A pretty good month for collecting



#2

During September I was able to add three vintage machines to my collection:

A Rockwell 24K with carrying case and instructions for a dollar.

A Unnisonic 811 with instructions, a registration card and a carton for a dollar. I now have an 811, 811-A, 811-C, 811-E and 811L-B. Was there an 811-B or an 811-D?

An HP-95LX with 1 MB RAM for $7.50 . Is there something unique that it can do that other HP machines can't do, and that I should become familiar with? Or, should I simply add it to my collection?

Palmer


#3

Palmer,

the HP95LX was the first of 3 really amazing HP machines. I think by far the best hand-held devices HP ever invented. All were basically IBM XT's running DOS using 2 AA batteries, a B&W display and some fantastic built-in software.

The 100LX improved greatly on the 95LX by expanding the screen to a full 25x80 characters and adding more/better built-in software. The 200LX improved on the 100LX by (optionally) adding more memory and still better built-in software.

I think that HP's big selling point with these was having Lotus 1-2-3 built in, but I think that the calculator software that HP wrote for these was just perfect. The solver on the 100LX/200LX (I'm not sure about the 95LX) was easily the best one ever. In addition you could link to 1-2-3 sheets to read/store data from within the solver and do some things not possible with any other solver in an HP calculator.

I still use my 15 year old HP200LX (double speed with 4M RAM) daily for calendar and phone book things as well as my calculator collection DB management tool. Not to mention the programming in various computer languages just to test out ideas and HP CALC for financial stuff and to see how far I can push the solver!

-Katie


#4

reading Katie's reply I reflect on all the good stuff coming out of hp in the heyday, it's but a dire contrast to see the situation today. A sign of the times or just normal company "decay" (evolution according to some)?. Just semantics, but the net of it is no more great ingenuity - maybe it's me being pessimistic today..


#5

Quote:
reading Katie's reply I reflect on all the good stuff coming out of hp in the heyday, it's but a dire contrast to see the situation today. A sign of the times or just normal company "decay" (evolution according to some)?. Just semantics, but the net of it is no more great ingenuity - maybe it's me being pessimistic today..

I totally agree. They are cranking out the same junk as every other company these days. Even the newer calculators don't have any sparkle to them.

#6

I completely agree with Katie. I was fortunate to purchase the 95LX new and used it for a good long time. The one problem that I had that was maddening to me was that' at least on my version, bulk Kermit transfers didn't work and I had to backup my files individually. Having a visible stack was brilliant, and incidentally something I wrote to HP about during the Woodstock model era.

The OmniGo 100 running GeoWorks was a huge disappointment on the other hand.

Regards.

#7

Katie:

Your posting reminded me that I have a 1 MB HP200LX that I got last year at HHC2009. I haven't done much with it since but where can I find an I/O cable (I can make one with the right 200LX connector), backup batteries (What type does it take? It's missing), and PC application software to transfer programs between the LX and a PC? I did find some manuals on that other site but they were pretty expensive.

It appears to work just fine on a couple of AAs, so I'm wondering what I can do with it now.

Thank you for any suggestions.

Gerry


#8

...I don't mean to interupt, but... . ....:

The backup battery is a CR2032. There should be a little plastic carrier in the side of the machine that it fits it.

The cable is very similar to (not NOT identical to)the HP49 cable. There is a 'Cable Table' around here somewhere that has the details.

It can run on NiCds or Alkalines. When running on NiCds, one can use an external 'wallwart' for charging. There is a setting to 'tell it' you are running on rechargable batteries.

Also, it IR emits HP SIR so a HP82240 printer should work - although I haven't figured out how to get it to work from QBASIC.

TomC

ps: I'm also a 'fan' of this fine machine!


#9

I think that the fastest way to transfer data between a PC and an HP95/100/200LX is to use a PC-CARD (aka PCMCIA). You can get them with 100+ MB for next to nothing on TAS and you can buy a PC-CARD reader (for next to nothing too) for you PC or laptop if you don't already have one.

Aside from being much faster than serial communications it's good to just keep one of these cards in your palmtop for greatly enhanced storage of programs and data, It looks to your palmtops that it has an like the A: when installed (by default, you could change that).

If you really want to go the serial route, you can still buy them new here and probably elsewhere on the web. The serial cable is needed for connection to a modem, for example, and you can even get an email client that works pretty well. It used to be possible to do some web surfing too, but I haven't tried that in years and I doubt that you'd get very far with it these days.

Finally it's possible to skip the serial connection but still connect to the internet by buying a PCMCIA modem card with an X-JACK built in. There was at least one 14.4K modem card that worked well on the 200LX, I don't think that there were any faster ones made that worked. IIRC they all draw more current than the 200LX can supply so you have to use an external modem for better speed.

-Katie

#10

Katie:

You wrote:

Quote:
The HP95LX was the first of 3 really amazing HP machines. I think by far the best hand-held devices HP ever invented.

So, I started playing around with it just a little bit. I ran the forensics algorithm and got 9.000000000029575 -- that's ten zeroes in there! That contrasts with the 8.9999999956625 (only eight nines in there) as listed in Sebastian's site for the HP-42, 48, 49, 50.

Palmer

#11

Just making sure you saw the note below. Nashville isn't that far from NC. :-)

Hope all is well.


#12

Gene:

Nashville is within my driving range. I would certainly try to attend if you can bring HHC2011 there.

Palmer


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