Compaq Portable SLT/286 1921

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The Compaq SLT/286 (1988), prices starts at $5,399.

The machine offers a bright high-resolution display that supports the VGA video standard, the first laptop with that feature. It has a 12-megahertz 80C286 processor, a new low-power chip that is among the faster 80286 microprocessors, and it is certainly capable of handling most applications. And it has a detachable keyboard, another first among laptops.

It is 8 1/2 inches deep - 2 to 3 inches less than the other leading laptops at the time

The SLT/286 provides mass storage in the form of a 20-megabyte or 40-megabyte hard disk drive. The shock-mounted drive is a new design that can withstand up to 80 G's of impact, or a ride in the trunk of a New York City taxi, whichever comes first. Data is transferred through a high-capacity (1.44 megabyte) 3.5-inch diskette drive. An optional 2,400-baud internal modem is $599.

At 14 pounds, including the battery and the hard disk, the SLT/286 strains the definition of laptop. Still, it is five pounds lighter than Compaq's lunchpail-shaped Portable III, a significant difference among portables. Most important, it runs for three hours on one battery charge. An optional backup battery pack ($129) weighs two pounds.

One drawback of the machine is that it does not support color, but then neither does any other laptop. (High-resolution flat-panel color displays will begin arriving next year.) Another surprise is that Compaq, which has forged its reputation for high-performance machines around the 80386 microprocessor from the Intel Corporation, did not introduce an SLT/386. While the 12-megahertz 80C286 is a better-than-average chip, it is no match for the 386 chip. Michael Swavely, Compaq's vice president for marketing, suggested in an interview that the power demands of the 386 chip had reduced the SLT's battery life to unacceptably short periods. The fast 286 chip, he said, offered the best balance of performance and battery life.

Model 2680 SerialNo: 1921HU4H3434

This machine was very kindly donated by Lesley Moreland together with the Power Supply and the following manuals:
Operations Guide - comprehensive manual in original ring folder Memory kit and battery pack
installation Guide.

Manufacturer: Compaq
Date: October 1988

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Magazines RELATED to Compaq Portable SLT/286 1921 in our Library

Item Manufacturer Date
Personal Computer World - November 1988 1 Nov 1988
PCW Focus - August 1989 1 Aug 1989

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This exhibit has a reference ID of CH6437. Please quote this reference ID in any communication with the Centre for Computing History.


Compaq Portable SLT/286 1921

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