One of only 50 or so Apple I computers still in existence is up for grabs at an auction running over the next eight days. Online auctioneer Christie's has started the bidding at £240,000 (US$370,000) for the Apple 1 personal computer, which even comes accompanied by a original manual.

Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs began work on their Apple 1 computers in 1976 and would go on to build around 200 of the machines, which became the first personal computers to make it to market. These early computers were sold without cases, power supplies, keyboards or monitors but the motherboards were pre-assembled, which set them apart from the competition at the time.

The model on offer comes with a rare first manual, as issued by Apple, which is said to be in very good condition. The board has been mounted in a painted fiberglass case with keyboard and has been fitted with an original Apple cassette interface.

According to the condition report, the electronics have not been tested, but it claims that the machine could be brought up to working order again with the help of a certified engineer. It was last turned on in 2005. Seven Centuries of Science is expecting a winning bid of anywhere between £300,000 and £500,000 (US$463,000 and $770,000) for the computer.

This is a lot of money by anyone's measure, but it won't be enough to make this relic the most expensive Apple computer ever sold. A 1976 Apple 1 motherboard that changed hands at Bonhams' History of Science auction last year holds that title, following a mammoth bid of US$905,000.

If you're an Apple devotee that happens to have some spare change lying around, you can try your luck via the source link below.

Source: Christie's

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