Christie’s Expects Apple 1 to Fetch $127K at Auction

Christie’s announced this week the auction of another Apple 1 motherboard, and the auction house expects it to fetch between £50,000 and £80,000 ($79,180 - $126,694). The motherboard is one of 50 thought to still exist, though it isn’t one of the six that still works.

Apple 1 Auction

Christie’s Apple 1 Auction

The motherboard came from the estate of one Joe Copson, a former Apple employee, and the motherboard has the serial number 22. Related: Our condolences to the Copson family.

The Apple 1 was envisioned by Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, designed by Mr. Wozniak, built by Messrs. Wozniak and Jobs and some of their friends, and then marketed and sold by Mr. Jobs for $666.66 (an amount based on the cost of goods). It is believed that some 200 were sold, but as noted above, only 50 are still known to exist.

The computer was sold as a completed motherboard, a first at the time as all other “home computers” available on the market t the time were available only in kit form. That said, users still had to supply their own power supply, a case, if they wanted it, a keyboard for input, and a TV for a display.

To that end, note that the keyboard included in Christie’s photograph (above) is not an Apple keyboard.

In any event, it’s place in history for both personal computing and Apple itself means that when these devices come up for sell, they get a lot of interest.

As noted by James Hyslop, Scientific Specialist for Christie’s, “This is the computer that started Apple, now recognized as the most valuable company in the world; its significance in making computer technology accessible for all cannot be undervalued.”

Christie’s auctioned another Apple 1 in November of 2011, shortly after the death of Steve Jobs. That unit included a box and original Apple documentation, and it went for £133,250 (US$213,600 at that time).

The auction will be held on October 9th, 2012, in London.