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S > SANYO  > MBC-1000


This mini forum is intended to provide a simple means of discussion about the Sanyo  MBC-1000 computer. If you want to share your own experience or memories, or add relevant information about this system: post a message!

  Click Here to add a message in the forum


Monday 29th June 2020
Colin Smith (United Kingdom)

I wrote a motor insurance quotation system for the mbc-1000. It had all the cars, 40 insurers and all the age ranges etc. How I fitted it all on one floppy disk frightens me now. It worked and sold loads of them - made someone else (my boss) a fortune!

Saturday 12th January 2019
mr philip sempers (United Kingdom)
My YouTube Channel

There is one for sale on eBay item number:163474461601

Seems like it is rare as hens teeth and I am only a few miles from it. Don''t have the money to get it tho :(

Thursday 18th October 2018
James Smith (Idaho, USA)

The user manuals were interestingly written. A friend opined that a nephew of the Sanyo president who was taking English in Tokyo High School, and not doing well, wrote them. I still chuckle at the memories of deciphering them.

Wednesday 21st September 2016
R H SMITH (United States)





Monday 28th September 2015
Tim Blakey (California)

My oldest brother sold computers in the university bookstore at UOP in the early 1980''s. As an undergraduate, he spent much time teaching university professors how to set up and use their computers. He came into possession of a Sanyo MBC1000 through this connection, and gifted the computer to me in 1986 when he upgraded to a better system.

I loved this machine, my first computer, and it seemed quite magical to me. Even though the Macintosh had been out for two years, I didn''t have one. So to me, my giant MBC1000 felt like a piece of science fiction made real, with its softly glowing green screen and the intermittent crackle-hum of the floppy drives. It was also extremely practical.

It not only had the built-in 5.25" floppy, but it also came to me complete with a daisy-chained external 5.25" drive, a sprocket-fed dot matrix printer, a box of white continuous paper and a stack of floppies.

From that point forward I wrote every school report in WordStar, printed in low-res dots on perforated paper. I no longer had to re-type pages every time I made an edit. In fact, I don''t think I ever used my typewriter again.

But best of all were a collection of three floppies titled ZORK, ZORK II and ZORK III. These games were an instant hit with me, an AD$D geek, and fan of Choose Your Own Adventure books. I learned a lot about how to design games from playing these repeatedly, and guessing at the game''s vocabulary.

I was an art student, and intimidated by the prospect of learning SBASIC. Little did I know that computers would later completely take over the commercial art and design world.

The machine was so large it was like having another roommate. I remember lugging the hulking block of metal and glass from apartment-to-apartment for years. At first it wouldn''t even fit on my small writing desk, so It lived on the floor, and I would spend hours laying on the carpet in front of it playing those games or typing. Sometimes it would occupy my drafting table for serious report-writing, and I eventually built a custom desk that held all of the components on perfectly-sized shelves.

For some reason, I still have the main shelf thirty years later. But sadly, the computer is long-since gone, replaced by a used Macintosh IIcx in 1990. The dot-matrix printer developed a clogged row, and stopped printing descenders. So for a while I had to manually draw every descender with a pencil.

I still have the IIcx, and nearly every computer and laptop I''ve owned since then, but the one computer I miss the most was my mechanical roommate.

Saturday 8th August 2015
Doug Neumann (USA)

In the early 80''s I was employed at an office supply store in the college town of Menomonie, Wisconsin, home to UW Stout. We had started out selling the Timex-Sinclair 1000, graduated to the Commodore VIC20, and eventually advanced to the Commodore 64, the Sanyo MBC-1000, and the NEC APC, which was directed solely at the business market. We even had a Compaq Portable PC - or ''luggable'' as it was often referred to. I always liked the little Sanyo, as the MicroPro software was very user-friendly, and the SBasic it shipped with was easy enough for someone like me to get a handle on. I wrote an interactive SBasic program that would scroll through a number of pages of the Sanyo''s selling points, and even had an ''input page'' that was displayed anytime a key was pressed, so customers could type in their name, which would trigger a sub-routine that ''personalized'' their computer shopping experience. If their first name happened to be the same as one of our staff, an additional sub-routine would be triggered that was intended to offer them some degree of familiarity with a sales person before actual contact - I had noticed that people were often self-conscious about their lack of knowledge about the emerging technology. Even though we sold a lot of the Commodore merchandise, and even some of the very pricey NEC business systems, we never did have a ''taker'' on the Sanyo, and it eventually got relegated to printing mailing labels for sales flyers promoting office supply products. I had always hoped that I''d be able to buy the little system for home use, but it was probably best that I didn''t - technology evolved quickly, and it was soon obsolete, at least as a home computer. Still, I loved the solidly-built little system - especially the metal-encased keyboard. Fond memories indeed...

