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What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
02-28-2019, 12:33 AM (This post was last modified: 03-01-2019 04:01 AM by Valentin Albillo.)
Post: #121
RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
.
Hi, Csaba:

(02-27-2019 09:21 AM)Csaba Tizedes Wrote:  This is identical to EL-5510?

Yes, it is. Most SHARP PC-xxxx were also marketed in other countries renamed as SHARP EL-yyyy. I usually own one of each, though they're otherwise identical.

Quote:Do you have English pdf manual for SHARP PC-1421?

No, sorry, I only have the German pdf manual, which you can download using this link:

Financial Pocket Computer SHARP PC-1421 manual (German)

Nevertheless, apart from the financial functions keywords the rest of BASIC keywords and features are exactly like most other similar Level 2 BASIC SHARP pocket computers so any manual for those would do, the keywords and syntax are the same (though there were some other dedicated models with specific words for matrix operations, double precision (20 digits) and advanced statistic functions, and so the manuals for these specific models include dedicated keywords not present in the PC-1421/EL-5510).

As for the financial keywords, they mostly have the usual standard English names such as PV, FV, IRR, etc., and thus they're pretty easy to figure out if you're familiar with financial functions in general. The rest of the functionality can be easily deduced from the German manual by simply studying the many keyboard examples and the various financial application programs featured near the end of the manual. In a pinch, Google Translate can be used for very specific details.

There's also an Applications Book for this financial model, called (in English) "Dollars and Cents Computing" full of advanced financial programs using the built-in BASIC financial keywords, which can also serve as a useful source. I've seen it but I don't own it, perhaps it can be located as a net download or in TAS.

As a final comment on also using the financial SHARP PC-1421/EL-5510 for general purpose programming, not only does its 40 Kb ROM BASIC include all trigonometric functions in degrees, radians, and grads but also hyperbolic functions, linear regression, factorial, statistic functions, cube root, polar-rectangular conversions, the works ! Compare that to the HP-12C's function set ... Wink

The dedicated Statistics model (SHARP PC-1425) is even rarer than the Financial model, which is saying something (never located an English manual for it Sad ). I got one of those, too ! Smile

Quote:Thank you!

You're welcome !

Regards.
V.
.

  
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04-03-2019, 10:45 AM (This post was last modified: 04-03-2019 10:45 AM by foroplus.)
Post: #122
RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
(02-24-2019 11:38 PM)toml_12953 Wrote:  
(02-24-2019 11:13 PM)rprosperi Wrote:  Also, see this really useful website by Bill Symmes, owner of P*ROM, one of the largest VARs for Sharp Pocket Computers through the 80's and 90's, for lots of information on Sharp's full line of Pocket Computers, including lots of downloadable manuals.

http://sharppocketcomputers.com/

It has no info on my favorite Sharp! The PC-G850VS. Sad
You can use the PC-G850V(S) user manual, translated into English by Jack W. Hsu.
There is also a thread related to this Cal somewhere on this forum.

http://basic.hopto.org/basic/manuales.php

Calculadoras programables BASIC años 80-90:
http://basic.hopto.org
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04-03-2019, 01:28 PM
Post: #123
RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
(04-03-2019 10:45 AM)foroplus Wrote:  You can use the PC-G850V(S) user manual, translated into English by Jack W. Hsu.
There is also a thread related to this Cal somewhere on this forum.

http://basic.hopto.org/basic/manuales.php

Yes, thanks very much, I have Jack's great manual already (I followed when he released it here last year), however I had not discovered the page you shared before, so I've found many additional manuals here.

Also: Note that the PC-G850 manual on the linked page is v2.2, but Jack released version 3.0 a bit later.

--Bob Prosperi
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04-03-2019, 05:36 PM
Post: #124
RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
(03-30-2014 03:31 AM)Namir Wrote:  Hi All,

Want to ask you all to give your opinion for the best (vintage) BASIC pocket Computers, taking into account the following aspects:

1. Amount of basic and upgradable memory.
2. Number of lines in display.
3. Flexible variable names (supporting two or more alpha characters).
4. Support for SUB routines
5. Support for separate user-defined function.

I am listening!

Namiir


Raspberry Pi zero
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04-03-2019, 08:45 PM
Post: #125
RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
(04-03-2019 01:28 PM)rprosperi Wrote:  
(04-03-2019 10:45 AM)foroplus Wrote:  You can use the PC-G850V(S) user manual, translated into English by Jack W. Hsu.
There is also a thread related to this Cal somewhere on this forum.

http://basic.hopto.org/basic/manuales.php

Yes, thanks very much, I have Jack's great manual already (I followed when he released it here last year), however I had not discovered the page you shared before, so I've found many additional manuals here.

