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Seattle, WA, USA

Near-mint (NOS?) boxed C64C acquired at PRGE 2017

by intric8 Sun Oct 22, 2017 5:28 pm

At last year's Portland Retro Gaming Expo (PRGE 2016) I scoured the vendor section and, underneath a table, I found an incredible NOS factory sealed Amiga 2000. It had some battery damage, but I was able to rectify that situation and the machine was literally brand new. It made me catch my breath when I unpacked it after I got it home.

Naturally I had visions of locating another arc of the covenant at this year's PRGE 2017.

I did find one Amiga 1000, but it was in really bad shape and the owner had no idea if it worked. It looked as if it had been recovered from the trunk of a car that had been dredged from a cow pond on a cold winter’s morn. The price was a touch too high for my liking considering it’s unknown status so I let it go. I learned that someone else picked it up later that day. I was OK with that.

I went from vendor to vendor asking, "Got any Commodore?" and all I got were a lot of shaking heads. I did see a ton of 1702's in use to demonstrate this or that. God those CRTs last forever and still look amazing, don't they? Talk about the tank of the monitors. And then, right as I was about to give up and start to ponder if I should go back to the grimy A1000, I happened across the top of a box hiding behind some other boxes. I asked the guy behind the table what he had there, and he obliged.

It was a boxed Commodore 64C and it appeared to have never been used. The original price stickers were still on the box from a retailer called Best: $159, reduced to $139, reduced to $100. (Unfortunately, somewhere on the way home the extra $100 sticker fluttered off into the cruel sands of time.) I discovered later that Best was actually called Best Products, founded in 1957 and grew to 169 stores. It went out of business in 1997.
Best employed the "catalog showroom" concept for many of its product offerings. Although some product categories (such as sporting goods and toys) were stocked in traditional self-serve aisles, the majority of products (notably consumer electronics, housewares, and appliances) were featured as unboxed display models. Customers were permitted to examine and experiment with these models, and if found to be desirable, they could be purchased by submitting orders to store personnel.
I have a sneaking suspicion this machine was a display model of some sort back in the day.

Inside the box I found the original sales receipt showing that back on November 29, 1989 this machine had sold for $99.99 plus 7.8% tax for a grand total of $107.79.

The vendor I bought it from said he simply had it in storage for the past 20 years and needed to clear it out. I happily helped him out.

I can say from my first inspection that this machine seems to have never been used.

All of the cables are in their original wire twisties, and the TV modulator is still in the original bubble wrap. None of the manuals look to have ever been opened, either.

The only slightly strange thing about this machine - and the reason I think it was a display model - is that the Commodore 64 sticker has a slight crease in it. And right next to the sticker there is this odd little patch of mild yellowing. Nowhere else is there a single spot of UV damage. I have no idea how that could have occurred. I've tried to enhance the picture of the yellowing below so it can be more easily seen here. Other than that, this machine is a total time capsule.

I got it for $100, the same price Best was asking (a 3rd time) back in 1989.

And... it works. Whew!
Original box for the C64C I picked up at PRGE 2017
Original sales sticker on the outside of the box. There was a second sale one ($99.99) that unfortunately fell off during transport.
Looking into the box of the C64C, like I'm opening a long lost tomb.
The cardboard tray that holds the wiring looks to have been completely undisturbed.
Original receipt and manuals for the C64C. It was originally sold (and seemingly stored) on November 24, 1989 for $107.
This is the best looking C64C I've ever seen.
Serial number for the C64C
The case, other than one weird patch by the logo on the front, is immaculate.
None of the ports have ever been used from the look of it.
Obligatory dramatic C= key closeup.
Virgin wires for the machine, still in their original wrappings.
The one strange blemish on the case is here by the logo, and the logo has a little crease in it. I've enhanced the image here to make it more obvious.
The moment of truth - the machine powers up just fine!
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United Kingdom

Re: Near-mint (NOS?) boxed C64C acquired at PRGE 2017

by ArtstateDigital Sun Oct 22, 2017 5:59 pm

What a fantastic find. It's good to see it's in a home that truly loves and appreciates it. Well done!
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Zippy Zapp

Re: Near-mint (NOS?) boxed C64C acquired at PRGE 2017

by Zippy Zapp Wed Dec 20, 2017 8:41 am

Late to the party but that is fantastic. I hope you got a smoking deal. As for the yellowing of the sticker and the crease that is common as the sticker glue puts off a chemical and causes it to deteriorate even without UV or heat. All of my C64's look like that, even ones that didn't yellow. Even many of my floppy disk labels turned out like this too. Crummy glue. I only glue things now with glue that is Acid free and meant for archiving to last for years.

Nice find.
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Seattle, WA, USA

Re: Near-mint (NOS?) boxed C64C acquired at PRGE 2017

by intric8 Wed Dec 20, 2017 8:44 am

Oh - that's interesting about the glue emitting some sort of chemical. That makes a lot of sense to me now, as this thing was stored since Day One. In a weird way it's sort of an aesthetic Varta battery. LOL

I did get a great deal on it, IMO. Got the whole thing boxed for $100.
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Zippy Zapp

Re: Near-mint (NOS?) boxed C64C acquired at PRGE 2017

by Zippy Zapp Wed Dec 20, 2017 8:58 am

Cool. Yeah I would say $100 for a NOS is a great price. I think I paid $250 for the C128 and 1571 NOS together which was a bit more then I wanted to spend at the time but you know how it is.
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Zippy Zapp

Re: Near-mint (NOS?) boxed C64C acquired at PRGE 2017

by Zippy Zapp Wed Dec 20, 2017 12:15 pm

I forgot to mention that it is cool you have the original receipt and all that. Best products brings back many memories. We had one by our mall, back on those days. It is now a JC Penney furniture store. In the early to late 80's it was a cool place to buy Commodore stuff and home stereo gear. I bought all my speakers, receivers, CD players, etc there as the prices couldn't be beat. They had a great selection of Commodore 64 stuff, games and other software and was the place I frequently bought blank disks from as it was so much cheaper then the local computer store. They sold BASF 5.25" blanks, of which I still have a few boxes of. LOL.

For games and disks you took them up to the register and paid for them and that was it. But for drives, printers, stereo gear, etc, every item had a ticket below it and you took the ticket, paid for the item and then waited for your item to come down the conveyer belt right to the front of the store by the doors. It was pretty cool

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