Apple PowerBook Duo 280
The PowerBook Duo 280 is an Apple subnotebook series. Moreover, the PowerBook Duo 280 is a line of Macintosh laptop computers that was designed, manufactured and sold by Apple in 1994. The PowerBook Duo 280 was the fifth laptop series part of the PowerBook Duo series. Although it was discontinued in 1994, the PowerBook Duo 280 was succeeded by several other PowerBook Duo computers.
Furthermore, PowerBook Duo 210, PowerBook Duo 230, PowerBook Duo 250, and PowerBook Duo 270C were either predecessors of 280 or back-to-back products launched in the same time-frame with PowerBook Duo 280. Announced in April 1994 the PowerBook Duo 280 offered an ultraportable design that was light and functional for travel and infinitely expandable via its unique docking connector. However certain compromises were made to achieve this level of portability. The Duo series used an 88% of standard desktop-sized keyboard which was criticized for being difficult to type on. However, the PowerBook Duo 280 featured a slot for an expensive optional built-in 14.4 Express Modem and no provision for built-in Ethernet.
Therefore, the only way to move data in or out of the laptop in a stock configuration without purchasing additional accessories was via a relatively slow AppleTalk connection, which was not practical in the event of hard drive problems. Even more, the trackball was reduced in size from even that used on the PowerBook 100. The PowerBook Duo 280 was discontinued in November 1994, with no immediate replacement — the model that followed it was PowerBook Duo 2300C.
Depending on the location the PowerBook Duo 280 included several different PowerBook Duo 280 notebook models, available on specific regions (North and South America, Europe, Middle East, South Africa, and Asia-Pacific region) and were not available worldwide.
The PowerBook Duo was an Apple subnotebook series. The PowerBook Duo was developed, manufactured, and sold by Apple from 1992 until 1997. It was marketed as a more compact companion to the PowerBook series. Unlike other notebooks the PowerBook Duo has no floppy drive, no SCSI, and no direct way of attaching an external HD or floppy drive. However, the PowerBook Duo machines feature a serial port, phone jack (with internal modem), and a 152-pin 32-bit PDS (processor direct slot) in the back (called a PowerLatch connection), that accesses every signal line on the processor.
The PDS is the element that makes the PowerBook Duo unique – the PDS is a wild card. It allows adapters (called Docks) to connect directly and intimately with the Duo’s motherboard. These adapters let users add features to the Duo at the most fundamental level – something PowerBook users can’t do. Users can add Ethernet, new video capabilities, SCSI-2, accelerators, and other options. The PowerBook Duo series was replaced by the PowerBook 2400, which was slightly larger in size to the Duos, but still only the fifth smallest behind the 12 in (300 mm) PowerBook G4 which succeeded it as fourth smallest. Although both featured much more onboard functionality, they lacked docking capability. Apple presently only offers the MacBook Air in the subnotebook category.
The PowerBook Duo 280, also known as Yeager, was the fifth product in line released within the PowerBook Duo series. The PowerBook Duo 280 was delivered with OS 7.1.1, and was limited to maximum OS 8.1. Moreover, Apple delivered the PowerBook Duo 280 with 33 MHz Motorola MC68LC040 processor, 4 MB RAM (expandable up to 40 MB RAM 4 kB data, 4 kB instruction Level 1 Cache), 4 bit grayscale 640×400 9″ active matrix display, 240 MB hard drive, and the following Input an Output connections: 1 Mini DIN-8 (serial), mono 8 bit speaker, and mono 8 bit microphone, mono-audio in, and mono-audio out. With a width of 10.9″, height of 1.4″, and depth of 8.5″, the PowerBook Duo 250 had a standard starting weight of 4.2 lbs. Apple also embedded in the PowerBook Duo 280 within the expansion department, modem, Dock (152-pin PDS).
The PowerBook Duo 280 was announced in April 1994, and terminated in November 1994, and succeeded by PowerBook Duo 2300C.
Several dock options were offered by Apple in order compensate the lack of common ports within the PowerBook Duo 280 notebooks, such as Duo Dock, Micro Dock, and Mini Dock.
- Duo Dock: The Duo Dock was the largest dock developed for the PowerBook Duo. The Duo Dock pulled the laptop inside the dock’s metal and plastic case via an internal sliding mechanism. The dock turned the PowerBook Duo into a full-size, AC-powered, fully functional desktop computer with all the standard ports. The Duo Dock included a floppy drive on the side, two NuBus expansion slots, an optional FPU, level 2 cache, a slot for more VRAM to enable more colors at higher resolutions, and space for a second hard drive. The Duo Dock could physically support a heavy, high-resolution CRT display on top.
- Micro Dock: The Micro Dock gave the PowerBook Duo 280 up to three extra ports in a minimal configuration, for floppy, SCSI, video and Ethernet docks, each typically included one ADB port as well. The Micro Dock was considered the least expensive, and most basic of the docks. This type of dock allowed the Duo’s internal LCD to be used as well, and could run on the Duo’s internal battery for a reduced amount of time.
- Mini Dock: The Mini Dock allowed the PowerBook Duo 280 to be plugged into various standard desktop devices including SCSI, ADB, serial, floppy, external speakers, and an external display. This type of dock also allowed the Duo’s internal LCD and battery to be used.