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Recommendations for RPN Calculators?

Cliff posted more than 10 years ago | from the still-better-than-an-abacus dept.

Handhelds 580

sg3000 asks: "My trusty old HP 48S graphing calculator, that served me since engineering school, seems to be giving up the ghost. I haven't used it in a few years, but recently I put new batteries in it. It works, but it makes a loud static/white noise sound when it's on. The noise is not as noticeable when I hold it, but when I set it down on a hard surface, it's really loud. Then it sucks the batteries down incredibly fast (I put new batteries in it, and two days later, they were drained). Any suggestions on what I should buy as a replacement?"

"I'm in graduate school now, and since I'm taking an accounting course, where they don't want us digging out our laptops during a test, I need to buy another calculator. I'm a big fan of reverse polish notation (RPN), so I'd prefer to get another HP calculator.

Do companies still make calculators? I'd love to get another HP 48, but I'm not even sure if HP even makes calculators like that any longer -- on their web site, they're all cheapo-looking single line deals. I've read about something called an HP 48g, but HP has nothing about it on their web site."

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HP 48GX (4, Interesting)

mr.henry (618818) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051062)

Buy an HP 48GX [outpost.com] . It's the last decent HP scientific calculator and the RPN works great. The new HP's (like the 49G+) are crap, and aren't even made by HP. (They're rebranded.)

Why does HP's current calculator lineup suck [slashdot.org] ?

Re:HP 48GX (4, Informative)

StarFace (13336) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051140)

That's a good recommendation. I have the 48G, no expansion slot, never needed it. Great calculator and the transition from the 48S is minimal. They revamped some of the applications to make them a bit easier to use, but you can still access the old 48S methods if that is what you prefer.

its probably in vibrator mode (2, Funny)

civilengineer (669209) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051064)

just change it to silent mode

Re:its probably in vibrator mode (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051275)

Ehm...this is a joke. Why it is informative?

Linux, wheres the bits? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051066)

Looks like Microsoft is really taking off on the 64-bit front, check out articles around the web [informationweek.com] . I wonder what Linux is doing here? Have you guys even thought about 64-bit computing in your Linux OS? Cause it looks to me like Microsoft is going to be way ahead if it makes something that is twice as fast as your Linux thing.

Re:Linux, wheres the bits? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051272)

Yes, it's sad that Linus has not thought as far as making Linux 64 bit safe ... it would take 100 full-time people about 2 years to do that.

On the other hand, you can get Microsoft XP Professional 64bit here [binrm-rf] , and after all that's all you need to play games and securely host files.

Trolls need love too (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051067)

I'm sure this will be controversial, but trolls need love too. In fact, trolls probably need more love than your average slashbot - slashbots get positive reinforcement, after all.

There. I've stated the painful truth: trolls need love. Now let me tell you why.

Most of us were abused as children, or are being abused now, or have suffered mightily in some way. We have self esteem problems, we don't have confidence, we don't feel loved. We want positive attention and all the things "normal" people have, but we feel like we are unworthy of it.

An old saying rings true here: "If the only potato chip a hungry child can have is a soggy potato chip, there is nothing more important to that child than the soggy potato chip." Well, that describes us trolls perfectly. We are hungry for attention and all we know is that we do not warrant positive attention, so we type "fristus postus" and post goatse links [goatse.cx] and shoot for the negative potato chip of a (-1 Troll), or a (-1 Flamebait). Off-topic and redundant mods are like half a soggy potato chip - just enough to whet the appetite for more.

So do the world a favor. end the cycle of abuse. Mod one troll - just one - up, and you will be rewarded for life because you gave a hungry child a dry potato chip. Share the love, won't you?

OK (-1, Offtopic)

1000baseFX (120418) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051068)

Yea

2nd post (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051076)

/. fags!

rpn = racist (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051079)

Reverse Polish Notation?!?!? Why exactly is it "Polish"?

