Acer Group/Multitech Electronics Inc. (Sunnyvale, Calif.)

Acer is a leading Taiwanese computer manufacturer founded in 1976 by Stan Shih under the name Multitech Electronics, and it focused largely on product design. The company became known as Acer in the US in 1987. Models produced in 1987 might have the Multitech or Acer brand.  Today, Acer is one of the few PC makers to survive, ranking as the second largest producer of PCs worldwide in 2009.

Over the years, Acer has acquired several well-known PC brands including Gateway (and its sister brand eMachines) in 2007 and Packard Bell in 2008. In 1997, it acquired the Extensa laptop PC line from Texas Instruments.

In the early 1980s, Multitech was known for its Micro-Professor (MPF) series. The MPF-I was a computer trainer aimed at the education market, originally with a Z80 CPU but later sold with an optional 8088 CPU. The unit was sold in a case that opened like a book. In September 1983, when Multitech announced its enhanced MPF-I Professional (MPF-IP), it claimed to have sold 40,000 of the original MPF-I.

The MPF-II was a 6502-based Apple-compatible system in a compact book-like form factor with a built-in Chiclet-style keyboard. The MPF-II-C was a Chinese-language version announced in 1982. The company claimed it was the first microcomputer capable of generating Chinese characters. It sold in the US for $599.

Multitech Micro-Professor IIC

Multitech Micro-Professor II-C

The Multitech MPF-III took a different form factor than its predecessors. It has a separate CPU enclosure and keyboard. It was software compatible with the Apple II.

Multitech offered two MIC-500 models: the MIC-501 had single-sided, double-density floppy drives while the MIC-504 had double-sided, double-density floppy drives. Aimed at business market; the MIC-500 could be upgraded to a multiuser system.

Multitech targeted the US market from the beginning, but remained a presence in the Chinese market. For example, the DCS-570 Bilingual Workstation came with a Chinese-language DOS and a Chinese-language version to T/Maker, which allowed users to work in English or Chinese.

Multitech Micro-Professor I (MPF-I) (1981, single-board trainer)
Original Retail Price: $149.95
Base Configuration: Z80  CPU, 4K RAM (10K max), 8K ROM, speaker, set of textbooks, Tiny BASIC, cassette interface
Video: 6-digit LED display
Important Options: EPB-MPF EPROM Programmer Board, SSB-MPF Speech Synthesizer Board, PRT-MPF Thermal Printer, SGB-MPF Sound Generation Board, ACC-MPF Experiment/Expanion Kit

Multitech Micro-Professor I Professional (MPF-I) (1983, single-board trainer)
Original Retail Price: $199
Base Configuration: Z80 (MPF-IP) or 8088 (MPF-I/88) CPU, 2K RAM (4K max), 2K ROM (8K max), speaker, set of textbooks, Tiny BASIC, cassette interface
Video: 20-digit display
Important Options: EPB-MPF EPROM Programmer Board, SSB-MPF Speech Synthesizer Board, PRT-MPF Thermal Printer, SGB-MPF Sound Generation Board, ACC-MPF Experiment/Expanion Kit

Multitech Micro-Professor II (MPF-II) (1982, Apple II-class desktop)
Original Retail Price: $399
Base Configuration: 6502 CPU, 64K RAM, built-in 49-key keyboard, cassette storage, Centronics port, speaker, 12K BASIC
Video: 40 characters x 25 lines, 6 colors
Important Options: thermal printer, joystick

Multitech Micro-Professor II

Multitech Micro-Professor II

 

Multitech Micro-Professor III (MPF-III) (1983, Apple II-class desktop)
Original Retail Price: $995
Base Configuration: 6502 CPU, 16K RAM, 64K ROM; 24K ROM; TV video and monitor ports; keyboard/keypad; parallel, game, and cassette ports
Video: 80-column text, 16 colors

Multitech MIC-500 Series (1983, desktop)
Original Retail Price: $1,599
Base Configuration: 5MHz Z80A CPU, CP/M 2.2, 64K RAM, two 5.25-inch floppy disk drives, keyboard/keypad, two RS-232C and one parallel port, application suite, CBASIC, owner’s and software manuals
Size/Weight: 15.7 x 3.9 x 13.6 inches
Software: WordRight, Magic Worksheet, Analyst, Qsort, NAD
Important Options: 33MB hard disk drive, 12-inch monochrome monitor

Multitech MPF-PC (1983, PC)
Important Options: MPF-PC/ET high-resolution monitor

Multitech DCS-570 Bilingual Workstation (1985, PC)
Base Configuration: Chinese DOS
Software: Chinese T/Maker

Multitech Popular 500 (1985, PC)
Original Retail Price: $859
Base Configuration: 4.77MHz 8088 CPU
Important Options: MHM-15 high-resolution monitor

Multitech Plus 700 (1985, PC)
Original Retail Price: $1,395
Base Configuration: 4.77/8MHz 8088-2 CPU
Important Options: MHM-15 high-resolution monitor

