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GEM 386/20

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The GEM 386/20 was a clone of the original Compaq Deskpro 386/20 built into a standard, full-sized, AT Desktop form factor, right on down to the general case faceplate design which is extremely similar to Compaq's. It retailed for around $3000, with PC/computing Volume 2 1989 issue having an ad for one at $2,962.00.

Technical Details

While generally considered a pretty bog-standard "Whitebox" PC clone, this one is particularly interesting due to it's unique chassis design and the fact that it was obviously a very serious attempt to build a "clone" of a Compaq Deskpro machine. In particular, the chassis may even have been manufactured for MEC/GEM by Parkview Metals (the company that made cases for Compaq in the early days). The keyboard connector was located on the same spot as a Compaq Deskpro 8086/286/386 and was connected to the motherboard by way of a long DIN-5 extention cable that ran from the DIN-5 connector at the front of the case, to the motherboard in back, with the cable running under the motherboard.


  • Special custom Compaq Deskpro style full AT Chassis
  • Magitronic 200 watt AT Power Supply
  • Addonics branded 386 Motherboard with Compaq style memory upgrade slot
  • American Megatrends (AMI) BIOS
  • Intel 80386 DX-20MHz CPU
  • Support for Intel 80387 & Weitek FPU
  • RAM - 1-16MB using 30 pin SIP Memory
  • Mitsubishi 1.2MB 5.25" Floppy, Mitsumi 3.5" 1.44MB Floppy
  • Seagate ST-251 MFM 40MB HDD (also likely availible in 20MB-120MB capacities)
  • Western Digital Paradise PVGA1A with expandable Video RAM and Feature Connector
  • Internal Speaker Sound
  • Pre-Loaded with MS-DOS 4.x and later 5.00.

See Also