Need an experts advice: which is currently best CAS?


My son was impressed when he saw me using CAS on an HP40G. At school he must use an TI84+. Now I want buy him a CAS "toy" to play at home. What is the experterts advice: TI Nspire, HP40GS or an HP50G? Or even a PC program?



You can try Bernard Parisse's XCAS on the PC which is free. As a calculator, the Voyage 200 or a used TI-92Plus (better keyboard but bulkier and less flash memory) is powerful and user friendly. Coming from a TI-84, your son should feel at home with relative ease. The TI-89 has the same software but a non alpha keyboard which makes it less comfortable to use for CAS.

A 50G has the same problems as the TI-89 (keyboard), is certainly more powerful but less easy to comprehend.


As a middle school math teacher, I would recommend the TI-NSpire color CAS. Many schools that are using the 84+ now will probably be eventually upgrading to the NSpire. If he ever gets into programming, he can choose between TI Basic or Lua on the NSpire.



Can you shed more light on programming with Lua on the TI NSpire CX CAS? I am very curious about it. I have also seen Lua for the iPad and iPhone.


Edited: 11 Apr 2012, 11:42 a.m.


Namir, see this link for NSpire Lua documentation and tutorials.

Not having a color NSpire, I haven't tried it myself, but I have seen some screenshots on the google NSpire forum where some folks have indeed created some Lua scripts that run on the NSpire.


Thanks Don for the link to a wonderful site about the TI NSpire and Lua!



I second Don Shepherd's choice. The TI NSpire CX CAS is king!

Edited: 11 Apr 2012, 11:41 a.m.


I would recommend an HP40GS. You and your son can explore this calculator together. I'm sure he will enjoy the common "game".

After that your son should decide himself wether he will use an HP or an TI in future.

Bear the HP39gII in mind. Perhaps sometimes this calculator will released with CAS.


Hi all,

I've just gotta ask. Although personally I put HP calcs at the top of my list, wouldn't HP Graphing Calculators, especially the 48GX and 50G surpass TI's in many ways?


Thank you for your kind help. Suppose I will get a HP40GS for me and a Nspire PC software teacher edition for my son. :)


If you have a CAS-PC software in mind i would recommend Mathematica, Maple or GeoGebra (CAS) immediately.


You are right, but the 48GX has no reasonable CAS and the 50G is IMHO for a beginner to complicated and has no reasonable manual.

I think the HP40GS is a nice beginner calculator for his son to play with.


I say go for the hp 50g. Look at this for good instructions to use the 50g.

Hpnut in Malaysia


You're right! Excellent resource for the 50G. I just downloaded the modules. That way, I'll go through them slowly and methodically.


Here interesting HP49/50 CAS documentation

Renee de Graeve CAS book in english

Edited: 11 Apr 2012, 3:45 p.m.


"These notes show how to use the hp 50g, (or hp 48gii, hp 49g, hp 49g+) and ti 89 titanium (or ti 89) calculators to solve problems in dynamics."


My son was impressed when he saw me using CAS on an HP40G. At school he must use an TI84+. Now I want buy him a CAS "toy" to play at home.

I recommend introducing him to Geogebra (free software for PC, available for most operating systems). The user interface is very well done, and it makes geometry come to life. Truly a wonderful math toy (although not a CAS in the traditional sense of the term).



I recently switched to maxima (with wxmaxima frontend) at work. For my purpose it's a true mathematica replacement (very similar syntax), and it's free.


Today I saw the latest appends. Gives me some more chances to make math "sexy" enough for my son. <VBG>

On this site of Colin Croft he references a manual from Renée de Graeve with an interesting aspect:

The HP40G marks a new stage in the democratisation of the use of symbolic calculation — ...

Democratisation or just undermine math teachers' authority?


Possibly Related Threads…
Thread Author Replies Views Last Post
  HP Prime: CAS taylor Alberto Candel 5 3,987 12-13-2013, 09:45 PM
Last Post: Alberto Candel
  HP Prime CAS curiosity bluesun08 11 4,821 12-10-2013, 01:03 PM
Last Post: Han
  [HP-Prime CAS] "Warning, ^ (Command) Is ambiguous on non square matrices"?? CompSystems 1 2,177 12-07-2013, 07:15 PM
Last Post: CompSystems
  HP Prime: complex numbers in CAS. Alberto Candel 1 1,893 12-06-2013, 02:36 PM
Last Post: parisse
  ALL The Experts ARE HERE! Ron Ross 1 1,530 12-06-2013, 01:50 PM
Last Post: Kévin Ouellet (Canada)
  [HP Prime] plotfunc() bug in CAS Chris Pem10 2 2,403 12-04-2013, 02:46 PM
Last Post: Chris Pem10
  HP Prime: Home/CAS? Alasdair McAndrew 11 3,875 11-26-2013, 02:48 PM
Last Post: Alberto Candel
  HP Prime numerical precision in CAS and HOME Javier Goizueta 5 2,403 11-16-2013, 03:51 AM
Last Post: Paul Dale
  Need CAS help Michael de Estrada 6 2,626 11-13-2013, 01:29 AM
Last Post: cyrille de Brébisson
  HP Prime - CAS functions in Spreadsheet App CR Haeger 6 2,451 11-11-2013, 12:37 AM
Last Post: Michael de Estrada

Forum Jump: