Commodore 64 (C64) Preservation ProjectCommodore 64 (C64) Preservation Project
How many C64's were produced?
Several years ago, PageTable used some of the data from my serial registry and the "German Tank Problem" to determine that only 12.5 million C64's were ever produced.
This is a very low number and not likely to be correct, since Commodore themselves in official filings has said 17 million C64's and 5 million C128's.

Well, I redid this recently and here are my findings:

326298 Motherboards (1982)

326298 Rev6 21 (only prototypes, not counting)
326298 RevA 337532
326298 RevB n/a (none reported existing)
326298 RevC 99547
TOTAL 437079
286/437079 0.06% reported
There are a higher percentage of reported boards here than others, so I think this number is low.

KU-14194HB Motherboards (1983)

This was a very short run of boards only sold in Europe and Japan in 1983.
KU-14194HB CS14017 and F39658 = 53675
TOTAL 53675
110/53675 0.2% reported
There are a higher percentage of reported boards here than others, so I think this number is low.

250407 Motherboards (1983)

This is during the heyday of the USA C64 sales. There are more of these boards in existence than any other.
250407 1238489 (ignored, they are probably in numbers below)
250407 RevA 1247737 and F138546 and CS112159 = 1498442
250407 RevB 1203526 and A62352 and CS62307 and DE55519 and HKC1211455 and S66259 = 2661418
250407 RevC 1218502 and HKC962606 and UA167951 = 2349059
TOTAL 6508919
819/6508919 0.01% reported

250425 Motherboards (1984-1985)

250425 1323460 and HKC922576 and JA054265 and UA143461 (ignored, they are in numbers below)
250425 RevA 1069758 and HKC701441 and UA130409 = 1901608
250425 RevB 971770 and HKC266130 = 1277900
250425 RevC 063708 HKC493730 = 557438
TOTAL 3736946
504/3736946 0.01% reported

250466 Motherboards (1986)

250466 530806 and HKC366795 (ignored, they are in numbers below)
250466 RevA 438001 and HKC243358 = 681359
250466 RevB 407179 and HKC55313 = 462492
250466 RevC HKC176609 = 176609
TOTAL 1143851
147/1143851 0.01% reported

Total for non-cost-reduced boards: 11,880,470

Note: In issue 5/88 of 64'er, on page 16, it is noted that 12 million C64s were sold worldwide according to Commodore. This was just the beginning of the heyday of European C64 sales.

250469 Motherboards (1987-1992)

These are largely European C64's, but some are in the USA also.
The totals here could be interpreted a number of ways, because we don't know for sure when the revisions were changed between 3,4,A, and B that the numbers were reset. I will interpret them the most logical way.
250469 (ignored, they are likely in numbers below)
250469 Rev3 (1987) 1058246 and HKC421629 and UAL020353 = 1058246 = 1500228
250469 Rev4 (1988) 2012879 and HKC1126178 = 2012879 = 3139057
250469 RevA (1989-1990) 1996933 and HKC386449 and HKM035641 = 1996933 = 2419023
250469 RevB (1991-1992) 2326852 and HKC251969 and HKM437319 = 2326852 = 3016140
Largest no indicator = 2326852
Largest HKC = 1126178
Largest HKM = 437319
Largest UAL = 020353
TOTAL is either 3910702, 7394910 or 10074448
577/3910702 0.014% reported
or 577/7394910 0.0078% reported
or 577/10074448 0.0057% reported
The first count gets us closest to 17 million, but I think the number resets per board revision, so it is more likely to be the 7394910 number since most are prolific PAL machines. It can't be known for sure, only assumptions.
< I have changed the c64preservation site to output the board serial in the list- it was hidden for a while. You can sort only by KU board and see how the numbers that are there are spread out. I tried not to use data where there were only a few, and I purposely subtracted instances where, for example, all serial numbers started with 1.

For the "F" series KU, it was obvious the first digit is probably always 1, so I removed 100000 from my calculations. The CS ones are pretty spread out, so they were likely out there. All in Europe from 1982/1983.

The questions are-
1) Did some people just not enter the HKC and HKM and they are the same number series? That is not likely based on that it is never a high number on those series. If I don't count them, there are still 7.4 million boards. If I do, it's over 10 million boards.
2) Did the numbers start over again for each revision? If not, there are substantially less. Too few. Look at the small percentage of entered machines compared to what was made. We have an impossibly small sample.
The number of KU board entered is a huge percentage of what might exist. That means 1) a MUCH larger percentage of collectors with this board entered the serial, or 2) Our number of boards in existance is much to low. Same with 326298 to a much smaller amount, but I am willing to say more collectors with early machines have entered their information.
It's more likely a mix of these problems.
So, one single person entered board revision "C" which nobody else did. I assume it was a mistake but why would they do that?

So, the total number of C64's produced is *at least* 15,791,172 but probably more likely to be 19,275,380.

Keep in mind, all that has to happen to boost this number is someone finding a higher serial number in any series, and this is highly likely to happen at any time.
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