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I would be very grateful if the group could advise me on choosing an HP graphical calculator: 48 or 49 (before stocks are exhausted).

Uses: maths, electronics, physics: all at advanced level.

Thanks very much, David


If I`m the one to buy, I`d buy an HP48G+ or HP48GX.

If we are considering keyboard operation, daily use, documentation, display readability and easy-of-use, no contest: 48G series. (I bought a new, dark-dots LCD 48G+: the same fella -R_version ROM- with a better reading). The HP49 has a few handicaps that one can work out, but it's bigger memory and reloadable O.S. have their own effect. Despite the price, that is about the double (two 48`s at the price of a 49? Yes!) Some will say: HP 49G.

But you did not mention money, easy-of-use nor documentation, just the areas you want to use. In this case both are extremely good. You must consider the Computer Algebra System available at the 49G and the Equation Library, available at the 48G and loadable in the 49G. Consider both able to attend your needs. For me, the choice rests in usability. Have you ever used an HP RPN-based calculator before and liked it, the 48 is the choice. If it doesn't matter, the 49 may serve you as well.



Thanks Vieira, Luiz C. for advice. In reply to some of your questions: I've used HP55, HP29c and at present an HP41cv.

I'm buying for my childrens' and my own use. In exams my children will be restricted to non-graphical calculators - I think the HP32sii would be the correct choice for them. They have been using my HP41cv, and although it is working perfectly, I think some sort of backup would be wise.

By reading the postings, I realise that the 48 and 49 are incredibly sophisticated, and I should probably buy before they are unavailable.

At first I thought of getting a 15c of 42, but I don't think the prices they are being offered for are 'fair' - except maybe to a collector. I don't like the way the HPs are sold on Ebay.

One last thought, if it is to be a 48, would the group advise that the extendable one should be chosen?

Thanks very much, David

If it is for your children and they are still Junior or High school, it is tough choice and I will state a few probably obvious points.

1st: if they have used RPN and like it, consider two 48's, a lowly 48g for less than $50 and a better 48G+ or X.

The 128K Ram is nice in higher math and science courses, but only used for games at the Junior High level and the way calcs get treated by kids, well, if you get only a gx and break it, there just may not be a replacement at that time available.

If your kids haven't developed a deep appreciation for Hp's just yet, the 49 is selectable and more stylish. It has much more RAM and it has a CAS. It doesn't look or feel like the Hp's of old. However, the keyboard though rubber feels pretty good, it doesn't feel like an Hp either. Do not confuse an Hp39 with the Hp49, as it is algebraic only and its keyboard is not as good as a 49 rubber keyboard. I would also venture to say that the 49 might just be tougher than a 48 for general book bag use. 48's sometimes had LCD screen breakage and the 49 has an acrilic clear screen over the LCD.

If you can look at them side by side and keep in mind that the 48 has about 2000 functions and the 49 has maybe 10-20% more. You can load a CAS on the 48 if you need one (it is an earlier release of the 49's CAS actually, same author).

I own both and find that I use the 48 more, but I like where the enter key is, whereas the 49 put the enter key in bottom right corner. If you are just starting out ie your kid, this probably isn't a problem, but to an old dog, it's just one more hard trick to relearn.

As for your thoughts about a 15 or 42, well the hard reality is that a 48 is ten times more powerful for 1/2 the $$$. It is not a pocket calc, but that is the breaks. You can still buy Hp32s (I haven't really checked, I just haven't heard of them being pulled from stores).

Just my $0.02


after Ron`s more-than-profitable US$0.02, just a few words to say.

If you are about to buy one of each G+ or GX, I must tell you that expandability will be needed in some cases. As both G+ and GX can be connected to a PC/MAC WS, having the Connectivity Kit will allow the user to enhance indefinitely the calculator's memory limits. Otherwise, if you -or any of your children- intend using PCM-CIA cards with prerecorded applications, the G+ will never allow it: GX is the choice. And 128KB RAM is a lot of memory. I have a 48SX (32KB RAM) and for daily use, and the 32KB are more than enough. Just a matter of memory management, unless you intend to use it to collect data in the field without a mass-storage device (a lap/palmtop, for example...)

Hope it helps.



I use my 48 daily and would recommend a GX because, who knows, your or the kids may get the bug to see how much you can program into these and extra memory is a plus. Now, for the grand finally .... ITS GOT A BIG ENTER KEY! At least it still seems an HP! Geeze, we're purists here!


dave; i agree with joe (but that's not joe's fault). if you are going to have just one 48 then the ability to add memory and run a rom on it is important.