|Re: Which is the best? TI58C x HP67|
Message #26 Posted by Gene Wright on 24 Mar 2008, 8:36 a.m.,
in response to message #24 by Palmer O. Hanson, Jr.
Ah, these past arguments are usually so much fun.
Compared to some here, I might be in a good position to discuss these things. I was a very committed TI fan throughout the 1970s. Why, in particular? Memory power and cost.
The HP products were just so much more expensive to middle school / high school student than the TI products, that there just wasn't any real way they were attainable.
And, for much of the period in the 1970s, the TI products, at least on paper, seemed better technologically.
Consider from the timeline Stefan posted:
The date of the comparison is incredibly important. In Late 1977, I would argue for the capabilities of the TI-58/59 over the HP67. In late 1979, I would argue for the HP 41 over the TI-58/59. I don't think a comparison without specifying a date is really fair. :-)
For the two years or so that the TI-58/59 were out and the HP competitors were the HP 67/97, the TI-59 was roughly 1/2 the cost of the HP67 yet had almost 4X the memories. On the sliding scale of memory allocation, the TI-59 could have 30 memories and . When turned on, it had 480 program steps and 60 registers. That's a lot to work with. 2X the steps and registers at 1/2 the price. Then again, the TI-58/59 had the plug in rom modules that had no comparison in the HP world at the time. 5000 program steps to call as subroutines or use as main programs. Incredible. As much as I love my HP 67 today, at the time the price/capability ratio was probably in the TI-59 corner, IMO of course.
Yes, I know the TI-59 mechanically was much inferior. Sure thing. :-)
Then the TI-58c came out at an even cheaper price. In early 1979, I bought a TI-58c for about $90 at the time the HP 67 was being sold still for $400 or so. That was an incredible amount of power for $90. . . and it finally did not lose its memory contents when you turned it off! :-)
Of course, even as Palmer admits, the tables turned quite a bit when the 41c was announced...they certainly changed for me. I got a brochure for the 41c in the mail (I still have it) showing the 41c being held in someone's hand and it had letters showing in the display. And you could add modules like the TI calculators had been doing for years!
I bought one when I graduated from High School, joined PPC and changed camps.
But I do have a difficult time looking back at the early days and saying that a 26 register machine at 2X the price was really a great deal better than a 100 register machine (that still had 160 program steps when a full 100 registers were allocated AND a 5000 step rom module installed).
Isn't it great that we're all individuals who make up our own minds? Big :-) here.