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In the fast-evolving realm of personal computing, few names command as much reverence and innovation as Apple. The tech giant has been leading the charge for decades, consistently delivering groundbreaking products that redefine the limits of technology. Among these innovations, the Macintosh Performa 6116CD remains a significant milestone, etching its legacy in the history of computing.
On a remarkable day, July 17, 1995, Apple took the world by storm with the official debut of the Macintosh Performa 6116CD. Priced at $1,900, this computer marked the pinnacle of the Macintosh Performa series. Tailored for both home users and small businesses, the Performa 6116CD combined an array of cutting-edge features that were ahead of its time.
At its heart, the Macintosh Performa 6116CD housed a robust 60 MHz PowerPC 601 processor, accompanied by 8 MB of RAM, a 700 MB hard drive, a 2x CD-ROM drive, and a 1.44 MB floppy drive. This amalgamation of specifications bestowed the Performa 6116CD with remarkable processing power, enabling it to seamlessly tackle a spectrum of everyday tasks.
Though the Macintosh Performa 6116CD’s run was relatively brief, being discontinued on April 1, 1996, its memory lingered on in the hearts of Apple enthusiasts. Today, as it celebrates its 28-year anniversary, the Performa 6116CD stands as a testament to Apple’s commitment to pushing the boundaries of innovation.
The Macintosh Performa 6116CD amalgamated the prowess of PowerPC technology with unparalleled ease of setup and operation, all wrapped up in an attractive price-performance package. Geared towards families and individuals seeking a high-performance multimedia computer, this complete system includes the CPU, monitor, fax modem, Apple Design Keyboard and Mouse, and a suite of top-tier third-party software applications.
Bundled with 18 software applications, the Macintosh Performa 6116CD capitalized on the capabilities of PowerPC technology, boasting speeds up to six times faster than its predecessors. It even supported MS-DOS and Windows applications, bridging the gap between different computing ecosystems.
Driven by the 60-megahertz PowerPC 601 microprocessor, jointly developed by Apple, IBM, and Motorola, the Performa 6116CD boasted a built-in floating-point math coprocessor. The machine was armed with a 700MB hard disk and expandable 8 megabytes of RAM (with potential expansion up to 72 megabytes). Additionally, a built-in CD-ROM and high-speed Ethernet support were baked into the system.
Not content with being just another computer, the Macintosh Performa 6116CD came with a 14” diagonal high-resolution color display and a 14.4k-bps data and electronic fax modem. But it didn’t stop there – the computer showcased its futuristic spirit with built-in speech recognition and text-to-speech capabilities. It was a full-fledged multimedia marvel.
With the inclusion of an AV expansion kit, the Macintosh Performa 6116CD transformed into a versatile hub, offering S-video and composite video input and output. This feature enabled seamless connections with televisions, video cameras, and video recorders, showcasing Apple’s vision for a connected digital world.
The Performa 6116CD’s journey was also marked by changes in the digital landscape. The eWorld online service option, bundled with the computer, paved the way for what was to come. Today, this service has evolved into America Online, an embodiment of the dynamic shifts in the tech industry.
In hindsight, the Macintosh Performa 6116CD was more than a computer – it was a gateway to the future of personal computing. This affordable marvel ushered in the era of PowerPC technology, encapsulating Apple’s knack for innovation and pushing the boundaries of what was thought possible.
Notably, the model came with an external 28.8k modem and a specialized “business” software bundle, underscoring Apple’s intent to cater to a diverse audience. This variant omitted the monitor, showcasing Apple’s readiness to cater to varied computing needs.
The Performa 6116CD wasn’t alone in its journey. Its business-oriented counterpart, the Power Macintosh 6100, and the server version, the Workgroup Server 6150, stood alongside it, forming a comprehensive family of devices designed to cater to every need.
As we reminisce about the Macintosh Performa 6116CD, we’re reminded of Apple’s pioneering spirit that continues to define the tech landscape. This piece of history is a testament to how innovation and technology go hand in hand, shaping the course of the future while etching their stories into the annals of time.
Macintosh Performa 6116CD Details
|Introduced||July 17, 1995|
|Discontinued||April 1, 1996|
|Dimensions||3.4” H x 16.3” W x 15.6” D|
8.63 cm H x 41.4 cm W x 39.62 cm D
Mac Performa 6116CD Tech Specs
|Processor Speed||60 MHz|
|Number of Cores||1|
|System Bus||30 MHz|
|Cache||32 KB L1 |
256 KB L2 (Optional)
Storage & Media
|Media||1 – 1.44 MB Floppy|
1 – 2x CD-ROM (Optional for AV models)
|Built-in Memory||8 MB|
|Maximum Memory||132 MB (Actual)|
72 MB (Apple)
|Memory Slots||2 – 72 pin SIMMs (Group of 2)|
|Minimum Speed||80 ns|
|Graphics Memory||2 MB DRAM|
|Display Connection||1 – HDI-45|
|Expansion Slots||1 – 7″ PDS or NuBus|
|Hard Drive Interface||SCSI|
|SCSI||1 – DB-25|
|Audio In||1 – 3.5-mm analog input jack|
|Audio Out||1 – 3.5-mm analog output jack|
1 – Built-in speaker
|Display||1 – HDI-45|
|Original OS||System Software 7.5|
|Maximum OS||Mac OS 9.1|
|Backup Battery||3.6 V lithium|
|Maximum Continuous Power||210 W|
|Line Voltage||100-240 V|
Further Reading and References
- Macintosh Performa 6116CD: Technical Specifications – Apple Support
- Macintosh Performa 6116CD – IT History Society
- Macintosh Performa – Wikipedia
- Macintosh Performa 6100 Series Service Source (PDF) – Apple Repair Manuals
Disclaimer: The data presented in this article is under continuous development and has been manually collected from various sources based on their availability. The author of this article may revise this dataset as additional research is conducted and reviewed. Please note that the information is provided “as is” and “as available” without express or implied warranties. The author cannot be held responsible for any omissions, inaccuracies, or errors in the published information. Any warranties relating to this information are hereby disclaimed.
Last updated: August 27, 2023