|Re: What Calculator to buy|
Message #10 Posted by Karl Schneider on 3 Mar 2006, 11:25 p.m.,
in response to message #1 by Paul Hoffman
My 41C just dropped some pixels on it's LCD - OH well!
So what do I buy? I am a retired engineer, but still do some engineering. I don't use the fancy features often enough to remember them. I like all the bells and whistles, but if you can't remember how to use them - it's a pain to go back and relearn how to use them again.
Since it's an HP-41C, it is in all likelihood an older "fullnut" design (from 1979-1985), and may be repairable. Randy Sloyer at www.FixThatCalc.com has already repaired two of my fullnut 41's to perfect working order -- a 41C and a 41CX.
As others have stated earlier, it's also easy to find a nice used HP-41 on eBay. If you get the top-of-the-line HP-41CX, expect to pay substantially more. Those made from 1983 to "early" 1985 will be of the fullnut design, with better displays, key-feel, and construction. The rest from "late" 1985 to 1990 will be of the more-reliable halfnut design.
I don't like trying to use a small calculator keyboard like a computer - 'ALPHA' this and 'ALPHA' that etc. - UGH!
The 28S has a better keyboard - it's not as cluttered as the later models.
But the 41 has an alpha mode button! :-)
Yes, I also like the dedicated alpha keyboard of the HP-28C/S (I have two 28C's). But you won't be pleased with the 28C/S as a replacement for a 41C -- its "RPL" mode of operation is significantly different in many respects, especially for programming. Also, it is non-expandable, with no I/O except for the 82240A/B infrared printer.
The HP-42S was discontinued in 1995. Its programming, command set, and RPN operating paradigm is quite compatible with the HP-41, but you'll have to enter programs via the keyboard. The display isn't very easy to read, which may be of concern to you. They are available via eBay, but not cheaply.
The HP-32SII or HP-32S is also based on traditional RPN, and was discontinued in 2002. I believe that you would be quite pleased with it as a pure calculator (I have one), but they aren't cheap on eBay either.
As others have stated, the HP-33S (developed from the HP-32SII) is the least-cost new RPN calculator to replace an HP-41. However, there is much not to like about its aesthetics. That's why the HP-32SII is expensive on eBay.
Edited: 3 Mar 2006, 11:29 p.m.