|Re: Is it me or is the HP 41CX the...|
Message #5 Posted by Garth Wilson on 22 June 2008, 8:04 p.m.,
in response to message #1 by Geoff Quickfall
I have a 41cx plus Advantage module, ZENROM module (same version that recently went on the eBay for $505!), HPIL/XIO double module, and double extended memory module. I also have a 71B with an extra 160KB of RAM, Math module, Forth/Assembler module, HPIL, and loads of LEX files in RAM.
I have the HPIL-to-IEEE488 interface, the HPIL-to-RS232 interface, two 82161A tape drives, a Thinkjet, and the facilities to go from RS232 to SPI, I2C, parallel, Microwire, 1-Wire, IR, or virtually any interface I want.
I've interfaced both the 41 and the 71 to plenty of pieces of "rack-and-stack" IEEE488 lab test equipment at once. I wrote myself a program for the 71 to do most of the 41's alarm capabilities and more, but my 41 is still my alarm clock, daytimer, and phone directory.
Although the 71 has a lot more power, I still use my 41cx a lot more. I frequently write programs for it of 200 or so bytes, but have not used my 10-page programs for it in many years. A few programs have resided in it continuously for 20 years. The nature of my work has migrated over the years so I don't interface these handhelds to external equipment as much as I used to, but still, none of the calcs without HPIL appeal to me. A friend is trying to get me interested in the 50g plus RS232-to-IEEE488 interface and has loaned me one, but I've just gotten started and have only read the first couple of chapters in the User's Manual and can tell you it's nowhere near as well written as the 41 and 71 manuals. I have not yet downloaded the 887-page User's Guide. He's absolutely delighted with the 50g and thanking me for getting him turned on to HP, and I can see how it really does fit his particular work well; but I still think the 41cx was the peak of HP calc design in many ways.
As for the display, the 41's display and accompanying wider viewing angle, long battery life (a couple of years instead of a couple of hours), and sunlight-readability were very welcome improvements over the TI-58c and 59 I used previously with their LED displays.
Edited: 22 June 2008, 8:06 p.m.