The calculator is dead - viva la HP 15C Limited Edition



#2

I'm really surprised about the buzz created here in the forum with the re-release of a 29 years old calculator - limited in production and overpriced. A clear sign that the calculator is dead and you use your pocket shirts for a smart phone and do your calculations with Excel.

*** STOP THE PRESS ***

The next generation Ford Fusion will be developed in Europe, Michigan is preparing in its Detroit based skunk works a re-release of the Tin Lizzy to celebrate the 100th anniversary. They started to plant the first trees to harvest the raw material for authentic rubber tires.


Shortage on the transistor market. A major US company bought back thousands of Transistors on several eBay auctions. Rumors are a re-release of the Regency TR-1.


Motorola sells mobile phone group to Google. We know more! The development costs of the Motorola DynaTAC 8000X re-release (30th anniv in 2013) went off.


Cheers,
Joerg


#3

Dear Joerg,

I sense jealousy since TI has not came up with any products that created such excitement as the HP 15C LE. ;-)

cheers,

hpnut in Malaysia


#4

Dear hpnut,

I'm not really jealous - TI missed indeed the opportunity to celebrate the introduction of the Datamath (TI-2500) Calculator.

But I received a week ago a box from TI Dallas, Texas with some exciting new calculators. One of them, please check the German website of TI, is ready to be released to celebrate the 35th anniversary of an unrivaled product. Introduced in 1976, last modification in 1997 and discontinued early in the 21th century.

No - it is NOT the TI-30...

It will be available in a few weeks - my sample was manufactured in June 2011.

Enjoy: Link to the box of the new TI product. Fresh from Kinpo.

Cheers,
Joerg

Dennis, I bet you knew it all the time!!!


#5

The TI-30 sucked, but it was followed up with the somewhat less sucky TI-35. I managed to keep one of those going through the time I finally bought a 41C.

#6

Well, a reintroduction of the TI-58/59 would be really awesome. Even if Kinpo would be producing it, a better keyboard should not be too difficult to manufacture.

#7

Hey, Joerg! Please don't rain on our parade! ;-)


Regards,

John

#8

Hey, maybe TI will reintroduce the TI-55-II

:-)

#9

Hi Joerg,

Thanks for being a n-1 customer for the HP 15C LE. Just more to go around for the rest of us silly aficionados.

My condolances,

Michael


#10

Sorry, I have already 8 firm orders from my collector friends in Brazil and Germany ;-))

And I need a few for my retirement plan, too.

Cheers,
Joerg

#11

Quote:
Motorola DynaTAC 8000X re-release (30th anniv in 2013) went off.

You know what? I think it'd actually sell. Just for its "style".


#12

Texas please re-release TI-88 :-)


#13

It isn't possible for TI to re-release the TI-88, since they haven't released it a first time.

#14

I want another dozen new TI-30s to go with the ones that failed me in college.

#15

I think you have a point, but the re-release of the 15c is good news. As much as it'd be great having truly useful new calculators, a classic is a classic and should always be available. I can't understand for instance why ti discontinued the superb 85/86 line and instead upgraded the less capable 83, or casio ditched the fx 880p, much in use with site engineers over here (and even why hp withdrew the 42s).

#16

Tube amplifiers still sell. So do Vinyl LP records. I know several people who still drive cars with carbureted engines. Some of them cost a lot and all were developed long before the 15C. There's always an enthusiast market.


#17

Tube audio equipment can compete with the best solid state amps and preamps. It is easier to set up a satisfying tube-based system than a solid state one.

Many audiophile releases are recorded with tubed equipment.

Vinyl can compete (and some people say win) with 96/24 and 192/24 digital audio. It trounces CD quality (44/16). Never mind MP3.

Among connoisseurs, the last sentence is not even under discussion (Stereophile, The absolute sound, Hi-fi News,...)


#18

Quote:
Vinyl can compete (and some people say win) with 96/24 and 192/24 digital audio. It trounces CD quality (44/16). Never mind MP3.

Yeah, but only the first few times you play that LP (unless you can afford one of these).

And, they are hard to listen to in your car!

You are right about MP3 audio being junk. (But most of what the kids listen to on MP3 is junk, anyway, so maybe not much loss there!)


#19

In most cases, you wouldn't be able to tell the difference between a correctly encoded MP3 audio track (high quality VBR profile with a fine encoder like LAME) and the original source (be it vinyl, CD, or whatever).
MP3 files are junk when encoding is done by uneducated people.


