• Updated 2023-07-12: Hello, Guest! Welcome back, and be sure to check out this follow-up post about our outage a week or so ago.

New-in-box Macintosh 21-inch Color Display (1991)


Well-known member
I posted about this on r/VintageApple, but figured you all might appreciate hearing more of the story.

Here are some photos, including a couple not in the reddit post.

On Tuesday, someone tipped me off about an Apple box sitting out on the curb. They said it looked like something was inside of it. Since CRTs in good condition are hard to come across I figured it'd be worth the trip to check it out. It turned out to be a brand new, sealed Macintosh 21-Inch Color display. The person clearing out the house said they only cut the tape on the top of the box that morning to take a peek. These pics on imgur show the unboxing. It's nothing special compared to contemporary Apple packaging, but amazing to experience opening a brand new example of the heaviest Apple product ever made at 100lbs (ANS was only 84!) -- and a 30-year-old one at that.

Today I connected it to a Quadra 950 and it fired right up. Looks sharp and there were no scary noises or magic smoke. The degauss noise is a little intense, like a radar ping. It sounds almost identical to the Radius Color Pivot.

Mac84 on reddit asked about the 13W3 cable it came with, since there are several variants of it. The part number on this one is 590-0615-A. Other bundled accessories include a power cable, ADB cable, AppleColor Graphics Sampler CD, manuals and warranty card.

I have a lot of neat things in my collection, but this one is quite special. Now that it's tested I'll be packing it back up and putting it in storage again for a while to keep it pristine, but have some ideas of how to display it in the future.

I think it fits best paired with a Quadra 950, but let me know what computer and graphics card you'd connect it to.

Oh, and this wasn't the only thing that was there. So far I've also picked up:

  • Macintosh Portrait Display (Mint condition)
  • AppleColor High Resolution RGB Display (Excellent condition)
  • Macintosh IIx (Good condition; needs recapping)
  • Prototype LaserWriter SC (glossy plastics; no serial)
  • Prototype StyleWriter (glossy plastics; no serial)
  • PowerBook 500 Series with PPC Upgrade (Excellent condition)
  • PowerBook G3 Series 14.1" (Fair condition)
  • Apple II Chinese Card (In box, apparently super rare)
  • Macintosh Display Card 4•8 Prototype (incomplete part number)
  • Sealed box of Apple Double Sided floppy disks (Excellent condition)
  • Apple Extended Keyboard
  • Wedge mouse
  • Six-color logo mouse pad
  • Cube enclosure
  • Misc cables / manuals for the above

No, I won't be selling any of it, but thought you all might be interested to hear about the find.



Well-known member
Epic score if you ask me.  What a great piece!

Did you get all of this at the same estate?

Last edited by a moderator:


Well-known member
Wow, that's fantastic.  Just a random drive-by and someone saw the box?!

As for the graphics card, any of the 24-bit video cards such as the Radius 24 series.  The GX 1152 and 1600s would be great, too (Radius & SuperMac.)

Last edited by a moderator:


Well-known member
Speaking as another Bay Area person, I'm 50/50 split between "insanely jealous" and "insanely happy that you rescued all this stuff!"

Well done, and congrats! Please keep posting as you work your way through the haul :D  




Active member
Congrats  @elemenoh! That is definitely an incredible haul..you could bootstrap and start a museum with the variety and uniqueness of those items. Bravo.

As luck would have it I happened upon a craigslist post yesterday and picked up a similar item...at least it weight...maybe a pound less than your behemoth Color Display.

A much smaller haul relative to yours but maybe interesting to others:

+ 1x Apple AppleVision 850AV monitor (78lbs, new in box)

+ 1x Laserwriter 12/600 (110lbs!, new in box) 

Surprised to find retail hardware untouched and unopened 23+ years later. 

The 850AV is fascinating...it is a monstrous monitor with speakers and microphone built in. Apparently high quality, but a commercial failure (only on market for 9 months).

Background story...these two items came from an independent Apple reseller who was squeezed out of retail by Apple in late 90s. A friend of reseller held onto them all these years in a clean temperate storage facility and kindly gave them away yesterday.





Well-known member
Wow! Do you have more photos of the other things you managed to grab?

That picture does inded look good, and its nice to see Apple used the white packaging for this model of monitor too.



Well-known member
That Apple Vision 850AV is a monitor I wouldn't mind having someday, since I could use it on PCs as well as Macs, making it much more versatile than the earlier fixed-sync Apple CRTs, which tend to not support PCs without extraordinary measures.


Last edited by a moderator:


Daring Pioneer of the Future
Staff member
Mmmmm, congratulations on these finds, these are (both) extremely beautiful monitors. The MCD21 should work on just about all beige Macs and should work on the blue-and-white G3 and several of the different G4s as well, it depends on what card you have, so I don't know where exactly that was taken out, but Apple kept support for the old monitors in their graphics hardware for a surprisingly long time.

The 850AV is fascinating...it is a monstrous monitor with speakers and microphone built in. Apparently high quality, but a commercial failure (only on market for 9 months).

One thought: check into whether or not this monitor was sold under any other names, like ColorSync. Apple had been selling 20-inch displays since the two-page display in the '80s, and they continued for another few years after, but 1995-1999 they renamed their display families constantly and I believe there might have been a couple moments without a 20-incher between the discontinuation of the last of the beige ones and the first of the blue/graphite ones.

(ah, found it, there was a 20-incher, but not an AV version, that lasted until late 1999 when the blue-and-white monitors were released: https://everymac.com/monitors/apple/applevision_colorsync/specs/colorsync_20.html ) Here's EveryMac's listing for the 850av, including both the AppleVision and ColorSync naming, it was on sale for a bit more like 15 months https://everymac.com/monitors/apple/applevision_colorsync/specs/applevision_850av.html 

So, yeah, it could be that Apple discovered the markets for 20-inch monitors and large built-in multimedia speakers were mutually exclusive, or that the market that wanted both of those things wanted to have more control over them, or that the monitor sat too high for comfortable use with that speaker cabinet.

On the other hand: The 17-inch AV monitor has the same kill-date, so I suspect what's really happening is that as part of Jobs returning in 1998 and Apple culling its product line over the course of 97-98, the a/v monitors got the cut, regardless of whether or not they were a "commercial failure". This calls back to a/v professionals probably wanting more control over their speakers.



Well-known member
@adb9001 if you’d ever consider selling either for high eBay prices or even more (or trades as I have NOS stuff, prototypes, etc). Let me know as those two were used with a 9600 I had years ago and I’m feeling nostalgic.