Re:rpn = racist (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051109)

A guy in a bar leans over to the guy next to him and says, "Wanna hear a Polack joke?"

The guy next to him replies, "Well, before you tell that joke, you should know something. I'm 6' tall, 200 lbs. and I'm Polish. The guy sitting next to me is 6'2" tall, weighs 225, and he's Polish. The fella next to him is 6'5" tall, weighs 250, and he's Polish. Now, you still wanna tell that joke?"

The first guy says, "Nah, I don't want to have to explain it three times."

---

Three men are traveling the Amazon, a German, an American, and a Polack, and they get captured by some Amazons. The head of the tribe says to the German, what do you want on your back for your whipping? The German responds, "I will take oil!" So they put oil on his back, and a large Amazon whips him 10 times. When he is finished the German has huge welts on his back, and he can hardly move. The Amazons haul the German away, and say to the Polack, what do you want on your back? "I will take nothing!" says the Polack, and the Polack stands there straight and takes his 10 lashings without a single flinch. "What will you take on your back?" the Amazons ask the American, who responds "I'll take the Polack!"

---

The manager of a prosperous whorehouse in Warsaw one night found to his dismay that he was short of girls for the evening's entertainment. Thinking quickly, he dashed out and bought several blow-up dolls, figuring that, given his average clientele, no one would know the difference.

Soon he ushered a customer into a room that housed one of the new lovelies, assuring him that he was in for an especially good time. When the customer came out of the room a little while later, the manager was waiting eagerly in the hallway.

He winked at him and asked, "Well? How'd you like her?"

"I don't know what happened," said the customer, shaking his head. "I bit her on the tit, she farted, and flew out the window."

---

Two Poles walk into the post office and the first thing that catches their eye is a bunch of "Wanted" posters, in particular a shot of a mean-looking black guy beneath a banner that says "Wanted for Rape."

"You know," said one Pole to his friend, "they get all the good jobs."

---
A Pole and a Jew were in a bar watching TV when the late-night news came on. The lead story showed a berserk woman poised on a window ledge eleven stories up. "I'll bet you a hundred bucks she won't jump," said the Pole to the Jew.

"Deal," agreed the Jew, sticking out his hand a few minutes later when the woman plunged to a gory death. The Pole sadly forked over the money, only to look up in surprise as the other fellow tugged on his sleeve and offered him his money back. "You won it fair and square," he said, shaking his head.

"Not really," admitted the Jewish guy. "I saw it all happen on the six o'clock news."

"Me too," said the Pole, "but I never thought she'd do it again at eleven."

Re:rpn = racist (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051178)

Why has no one modded this down yet? It's obviously flamebait, as well as racist.

Re:rpn = racist (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051112)

it really stands for Reversed Pants Negroid

Re:rpn = racist (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051114)

Because a polish guy created it. Duh.

This is factual and on-topic you cocksniffer mod. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051172)

Who let the fucktards do the moderation?

Re:rpn = racist (2, Funny)

ArsonPanda (647069) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051141)

Why exactly is it "Polish"

It's not! it's RPN, so it's everything except Polish.
It's a Norwegien fisherman, a bannana, and a communicable disease, but it's NOT "Polish".

Re:rpn = racist (0, Offtopic)

Breakfast Pants (323698) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051267)

Not true, its reverse polish, not un-polish. What if what makes up polishness is the metaphysical equivalent of a palindrome?

Real Soon Now (4, Informative)

chennes (263526) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051082)

I have the HP48GX - it's a great calculator, but slow as molasses. According to this page [hpcalc.org] HP will be releasing the 49G Real Soon Now(tm). I'll believe it when I see it, of course, but we can dream, right?