#20

I for one have to admit I usually can't tell the difference between a fine, high-BR MP3 and the original... but to be on the safe side, I re-encoded all my CDs to lossless flac codec, as my player (a Cowon) can play that...

Cristian


#21

Same here. I can't tell the difference except in a rare situation. But I've also switched to FLAC (and freed my iPod from iTunes).


#22

You mean you can read FLAC on the iPod? My wife has an iPod, and she doesn't use iTunes (she uses Banshee on Linux) but the iPod still only reads mp3...

Cristian

#23

I kind of lost respect for the connoisseurs when they claimed to be able to distinguish between these and normal (cheap) wire. In this case the signal is digital, there will never be enough signal loss to degrade it to the point that a 1 is mistaken for a 0. Even in the analogue case, the difference is insignificant.

Okay, I lost all respect for connoisseurs way before this, but this is the best of the best in regards to stupidity :-)

I've a friend who used to make connoisseur quality audio equipment and he laughs at the folks who buy this kind of thing. His amplifiers and speakers are superb however.

- Pauli

Edited: 4 Sept 2011, 2:06 a.m.


#24

Digital audio problems (and cable differences) do not stem from loss of information, but due to jitter (timing differences) of the data stream.

While you might think that a well designed PLL should be able to reduce it to non-audible levels, the sad fact is that the best current approaches are based on writing data received in ROM memory and play from that memory, properly clocked with a premium quartz clock (with strategies to lower the clock jitter to less than 5ppm).

With a properly set-up system, differences can be very audible. But this is not the object of this forum!!

And I will be the first to agree that there are huge amounts of snake oil in specialist audio!


#25

Quote:
Digital audio problems (and cable differences) do not stem from loss of information, but due to jitter (timing differences) of the data stream.

So, are you saying that there are cables that introduce timing discrepancies in digital audio data streams that subsequently have an audible effect?

Quote:
... the sad fact is that the best current approaches are based on writing data received in ROM memory...

Since, by definition, ROM is not writable, this statement makes no sense to me.

Quote:
...with strategies to lower the clock jitter to less than 5ppm.

Does '5ppm' mean 'within 1/200,000th of where it should be'? At what level would it create an audible effect?

Quote:
And I will be the first to agree that there are huge amounts of snake oil in specialist audio!

Indeed, although it seems to have a matching amount of delusional thinking and comical physics among hi-fi reviewers and proponents of things like conditioned mains cables.


#26

There's a good talk and demonstration on the golden-ears baloney at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BYTlN6wjcvQ . There are a few funny parts, like at 3:15 to 4:45 where he says he compared a McIntosh tube amp to a cheap solid-state amp for a room full of enthusiasts. All the audiophiles said the tube amp sounded better, while the engineers said the solid-state amp sounded better; but the reality was that the A-B switch did nothing to the signal routing, and the cord going to the tube amp was only stapled to the back, and the tube amp itself was dead. There are various demonstrations of bit rate, number of bits, phase changes, etc.. For the things that rely on non-compressed audio data (as opposed to what YouTube does to it), the link is given to the full data. Enjoy.

#27

If the cable is not properly terminated with the characteristic impedance required by the network (either S/PDIF, AES/EBU or I2S), yes, it will introduce signal reflections that will impact on jitter

I meant RAM, obviously - my fault.

Regarding jitter:

jitter in wikipedia

Regarding jitter in audio:

Jitter, Bits and Sound quality

BTW - no one in the industry would consider Monster cable "expensive" or "cutting edge". Again, cable industry is the realm of snake oil (while I can readily differentiate among the three speaker
cables that I have - all very different in electrical measures (R,L,C))


#28

Quote:
If the cable is not properly terminated with the characteristic impedance required by the network (either S/PDIF, AES/EBU or I2S), yes, it will introduce signal reflections that will impact on jitter
Jitter is an inconsistency in the clock timing from one period to the next. I am very familiar with it. An improperly terminated cable will not cause inconsistencies in timing. (Proper termination is easy anyway. There's no excuse not to get it right.) Neither will refelections that will be the same from one sample to the next. In fact if the reflection is not strong enough to change the state of the receiver out of the 0 or 1 that is should be, it will introduce absolutely no error. And as your second article stated, the clock is generally stabilized by PLL at the DAC anyway. The first digital recording I heard was at an Audio Engineering Society convention probably over 30 years ago. Its only problem seemed to be from inadequate anti-alias filtering.

