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E > EXXON > 500 Series


This mini forum is intended to provide a simple means of discussion about the Exxon 500 Series computer. If you want to share your own experience or memories, or add relevant information about this system: post a message!

  Click Here to add a message in the forum


Tuesday 14th February 2023
Dave Kasper (US)

I have two of these machines that were used in our printing business for form letters. The ribbons are all gone. I do have all the books and dics that came with the machines. They were great work horses in their day. Anyone who wants them would have to come pick them up in Pennsylvania. They are way to heavy to ship out.

Sunday 17th June 2018
Dave (Pennsylvania. US)

I have the Exxon QYX machines in my storeroom, no manual with them, they r up for sale. If any one has interest email me. June 2018

Saturday 16th June 2018
Stephen D. McKenna (United States)

My father was Exxon Corporate (law Dept). I can recall him telling me, at the time, about the guy who invented the qwip (first real fax, before police departments had a clunky machine that transferred mug shots). He lived in the same building as my father as I recall and invented it there. He was an Exxon engineer, I recall. I cannot track down on the internet but, Exxon acquired Emerson Electric based on some professor demonstrating an electric motor that promised incredible efficiencies. After announcement those knowledgeable said the guy was well known and it had been repeatedly proven that the technology would not scale. Exxon sheepishly spun it off a few years later at a loss. That would have been after Exxon Office Products.

Saturday 24th December 2016
David gallaher

I too have an 50 or 510 system. These are likely the last 2 in existence. I have received offers from collectors but I would rather see this unit in a museum.

Wednesday 26th August 2015
Terry Tellone (USA)

I worked for Exxon Office Systems as the Branch Operations Manager in Chicago. I remember my staff dressing up as the Exxon 500 components for our annual Halloween party. EOS tried to market the 500 as a PC, but by then, the "real" PC had hit the market and made this "computer" instantly extinct. EOS also sold the first fax machine, Qwip Systems (my original employer), Vydec (the giant text editor that had a built-in desk - weighed a few hundred pounds!), and the Qyx Memory typewriter (which could retain about two sentences in its memory). I was the last person to leave the Chicago branch offices, after terminating the entire staff of over 100 employees, boxing up all the files and shipping them to Exxon corporate, and selling all of the furniture and artwork. I locked the door behind me and cried all the way home. We lost about 150 million dollars for Exxon, and they never did anything to stop it. One day, we received a fax saying the party was over. It was a great company, great people, but not the greatest products or business model.

Wednesday 9th October 2013
KevinH (New Jersey/USA)

I started at Vydec in November 1978$ by that time Zilog was already a division of Exxon Information Systems, as was Vydec. Vydec was eventually renamed (or "evolved into") Exxon Office Systems, which produced the systems you are displaying.

The core hardware and software for the Exxon 500 series was purchased from a company called "Compucorp". To the best of my recollection, the hardware was retained essentially unchanged but repackaged, and the software was more substantially rewritten. (The system could boot CP/M but the primary OS Exxon sold it with was proprietary to Compucorp.)

However, prior to the 500 series release, Vydec produced and sold a series of digital hardware-based "text editors" from roughly 1976 until about the 1982 release of the first 500. These "text editors" were the 1137(?), 1146(?), 1200, 1400, and 1800.

The base version of all of the Vydec "text editors" except the 1800 had NO microprocessor$ all of the input, display, editing, and printing features were implemented in (mostly) 7400-series digital logic.

Added features for some of the "text editors" involved additional hardware which used the Intel 8008(!) microprocessor and later, the Zilog Z80.

I believe that the Vydec 1800 was the only one of the series that actually required the additional hardware containing the Z80, being the last of the series.

Photos and info. about the "Vydec 1800" can be found in various places on the web.

$$-Kevin H.

Tuesday 2nd November 2010
Richard (UK)

I still have an Exxon, one of the 500 series. It has been in my loft for about 20 years and was working when I put it there. Recently I have brought it down. Does it have any value?

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