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I've owned my HP-50G since 2006 and use it almost every day. I believe I've had to change batteries in it three or four times over those years and I think that this means that the device is outstanding in power management.

Yet, I've read (mostly in the Amazon reviews of the device) that for some owners, the calculator eats batteries very quickly.

Curiosity drives my question - was there an HP-acknowledged problem with some of the HP-50Gs?

I find that the batteries drain quickly when doing a lot of graphing (particularly if high pixel density is chosen) or long integrations etc.

I think that the "problem" is that the ARM processor clock is increased when the calculator executes routines and reduced when not doing much. The processor uses a lot of current at high clock frequencies. This is more "the nature of the beast" than a problem.

Thanks Bart!

For some discussions, see these threads on comp.sys.hp48:

HP graphing calculator power consumption

Some numbers on Battery Life

There seems to have been a problem in a few cases, see here:

New HP 50G owner, experiencing problems

I'm sure another issue is that the calculator is easy to accidentally turn on even when it's in its case (say, while in a book bag).

If it only ever sat on a desk, presumably that would be much less of a problem.