Re:Real Soon Now (4, Insightful)

GarthSweet (514087) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051127)

Slow!?!? Compared to what, your brain, a pencil and paper? It should beat both of those. A PC? Yes, it is slower than that. If you are doing the quantity and depth of calculations on the HP48 where it's speed is an impact then you are using it for the wrong job. It's like using an electric drill as a hammer. My 2 cents. P.S. My HP48sx is still going strong after almost 10 years.

Manual is already on HP website... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051249)

Considering what you can find here:
http://h20015.www2.hp.com/content/common/ma nuals/b pia5324/bpia5324.pdf

all 856 pages of it...

I doubt the 49g+ is a hoax by any stretch of the imagination.

calculator consumer reports...? (-1, Troll)

HexRei (515117) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051083)

...slashdot must be pretty hard up for stories...

Uh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051084)

Ebay?

Cmon - join the 21st century (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051089)

Just get a laptop.

seriously man (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051149)

What is this 1972? Give me a fricken break.

Get a got damn pocket PC if you must, but a calculator? Unless you're going for some kind of retro look why bother...

Re:Cmon - join the 21st century (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051212)

Modding that comment as a troll shows what utter fucking retards some Slashdot mods are.

This one, true as it is, may qualify as a troll. Who cares though? You're still a fucking retard, mod.

it's not a troll (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051253)

Just because a post isn't some long winded whishy washy touchy feely pseudo-intellectual ramblings doesn't mean it's a god damn troll.

Mod it brief, rude, consice, to the point, the truth hurts, whatever actually fit's it. But don;t mod it troll.

Learn what a troll if you assbastard mods.

Those posts about windows blazing ahead twice as fast because linux doesnt have 64 bit yet...those are trolls! LEARN WHAT A FUCKING TROLL IS YOU ANAL BUCANEER!

My choices... (4, Informative)

kwiqsilver (585008) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051097)

I have a HP 48GX and love it. If you can find one, get one.

I also wrote a GTK based one:
ghsilop [sourceforge.net] .

Inverter toast? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051104)

Sounds like its power supply inverter is toast. Rip it apart, trace down the IC that is making all the noise (or look for a small IC mounted xformer near on IC) and do some home work. Replace what makes noise and what ic is a PWM if it has one, unless its home brew PWM inversion and learn.

Re:Inverter toast? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051153)

Generally the only time an IC makes a noise is when it sizzles just before it goes bang.

But yes, it sounds like a faulty component in the inverter for the TFT backplane, probably a coil with shorted turns, or an eletrolytic capacitor which was glued-down on the board but the glue has broken down and fallen off.

Re:Inverter toast? (1)

aSiTiC (519647) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051176)

The 49G has been available for over a year now. The link you provided is to the 49G+ an entirely new beast. I assume they didn't want to move to 50G, not quite as catchy. ;)

Is there some answer to this Q (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051110)

Looks like Microsoft is really taking off on the 64-bit front, check out articles around the web. I wonder what Linux is doing here? Have you guys even thought about 64-bit computing in your Linux OS? Cause it looks to me like Microsoft is going to be way ahead if it makes something that is twice as fast as your Linux thing...

Re:Is there some answer to this Q (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051219)

http://www.linuxia64.org/

Re:Is there some answer to this Q (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051280)

LOL, they had to rename it cause a IM chat program was more popular?? HAHA... oh and by the way, wheres the AMD64 support? Oh, nowhere... oh and by the way, wheres the support for everything outside the kernel? You know... everything ELSE? libraries, apps, SDK's, GUI's, toolkits... ?? well?

Oldie but Goodie (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051115)

Seriously, check out the 32S or 42S. They don't do graphing, and you only have a 4-item stack, but if you already know RPN, you'll be much faster with either than the graphing variants.

depends (2, Interesting)

c4ffeine (705293) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051122)

It depends on how much money you have, really. I've had great results with my TI-89- it's a calculus student's best friend. The only problem is, it costs about US $120 (at least mine did about 8 months ago). Visit http://education.ti.com/us/product/graphing.html for TI calculators. Better yet, go to http://www.graphingcalculators.net/ before it gets /.ed.

