Morrow Designs Inc. (San Leandro, Calif.)

George Morrow’s first company was Morrow’s Microstuff, which sold memory boards for the MITS Altair 8800 via mail order. Morrow Designs was originally called Thinker Toys, but Playskool, the company that sells Tinker Toys, forced Morrow to change the name. Morrow was a well-regarded microcomputer designer, and the computers his company produced are popular with hobbyists today.

The Decision 1 was sold in single- and multi-user configurations. The multi-user version used Micronix, Morrow’s own Unix-like multi-user, multitasking operating system that could emulate CP/M.

Morrow sold the Micro Decision–the company’s first single-user-only computer–with a smart terminal (a relabeled Lear Siegler ADM 20). However, it will accept any terminal. A Micro Decision with a single double-density floppy drive was called the MD1. With two double-density drives the system is called the MD2, and a system with two double-sided, double density drives is called the MD3.

A business system with hard drive and monitor for under $3,000 was a bargain in 1983. Although Morrow was a respected brand, more and more people were looking for PC-compatible systems, and the MD11 did not sell in large numbers. The MD5-E was one of the first–if not the first–complete hard-drive systems offered for under $2,000.

The Pivot is nearly identical to the Osborne 3/Encore and the Zenith Z-171. Morrow upgraded the LCD to a 25-line backlit display in 1985 with the introduction of the Pivot 2. It was heavier but offered higher video resolution, an RGB video port, and a 272K RAM disk.

Morrow Decision 1 (1981, desktop)
Original Retail Price: $1,495 to $4,995
Base Configuration: 4MHz Z80A CPU, Micronix, 14 S-100 slots, 64K RAM (1MB max), 2K ROM, three RS-232C and one parallel port, BASIC-80, BaZic, application suite
Size/Weight: 19 x 21 x 7.5 inches, 40 lbs.
Important Options: 5.25-inch floppy disk drive, 10- or 16MB hard disk drive

Morrow Micro Decision (1982, desktop)
Original Retail Price: $1,790
Base Configuration: 4MHz Z80A CPU, CP/M 2.2, expansion port, 64K RAM, 5.25-inch floppy disk drive, 12-inch monochrome video terminal with keyboard/keypad, two RS-232C ports, BASIC-80, BaZic, application suite
Video: 24-line x 80-column text
Size/Weight: 16.7 x 11.3 x 5.3 inches, 14.2 lbs.
Important Options: 8088 coprocessor, second 5.25-inch floppy disk drive

Morrow MD11 (Nov. 1983, desktop)
Original Retail Price: $2,745
Base Configuration: 4MHz Z80 CPU, CP/M Plus, 128K RAM, 8K ROM, 5.25-inch floppy disk drive, 11MB hard disk drive, 12-inch monochrome monitor, keyboard/keypad, three RS-232 and one parallel port, BASIC-80, application suite, nine-volume manual set
Video: 24-line x 80-column text
Size/Weight: 17 x 11.5 x 5.5 inches
Important Options: 8088 coprocessor, MS-DOS, 16- or 34MB hard disk drive

Morrow MD5-E (1984, desktop)
Original Retail Price: $1,999
Base Configuration: CP/M 3.0, 128K RAM, 5.25-inch floppy disk drive, 5.4MB hard disk drive, monochrome monitor, keyboard/keypad, application suite
Important Options: second hard disk drive

Morrow Portable MD3 (early 1984, transportable)
Original Retail Price: $1,899
Base Configuration: Z80 CPU, CP/M 2.2, 64K RAM, two 5.25-inch floppy disk drives, integral 9-inch monochrome CRT, keyboard/keypad, BASIC-80 and BaZic, application suite
Video: 24-line x 80-column text
Size/Weight: 19 x 15.5 x 7.15 inches
Important Options: internal modem

Morrow Pivot (1984, transportable PC)
Original Retail Price: $2,500
Base Configuration: 3.5MHz 80C86 CPU, MS-DOS 2.11, 128K RAM (512K max), 5.25-inch floppy disk drive, monochrome LCD, integral keyboard, RS-232C and parallel ports, internal modem, AC adapter
Video: 16-line x 80-column text, 480 x 128 graphics
Size/Weight: 9.5 x 13 x 5.5 inches, 9.5 lbs.
Important Options: second 5.25-inch floppy disk drive, NiCad battery pack

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