Also: Note that the PC-G850 manual on the linked page is v2.2, but Jack released version 3.0 a bit later.
Thanks. I'll update the manual.

Calculadoras programables BASIC años 80-90:
http://basic.hopto.org
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05-07-2019, 08:24 PM
Post: #126
RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
I was into Pocket Computers long before I got into calculators. 'Best', as always, is subjective, but here are my favorites:

For sheer options and processing power, the Sharp g850 is the best. BASIC, C, Assembler, Monitor... this thing is a really great machine. Quite a few posts about it above, so I won't go into detail, but this is a very handy machine, even today. I have a BASIC dnd stats roller on mine for rpg sessions. Great machine, and sadly, the last of an era.

What's even better is that it's completely simple to build a serial <-> usb cable for these with about $5 in parts (arduino wires and an ebay usb signal converter) which makes transferring files a snap. My only gripe is the lack of RAM expandibility.

For portability, I really like the Sharp PC-1250/Tandy PC-3 line. Tiny, but not hamstrung like some of the other small form factor BASIC computers. I quite enjoy these, even nowadays. They are probably the best compromise of all of the smaller form factor models.

The Sharp e500 and Casio VX-4 also get honorable mention.
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06-13-2019, 06:56 PM
Post: #127
RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
The Casio VX-4 I ordered from Japan just arrived today. Does anybody happen to know where to find documentation (English or Japanese) for this or a similar model? The basic operation seems similar enough to other Casios I've used, but there's a lot of stuff I'm not going to be able to work out by trial and error (the C compiler and assembler, for instance).
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06-13-2019, 09:18 PM
Post: #128
RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
I'd be very interested to know that too; I have put off ordering one, because I couldn't find an English translation of the manual, and feared that much may be different from the 880.

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& Casios, Rockwell 18R :)
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06-13-2019, 09:26 PM
Post: #129
RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
(06-13-2019 09:18 PM)cdmackay Wrote:  I'd be very interested to know that too; I have put off ordering one, because I couldn't find an English translation of the manual, and feared that much may be different from the 880.

Yeah, the VX-4 is totally different from the 850/880, but it's apparently very similar (and possibly identical) to the 870.

I was able to find a decent BASIC reference at least:

http://luckleo.cocolog-nifty.com/pockeco...ic_jp.html

And this simple C program compiles and runs as expected:

Code:
main() {
    int d;
    printf("Hello!¥n");
    printf("Enter a number: ");
    scanf("%d",&d);
    printf("%d*3=%d¥n",d,d*3);
    return;
}

Note that you use ¥ instead of a backslash, as with many Japanese computers from this era.

I tried declaring main with an int return type, but it throws a syntax error, so who knows what standard this thing adheres to. Smile
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06-13-2019, 10:10 PM
Post: #130
RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
In response to the title ( but not vintage) some might be interested in basic for android by NS-ware, they seam to keep trying to improve it unlike many others, not free but worth a punt. Many android devices have a great display an can number crunch like crazy.
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06-13-2019, 11:17 PM
Post: #131
RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
(06-13-2019 10:10 PM)thenozone Wrote:  In response to the title ( but not vintage) some might be interested in basic for android by NS-ware, they seam to keep trying to improve it unlike many others, not free but worth a punt. Many android devices have a great display an can number crunch like crazy.

Is that related to the old NSBasic for Palm OS and Windows CE? Back then, the IDE ran on a desktop, and you had to copy the compiled apps to your device.
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06-14-2019, 12:12 AM
Post: #132
RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
thanks Dave,

(06-13-2019 09:26 PM)Dave Britten Wrote:  Yeah, the VX-4 is totally different from the 850/880, but it's apparently very similar (and possibly identical) to the 870.

This post notes:

"AFAIK the only difference between the FX-870P and the VX-4 is the color scheme and the built-in
RAM. Surely the educational VX-4 (8K) was cheaper than the commercial FX-870P (32K)."

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06-14-2019, 12:54 AM
Post: #133
RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
(06-14-2019 12:12 AM)cdmackay Wrote:  thanks Dave,

(06-13-2019 09:26 PM)Dave Britten Wrote:  Yeah, the VX-4 is totally different from the 850/880, but it's apparently very similar (and possibly identical) to the 870.

This post notes:

"AFAIK the only difference between the FX-870P and the VX-4 is the color scheme and the built-in
RAM. Surely the educational VX-4 (8K) was cheaper than the commercial FX-870P (32K)."

Okay, so just memory and a different paint job, then.