Re: TI's have RPN? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051174)

I thought TI's didn't have RPN?

Re: TI's have RPN? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051196)

They don't. C4ffeine is an idiot. (As if it wasn't already obvious from the fact that he prefers Ti...)

Re: TI's have RPN? (2, Insightful)

ari_j (90255) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051273)

Prefering something doesn't make you stupid. Ignorance of the single most important feature that the author asked for does. This is like the car dealer hearing you need four-wheel drive and a V8 and suggesting you get a sports car. Both good, but one is nothing at all like what you wanted.

Re:depends (0, Offtopic)

iethree (666892) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051194)

i've got a ti-89 and i can't complain, it's hands down the best graphing calculator i've used. It's fairly easy to use but also has tons of features that will keep you busy for months figuring them out. there are many applications you can download for it with the USB graph link as well

Lets take a poll... (0, Troll)

bobo the hobo (302407) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051123)

Is this really a valid and relevant question to like, anyone?

Re:Lets take a poll... (1)

dvcx1 (692619) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051215)

I think its quite relevant, I have had similar issues and if you account for the size of the slashdot population, it increases the probability of others having experienced similar issues. SO, whats the harm in tossing one into the "Ask Slashdot" queue, 99% of the time its rejected = )

Replacement option... (1, Funny)

Eric_Cartman_South_P (594330) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051126)

Click on "Start"

Click on "Run"

Type in "calc.exe"

Click "OK"

Re:Replacement option... (1)

dvcx1 (692619) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051198)

Where is the "Start" you speak of?

Re:Replacement option... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051208)

Do you even know what reverse polish notation is? CALC is a joke, just like Windows.

Re:Replacement option... (0)

RedHat_Linux_Man (692702) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051234)

Ummm...

calc.exe can't graph sinusoids, set up matrices, draw conics, calculate regressions, play games, etc. Like most graphing calcs can.

HP-49G (1)

claudius0425 (679268) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051128)

The 49G is HP's succesor to the 48SX. It has full symbol manupulation ability, and can function in eigther RPN or algebraic mode (RPM WILL RULE THE WORLD!!!). It is an excellent calculator.

Re:HP-49G (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051148)

The 49G is a bastard calc. The 48G/GX is the 48S/SX successor.

Re:HP-49G (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051278)

RPM WILL RULE THE WORLD!!!

No, The World RPN Rule Will.

New Hp49G+ (2, Informative)

dduardo (592868) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051130)

HP has begun producing new calculators with the Hp49G+ just released. Features include: 75Mhz processor, USB cable, IrDa, SD flash card support Here is a link to pictures, etc of the new hp line. http://www.hpcalc.org/hp49gplus.php I'm looking forward to getting the Hp49G+ and hp33s. Hope that helps!

Re:New Hp49G+ (3, Informative)

dduardo (592868) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051165)

Sorry, should have put the link in easy to click mode: HP 49G+ [hpcalc.org]

Try an emulator (1)

(H)elix1 (231155) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051133)

Another RPN junky. (grin) I got hooked on it way back when as well, but I usually pull out my HP only for taxes these days. I get by with an HP emulator [hpcalc.org] for my pocket pc, which works the way you expect it too - but is no replacement for the real thing if you are doing more than currency conversion for your expense reports.

open it up, fix it (1)

Splork (13498) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051134)

replace the burnt out capacitor

maybe it's just me..but (1)

user138 (568586) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051137)

i can't search hp.com. seems it doesn't like mozilla 1.4 at all.. or maybe it mozilla.. either way.. bad design.

JGraham

New HP calculators (1)

aSiTiC (519647) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051139)

HP is getting back into the calculator business, see this info page: HP 49g+ [hpcalc.org]

This new calculator even uses a RISC ARM processor, so it should be fairly speedy. However, I don't know if these calculators have been made available for sale yet.

