Kaypro IV Portable Computer

Kaypro was a manufacturer of portable microcomputers running the CP/M operating system. Its first commercial model, Kaypro II, was launched in 1982. The Kaypro IV was introduced in 1983. Surprisingly, it is not the same as the Kaypro 4, which was released in 1984.
The Kaypro IV was basically a Kaypro II with added Double Sided/Double Density Drives. It had a Z80 microprocessor that ran at 2.5 MHz. The memory included 64 KB of RAM and 2 KB of ROM. Kaypro IV had a 9" monochrome monitor and a built-in speaker. The operating system was CP/M 2.2. The Kaypro IV included the word processor Wordstar, which was included in the Perfect Software Suite.
The introduction of the IBM PC in 1981 led to the rapid growth in popularity of the MS-DOS operating system for personal computers. Software developers migrated to writing for MS-DOS instead of CP/M. Kaypro was slow to make the transition in their machines, and the company never gained the kind of prominence in the MS-DOS arena that it had enjoyed with CP/M. A prime competitor for the MS-DOS portable market was Compaq, which sold an "all in one" computer that was similar to its own CP/M portable. In March 1990 Kaypro filed for bankruptcy.
This Kaypro IV was purchased with funds from a research grant obtained by Robert M. Smith, of the Department of Space History of the National Air and Space Museum. Smith's book, The Space Telescope, was written in part on this computer.
Currently not on view
Date made
Kaypro Corporation
Physical Description
metal (overall material)
plastic (overall material)
overall: 21.5 cm x 48 cm x 43 cm; 8 7/16 in x 18 7/8 in x 16 15/16 in
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Computers
Computers & Business Machines
Family & Social Life
Data Source
National Museum of American History