I pulled a Tandy 8 KB RAM module out of a PC-6 with a wonky ribbon cable and put it in the VX-4, and now I've got about 11.5 KB for program storage. That should be enough to tinker with, though I wouldn't say no to a good deal on a 32 KB module. Wink
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06-14-2019, 12:29 PM
Post: #134
RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
I found a really good English reference for the fx-890P, which appears to be similar enough to the VX-4/fx-870P that it's still extremely useful for those machines:

https://www.manualslib.com/download/7326...-890p.html

I have noticed some differences in functionality and available commands - the VX-4 doesn't appear to support labels, or the BASIC graphics commands, for instance. It also appears to be lacking graphical functions in C.

The C dialect is K&R, with its weird syntax for declaring function argument types, and forward-declaration/prototyping of functions is messy at best. You're better off just defining the functions before they're used. Or better yet, use BASIC, because the C interpreter is so much slower. Smile
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07-05-2019, 04:16 PM
Post: #135
RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
I managed to pick up an fx-850P in nice condition on TAS for £35 incl. P&P.

Given the only difference (I think) between the 850 & 880 is 8KB/32KB RAM, and I’m unlikely to be writing long programmes, and the 880 seems to regularly go for £100 and up, I’m quite pleased.

Arrived today, came with plastic slide-on hard cover & 405pp. paper manual.

Three utterly dead batteries, which I removed, luckily no leakage. Put in two new CR2032, and it’s come to life, all seems well. I don’t have any CR1220 (the backup battery), so will order some.

As an added bonus, I’ve just found the laminated sci function quick reference card tucked into the manual as a bookmark, which wasn’t mentioned in the listing.

Something else new to play with Smile

Casio880 are selling a USB connection cable for it; I wonder if I can get that to work with MacOS or Linux? No Windows here… I’ll find out.

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07-06-2019, 02:59 PM
Post: #136
RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
I’d have to say the TI-95 Procalc but you’ll need a large pocket.
My other favourite is my Sharp PC-1500. I have the base unit that it slots into which adds a tape cassette recorder and a mini printer. I’ve even recently tracked down someone who still sells the ALPS 4 colour/color pens. It’s all in working order.

Denny
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07-06-2019, 03:50 PM
Post: #137
RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
I just got a Casio fx-730P the other day, and I really like it. It has two memory addressing modes: DEFM and DIM. DEFM works like the corresponding memory configuration function on Casio calculators, adding more variables "after" Z. In this mode, you can use array indexes to address variables relative to one another (so C(3) is the same as F). In DIM mode, you allocate and deallocate arrays with up to 3 dimensions, like a more traditional BASIC.

I still can't get my FA-3 cassette interface to work, though. It sounds like it's saving just fine, but the computer acts like it doesn't hear anything when attempting to load.
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11-22-2019, 05:27 PM
Post: #138
RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
(03-30-2014 03:39 PM)W_Max Wrote:  And even more capable with Turbo BASIC from Borland Smile

It can be run on 95LX and/or 200LX?
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11-23-2019, 07:22 PM (This post was last modified: 11-23-2019 11:39 PM by ijabbott.)
Post: #139
RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
(07-06-2019 03:50 PM)Dave Britten Wrote:  I still can't get my FA-3 cassette interface to work, though. It sounds like it's saving just fine, but the computer acts like it doesn't hear anything when attempting to load.

I trust you've tried the obvious stuff such as adjusting the volume?

I've got an FA-1 and an FA-2 working with an old, 1980s "computer compatible" cassette recorder. I've changed the belt and cleaned the heads. The audio still sounds bloody awful, but seems good enough for loading and saving Casio tapes. (The next challenge will be ZX Spectrum fast loaders when or if my "ZX Spectrum Next" finally shows up.)

I suppose I now need an FX-700P to use with the FA-2, and so it continues....

EDIT: It's the FX-702P (not the FX-700P) that uses the FA-2 cassette interface (which can also be used by the FX-501P, FX-502P, FX-601P and FX-602P).

— Ian Abbott
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11-23-2019, 07:43 PM
Post: #140
RE: What is the best BASIC Pocket Computer
(11-23-2019 07:22 PM)ijabbott Wrote:  
(07-06-2019 03:50 PM)Dave Britten Wrote:  I still can't get my FA-3 cassette interface to work, though. It sounds like it's saving just fine, but the computer acts like it doesn't hear anything when attempting to load.

I trust you've tried the obvious stuff such as adjusting the volume?

I've got an FA-1 and an FA-2 working with an old, 1980s "computer compatible" cassette recorder. I've changed the belt and cleaned the heads. The audio still sounds bloody awful, but seems good enough for loading and saving Casio tapes. (The next challenge will be ZX Spectrum fast loaders when or if my "ZX Spectrum Next" finally shows up.)

I suppose I now need an FX-700P to use with the FA-2, and so it continues....

I suspect it was a volume thing. I got a Tandy Computer Cassette Recorder at VCFMW and it works great.
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