hp 33 display


i am a surveyor, in china at the moment. i am going to get some dedicated programs written and i was told it would be better on the hp 33 as they are newer than my old 48 gx with cogo.
has the display comma been enlarged, does anyone know a good u.s.online source which has the newer version or a shop in frisco where a friend of mine can buy one and mail it to me
i see they are as low as 49 bucks.in australia they are about 150 u.s.d.which is a waste if i dont like it
should i look for serial nos above a certain number to clarify this


The HP-33S may be newer, but that doesn't mean that it is better than the HP-48GX. They aren't addressed at the same set of problems. The HP-33S is a programmable scientific calculator with a programming model that is similar to that of pre-RPL HP calculators. The HP-48GX is a graphing calculator with more memory and a much more sophisticated programming model. Which is better is determined by your needs and personal preferences.

You can get the HP-33S from Amazon or Walmart. I bought one recently at my local Walmart store. It had the improved LCD display. I still don't like the legibility of the key labels, the shiny metallic finish isn't helpful. For $50, I can live with its defects. It's small, supports RPN, and is programmable. Its keyboard works reliably, unlike my HP-49G+, which was replaced under warranty and still doesn't work properly.

If they ever get the hardware problems corrected, you may be better off with the HP-49G+ with its support for removable flash memory cards. That way, you can offload and backup data to a computer with a flash memory card reader.


David, I too am a surveyor in Maryland. I have an HP48GX with a COGO card installed and I also have an HP33S with some COGO programs that I wrote installed in it. Not to "pat myself on the back", but just so that you know my programs are not trivial, a college in Texas is using them in their curriculum. So I can tell you from experience, if you have an HP48, you don't need nor will you be impressed with the HP33S for field work. The only reason I can think of to use the 33S is for the NCEES exam as it is allowed and the HP48 is not.


Agreed. The 33S is a great calculator for solving problems on surveyor's licensing exams (e.g. LSIT/FS, PLS/PS exams), since NCEES has banned all other programmable calculators from such exams. But it cannot be used as a field data collector like the HP48GX traditionally was. The 33S only has about 32 variable memories, and no way to download data. A current 48 or 49 series model, or an older 48GX, would be a better choice.

If you are interested in 33S surveying software for exams, there are some inexpensive commercial options, like this one.


thanks all, what the programmer told me was that the physical mechanics of my two 48g and the gx are getting old, both are mint condition, but 10 years old, but how long does a calc last, i have an 11c, two 32s and the old 42 which all work.
he suggested the 33 for a dedicated curve programe only,simply cause its new in build, i was going to get the survey pro card for my gx, tds said it would be better to get the tds recon, if i spent the money on a card, and the gx dies i am left with nothing, also a surveyor told me that his cogo card died after 10 years, maybre i should get the program written to a card for the gx and just buy used ones, what do others think
cheers david


You could wait a few months instead. This runs circles around the recon, ranger, allegro, and everything else out there. www.pssllc.com



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