Compaq LTE

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The Compaq LTE was a line of laptop computers made by Compaq, introduced in 1989. The first models, the Compaq LTE and the Compaq LTE 286, were among the first computers to be the size of a paper notebook, spurring the use of the term "notebook" to describe a smaller laptop. They were also among the first to include both built-in hard disk and floppy disk drives, offering performance comparable to then-current desktop machines. The model name "LTE" is assumed by many consumers to mean "LITE", owing to the device's small size and weight [1] [2].

Laptop COMPAQ LTE Elite 4/40CX


The two original LTE models differed primarily in the processor availability; however, the 286 model came with a standard 40 MB hard drive in place of the base model's 20 MB. Both computers weighed 6.7 lb (3.0 kg). They ran MS-DOS version 3.31.

Aspect Value
Processor LTE: 9.55 MHz Intel 8086; LTE 286: 12 MHz Intel 80C286
Memory 640 kB base RAM, additional 1-4 MB using proprietary memory cards
Hard disk LTE: 20 MB: LTE/286: 40 MB, <29 ms seek time
Floppy disk drive 1.44 MB floppy drive
Video adapter Backlit grayscale CGA 640 x 200 display (80/40 x 25 lines, 4 shades of gray) with separate CGA video output
Modem Internal 2400 bit/s Hayes

Little known fact: Windows 3.0 could be installed on the original LTE 286 if one secured the CGA driver from Microsoft. Installation was a little tricky because the buttons in one of the installation boxes were off the screen at the bottom, but if you knew they were there, you could scroll the box and complete the install.

Later models[edit]

Compaq LTE 386 laptop.

The success of the original LTE series led Compaq to apply the designation to later models. The LTE 386 made extensive use of flexible electronics for the motherboard and motherboard interconnects. Other later Compaq LTE computers had a pointing stick in the middle of the keyboard, however the LTE Elite 486 models had a trackball mounted to the right of the LCD screen. The LTE Elite series had an easily removable hard drive for data security purposes. Starting with the LTE 386, the LTE series computers were able to connect to a (in some cases, powered) docking station to act as a regular desktop computer. Later models are able to remove the floppy drive to add an internal CD-ROM drive, which was an expensive upgrade option for the late LTE series. The last LTE laptops were the 5000 series ending with the 5400, which had a 150 MHz Pentium processor and was quite capable of running Windows 98SE. It also allowed for swappable Floppy Drive/CD-ROM Drive.

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