Photo Credit: Love Hulten
Back in 1984 when Steve Jobs introduced the Macintosh (later called Macintosh 128k after its successor hit the market) was well met and was arguably advanced for its time. It was a great computer but an ugly one in today’s standards: it was a big block of plastic you can carry around and like most computers at its time, it was beige. And yes, beige is pretty much an ugly color.
However, more than 30 years after its release it is making a fashionable return, all thanks to Love Hulten, a Swedish designer and expert craftsman. He brought forth the Golden Apple, a beautiful combination of art and technology rolled into a single, rectangular block – we’re sure that even the designers at Apple would be awestruck
What’s it made of?
The replica computer is made of materials you would not expect to be used on an electonic device. The wooden base of the mouse, keyboard, and computer are made from American Walnut, giving them a dark and antique-like feel most collectors would swoon at. Though the materials have changed, the dimensions and size have not been altered, making it a fitting replica.
Photo Credit: Love Hulten
The keyboard has a Victorian-era and steampunk vibe into it, considering that the keys are made from zinc and plated with gold. The wood, zinc, and gold combination is beautiful, and it’s something you might have seen in a museum instead of a designer’s showroom. It is connected to the device via USB drive and connector.
As for the mouse, which is fully made of walnut, is wireless – it uses Bluetooth to connect.
The detail of the craftsmanship is impeccable: it covers everything from the original handle on top of the Mac, along with the lower side and the top vents. Topping it off is a gold colored Apple logo in front, a fitting trinket to an already aesthetically-pleasing device.
Does it work?
If you are expecting it to run the original software, prepare to be disappointed: it does not. What the redesigned Macintosh 128k Golden Apple has is much better: inside the walnut body is an up-to-date Mac Mini running the latest software. So yes, you can use a replica of the old Macintosh to browse Internet, play games, and even work. It’s fully functional, though we would not recommend it for heavy use: after all, you would want to take good care of the keyboard – you’re literally hitting gold as you type.
The floppy disk drive has been replaced with a DVD drive. After all, who uses floppy disks anyway: we’re prepared to bet that most kids and teens nowadays don’t even know what it is…they’re only familiar with since it’s the save icon of a famous word processing program.
I want it badly. Can I buy it?
Unfortunately, Hulten made this to troll all Apple fans – it’s not for sale and there’s no way you can buy it – though it wouldn’t hurt to send him an e-mail and make an inquiry. Pieces like that deserve to be placed in every Apple fans’ collection though. However, no one’s stopping you from making your own, though you’ll need an insane amount of skill and resources to make it.
Other than the Macintosh 128k replica, he also has several items in his showroom – like redesigned arcade game consoles, which are up for sale. There’s even a wooden and working Game Boy SP. Most of his works center on giving technology an antique-like feel. You can contact him if you want to have him work on a project.
How does the old Macintosh 128k fare?
The old Mac was priced at $2,495 and was the first ever personal computer ever placed on American homes. In complete contrast to today’s situation, the Mac was priced lower compared to its competitors, which is one of the reasons why it became a huge success. It was armed with a Motorola 68000 microprocessor, with a speed of 8 MHz, and a 128 KB of RAM. Sure, the specifications today would make it as powerful as a scientific calculator, but it was ahead of its time.
The mouse, was one of the reasons why it stood out over its competitors: Macintosh used the now-mainstay point and click system instead of text-based commands every other computer was using at the time.
Regardless, it doesn’t stand a chance against its replica – it’s like fighting in a gun battle using a stick.
Overall, it’s great to see artists like Love Hulten paying tribute to one of the greatest technological advancements in the 20th century. His works definitely deserve a spot in a premiere showroom, considering how beautiful they look and how ingeniously they are designed.
We hope the Golden Apple sets a trend and hopefully, we’ll see a redesigned Apple I, Apple II, and even a 1998 iMac made by various designers who are inspired by Hulten’s initiative.