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IBM 701

USA 1952

Nathaniel Rochester

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The first production-line electronic digital computer from IBM and is intended for scientific use. It includes 1 Kb RAM. The 701 is the first machine to use a Tape Drive.

This drive uses magnetized plastic tape, one tape could contain as much as 12.000 punch cards! The 701 had in the early versions still a punched-card reader. Only 19 units will be sold during the next three years.



Codename: IBM 701
introduced 1952
CPU 18 bit wordlength
CPU speed A multiplication takes 0.456 milliseconds ad addition takes 0.060 milliseconds.
Memory The memory capacity is 2048 words of 36 bit length (about 9 kb).
The memory consist of 72 tubes each 1024 bits.
The hard disk is of the magnetic drum type with a capacity of 9Kb, access time 40 milliseconds writing speed 3.6 kb/sec.
  • A tapedrive with a capacity of 1.2 Mb. Tape read speed is 5.6 kb/ sec.
  • The printer prints 150 lines per minute.
  • The card unit reads 150 cards/minute and punches 100 per minute, each card can hold 108 bytes.
OS n.a.
initial price n.a.
footprint n.a.
energy consumption n.a.



1952 first issue



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