Thursday 4th April 2013
Otto Fobian (South Africa)

The MBC-1000 was also my first "real" computer. I had been fiddling with Z-80 type stuff but never achieved anything useful. Being a radio ham at the time I interfaced my hf rig to the "1000" and wrote a morse code "reader" in assembler. It was very good at tracking speed and variations in transmission technique. Later I wrote a morse sender as well. Amateur Packet Radio became popular and I wrote several apps for receiving and sending for that too. I had a budgie as a pet which learned the sound of the keyboard clicks. She would sit on the monitor and click away as if typing furiously!!
Many nostalgic memories of those days.

Sunday 20th May 2012
Wolf W. Berger (Bavaria)

For me as a freelance translator working in Japan in 1982 the MBC (I had the 1200 with two floppy disc drives), one of the two types of daisy wheel printer offered by a Tokyo software house called Procom, and their adaption of Wordstar for different languages, this was the very first affordable machine for German. I paid the equivalent of $5,000 for the package and it was all worth it because translation business was booming at that time in Japan. I scrapped the machine after 8 years of heavy duty having used up two keyboards and two floppy drives in the process.

Wednesday 10th September 2008
writeroffthelake (Vanessa) (USA)

My first computer was the Sanyo MBC-1000. You''re right, it had a very fast bootup. Great machine. I paid $1500 for it in, I believe, the fall of ''82 (maybe ''83). I had only 2 options for printers that would work with it and I still had to pay $60 for a parrallel cord to be custom made - they had to have my Sanyo manual. It took them a week to do the cord. I liked the machine so much that in 1985 I bought the more expensive "sister" to it - the Sanyo MBC-4050 because it had 2 floppy drives and double the memory. I sold the MBC-1000 for $150. I''m a freelance writer and I can tell you that the screen on that Sanyo, even when writing 12-15 hours a day, never gave me a headache or eye problems. It was always clear and easy to see, a big plus for a writer. Great computer and a good price - the same price as the Healthkit that was similar, but required you to build it. I was always glad I chickened out on building the Healthkit and bought the Sanyo MBC-1000.

Monday 20th August 2007
Bruce Coulette (Earth)

This machine was extremely rugged and reliable. Many cups of coffee on the keyboard did not kill it. I had a consulting business at the time and took a chance on buying a computer - of course, it made a tremendous difference. No more doing spreadsheets by hand, threw away my White-Out, etc. You always remember your first computer fondly, but this was a really good machine for its day and operating system (CP/M). The price you show was deeply discounted - I paid about $1,600 (no printer).

Tuesday 16th January 2007
Chris Collman (USA)

This was my first PC and used it in our garment manufacturing business. I bought a package that included an MBC-1000, second external 5 1/4 floppy drive, daisy wheel printer, installation and something like 8 hours of instruction for around $4,000 (1983 or 4?). I would guess the retail price of just the computer as pictured was around $2,000. We used CalcStar for our costings and WordStar for letters and stuff like that. In June 2006, I dismantled all the parts and took it to the recycle center, along with my Kaypro which replaced it. Heavy steel construction, very little plastic. I still have my custom boot disk and WordStar program disk, just to impress other old timers !

Thursday 17th August 2006
John Van Laer (Earth)

My parents worked as insurance brokers and had a Sanyo MBC 1000 for a while, I remember it well! We had insurance quotation software for it, plus Wordstar and an adventure game (called Adventur on the disk label, I think it was Classic Adventure for the CPC, for example). I've still got the software at home somewhere - with the eventual aim of connecting a 5.25" drive to a CPC6128 and using it that way - but the Sanyo machine disappeared long ago...

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