RPN really exists? (2, Funny)

drquizas (681020) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051142)

Wow, I was pretty sure RPN was something my data structures prof made up when he was introducing the concept of stacks.

Re:RPN really exists? (1)

bwalling (195998) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051224)

Yes, and once you start using RPN, you can't imagine going without it. It's truly brilliant. Plus, anyone that borrows your calculator will give it right back because they can't use it.

There is one drawback - I have a hard time with "regular" calculators. I tend to lose numbers because I expect the RPN behavior of keeping my stack.

TI-89 works best (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051144)

Best of the Best.
http://www.ti-89.org/

TI-89? (2, Informative)

Josh Booth (588074) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051145)

My friend recently got a TI-89 and, while it's not an HP, it is able to download programs from the computer. He was able to download an RPN shell and he loves it. Of course, we are both high school seniors, so he gets bored. Since he doesn't have any games on there, he winds up putting in random equations and having it solve for x. Last time, it took the calculator about a day of computing and it would have taken more had the batteries not run out.

Re:TI-89? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051213)

Meaning the crappy Ti got wedged and would have sat there for eternity - if, as you say, its inefficiency hadn't chewed through the batteries. A HP 48GX wouldn't do that.

They may be amusing but they're not serious calculators.

Re:TI-89? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051232)

not a serious calculator?
-3d graphing
-matrix multiplication
-INTEGRALS
-INTEGRALS
-INTEGRALS
-Built in notepad
-way too many to list
This is the closest thing you can get to using a computer/pda on a test, and get away with it
-CS student

Re:TI-89? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051260)

I actually had a math teacher that wouldn't allow me to use an 89 on tests.

TI-83 (0, Troll)

egg troll (515396) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051150)

It doesn't do RPN, but that's an antiquated system and you'd do well to rid yourself of it (I *know* I'm going to get an argument on this. But hey, you don't store your data on punch cards, do you?) Plus, by avoiding HP you won't be supporting a company that continues to make Indonesian laborers work for slave wages (if you like doing that thing. Not everyone on Slashdot cares.)

Re:TI-83 (1)

Josh Booth (588074) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051216)

I have a TI-83 Plus and I must say that it rather sucks. I want to get an 89 so I can put an RPN shell on it. I don't like having to go back into my equation to put in parenthesis I forgot and it is very slow. I need to get my TI-34 back from someone I loaned it to because it was the only calculator that I really enjoyed doing arithmetic with. The new 34's have that editable line that I don't like--it's just like the 83 style: you forget a parenthesis, and must scroll back and put it in.

Not everything that is old is bad. Are Unix-like systems bad because they are based on 60's computer science? Are Windows and C++ better than Unix and C just because they are newer? Is the steering wheel bad because it has been around for 100 years?

Not much out RPN out there... (1)

BlakeGarretson (619688) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051151)

HP quit selling there line of 48S/SX/G/GX and 49G calculators, but they recently came out with the 49G+. This is basically the 48G on steroids. It has been shipping in Europe for a couple weeks now. You can get it here. [educalc.net]

The HP-33S (an "improved" 32S) is supposed to come out possibly in December.

TI-8x (1)

damiam (409504) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051152)

The TI-86 and 89 are both really nice calculators, and you can download programs supporting RPN for them if you can't live it without it.

One word... (1)

GrodinTierce (571882) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051155)

TI-83 (preferably the Silver Edition).

Tierce

Re:One word... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051235)

How appropriate that someone who can't count prefers a TI-83! And the silver sparkly Barbie edition to boot :-)

Why are you using RPN? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051156)

Just curious, why would you use an RPN calculator?

Re:Why are you using RPN? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051191)

I think it's because most of us are nerds, we like to use complex things.... take linux for example. I have a HP 42S as a computer science major.
I also used it in high school only about 5 years ago.. I think I was the only kid with a RPN calc let alone an HP one..

