The Museum of HP Calculators

HP Forum Archive 03

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Message #1 Posted by Bill on 1 June 2000, 1:37 p.m.

I just bought a HP30S calculator to preserve my HP42S. I am loosing my faith in HP! It is an "OK" calculator but no different than all the other cheap calculators out there. All I want is a calculator that will last a few years and not feel like it is going to fall apart; I am even willing to pay a premium. My only choices are a HP32SII or a HP48G+. The HP32SII is a poor substitute dressed up like a 42S and the 48 is overkill for day to day work. The only graphs I have to do are SPC graphs and I have a nice computer to do that.

Re: HP30S
Message #2 Posted by Frank Knight on 2 June 2000, 3:16 p.m.,
in response to message #1 by Bill

I noticed the price of the 30s at Amazon (under 15$) but have not seen one in person yet. At that price I would expect it to be "cheap". My personal opinion is that though really cheap now at recent markdown (discontinue, I wonder)prices for 5.99 for the 6s and 9.99 for the 6s solar, these two are pretty good compared to the other offerings in this price range. I just bouht my daughter a new TI-12 for it's simplicity yet fractional functions, and it had an out of box ribbon cable/display issue, not unexpected since it is made in China as well to control cost and thus price. BTW, having spent time wandering factories in Mainland China and many other countries in the world, I can say there are great factories and poor factories in each, China included. What is it that you find distasteful about the 32sII for it's price, besides maybe the display? Same question on the 20S other than the one I know, not RPN? Most of us here of course myself included would be happy pay more for a higher value modified 42S like non-graphing programmable, but removing My Engineer Hat and putting on my Marketeer Hat I do wonder at the total size of that market opportunity (volume*potential big margin), verses the volume*margin at the lower prices on the commodity machines.

32S II drawbacks
Message #3 Posted by Andrés C. Rodríguez on 2 June 2000, 3:37 p.m.,
in response to message #2 by Frank Knight

384 bytes memory: FAR TOO LOW !!

Mixed algebraic/RPN equation mode

Messy distinction between equations, expressions, equalled to 0, equalled to minus the variable, etc...

No buzzer, no printer, no I/O

Messy complex mode

The way to show an alpha message is writing an invalid equation such as HELLO, then use a error ignore flag to avoid the "nonsense equation" message (!?)


Still it is a passable option for RPN adepts

Re: 32S II positives
Message #4 Posted by Frank knight on 2 June 2000, 3:45 p.m.,
in response to message #3 by Andrés C. Rodríguez

But, it's only 59.95 new, still available, 25-30+$ on ebay, is an rpn and a good performer given it was designed quite some time ago. You will beg for one at 100+ following discontinuance! ;+}

Re: 32S II + & -
Message #5 Posted by Andrés C. Rodríguez on 2 June 2000, 5:29 p.m.,
in response to message #4 by Frank knight

I already have a 32 S II, enough by now. I would buy a 48G+ (under protest), a used 42 (I already have one, but don't want to risk mine), or some other option.

Re: 32S II positives
Message #6 Posted by Kevin FitzGerrell on 3 June 2000, 3:08 p.m.,
in response to message #4 by Frank knight

I HP discontinues this one without replacement I would certainly be bummed. I imagine I would have paid $100 for it last month when I lost my 42S if I had been unable to just go to the store and get one. Based on the number of these calculators I see sitting on other engineers desks or in their pockets I have to believe there is a significant market for both the 32SII and a higher end model. Oh well, I guess we'll see.

Re: 32S II ...
Message #7 Posted by Andrés C. Rodríguez on 5 June 2000, 2:01 p.m.,
in response to message #4 by Frank knight

To exist is a good feature for any product; hence I agree that the 32SII is the "best" (only) available option for classic RPN users. But IMHO, the programming features mentioned on my previous posting are annoying, and without good reasons to justify them. I may prefer a LCD version of the HP25 ... well, perhaps this is too much flaming :-)

The 32SII is a very nice calculator regarding its preprogrammed features, but not so good on its programmability, memory capacity, and other idiosyncracies. And, yes, I admit; is a little faster than the HP42S!

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