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Ten classic electronic calculators
10-10-2020, 12:13 PM
Post: #1
Ten classic electronic calculators
Ten classic Link

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10-10-2020, 06:43 PM
Post: #2
RE: Ten classic electronic calculators
Only two HP's, and neither of them the HP-35?!
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10-10-2020, 07:02 PM (This post was last modified: 10-10-2020 07:25 PM by Steve Simpkin.)
Post: #3
RE: Ten classic electronic calculators
(10-10-2020 06:43 PM)John Keith Wrote:  Only two HP's, and neither of them the HP-35?!

True but this article is from the U.K. and they had a *very* different experience with calculators and computers then I remember in the U.S. Growing up in Southern California I had never heard of Sinclair calculators (or Acorn computers). During High School in the late 70's I was the only person I knew that had an HP calculator (HP-25). Everyone else in my chemistry class (the only class I had where scientific calculators were mandatory) had a TI, Casio, Sharp or Commodore model (in roughly that order of popularity).
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10-11-2020, 07:37 AM
Post: #4
RE: Ten classic electronic calculators
Nice link!

Quote:...when you reached secondary school you were handed a slim book full of
numbers during a maths lesson and taught how to use log tables.

But, to a nation of people for whom pounds, shillings and pence were still a fresh memory, perhaps mental gymnastics weren’t too tricky for many of us.

I resemble these remarks.

Remarkable how early TI's LCD model was. For me, the window of fondness for a calculator has to predate the LCD models. Although there were of course LCD models which I felt something for - was it greed, envy, lust? The 28C and the 15C would be cases in point.
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10-11-2020, 09:11 AM (This post was last modified: 10-11-2020 11:04 AM by Steve Simpkin.)
Post: #5
RE: Ten classic electronic calculators
(10-11-2020 07:37 AM)EdS2 Wrote:  ...
Remarkable how early TI's LCD model was.
...

TI may have had some help from Toshiba with their early basic and scientific LCD calculators.

"Concerning LCD-calculators Texas Instruments was far behind Japanese companies. Sharp Corporation started sales already in the year 1973 with the EL-805 sporting a silver-colored COS-LCD display. If you restrict the comparison on the first calculator using the yellow-screen FEM-type display you find the Casio's Pocket LC introduced in the year 1975, the Sharp EL-8020, Toshiba's LC-810 and finally the Canon LC-1."

First TI basic LCD calculator 1977:
http://www.datamath.org/BASIC/LCD_Classic/TI-1750.

First TI scientific LCD calculator 1978
http://www.datamath.org/Sci/Slimline/TI-25.htm
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10-11-2020, 09:41 AM
Post: #6
RE: Ten classic electronic calculators
(10-11-2020 09:11 AM)Steve Simpkin Wrote:  TI may have had some help from Toshiba with their early basic and scientific calculators.

They did. Toshiba made a lot of them.

By the time TI released the TI-66 they didn't even make any attempt to hide the fact. The PCB has Toshiba written all over it.

See here

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10-12-2020, 05:43 PM
Post: #7
RE: Ten classic electronic calculators
(10-10-2020 12:13 PM)hp41cx Wrote:  Ten classic Link

Then I guess I'm a "classic" guy as I had/have 3 of them.

Texas Instruments TI-35 (The TI-30 was actually much more popular at my high school)
Hewlett-Packard HP-41C (CV & CX actually)
Hewlett-Packard HP-28C


I was shocked to see that the 28C made the HPCC list of HP's worst calculators. I personally view it as one of the most revolutionary calculators HP ever made. Sure, it had limited memory that was quickly addressed by the 28S, but using it was a completely think-outside-the-box experience. If you were ranking calculators by how revolutionary they were for their time, I'd put the 28C right up there with the 35 and the 41.
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10-12-2020, 05:49 PM
Post: #8
RE: Ten classic electronic calculators
(10-10-2020 07:02 PM)Steve Simpkin Wrote:  Everyone else in my chemistry class (the only class I had where scientific calculators were mandatory) ...

