on being just the right age to grow up with the Mac. I was six years old when my The MacintoshDad brought home our little 128K wonder in 1984. He was a computer consultant at the time, and as such I've been brought up on all sorts of computers. But this particular machine was very different. I spent all my time playing with the Guided Tour and MacPaint - brush mirrors, fat bits, the spray can.

To my Dad, these were merely tools used to show off the Mac's then superior resolution, but to a six year old they were a creative means to scratch the constant itch of curiosity that all kids that age have.

I specifically remember sneaking out of my room long past my bedtime to play ChipWits into the wee hours of the night.

As Apple and the Macintosh got older, so did I. MacUser and Macworld were my windows into the evolving Mac lineup. My Dad made regular trips to BusinessLand (a computer store in Los Angeles at the time), and I always tagged along to get a chance to play with Apple's latest and greatest. It was there that I got my first peek at the SE, and drooled over the color capabilities of the Mac II.

Every time a new system was released, I'd hang onto every word written by the reviewers in the Mac magazines. Eventually a Mac reseller opened in Calabasas - within walking distance of our home - and soon I was spending my after school hours marveling at the speed (and the five digit price!) of the IIfx.

Once the Quadras and PowerBooks were released, the store became an addiction. While my friends were out riding bikes and playing Nintendo, I was in Calabasas applying Gaussian blurs in Photoshop to compare the speed of the Quadra 950 to the 900 it had just replaced.

But I never actually owned one of these amazing machines that I constantly fiddled with. My Dad bought a IIcx right as it was released, but soon after he became more involved in PCs (for business reasons), and our home never saw another Mac until I was given a Power Mac 7500 as a gift for college. Until then, I kept on dreaming, and by the time I graduated high school, my brain was stamped with the memories of Macs that I had always wanted - but as a kid could never afford.

So fast forward to a few years ago - now armed with money of my own, a Goodwill computer store just blocks away, eBay, and memories of every 68K Mac I ever wanted while growing up - a Mac collecting monster was born.

It's a disease. How can I resist that $10 Centris 610 when I have memories of deciding that I only had to mow 500 lawns to own one back in 1993? How can I not pay $20 for a IIfx that at one time required taking out a second mortgage on the house?

It goes on and on. If you're like me, you don't even need them all to be complete - I only play with one or two at a time. So for 30 or so Macs, I have only a handful of hard drives and sets of SIMMs between them. Part of the fun is swapping the components anyway!

Sadly, I've been giving serious thought to donating the majority of my collection. I need the space! Not all of them, mind you. Some are being used for an actual purpose, but most are just taking up room. Essentially every 68K Mac (except the Performa line) is represented here.

It's tough, though - I've been planning this "cleaning" for over a month now, however I can't seem to bring myself to part with systems that were such a huge part of my childhood. There's something unique and cool about every one of these Macs. It'll be difficult to see them go.

For the moment I'm thinking that I'll hang onto the 128K, Plus, IIcx, IIfx, and Mac TV. I have a Quadra 700 that's used as a gateway to my home network, and a Quadra 840av with a Spigot AV card that's used for video purposes. So those will stay as well.Mac Portable

Maybe I should hang on to one of my PowerBooks and the Mac Portable, or even keep another Quadra, like a 950? Heh - see what I mean?

Already the list of Macs to keep is getting bigger and bigger! Soon I won't be donating anything at all! I feel like one of those guys in the group therapy sessions, discussing his problem in an open forum. I can see it now - "Hello, my name is Dustin, and I have an addiction to old Macs." Then you all say in unison, "Hi, Dustin!"

So speak to me here - does anyone else have this same problem? Do any of you have any suggestions of which Macs I should donate and which I should keep? I'd love to hear some of your stories, if for no other reason than to let me know that I'm not alone in my Mac collecting insanity!

Share your perspective on the Mac by emailing with "My Turn" as your subject.

Join us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter or Google+, or subscribe to our RSS news feed

Today's Links

Follow Low End Mac on Twitter
Join Low End Mac on Facebook

Page not found | Low End Mac

Well this is somewhat embarrassing, isn’t it?

It seems we can’t find what you’re looking for. Perhaps searching, or one of the links below, can help.

Most Used Categories

Archives

Try looking in the monthly archives. 🙂

Page not found | Low End Mac

Well this is somewhat embarrassing, isn’t it?

It seems we can’t find what you’re looking for. Perhaps searching, or one of the links below, can help.

Most Used Categories

Archives

Try looking in the monthly archives. 🙂

Favorite Sites

MacSurfer
Cult of Mac
Shrine of Apple
MacInTouch
MyAppleMenu
InfoMac
The Mac Observer
Accelerate Your Mac
RetroMacCast
The Vintage Mac Museum
Deal Brothers
DealMac
Mac2Sell
Mac Driver Museum
JAG's House
System 6 Heaven
System 7 Today
the pickle's Low-End Mac FAQ

Affiliates

Amazon.com
The iTunes Store
PC Connection Express
Macgo Blu-ray Player
Parallels Desktop for Mac
eBay

Low End Mac's Amazon.com store

Advertise

Well this is somewhat embarrassing, isn’t it?

It seems we can’t find what you’re looking for. Perhaps searching, or one of the links below, can help.

Most Used Categories

Archives

Try looking in the monthly archives. 🙂

at BackBeat Media (646-546-5194). This number is for advertising only.

Open Link