Quote:
(while I can readily differentiate among the three speaker cables that I have - all very different in electrical measures (R,L,C))
Take a look at a 3-dimensional graph of the complex impedance of your speakers versus frequency. The reactance can go plus and minus j a few ohms across frequency, and the resistance varries a few ohms too. And these will change with temperature.


Edited: 4 Sept 2011, 10:59 p.m.


#29

It's amusing that the second quoted article is citing artifacts that are between 83dB and 98dB below the signal level; good luck hearing those, even if you're a bat.

Whereas, the other cited attempt at simulating artificial jitter lifts the noise floor to, shock! horror! 110dB below the signal. Which is about a millionth of the power of the noise floor on vinyl, if memory serves.

I can't even be bothered to calculate how many miles long digital cables would have to be for internal reflections to be a potential source of timing errors, assuming delayed reflections could somehow introduce or suppress bits in a way that got around link-level integrity checks.

#30

Quote:
I kind of lost respect for the connoisseurs when they claimed to be able to distinguish between these and normal (cheap) wire. In this case the signal is digital, there will never be enough signal loss to degrade it to the point that a 1 is mistaken for a 0. Even in the analogue case, the difference is insignificant.

Proof by assertion. If you perceive a difference yet can't measure it, you're most likely not measuring the right thing.

Quote:
Okay, I lost all respect for connoisseurs way before this, but this is the best of the best in regards to stupidity :-)

So in your book anyone who claims to perceive a difference is stupid. Maybe you need a Q-Tip and some manners.

#31

My longtime reference source is vinyl. I don't own an ELP laser turntable (nor do I want to--its performance is mediocre), but I do own a Loricraft record cleaning machine.

I also like tube electronics. Not exclusively, but it tends to be easier to get good sound with them. I also happen to like output transformerless amplifiers and full range electrostatic loudspeakers.

And yeah, I'm one of those "loonies" who claim to hear differences in cables. But that's a whole separate discussion for which there is no final agreement.


#32

It happens that the best sound I have ever heard was from an OTL amp - Transcendent's T16 - driving Gallo (crosoverless) speakers. While I am electronic engineer, by no means I think that every amp sounds the same.

As the amp was a loaner, I intend to build another OTL when funds and significant other allow. Hopefully with a couple of Quad 2805's (which are yours? Acoustats? Atma Sphere amps?


#33

Atma-Sphere. Sound Lab Ultimate-1PX speakers. I am a dealer for both (essentialaudio.com). If you're ever in the Chicago area let me know and come for a listen.

#34

Quote:
The next generation Ford Fusion will be developed in Europe, Michigan is preparing in its Detroit based skunk works a re-release of the Tin Lizzy to celebrate the 100th anniversary. They started to plant the first trees to harvest the raw material for authentic rubber tires.

Ah, you think you're being clever. Well, Morgan is bringing back the Morgan 3 wheeler, originally introduced around 1910, so you're closer to the mark than you think...

Morgan 3 Wheeler


#35

My favorite car is a 90" Land Rover - no major changes from the 88" model introduced after WW II ;-))

Cheers,
Joerg


#36

Quote:
90" Land Rover

Length, width, or height!?


#37

Oops - wheelbase.

Joerg

#38

I think Leica camera wins the prize for oldest re-release:

In 2002 the Leica 0 series was re-released : a clone on the 1923 original.

There was a modern formulation of the 50mm Anastigmat lens and a small modification to take 135 film cassettes, which had not been invented in 1923, but that was it.

I have one - it's a fun camera.

To keep the post on topic; I also have an original HP-15C and have every intention of getting a HP-15C-LE as a day to day replacement.

I don't have an original Leica 0 series : but they do come up at auction occasionally - one sold last year for $1.9 million

Edited: 4 Sept 2011, 3:18 a.m.


#39

It might be eight years younger than the Leica but the Bolex H16 has been in continuous production since 1935 with little change -Bolex H16. With the 12C, it shows that when you get the basics right first time, there's no reason to change for the sake of fashion. The prices have remained high too but so has the quality -Bolex H16 Spring Driven Price List.


#40

thanks.

amazing to know wind up movie cameras still exist.


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