Apple Performa Plus Display

The Apple Performa Plus Display was a low-end Goldstar-built 14-inch monitor designed and fabricated for the Macintosh Performa series. Apple slightly modified this device to create the Apple Color Plus monitor, which was essentially the Performa Plus Display in a nicer case. The Apple Performa Plus Display also had a tilt & swivel stand.

History of Apple: From Apple II to Apple Cinema Dispay [Video]

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Apple Performa Plus Display

The Apple Performa Plus Display is similar to the Apple Performa Display, but has a 0.29mm dot pitch, rather than a 0.39mm dot pitch, for improved visual clarity.

Release Date

Introduced on September 1, 1992.


  • Tube type: Shadow mask CRT.
  • Tube Size: 14-inch. 13-inch viewable.
  • Resolution: Fixed 640 x 480 pixels. Dot/Pixel pitch: 0.29 mm. 67 DPI. Horizontal rate: 35 kHz. Vertical rate: 66.7 kHz.
  • Supported MacOS: 7.0P+ 4.
  • Maximum display colors: 16.7 million.
  • Video cable: Standard Macintosh DA-15 video connector.
  • Power: 85 watts max.
  • Dimensions: 12.75-inch (height) x 13.9-inch (width) x 14.75-inch (depth).
  • Weight: 35.0 lb..

Apple Model, Discontinuation, Price

Apple Part Number: M9102LL/D.

Discontinued: July 18, 1994.

Price: US$400.

Features of the Macintosh Performa Series

The Apple Macintosh Performa series is Apple Computer’s consumer product family of Apple Macintosh personal computers. It was marketed from 1992 until 1997, when Apple then replaced the Performa series with the Power Macintosh 5 x 00 series. The Performa series was not a new line of computers. Indeed, it only renamed models from Apple’s regular line of computers—such as the Quadra, Centris, LC, and Power Macintosh. The initial series of models consisted of the Performa 200, based on the Macintosh Classic II, the Performa 400, based on the Macintosh LC II, and the Performa 600, based on the Macintosh IIvx.

The series was conceived when Apple decided to bring its computers into the home of an average user, with the idea that a child would experience the same Macintosh computer both in the home and at school, and grow to use Macintosh computers at work. At that time, Apple sold computers through authorized resellers, either brick and mortar stores or by mail order. Resellers sold Macintosh computers to professionals, who then purchased high-level applications and required performance and expansion capabilities. Consumers, however, purchased computers based on the best value, and weren’t as concerned about expansion or performance.

Finally, Apple decided to split the Macintosh line into professional and consumer models. The professional line included the Classic, LC, Centris, Quadra, and Power Macintosh lines, and continued to be sold as-is (e.g., no consumer software bundles and limited features). The consumer line included computers similar to the professional line labeled “Performa”.

To satisfy consumer-level budgets, the Performa computers were sold bundled with home and small business applications. Most models were also bundled with a keyboard, mouse, an external modem, and either a dot-29 or dot-39 pitch shadow mask CRT monitor. Professional models were sold à la carte, with keyboard and mouse bundles chosen by the dealer, or sold separately. Monitors sold with higher end Macintosh models used Trinitron tubes based on aperture grille technology.

Software bundles included ClarisWorks, Quicken, a calendar/contact manager such as Touchbase and Datebook Pro, America Online, Apple’s At Ease child-safe interface, educational software such as American Heritage Dictionary, The New Grolier Multimedia Encyclopedia, TIME Almanac (on models equipped with a CD-ROM drive), Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing, or Mario Teaches Typing, and a selection of games such as Spectre Challenger, Diamonds, and Monopoly. These bundles were all pre-installed over a slightly customized version of the Macintosh system software.

Although the Performa models resembled their professional counterpart on the system software and hardware level, certain features were tweaked or removed. The Performa 600, for example, lacked the level-2 cache of the Macintosh IIvx it was based on. The Performa versions of the system software also introduced some features that were later included in mainstream system releases, most notably the Launcher. System 7.5 ended the separate Performa releases.

The Performa marketing strategy failed, as a large number of models were intended to accommodate retailers, who could advertise that they could beat their competitors’ price on equivalent models, while at the same time ensuring that they did not carry the same models as their competitors. This created consumer confusion. To help consumers choose between the options available to them, Apple created “The Martinettis Bring Home a Computer”, a thirty-minute infomercial about a fictional family that purchases a Performa computer. Another factor was that people working at mass-market retail stores lacked the specialized training Apple offered to its dealers. Usually the Performa display models were poorly taken care of; the demo computers crashed, the self-running demo software was not running, or the display models were not even powered on. Apple tried to address the training issue by hiring their own sales people to aid the store sales staff, most of them recruited from Macintosh user groups. Despite this, however, many returned Performa computers could not be serviced properly because the stores were not authorized Apple service centers.

Most experts attributed the failure to retailers favoring the Microsoft Windows line, especially after the introduction of Windows 95. Computers running Windows were generally cheaper, and encouraged by manufacturer spiffs, advertising co-ops, and other promotion programs. In addition, many stores preferred to sell their own branded white box PCs.

The significant number of nearly identical models across its multiple hardware lines caused Apple to rethink its marketing strategy. The company eliminated the entire Performa line in the late 1990s, along with many of the professional models in favor of a “four box” strategy, comprising a professional desktop (Blue and White G3), professional laptop (PowerBook), consumer desktop (iMac) and consumer laptop (iBook). In the late 1990s, Apple focused on the store within a store concept, with Apple and related products displayed and sold in a physically separate location.


  • The Performa Plus Display could work at as few as 16 colors on the early Macs and LC models, to as many as 16.7 million colors with the Quadra and Power Macintosh. In fact, this monitor and the Apple Color Plus Display could work with every Mac with a DB-15 15 pin display port.
  • The Apple Color Plus monitor was the same as the Performa Plus Display, but in a nicer case. The Apple Color Plus display also had a tilt & swivel stand.
  • The Apple Performa Plus Display was tested for FCC compliance under conditions that included the use of Apple peripheral devices, and Apple shielded cables and connectors between system components. Apple warned that it was important that the user uses Apple peripheral devices and shielded cables and connectors between system components to reduce the possibility of causing interference to radios, television sets, and other electronic devices. Apple recommended that the user obtained Apple peripheral devices and the proper shielded cables and connectors through an Apple-authorized dealer. For non-Apple peripheral devices, the user should contact the manufacturer or dealer for assistance..



This post currently has one response

  • I still have one of these old monitors. Not in working condition, but a very nice piece of Apple technology.

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