Apple Announces High Performance Macintosh SE/30

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MacWorld, San Francisco, California. January 19,1989. Apple Computer, Inc. today introduced the Macintosh(R) SE/30 computer, a major extension of its compact Macintosh personal computer product line.

The Macintosh SE/30 operates at up to four times the speed of the Macintosh SE and provides users with convenient MS-DOS and OS/2 disk compatibility. It is the company's first transportable system to use the Motorola 68030 microprocessor and 68882 math coprocessor and to provide RAM expansion capability up to 8MB.

Apple also announced that it will make an upgrade kit available to current Macintosh SE users who want Macintosh SE/30 functionality. "With the introduction of the Macintosh SE/30, Apple is demonstrating its commitment to technological advancement in the Macintosh product family," stated Randall S. Battat, vice president, Product Marketing. "The Macintosh SE/30 delivers the most significant performance increase yet in a compact Macintosh."

The Macintosh SE has become the most popular model in the Macintosh computer family since its introduction in 1987. The new Macintosh SE/30 continues to build on this heritage and provides users with the familiar compact, easy to set up design and integral high-resolution monochrome video screen. The Macintosh SE/30 also works with most of the existing base of Macintosh software applications.

Macintosh SE/30 Features

The increased performance of the Macintosh SE/30 derives from its combined use of the Motorola 68030 and the Motorola 68882 floating point coprocessor chips. The 16MHz Motorola 68030 is a full 32-bit microprocessor with separate 256-byte data and instruction caches. These features make the Macintosh SE/30 operate up to four times the speed of the Macintosh SE.

In addition, the companion Motorola 68882 floating point coprocessor performs certain complex mathematical calculations more than 100 times faster than the Macintosh SE. This dramatically improves the performance of some spreadsheets, statistical and numeric-based graphics programs.

A second key feature of the Macintosh SE/30 is the Apple(R) FDHD(TM) (Floppy Drive High Density), an internal 1.4MB floppy disk drive that increases flexibility in integrating the Macintosh SE/30 operation into a multivendor environment. Nicknamed "SuperDrive," the FDHD can read, write and format MS-DOS, OS/2, Macintosh and Apple II ProDOS(R) diskettes. It works with 720K or 1.4MB MS-DOS or OS/2 diskettes; 400K, 800K and 1.4MB Macintosh diskettes; and ProDOS diskettes.

Apple File Exchange, a utility available with Macintosh System Software, is used along with the FDHD drive to access and transfer files conveniently between MS-DOS, OS/2 and ProDOS diskettes. The Macintosh SE/30 user in a multivendor office can then share documents, spreadsheets and other data files simply by transferring a diskette from one system to another.

The Macintosh SE/30 expansion slot architecture supports new types of advanced expansion options not previously available on a compact Macintosh, such as video, memory parity, high-speed communications and sound.

Several well-known hardware developers have already endorsed the 030 Direct Slot and are introducing products at MacWorld. These cards expand Macintosh SE/30 customers' options in networking and communications, allow the addition of external color and gray-scale monitors, and let users work with digital signal processing (DSP) based sound. These companies include: Avatar Corporation, Creative Solutions, Digital Communications Associates, DigiDesign Inc., Dove Computer Corporation, Epic Technology, Kinetics, MacPEAK Systems, Micron Technology, and SuperMac Technology. (See attachment for details.)

In addition to other advances, the Macintosh SE/30 includes an Apple custom sound chip on the motherboard that provides four-voice stereo sound capability and compatibility with sound applications.

"The Macintosh SE/30 is the choice for users who want a general purpose computing system that is easily transportable, expandable and provides maximum performance," stated Todd Logan, Macintosh SE/30 product manager. "By incorporating the 68030 in a compact Macintosh we are making the latest in technology as affordable as possible."


Apple offers three configurations of the Macintosh SE/30. The first option has 1MB of RAM and a single 1.4MB FDHD floppy disk drive; the second option has 1MB of RAM and an internal 40MB hard disk; and the third option has 4MB of RAM and an 80MB internal hard disk. Both hard disk configurations include the FDHD. Keyboard options and other peripheral devices are packaged and sold separately.

Price and Availability

Immediately available from Apple U. S. resellers nationwide, the Macintosh SE/30 (1MB) carries a suggested retail price of $4,369, the Macintosh SE/30 Hard Disk 40 (1MB) carries a suggested retail price of $4,869, and the Macintosh SE/30 Hard Disk 80 (4MB) has a suggested retail price of $6,569. Both configurations ship with Macintosh System Software 6.0.3, MultiFinder(TM) and HyperCard(R). The Macintosh SE/30 requires System Software 6.0.3.

The upgrade kit for Macintosh SE users includes a Macintosh SE/30 logic board and chassis. Customers who upgrade to Macintosh SE/30 functionality, can also elect to upgrade their internal floppy disk drive to 1.4MB capacity using the optional FDHD Upgrade Kit. Pricing and availability for the Macintosh SE/30 upgrades will be announced in the Spring.

Apple, the Apple Logo, Macintosh, HyperCard and ProDOS are registered trademarks of Apple Computer, Inc. FDHD and MultiFinder are trademarks of Apple Computer, Inc. NuBus is a trademark of Texas Instruments. MS-DOS is a registered trademark of Microsoft Corporation.

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