Interest on collecting Calculators

Do you think interest on collecting HP and other brands calculators will be increasing as the time passes?

Or the interest will die with us, the generation of collectors that love our calcs because we used them when studing?

What could happen with calc prices? Will they always increase as do prices of others collecting items?

I hope you understand the point. I know my english is very limited!

Merry Christmas.




from someone else with a very limited English, I believe collectors will prevail anytime, as long as mankind exist. For the matter of calculators, it's just the spark that matters. We here, were the spark that started calling attention for them.

Let's think about it: what sort of stuff is ellected to be a collectible item? Stamps? Telphone cards? I was never told about someone who collect, say, clothes, unless they are rare. I was never told, till a couple of years ago, that someone would collect, say... hewlett-packard calculators? They are tools. Oh, no, now they are rare.

That's what make collectibles collectible items: rarity and availability. Which is the stamp collectors would pay as much money as they have? I have no idea of how does it look like, but it is for sure the rarest.

But it must be available, even if it is rare.

What happens is that HP calculators were always availble, and at the moment some of us began to search for them as if they were no longer available, the ones who had them decided to make them rare: I have this item, but it costs that much, because it's rare!. If, in any moment in time, they are actualy unavailable, hunters will search for other collectible itens and make them rare. And there is a point we must never forget: who is elected to decide if an item is rare and valuable? In our case, we are the ones that know which is the rarest: an HP10B or an HP10C? If someone that does know there in an HP10-whatever calculator that is rare, so I'll pay 200 bux for this HP10B and it's a bargain! Who would do that? None of us, for sure.

Another opposite point: what is a rare calculator good for if we cannot buy it, or even find one?

And let's face it: collecting HP calcualtors is new fashion, it widely started, say, in 2000?...

So, I think collectors will keep this issue for as long as people are interested on doign business. Otherwise, if someone, from now to a couple of years, look at an HP10C and say: It has no graphics? So, what is it good for? Naa, I'll not pay more than 10 bux for this..., you may be sure collecting HP calculators will not be a big beal...

Time will tell.


(I did not spell check this, so, forgive the errors...)


I suspect that the traditional HP calculators will retain their value for a good time to come, because they have the fundamentals of high quality, utility, practicality, and relative scarcity. These are tools, not obsolete gizmos, and they are as useable as when new. While newer products (e.g., PC software and more-advanced calcs) may have become available, they lack some of the attributes of the great HP machines of the '80s.

Unless HP goes "back to basics" with the upcoming outsourced line (let's wait and see), there will be a demand for these well-engineered, but not obsolete, products of the not-too-distant past.



If I am not wrong, Dave Hicks maintains a lot of calculators that are part of history, some are fully mechanic-based, others are elctronic, most of them are digital. Maybe I'm wrong, but Hewlett-Packard brand was Dave's choice, as we see Joerg Woerner and Viktor Toth with other algebraic models, mostly from Texas Instruments.

These guys collect the tools, not the itens, as I see. They all have their pages and they all show their models. And they have been collecting them for a long time, not for these days, if I am not wrong.

What I want to mention is the fact that interest on collecting HP calculators widely, EVEN for those who do not even know what C-MOS or V-MOS technology stand for, is something new. And I mention this fact with no offensive meaning, just because a reliable collector knows very well what is he dealing with, its history, rarity, and so, as Dave, Viktor and Joerg themselves know, for sure. The guys who do not know about their collectibles are, in most cases, the profit-guys. Nothing against them, I sincerely hope that they find something else more profitable than HP calculators soon, and begin selling what they have in stock for lower (actual) prices, and all of us, we and them, be happy.

I myself am far from the big HP commerce center, but I am sad for those who are closer and want to have an HP calculator for professional reasons (as I read in some posts here) but can't afford the high prices.



Even with limited English skill, the message should be clear:

One person's crap is another's collectible.

There's no way to predict the future of calculator collecting, but I wouldn't bet against steadily increasing prices for HPs. (I do suspect that, should HP release a good high-end RPN/RPL model, some of the over-the-top prices being seen for 32SIIs and 42S' will be moderated.)


In my post, I really wasn't suggesting that if one didn't know English, one would have trouble understanding things . . .

I meant that, in reading the article about collecting AOL disks, it should be clear to most anyone that "one person's crap is another's collectible".

It was only in re-reading my hastily-written note that I suspected a possibility of misunderstanding.

(I really should put a delete code on these!)

I'm sorry if I've offended anyone!


Certainly no offense taken. I hope that you are right about new RPN/RPL models. With the prices seen on ebay and the interest in places like this and the comp.sys.hp48 forum, I am surprised TI hasn't introduced an algebraic / post-fix switchable model. I can understand the potential for a limited (and perhaps shrinking) market for an all post fix model, but why not one that does both?


Hi, Paul;

I wish I could know some more in English language, and by no means I would understand your words as offensive; I believe others would not. There is no place for this in here.

But... I feel bad about this... I did not completely understand the sentence at the first reading: "one person's crap is another's collectible". After reading it three times I understood: "what you take as disposable may be usefull for someone else".

Some people say English is easier because of the number of (daily used) words available in the language, but there are some combinations of words and sentences that I have to wonder a few till I get it understood.

I think this answers your "question": how can I feel offended (and others, if appilcable) if I really do not get into the actual meaning, sometimes?




"Crap" is a coarse slang term often used for "junk" or "stuff", but also used for "excrement". I didn't choose it to be coarse, so much as for its alliterative value. "Alliteration" is the English technical term for the slightly poetic-sounding repetition of consonant sounds. (A little alliteration adds a lot to a slick slogan or pithy pronunciamiento.)

But a nicer way of stating the message is the parallel, and more widely used version: "One man's trash is another man's treasure."

Anyway, thanks for taking the time to try to figure out some of my silly words. I consider it an honor, and am grateful!

-- Paul B.


One should always remember that english is not a proud language... it freely steals from every other language it comes across. We have no need of them stinkin' language police ala France...

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