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Full Version: A beautiful HP-70
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Late last year this complete HP-70 set in mint condition sold on TAS for only $676.66 to a domestic buyer. The seller had restricted shipping to the USA, otherwise I think the final sale price would have been much higher, perhaps over $1K. Previously, a HP-70 w/o accessories and in not nearly as good condition had sold for nearly $1K to a buyer outside the USA, probably Europe. This is the only HP-70 I've seen with the original cardboard box and Demonstration Book. This is truly one of the nicest rare collectable vintage HP calc sets I've ever seen.

Very nice, never seen such a complete HP-70 set. But compared to, e.g., the 29C box, this box looks quite shabby. Why did HP not provide a nice box in the early days?

HP wanted this model to be a much less expensive economy financial calculator that cost a lot less than the HP-80. So they replaced the fancy metal clamshell jewel case with a cardboard box and the nice black soft leather calculator case with a plastic zipper case to lower costs. Another advantage of the cardboard box is that it could also be used for shipping, since in the early days HP calcs were not sold over the counter, except at HP outlets. HP also eliminated the separate Quick Reference Guide, although they improved the Owner's Handbook by making it spiral bound. When HP introduced the HP-80 in 1973 the price was $395, whereas when they introduced the HP-70 in 1974 the price was reduced to $275. The problem is that it was still not cheap, and when the more powerful HP-22 was introduced in 1975 for $165, that sealed its fate, and very few were sold, which is why they are so rare and fetch such a high price today.

HP 70 with all the trimmings

A quick google search brought this up. Very nice looking. Note: I am not associated with this individual, etc.

Very nice, however, I don't see the Owner's Handbook in any of the photos.

Heh! You're right! It's a fake! :-)

Maybe it's under the Real Estate Application book.

I am fortunate enough to have a very nice, working HP 70 and owners handbook. Perhaps my favorite of the bunch.

Thank you Michael for this clear explaination.

Edited: 8 Mar 2011, 7:33 p.m.

Thanks, Michael, for the interesting background information, and thanks, Gene, for the interesting link!

BTW, I like the HP-70 case because the zipper goes nearly to the bottom of the case and let's you pull out the calc easily. I use one for my HP-41.