Commodore P128 and B128

Commodore produced some obscure models in the early 1980s that saw small production runs or never really got past the pre-production phase. These units are sought after by Commodore collectors today.

At the National Computer Conference in June 1982, Commodore showed two systems it intended to start selling in the fall: The P128 and B128. The P128 was called the third generation of Commodore’s PET series, while the B128 (sometimes referred to as the CBM II and sold in Europe as the 600 series) had a similar design but was configured for business customers (hence the “B” designation).

Source: Commodore, 1982

Each of the two new models suffered different fates. The B128 lasted only about a year with low sales numbers. The P128 never made it past beta stage, although Commodore did send beta units to dealers who sold them to the public. As beta units, they did not have all the bugs worked out, so the early word on the systems was not favorable.

That and concern about the P128 cutting into C64 sales caused Commodore to cancel the product and recover whatever beta units it could from dealers. Very few P128s made it out into the wild.

Introduced: June 1982
Base Configuration: 1MHz 6509 CPU; ROM cartridge slot; 128K RAM (256K max); 24K ROM; integral keyboard/keypad; RS-232, IEEE-488, user, and cassette ports; three-voice sound
Video: 25-line x 80-column text, 640 x 400 graphics

Introduced: June 1982
Base Configuration: 6509 CPU; ROM cartridge slot; 128K RAM (256K max); 40K ROM; monochrome monitor; integral keyboard/keypad; RS-232, IEEE-488, user, and cassette ports; BASIC 4.0, three-voice sound
Video: 25-line x 80-column text, 640 x 400 graphics
Important Options: Z80 coprocessor, CP/M or CP/M-86, UCSD Pascal