IMSAI 8080

What Does IMSAI 8080 Mean?

IMSAI 8080 is the name of one of the earliest consumer computers, released in 1975 by IMS Associates, Inc. (later renamed IMSAI Manufacturing Corp). It was one of the first microcomputers, with the MITS Altair 8800 being its competitor. Available in both kit or ready-to-use form, this was one of the first computers that could be purchased pre-assembled.


Techopedia Explains IMSAI 8080

IMSAI 8080s were Built by IMS Associates, Inc. of San Leandro, California and run on Intel 8080 and later 8085 and S-100 bus. They were the first “clone” microcomputers, as they were intended to be less expensive competitors of the Altair 8800. The IMSAI 8080 had 2.0 MHz of processor, 64K RAM and front-panel LEDs. It also came with CM/P Operating System and an optional floppy drive. It was available in two formats, kit (relatively cheaper at $599) and assembled and ready to use (more expensive at $999). Kits usually took days of soldering and hard work to assemble, so for individuals without much expertise in electronics, the pre-assembled computer was a much simpler option.


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Margaret Rouse is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical, business audience. Over the past twenty years her explanations have appeared on TechTarget websites and she's been cited as an authority in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine and Discovery Magazine.Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages. If you have a suggestion for a new definition or how to improve a technical explanation, please email Margaret or contact her…