Apple IIGS Personal Computer

The computers in the Apple II family were among the most popular personal computers in the late 1970s and 1980s. The last model and most impressive of the Apple II family was the Apple II GS (GS=graphics + sound). When it was released in September of 1986—Apple's 10th anniversary—at the price of $999 (without a monitor—or $1498 with an RGB monitor), the Apple II GS competed against other computers such as the Commodore Amiga and the Atari ST.
The Apple II GS used the Western Design Center 65816 16 bit microprocessor, which ran at 2.8 Mhz. It had 256 KB of RAM, which could be expanded to 8 MB. There were seven slots to accommodate an expansion of memory. It was the first computer to utilize the Apple Desktop Bus (ADB) which linked standard input device such as keyboards, mice, and graphics tablets. This made it possible for Apple to sell a single set of peripherals that both the Apple Computer and later the Macintosh could use. The IIGS display had a 600 X 200 pixel mode with 2-bit palletized cooler and a 320 X 200 pixel mode with a 4-bit palletized color. The Apple II GS could display 256 colors on the screen. Its ProDOS 16 as system software allowed users to handle any number of open files at the same time.
The IIGS seemed well positioned to capture a large market. However, by the time it was released, Apple was putting its energy into developing the Macintosh and the IIGS suffered from limited marketing. Apple discontinued the line in December 1992.
Currently not on view
Object Name
Date made
Apple Computer
Physical Description
plastic (overall material)
metal (overall material)
rubber (overall material)
overall: 12 cm x 18.3 cm x 35 cm; 4 3/4 in x 7 3/16 in x 13 3/4 in
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Family & Social Life
Computers & Business Machines
See more items in
Medicine and Science: Computers
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Richard M. and Susan S. Taffet

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