There were two eras of Macintosh clones: The unauthorized period, when clones were reverse engineered or built around ROMs or used logic boards removed from existing Macs; and the authorized period, when Apple approved vendors and licensed the Mac OS and hardware designs.
Apple started to license the Mac in 1994, the first clones arrived in 1995, and they quickly cut into Apple’s profitable high-end market. For an overview of the authorized clone period, see Apple Squeezes Mac Clones Out of the Market.
The Early Mac Clones
- Unitron Mac 512, circa 1985
- McMobile, 1986-89
- Colby WalkMac, 1987-91
- Dynamac and Dynamac EL, 1988-89
- Outbound Laptop, Outbound Notebook, 1989-91
- Atari ST
- 68000 Dash 30fx, circa 1990
- Colby Classmate Tablet Computer, 1991
- Dynamac IIsf and IIsf/30, 1991
- NuTek One and Duet, 1993-94
The Authorized Mac Clones
- DayStar, 1995-97
- Motorola StarMax, 1996-97
- Power Computing, 1996-97
- Umax SuperMac, 1996-98
These companies used OEM motherboards usually supplied by Motorola or StarMax.
- MaxxBoxx, 1997-98