Sharp PC-E220


what do you think about this machine?


I cannot say anything about the E220, but I had a E500 which seems to be a slightly upgraded version of the former. I have to say that I didn't like this beast too much. It has an enormous amount of built-in functions and programs as well as a sophisticated basic implementation. But somehow, these components fail to form an integrated entity. The built-in engineering software is nice, but I didn't find an easy way to adapt it to my needs and use it in my own programs (I have to admit that I didn't try very hard).

Other than that, it's a good pocket computer with a large display - a serious engineering tool. Maybe my dislike is due to the fact that I'm not an engineer.. Anyway, speaking of basic programmable pocket computers, I like the HP 71B or the Sharp PC-1262 much better. An even better choice would be the HP 100LX or 200LX. These are MS-DOS-based XT computers even somewhat smaller than the E500 and you can use your favourite programming language.


Actually the PCE-500 is much better than the PCE-220, they are not in the same league. Strange that you don't like the 500, it is the top of the line for Sharp Basic machines (and all Sharp machines for that matter...).

The 220 has a Z80 processor and an embedded assembler, it is very much oriented towards ASM. The machine is much thicker than the 500, being made with a less classy plastic. Also, the display sports plain 5x7 character matrices (four 24 char lines I think) with no graphing capability. BASIC is standard with no extra features like a built-in library.
It has a calculator mode, quite like a scientific calculator (like the PC-1401 or PC-1403).

I think I recall it has a built-in RS232, but this is the only thing going for the poor beast.

If you are a collector anyway, prepare for a long search (albeit your question seems to imply that you found one), because it is much much rarer than the 500. So get it, but don't expect too much.

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