Re:Why are you using RPN? (2, Informative)

TokyoBoy (217214) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051241)

I feel that RPN is so much more liberating once you get used to it. It really is flexable an having a stack and a complete programming language at your fingertips is sooooo much a plus.

I find it hard and annoying to use "regular" calculators now. I have been using my HP 48SX for almost ten years now and it still runs like a charm!!!! BTW, HP has revived their calc division. See www.hpcalc.org [hpcalc.org] for details. They have a line of new calculators on the way too!!!

almost fjirst post! (5core: 3 Interesting) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051158)

ha ha!

the old hp style. but only engineer type nerds need calculators. I hate them all.

Mathematica (1)

Gil-galad55 (707960) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051166)

First, let me give a vote to the TI-89. It served me well in a physics/computer science double major. Second, though, let me recommend Mathematica or a similar mathematics package. Unless you're having to carry around your calculating power, a full-blown computer package is more powerful than your calculator can ever hope to be, and working with software like that will often give you further insights into problems. You can say "What if..." and do something funky like graph imaginary parts of a function on their own axes, letting you see how phase is affecting your results. Just some thoughts!

The only calculator with AWK and SED hotkeys! (1)

candover (39486) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051169)

Looks like you need an HP 67X [209.197.117.170] . Don't forget to pick up the extended-length belt case.

Brief HP calculator guide (5, Informative)

Bilestoad (60385) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051170)

The RPNs worth buying are:

16C - awesome calculator for programmers, especially embedded work. There is no better number system converter available at any price. No I can't do bin/dec/hex in my head faster than the 16C and neither can you. Expensive due to relatively low numbers produced.

42S - pricey, even used, but excellent. Two line display, a replacement for the 15C.

32SII - somewhat like a 42S but with single line display, not so nice to use.

15C - same form factor as 16C. At the time HP's top scientific.

11C - a simpler 15C

10C - a simpler 11C

All the above have solid old-HP build quality, excellent key feel and outstanding battery life.

Older HPs are also usable (and may be preferred) - but they have even greater collector status and sometimes fetch higher prices. They will go through batteries faster and the red LEDs can be harder to see.

Forget the 48 models, the 49 and all the new stuff. The 48GX is OK if you have to have graphing but the single and dual-line models have better UI for daily use. The 49? HP died when Carly took over. Now they make pretty colored plastic boxes that only work with windows and they have forgotten how to spell "engineering". In fact they fired all the engineers and HP is now run by MBAs in shiny suits.

(I own 16C, 42s, 15C and 11C models.)

Re:Brief HP calculator guide (2, Insightful)

ewhac (5844) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051231)

The RPNs worth buying are:

16C - awesome calculator for programmers, especially embedded work. There is no better number system converter available at any price. [ ... ]

I've had one of these for -- can I say this? -- about 20 years. I think I changed the three button cells once in that time. The thing is still on my desk, and it still works. And you're right, the thing is great. I find the lack of scientific functions a bit of a drawback, though.

15C - same form factor as 16C. At the time HP's top scientific.

Yes. I wish I'd had the foresight to get one of these as well.

Out of curiosity, why do you not mention the HP 41-C/CV? A friend of mine gave me one as a gift recently, and it's still a darned fine piece of equipment.

Schwab

Re:Brief HP calculator guide (1)

(H)elix1 (231155) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051246)

I can't believe you left out the HP 19B [hp-collection.org] Got one 'free' with a HP mass spectrometer. Bought my bride a 48G when she needed one for school, because I was not willing to share. Still use the thing...

Do You Have a PalmPilot? (4, Insightful)

ewhac (5844) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051175)

If you have a PalmPilot, you might consider RPN [nthlab.com] . Given your stated requirements, it may not be powerful enough, but it's served me well.

