Usability of HP 17B II/19B II vs 12C - tips?



I have used the 12C for a number of years, and have been checking out a friends 17B II, with a view to getting it or the 19B II. The 12C is simple to use and PVs can be calculated very quickly. Also, all the functions are readily accessible.

Am I missing something, or does it take longer to do PV type calculation on the 17B II/19B II ?? It seems that only the non RPN 14B had buttons for financial functions - the 17/19 require wading through menus.

Any tips on using the 17/19 B II, or is keeping the 12C the preferred option?



It depends upon what you plan to use the calculator for? The Hp12c is the standard for an RPN financial calculator. The Hp17Bii was its replacement upgrade. That the Hp12c WAS NOT discontiued is a testament to how good the Hp12c IS.

However, as a calculator, the Hp17Bii (and the even more feature rich, but discontinue Hp19Bii) has lots more features and can be customized much beyond the Hp12c with its 7K (or 32K for the newest Hp17Bii+) available for its very sophisticated and easy to use solver.

While you do need to wade through menues, you get to the one you want or need and it stays there until you need another menu. It also allows you to operate (or share) your calculator in two different modes, RPN and algebraic.


The 17bii has a backspace button which in and of itself is worth the upgrade.


The 12c Platinum 25th Anniversary edition has a backspace button. Albeit a little abnormal, but at least they added it. :-)



Hi (insect?!?);

I have all three models and a few other financial ones, and so far I saw just two other HP19B users around here (one, in fact, with an HP18C). The HP12C indeed has the fastest way to get to the TVM interface because it has TVM-dedicated keys. It happens the same with all previous HP financial calculators. I have an HP37E and one HP38C, and I have once used an HP22 and one HP27. All of these are predecessors of the HP12C, and they all have TVM-dedicated keys. Some models that came after the HP12C offered the menu option, and also lots more memory and extra resources. I prefer using any HP17B/19B to compute cash flow because they are faster when computing IRR and offer some extra features, like NFV (Net Future Value). Appart of that, the menu-driven softkey-based TVM is a different approach, these models actually do not have TVM-dedicated keys. Anyway, I see no trouble in that, and the extra functionality worth the lack of such dedicated keys.

I'd keep the HP12C (I also have Platinum and Prestige units) and, if possible, would give these new units a try...

My 2ยข.

Luiz (Brazil)

Edited: 13 Oct 2006, 12:40 a.m.


But as a finance professional, I don't want to wade through menus for the common financial functions. It seems like the 14B was the closest to a 12C successor, but it didn't come with RPN. Was there an RPN version?

It seems to me that the 17B and 19B are more for students than professionals, who need an answer ASAP.


A friend of mine is most definitely a professional, runs a fund, and she loves her 17bii. She has had it since college (89). It isn't a lot of "wading" to get to the finance stuff. The menus are not "buried" but are right on top. And it doesn't revert to the home if you turn it off.

Furthermore the 17bii has bond features, lists, 2 variable statistics and an equation solver which is far more powerful for programming than the crippled rpn of the 12C.

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