Technical Desktops

86 with Monitor and 9130

80 Series Selection:

Name: 86
Product Number: 86
Introduced: 1982
Division: Personal Computer Division
Original Price: $1795
Catalog Reference: 1983, page 588
Donated by: Russell Warmington, Victoria.


The 86 was an even more modular 80 Series machine than the 83. The 86 had no built in printer, mass storage or display. The 86A came standard with two interfaces for 9130 floppy drives and a parallel (Centronics type) printer interface. The 86 had an output port for composite video. It was commonly connected to the 82912A (9 inch) or 82913A (12 inch) monitor. The 86A came standard with 64K RAM. The 86B replaced the 86A in 1983. The 86B omitted the two disc drive interfaces and parallel printer interface in favor of a single HP-IB interface. The 86B also came standard with 128K RAM, and had built in Electronic DISC ROM.

The 86B was obsoleted in November of 1987.

Collector's Notes:

Like the 85, the 86 is a very reliable machine. All eight units that the museum has processed have worked. The 86 has a composite-video output port. This port will work with almost any composite video monitor (not just an HP monitor). Use a standard RCA cable for the connection. If you don't have a composite monitor of any kind, it has been suggested that you can use your HP-86 with a standard VGA monitor. To do this, you will need a composite-to-VGA converter box but, as of August 2020, there have been reports that this doesn't always produce a usable image - so this is not guaranteed to work. When/if more information becomes available, this page will be updated.


The HP-IB interface on the 86B makes it much more useful than the 86. The 86B can connect to a wide range of disc drives, whereas the 86 is limited to the 5.25 inch floppies of the 9130 disc drive.

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