In my chemistry class, calculators were not allowed. The teacher required that we all use slide rules! Then again, I never lost points for having too many significant digits in the answer. :-)
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10-12-2020, 06:12 PM
Post: #9
RE: Ten classic electronic calculators
(10-12-2020 05:43 PM)Wes Loewer Wrote:  I was shocked to see that the 28C made the HPCC list of HP's worst calculators. I personally view it as one of the most revolutionary calculators HP ever made. Sure, it had limited memory that was quickly addressed by the 28S, but using it was a completely think-outside-the-box experience. If you were ranking calculators by how revolutionary they were for their time, I'd put the 28C right up there with the 35 and the 41.

Being revolutionary and poorly executed are not mutually exclusive; the 28C was both. The 28C was a watershed in calculator design but I would not want to own one, unless I was a collector that had to have one of every HP calculator ever produced.
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10-13-2020, 04:10 AM
Post: #10
RE: Ten classic electronic calculators
(10-12-2020 06:12 PM)John Keith Wrote:  Being revolutionary and poorly executed are not mutually exclusive; the 28C was both.

Perhaps, but I didn't realize it was poorly executed at the time. :-)

Quote:The 28C was a watershed in calculator design but I would not want to own one...

I sure put mine to use. It was essential in my grad school physics research in the lab. Later when I became a high school teacher, I was the only one at the school with a graphing calculator for a while. It had quite the WOW factor. I used it till in died in ~2004.
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10-17-2020, 08:23 PM
Post: #11
RE: Ten classic electronic calculators
I have 4 of them.

TI 59
HP 41C
Casio FX 7000G
HP 28C

My site http://www.emmella.fr
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10-18-2020, 10:02 AM
Post: #12
RE: Ten classic electronic calculators
(10-17-2020 08:23 PM)badaze Wrote:  I have 4 of them.

I list only the two that I don't have: Casio fx-81 (not even sure about that one) and Casio fx-550.

Anyway, I think that represents just an arbitrary collection that the author acquired on flea markets and thrift stores.
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10-18-2020, 10:36 AM
Post: #13
RE: Ten classic electronic calculators
(10-18-2020 10:02 AM)Maximilian Hohmann Wrote:  I list only the two that I don't have: Casio fx-81 (not even sure about that one) and Casio fx-550.

I had a Casio fx-81 in high school. Then I started lusting after the fx-100 that a classmate had with its *TEN* digits Big Grin

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10-18-2020, 11:12 AM
Post: #14
RE: Ten classic electronic calculators
(10-12-2020 06:12 PM)John Keith Wrote:  
(10-12-2020 05:43 PM)Wes Loewer Wrote:  I was shocked to see that the 28C made the HPCC list of HP's worst calculators. I personally view it as one of the most revolutionary calculators HP ever made. Sure, it had limited memory that was quickly addressed by the 28S, but using it was a completely think-outside-the-box experience. If you were ranking calculators by how revolutionary they were for their time, I'd put the 28C right up there with the 35 and the 41.

Being revolutionary and poorly executed are not mutually exclusive; the 28C was both. The 28C was a watershed in calculator design but I would not want to own one, unless I was a collector that had to have one of every HP calculator ever produced.

This discussion reminded me that I never finished watching the video of Bill Wickes's 3 hour Introduction of the 28c (https://videos.hpcalc.org/). If you jump to the 2:05:20 mark you can hear him discussing the issue and the why's of its limited memory.
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10-18-2020, 12:07 PM
Post: #15
RE: Ten classic electronic calculators
(10-18-2020 11:12 AM)Wes Loewer Wrote:  
(10-12-2020 06:12 PM)John Keith Wrote:  Being revolutionary and poorly executed are not mutually exclusive; the 28C was both. The 28C was a watershed in calculator design but I would not want to own one, unless I was a collector that had to have one of every HP calculator ever produced.

This discussion reminded me that I never finished watching the video of Bill Wickes's 3 hour Introduction of the 28c (https://videos.hpcalc.org/). If you jump to the 2:05:20 mark you can hear him discussing the issue and the why's of its limited memory.

