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The BeBox is a dual CPU personal computer, briefly sold by Be Inc. to run the company's own operating system, BeOS. Notable aspects of the system include its CPU configuration, I/O board with "GeekPort", and "Blinkenlights" on the front bezel.
A BeBox, with aftermarket monitor
|Release date||BeBox Dual603-66 : October 3, 1995|
BeBox Dual603e-133 : August 5, 1996
|Introductory price||BeBox Dual603-66 US$1,600|
BeBox Dual603-133 US$2,995
|Units sold||1000 – BeBox Dual603-66|
800 – BeBox Dual603e-133
|CPU||2× PowerPC 603|
|Memory||Up to 256 MB of RAM (Supports up to eight 72-pin SIMMs)|
|Power||100–240 volt AC single-phase|
|Dimensions||15.68 in × 8.28 in × 18.15 in|
39.8 cm × 21.0 cm × 46.1 cm
The BeBox made its debut in October 1995 (BeBox Dual603-66). The processors were upgraded to 133 MHz in August 1996 (BeBox Dual603e-133). Production was halted in January 1997, following the port of BeOS to the Macintosh, in order for the company to concentrate on software. Be sold around a thousand 66 MHz BeBoxes and 800 133 MHz BeBoxes.
BeBox creator Jean-Louis Gassée did not see the BeBox as a general consumer device, warning that "Before we let you use the BeBox, we believe you must have some aptitude toward programming – the standard language is C++."
- Four serial ports (9-pin D-shell)
- One mouse port, PS/2-type
- Two joystick ports (15-pin D-shell)
- Two MIDI out ports
- Two MIDI in ports
- Three infrared (IR) I/O ports (6-pin mini DIN)
- One internal CD audio line-level input (5-pin strip)
- One internal microphone audio input (4-pin strip)
- One internal headphone audio output (4-pin strip)
- Two line-level RCA inputs (L/R)
- Two line-level outputs (L/R)
- One microphone input 3.5 mm stereo phono jack
- One headphone output 3.5 mm stereo phono jack
- A 16-bit stereo sound system capable of 48 kHz and 44.1 kHz
- One "GeekPort" (37-pin D-shell)
- An experimental-electronic-development oriented port, backed by three fuses on the mainboard
- Digital and analog I/O and DC power connector, 37-pin connector on the ISA bus
- Two independent, bidirectional 8-bit ports
- Four A/D pins routing to a 12-bit A/D converter
- Four D/A pins connected to an independent 8-bit D/A converter
- Two signal ground reference pins
- Eleven power and ground pins:
- Two at +5 V, one at +12 V, one at -12 V, seven ground pins
Two yellow/green vertical LED arrays, dubbed the "blinkenlights", are built into the front bezel to illustrate the CPU load. The bottommost LED on the right side indicates hard disk activity.
- "Jean-Louis Gassée Unveils the BeBox" (Press release). October 3, 1995. for the original BeBox Dual603-66.
- "Be Announces the BeBox Dual603-133" (Press release). August 5, 1996.
- The BeBox, General, FAQ, How many BeBoxes were sold before they were discontinued? Be, Inc.
- Be Product Datasheet, The BeBox Dual603, BeBox Dual603-66, BeBox Dual603-133
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 1996-10-20. Retrieved 2015-04-28.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link)
- "BeBox History, 1997". The BeBox Zone. Archived from the original on 4 February 2012.
- "New Amiga Prepares to Kill Mac/PC". Next Generation. No. 21. Imagine Media. September 1996. p. 21.
- "Interview with Joseph Palmer". Be Informed, The BeBox Zone. 2 December 2005. Archived from the original on 24 February 2008.
- "The BeBox Zone". Archived from the original on 15 April 2013.
- BeBox Photo Gallery (Joseph Palmer: Be HW Engineer)
- Pinout for the GeekPort connector
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