Multitech Accel 900 (1985, PC)
Original Retail Price: $2,395
Base Configuration: 6/10MHz 80286 CPU, 512K RAM (1MB max), 1.2MB floppy disk drive, black-and-white monitor, MS-DOS 3.1
Important Options: 30MB or 40MB hard disk drive, MHM-15 high-resolution monitor

Multitech Accel 900

Multitech Accel 900

Acer 710 (1987, PC)
Original Retail Price: $995
Base Configuration: 10MHz 8088 CPU, 768K RAM, 20MB hard disk drive (Model 20), 360K floppy disk drive (Model 1), 2 360K floppy disk drives (Model 2), 4 8-bit slots, RS-232C port, parallel port, light pen port, 84-key keyboard, 85W power supply, MS-DOS 3.2

Video: 80 characters by 25 lines, MDA, MGA, CGA, Plantronics Color-plus
Size and Weight: 5H x 14.2W x 16.2D inches, 30 lbs.
Important Options: 12-inch MM-12 or 14-inch MM-14 monochrome monitor, 14-inch CVM-14 color monitor, 14-inch dual frequency enhanced color monitor, Acer modem,  Acer Enhanced Color Graphics Adapter

Acer 900 (1987, PC)
Original Retail Price: $3,395
Base Configuration: 8/12MHz 80286 CPU, 512K RAM (1MB max), 20MB hard disk drive (Model 20), 40MB hard disk drive (Model 40), 80MB hard disk drive (Model 80), 1.2MB floppy disk drive, 6 16-bit and 2 8-bit slots, 2 RS-232C ports, parallel port, 101-key keyboard, 196W power supply, MS-DOS 3.2
Video: 80 characters by 25 lines
Size and Weight: 6.5H x 21W x 17D inches, 42 lbs.
Important Options: 12- or 14-inch monochrome monitor, 14-inch color monitor, 14-inch dual frequency enhanced color monitor, Acer modem,  Acer Enhanced Color Graphics Adapter

Acer 910 (1987, PC)
Original Retail Price: $1,795
Base Configuration: 10MHz 80286 CPU, 512K RAM (1MB max), 20MB hard disk drive (Model 20), 40MB hard disk drive (Model 40), 80MB hard disk drive (Model 80), 1.2MB floppy disk drive, 4 16-bit and 2 8-bit slots, 2 RS-232C ports, parallel port, light pen port, 84-key keyboard, 135W power supply, MS-DOS 3.2
Video: 80 characters by 25 lines
Size and Weight: 5.9H x 16.15W x 15.76D inches, 31 lbs.
Important Options: 12-inch MM-12 or 14-inch MM-14 monochrome monitor, 14-inch  color monitor, 14-inch CVM-14TE dual frequency enhanced color monitor, Acer modem,  Acer EGA-ATI Enhanced Color Graphics Adapter

Acer 910

Acer 910

Acer 1100 (1986, PC)
Original Retail Price: $3,995
Base Configuration: 16MHz 80386 CPU, 1MB RAM (16MB max), 40MB hard disk drive (Model 40), 80MB hard disk drive (Model 80), 130MB hard disk drive (Model 130), 1.2MB floppy disk drive, 5 16-bit and 2 8-bit slots, 2 RS-232C ports, parallel port, 101-key keyboard, 196W power supply, MS-DOS 3.2
Video: 80 characters by 25 lines
Size and Weight: 6.5H x 21W x 17D inches, 51 lbs.
Important Options: 12- or 14-inch ADM-14 monochrome monitor, 14-inch color monitor, 14-inch CVM-14TE dual frequency enhanced color monitor, Acer ComcoModem 2400 modem, Acer 3-in-1 Graphics Display Board, Acer EGA-ATI Enhanced Graphics Adapter, MFB-AT multifunction board

Multitech/Acer 1100

The Multitech 1100 was eventually relabeled the Acer 1100

Acer LAN 500 (1986, diskless PC)
Base Configuration: 8088 CPU

 

 

 

 

Multitech/Acer LAN 500

The Multitech LAN 500 eventually became the Acer LAN 500

 

Acer LAN 900 (1987, diskless PC)
Original Retail Price: $1,595
Base Configuration: 8/12MHz 80286 CPU, 512K RAM (1MB max), 16-bit and 8-bit slots, RS-232C port, parallel port, 84-key keyboard, 135W power supply, ARCNet LAN card, MS-DOS 3.2
Video: 80 characters by 25 lines, MDA, CGA, Hercules
Size and Weight: 3.3H x 14.2W x 16.2D inches
Important Options: 360K floppy disk drive, 12- or 14-inch monochrome monitor, 14-inch color monitor, 14-inch dual frequency enhanced color monitor

