HP 50G or HP 48GX?



#15

Since my HP 48G doesn't really turn on (Broken 'on' button), I am just thinking of getting a new one. I just checked the HP's site and there is the HP50G. It's around $150, while the HP 48GX on ebay goes for over that.. some auctions are WELL over $150.

Is this because 48GX's are discontinued or is it because 48GX's are actually a better calculator than the 50G?


#16

You can get a 50g from Amazon for about $114. I've seen them as low as $100.

The 50g is faster, has a nicer, larger screen, and can be programmed in C in addition to UserRPL, SysRPL, Saturn ASM, and ARM ASM.

The 50g has 3 I/O options: Serial, USB, and IR. Serial and USB work with all OSes (Mac, Win, Lin).

The 48GX has a better keyboard, but with ugly colors. Not all 48GX programs will run on the 50g, SysRPL and Saturn assembly programs may need to be updated to support the 50g.

50g has CAS and 21st century storage (SD card).

If you are looking for a great calc with an OK keyboard and are only interested in existing UserRPL code, then get the 50g. The 50g is also easily replaced if lost or broken.

IMHO, the #1 complaint about the 50g however is the placement of the ENTER key. Many would sell their children before using a 50g because of the ENTER key.

In the long run, get both. Everybody should have a 48GX, its a classic. I started using the 50g because my 1993 still minty looking 48GX was a gift that I did not want to lose. I used it and traveled with it from 1993 to 2006, then I retired it for a replaceable 50g. I've found the 50g a superior computing device. If the ENTER key were moved back and the design a little bit more professional looking, it'd be perfect (well almost, needs HP-IL too :-). Actually JFG's PilBOX serial to HP-IL version may give the 50g HP-IL.

Just my $0.02.


#17

Quote:
The 48GX has a better keyboard, but with ugly colors.



Colours are matter of personal taste, I for one like the 48GX colour scheme; Also HP48 is a bit narrower, heavier, fills better in hand and has bigger system font. All in all it looks and fills like professional tool and not like a toy.

Cheers,
Reth


#18

Quote:
Colours are matter of personal taste

True. I should have stated that it is popular opinion that the colors are ugly. Correct me if I am wrong, but I believe that most agree that the 48SX and 50g have a better color scheme. I.e. easier to read. Of course, nothing bests the 49g+ for ugly (again, popular opinion).
Quote:
Also HP48 is a bit narrower, heavier, fills better in hand and has bigger system font. All in all it looks and fills like professional tool and not like a toy.

No argument there. I like the boxy look. The solid feel. However, you do lose the bigger font if you install Metakernel (about as close as a 48GX can get to the 50g).

The 50g is one of my toys :-)


#19

Quote:
Of course, nothing bests the 49g+ for ugly (again, popular opinion).

I don't know why I am so fond of the hp 49g+ color scheme. It could be because a) it was my first HP calculator, or b) have you seen the shape and color of its predecessor, the hp 49 !? The hp 49 is quite ugly, IMHO.

Quote:
The 50g is one of my toys :-)

We know. You are insane. We've seen your magnum opus, "Extend your 50g with C". When it becomes a textbook I will boast I saw it here first.

Edited: 14 Jan 2009, 9:50 p.m.


#20

Quote:
You are insane.

Thanks. I'll take that as a complement :-).
#21

Get a 50g. Ultimately, it's a far better machine. You won't regret it.

thanks,
bruce


#22

The HP50G is an amazing device. I have one HP48SX and two HP48GX units. They don't begin to come close to the HP50G (or even the HP49G+) in computing power. The cultists who worship the HP48 do so with absolutely no technical basis other than the location of the ENTER key, or the feel of the keys. The HP48-series LCD is likely the poorest quality display ever on a HP calculator. The HP49G/50G display is crystal clear, and larger as well. HP48 exansion memory cards are another very expensive abomination. For the HP49G/50G, one can use the cheapest SD card and have grossly more memory than will ever be used.

I've used HP calcs since 1977. The HP42S was my favorite. It still is, for RPN, but for other uses, the HP50G has surpassed it and all other HP calcs by far.


#23

Quote:
The HP50G is an amazing device. I have one HP48SX and two HP48GX units. They don't begin to come close to the HP50G (or even the HP49G+) in computing power.

No argument here. However, my 48SX has far more computing power than I can use. Do I need more?

Quote:
The cultists who worship the HP48 do so with absolutely no technical basis other than the location of the ENTER key, or the feel of the keys....

Well, you see, I am not a "cultist", but the look and feel (and build quality) of my professional tools is important, at least to me. After all, these factors were why I went with HP after starting out with TI. These may or may not be important to Denizen. But at least he should know the pros and cons of both the 48GX and 50G so he can decide. I think Egan has done a good job of this.

#24

Quote:
The HP48-series LCD is likely the poorest quality display ever on a HP calculator.

My 48GX recently died (and then came back to life), so I bought a new calculator (48Gii) to err on the safe side. The first thing I noticed was the grey screen and black numbers, compared to the green screen and blue numbers on the GX. I'm finding the Gii really hard to read. I have the brightness as high as possible, yet the GX is still much easier to read. It's a real pity they stopped making the GX.

V


#25

Someone who never used an 48GX CANNOT understand why it feels so good to work with it ;)
The keyboard is GREAT, the haptics are fantastic. That's why I love mine. But ...
without Metakernel, and without a second big memory card you won't do much. Compared to a 50G it is slow, you don't have a powerful CAS and file transfers are slow and much more cumbersome.


#26

Hi,

HP-48 Gseries users could also consider taking a look at SpeedUI for the HP-48 G series, which accelerates nearly all aspects of the user interface, including Choose boxes, input forms, and more.

SpeedUI is still supported and updated, whereas the old MK beta is outdated and without any support for much more than a decade...

HTH

#27

Quote:
The HP48-series LCD is likely the poorest quality display ever on a HP calculator.

FWIW, I have a 48GX with the black LCD display which is the best display I've ever seen...extremely well saturated, high contrast, sharp and clear. Better than my 50g. I also have an older 48G with blue display which is poor. I guess my point is if you can find a black display 48, get it...it's worth it.


hal
#28

Hi Denizen, The 50g is a great machine, but also is your old 48g (if it still worked). As you are comfortable with your old 48g I would consider not upgrading and just replacing it with another 48g. The 48g is much less expensive on that auction site than the 48gx. The 48gx gives you more memory and some expansion slots but that is it. I started with the HP45 30+ years ago and I like the keyboard of the 48g series. On the other hand I have moved to the 50g with it's nicer and bigger screen and slightly faster performance (I don't use any features beyond those in the 48g). I have stopped using my 48g because it gets me confused going between the 2 different keyboard layouts. One big question for you is how much you like the 48g keyboard layout. I would love to see a 50g mounted with a 48g keyboard, but I don't think will ever happen.


Best of luck ... Chuck


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