Schwab

Can be fixed (5, Informative)

EmagGeek (574360) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051177)

This sounds like subharmonic oscillation in the inductor core used in the DC-DC converter. Pop it open, find the inductor, and replace it - thing should be good as new.

Re:Can be fixed (1)

EmagGeek (574360) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051197)

Oh, and while you're in there, replace any aluminum-electrolytic caps that might be in there. The electrolyte can dry out, which may also cause audible noise. Replace them with Aluminum-Polymer caps from Cornell-Dubilier...

RPN is a mere hack and used by anal people (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051179)

RPN is a mere hack and used by anally retentive personality people.

As any programmer knows RPN was created to make the user interface more hostile at the benefit of a calculator.

All the popwerful calculators now have full editable formula input screens complete with PARENS.

The parenthesis is a safe adn metally clean way to show precedence without the awkward postfix RPN (Reverse Polish Notation) idiocy of older calcualtors.

The amrketplace has spoken.

With modern desktop computers, people prefer to "indicate' rather than 'regurgitate" and use mice and not syntax-error-prone command lines.

The Mac mouse won the command line wars, and the parenthesis and pretty "graphing" 16 dollar casios won the calculator war.

For predicate calculus and matrix and much more people prefer things similar to Mathematica on a personal laptop.

The world moved on.

Its time to use PRN as a silly Palm Pilor calculator applet as they exist now. Iam sure there are several freeware RPN calculator programs for PalmOS.

The palm also runs its own 68K assembler and debugger on the palm itself so you could jsut write your own calculator without need of any palm development tools.

A used 8MB palm from 3 years ago was 129 dollars brand new, I suppose they would be 50 dollars used if people upgrade and part with theirs.

8MB for a calculator is a lot of storage, and you can add a numeric keypad to a palm easily from many vendors for use in accoounting.

The truth about RPN (2, Informative)

n3xup (411763) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051186)

Check out this website here [calculator.org] to find out what RPN really is.

I hope when he wrote- "Do companies still make calculators?", he meant 'still make RPN calculators.'

use a software emulator (2, Informative)

chipace (671930) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051188)

I use the HP48 software emulator on my pc. I don't need a portable calculator, so I leave my old hp48sx in my closet. The emulator has a gui with all of the buttons that the physical calculator has. Just do a google search on "hp48 emulator" and you can find a download for your os. By the way, legally you need a physical calculator to use the emulator rom. No batteries required.

Check aging components: capacitors etc (1)

staaktdenarbeid (620908) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051192)

Probably this is too trivial - but since you have not turned it on for a long time, some electronic component has aged and now chokes. Typically capacitors grow old easily. Can you open it up and locate the source of the noise more precisely ? (Guess I shouldn't even have asked this ..)

Get a HP... (2, Funny)

yadayadayada (568840) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051195)

...because they come with indemnification.

Lets be real (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051202)

An RPN calculator? Even the Polish make jokes about them these days.

Welcome to 1979.

HP41CV (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051206)

I still use a HP41CV that I purchased in 1986. I'll never replace it, nor has it been obsoleted despite 17 years.

Worse is the mere thought of not using RPN. I think I'm ruined. I know I am. I literally want to throw an algebraic calculator across the room when I'm forced to use one.

If RPN calculators ever become unavailable, there's going to be a lot of people going postal with what's left.

HP-48 and friends banned on PE Exams (2, Informative)

BlakeGarretson (619688) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051210)

FYI, if you want to use your new calc on a PE exam, read this [ncees.org] and this [ncees.org] first. Basically, all calcs from the HP-48G/49G series are banned as of next April. I'm glad I already got my PE; I would hate to take it without RPN...

"giving up the ghost" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051220)

My trusty old HP 48S graphing calculator, that served me since engineering school, seems to be giving up the ghost.



I know this is offtopic, but since
the release of DJ Shadow's [djshadow.com] "The Private Press", [google.ca] I realy must know...



WTF does "giving up the ghost" mean?