Acer ACROS 4221G (1994, multimedia PC)
Original Retail Price: $1,199
Base Configuration: 33MHz 80486SX CPU, 4MB RAM (36MB max), 512K video RAM, 210MB hard disk drive, 3.5-inch floppy disk drive, double-speed CD-ROM drive, fax/modem, speakers, 4 ISA slots, 16-bit Soundblaster sound card, 145W power supply, 101-key keyboard, PS/2 mouse, MS-DOS, Windows
Software: Microsoft Multimedia Works, Microsoft Entertainment Pack, Microsoft Productivity Pack, Microsoft Encarta, Microsoft Cinemania, Microsoft Sound Bits, Microsoft Multimedia Golf, Intuit Quicken, Prodigy, America Online, Phoenix Micro-Fax

Acer ACROS 4471G (1994, multimedia PC)
Original Retail Price: $1,499
Base Configuration: 33MHz 80486DX CPU, 4MB RAM (36MB max), 1MB video RAM, 340MB hard disk drive, 3.5-inch floppy disk drive, double-speed CD-ROM drive, fax/modem, speakers, 4 ISA slots, 16-bit Soundblaster sound card, 145W power supply, 101-key keyboard, PS/2 mouse, MS-DOS, Windows
Software: Microsoft Multimedia Works, Microsoft Entertainment Pack, Microsoft Productivity Pack, Microsoft Encarta, Microsoft Cinemania, Microsoft Sound Bits, Microsoft Multimedia Golf, Intuit Quicken, Prodigy, America Online, Phoenix Micro-Fax

Acer ACROS 4581G (1994, multimedia PC)
Original Retail Price: $1,699
Base Configuration: 50MHz 80486DX2 CPU, 4MB RAM (36MB max), 1MB video RAM, 420MB hard disk drive, 3.5-inch floppy disk drive, double-speed CD-ROM drive, fax/modem, speakers, 4 ISA slots, 16-bit Soundblaster sound card, 145W power supply, 101-key keyboard, PS/2 mouse, MS-DOS, Windows
Software: Microsoft Multimedia Works, Microsoft Entertainment Pack, Microsoft Productivity Pack, Microsoft Encarta, Microsoft Cinemania, Microsoft Sound Bits, Microsoft Multimedia Golf, Intuit Quicken, Prodigy, America Online, Phoenix Micro-Fax

Acer AcerPower 8681TG (1994, multimedia PC)
Original Retail Price: $1,999
Base Configuration: 66MHz 80486DX2 CPU, 4MB RAM (64MB max), 1MB video RAM, 420MB hard disk drive, 3.5-inch floppy disk drive, double-speed CD-ROM drive, fax/modem, speakers, 6 ISA slots, 2 VESA slots, 16-bit Soundblaster sound card, 200W power supply, 101-key keyboard, PS/2 mouse, MS-DOS, Windows
Software: Microsoft Multimedia Works, Microsoft Entertainment Pack, Microsoft Productivity Pack, Microsoft Encarta, Microsoft Cinemania, Microsoft Sound Bits, Microsoft Multimedia Golf, Intuit Quicken, Prodigy, America Online, Phoenix Micro-Fax
Important Options: Pentium Overdrive CPU

Acer AcerPower 9607TG (1994, multimedia PC)
Original Retail Price: $2,799
Base Configuration: 60MHz Pentium CPU, 8MB RAM (96MB max), 1MB video RAM, 540MB hard disk drive, 3.5-inch floppy disk drive, double-speed CD-ROM drive, fax/modem, speakers, 5 ISA slots, 3 PCI slots, 16-bit Soundblaster sound card, 200W power supply, 101-key keyboard, PS/2 mouse, MS-DOS, Windows
Video: ATI PCI graphics card
Software: Microsoft Multimedia Works, Microsoft Entertainment Pack, Microsoft Productivity Pack, Microsoft Encarta, Microsoft Cinemania, Microsoft Sound Bits, Microsoft Multimedia Golf, Intuit Quicken
Important Options: Pentium Overdrive CPU

Literature:

1982 multitech presskit introduces first microcomputer to handle chinese 9-14-82
1983 multitech special price list for wescon show 11-8-83
1983 multitech price list and software brochure 7-29-83
1983 multitech presentation outline 9-12-83
1983 multitech mpf-IP press release upgrades popular microcomputer for educational
1983 multitech mpf-I mpf-IP brochure learn computing
1983 multitech mic-500 letter and brochure 3-1-84
1983 multitech brochure office power
1986 multitech presskit debuts new products at comdex 11-10-86
1987 acer presskit multitech electronics shifts us production to acer 4-29-87
1987 acer presskit introducing thenew 386-based multitech 1100 5-8-87
1987 acer presskit acer technologies targets comdex to make pc industry debut 6-1-87
1987 acer press release acer technologies targets comdex 6-1-87
1994 acer acros multimedia pcs adds new models to multimedia family pr 2-7-94

One comment

  1. I have a complete Multitech Acer 700. It is from 1987 and is not on your list.

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