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I have finally received the black 17bII that I have been looking for.

HP 17bII black

Does anybody know why HP turned to the admittedly uglier brown scheme?

Also the pouch is black - and seems better quality as well.

Both machines pictired were made in Indonesia.

IIRC, I think that in a HP Digest magazine around 1980 it was mentioned that the HP41 was dark brown (and not black) because brown was "warm", avoiding the "coldness" of black. If this approach was still valid many years after is just a possibility...


first units were brown then arrived the black one.

keyboard is better in the brown unit.


Ugly, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder.

I think the brown unit is better looking.

Thanks for the information!

Serial number info is not as clear as with old models.

Regarding keyboard quality, both are equal in my humble opinion. I am not able to wring out any difference!!


i have some 17bii, the brown ones are singapore units with molded keys and the black units are from indonesia and painted keys.

the lcd is a bit better in the black units.