HP42S, HP41CX, HP48GX (1)

mtm (10808) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051221)

I still have all three, but find that I use the 42S the most; it still has the 'feel' of the old, rugged HP's and has a quick response.

ebay is your friend: HP calculators [ebay.com]

What's with RPN? (1)

GnuVince (623231) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051226)

Why do people like RPN calculators, but dislike languages like Forth or Joy? Or what about prefix notation maths like in Lisp?

A pitch for TI (1)

Unregistered (584479) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051228)

While it's not RPN, i'm gonna trow out a mention of the TI calcs. Great pieces of wequipment. The TI-89s are really powerful (use the same software as the top of the line 9x, but in a normal calc. form (as contrasted with th 9x's which have a qwerty keyboard and is really big.

Reliability? (1)

Herkum01 (592704) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051230)

Here is something [asianideas.com] that is more reliable, and falls in the under $15 category, and is less likely to be outdated.

ti89 (1)

oZZoZZ (627043) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051237)

I use the TI89 from Texas Instruments (obviously), and It's served me quite well, the solve() function is fantastic... there's nothing I've come across that it can't do.

what about a good calculator for linux? (1)

treat (84622) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051238)

does one exist?

HP32SII (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051243)

HP seems to have dropped a lot of their professional calculators (much to my disappointment). But before then they came out with a couple of great calculators. If you want a graphing calculator, go with the HP49G which allows you to choose between Algebraic entry and RPN. If you want something more like you HP48G, go with the HP48GX or plus. If you don't need graphing capabilities, definitely get the HP32SII. This is the calculator that I have and I love it. In general, it is hard to find these calculators most places. The first place I would check are college bookstores, especially dorky colleges like Caltech (where I go, so I know that they had 49Gs there).

HP12C (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051250)

Been around forever and IMHO the *best* financial calculator.

All you need... (1)

ferrocene (203243) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051252)

is a TI-82 with "Drug wars 2: extreme doobie-smack" loaded onto it.

What? It got me through AP calc. The trick is to buy low.

TI-83+ (1)

zaphodchak (644557) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051259)

Heh, the stsndby for middle and high-school students everywhere... You need a (free) 3rd partymapp for Reverse Polish Notation, but its a good but, and they're good, solid, reliable machines.

48G vs 49G (2, Informative)

Dr. Mojura (584120) | more than 10 years ago | (#7051262)

I have both a 48G and a 49G. I keep the 48G at work, and bring the 49G around with me to school. While I much prefer the 48G's feel (I can can enter keystrokes on the 48G's quick, plastic keys almost twice as fast than on the 49G's hard-to-press rubber keys), I use the 49G exclusively for schoolwork due to it's vastly improved equation editing, algebraic manipulation, calculus handling and unit conversion. The 49G is much better in this regard.

In the end, it really depends on what you'll be using it for. If you're not going to be doing calculations involving more complex equations (especially calculus or variable isolation involving many instances of the variable -- the 49G beats the 48G hands down here), the 48G (or 48GX) is probably best. Since you've gotten along with your 48S this long, the 49G is probably overkill.

HP will also be releasing a few new [hpcalc.org] calculators soon, including a 48GII & a 49G+. Hopefully they will address the 49G's horrible key action!

Accounting Calculator is probably better (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7051282)

Since you are going to accounting school, why don't you buy an accounting RPN calculator:

http://www.hp.com/calculators/financial/index.ht ml

I've got a 12C, and it is what I believe the standard RPN calculator for most MBAs (as well as a TI one), so that may be best suited to you.

I also suggest you wait until you get to school: some courses I hear have a recommended calculator model, so you may just want to hang out for that one.

Most people here will tell you that a 48GX / 49G with libraries can do what the 12C does, but the interface won't be as great (since the 12C replaces most of the scientific keys with financial ones) and IMHO this warrants its purchase alone.

To cover all bases though, I've still got a 48GX :)))
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