Yes that video was very interesting. If I remember correctly Bill's choice was to either use the hardware of the HP-18C with its 2K of RAM contained in the LCD interface chips (and more ROM) or gamble and wait sometime in the future to see if management would approve a development budget for the hardware he really wanted to do. No one at HP was certain how much market there was for an advanced scientific graphing calculator with algebra capabilities. HP allowed the team to test the market using the already developed HP-18C hardware. When it turned out to be a hit, they approved the changes needed for the HP-28S and then the HP-48SX. I had each of them shortly after they came out and am still using my HP-48SX.
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10-18-2020, 12:16 PM
Post: #16
RE: Ten classic electronic calculators
(10-18-2020 11:12 AM)Wes Loewer Wrote:  This discussion reminded me that I never finished watching the video of Bill Wickes's 3 hour Introduction of the 28c (https://videos.hpcalc.org/). If you jump to the 2:05:20 mark you can hear him discussing the issue and the why's of its limited memory.

...And if you watch his video introducing the 28S he acknowledges the anger of those who bought the 28C but says that the purchasers of the 28C funded the development of the 28S.
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10-19-2020, 10:03 AM
Post: #17
RE: Ten classic electronic calculators
(10-18-2020 12:16 PM)John Keith Wrote:  
(10-18-2020 11:12 AM)Wes Loewer Wrote:  This discussion reminded me that I never finished watching the video of Bill Wickes's 3 hour Introduction of the 28c (https://videos.hpcalc.org/). If you jump to the 2:05:20 mark you can hear him discussing the issue and the why's of its limited memory.

...And if you watch his video introducing the 28S he acknowledges the anger of those who bought the 28C but says that the purchasers of the 28C funded the development of the 28S.

So, I guess all those people who later bought the 28S and ultimately the 48/49/50 series owe me a huge thanks for being one of ones who purchased the 28C. Smile You're welcome!

I think the video John might be referring to is actually about the 48SX. For those who are interested, go to the above link and look for the HHC 1990 video "19. William Wickes HP 48SX Software Development Questions and Answers." The specific discussion starts at about 9:58. (But you'll want to watch the first 10 minutes to get the background history.)
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10-19-2020, 03:59 PM
Post: #18
RE: Ten classic electronic calculators
(10-17-2020 08:23 PM)badaze Wrote:  I have 4 of them.

TI 59
HP 41C
Casio FX 7000G
HP 28C

I have three of those four - I don't have a 41C. (Also, I have a 28S instead of a 28C, so close enough).
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10-19-2020, 05:16 PM
Post: #19
RE: Ten classic electronic calculators
(10-12-2020 05:43 PM)Wes Loewer Wrote:  
(10-10-2020 12:13 PM)hp41cx Wrote:  Ten classic Link

Then I guess I'm a "classic" guy as I had/have 3 of them.

Texas Instruments TI-35 (The TI-30 was actually much more popular at my high school)
Hewlett-Packard HP-41C (CV & CX actually)
Hewlett-Packard HP-28C


I was shocked to see that the 28C made the HPCC list of HP's worst calculators. I personally view it as one of the most revolutionary calculators HP ever made. Sure, it had limited memory that was quickly addressed by the 28S, but using it was a completely think-outside-the-box experience. If you were ranking calculators by how revolutionary they were for their time, I'd put the 28C right up there with the 35 and the 41.

Me too! I owned three of them when they were new. Or close enough, anyway: the Sinclair Scientific was the precursor of the Sinclair Cambridge Programmable and came in the same sci-fi looking housing and had the same slow and inaccurate transcendentals. And I bought a 41C and a 28S as soon as they came out. Totally agree that the 28C/28S were revolutionary, even though I went back to plain old RPN in the shape of the 42S not long after.
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10-19-2020, 07:32 PM
Post: #20
RE: Ten classic electronic calculators
(10-19-2020 10:03 AM)Wes Loewer Wrote:  So, I guess all those people who later bought the 28S and ultimately the 48/49/50 series owe me a huge thanks for being one of ones who purchased the 28C. Smile You're welcome!

I think the video John might be referring to is actually about the 48SX. For those who are interested, go to the above link and look for the HHC 1990 video "19. William Wickes HP 48SX Software Development Questions and Answers." The specific discussion starts at about 9:58. (But you'll want to watch the first 10 minutes to get the background history.)

Actually I bought the 28C when it first came out as well. Fortunately I managed to sell it as soon as I got my 28S. I do not regret that sale, unlike the original 15C I stupidly sold to help fund the purchase of the 71B. Sad

You are probably correct about the video being for the 48SX, it's been a while since I watched those videos.
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