HP 12C Models


I've always wanted an HP12C (I currently have a 41CV which I love) - but there seem to be a number of variations on the 12C that are currently available. Regular, Platinum, and 25th Anniversary. The things that I love about the old HP calculatars are:

1) Fit and finnish/Durability 2) RPN 3) High quality tactile feedback of the key presses. 4) Overall logic/layout/programability

Of the HP 12C models that are available now which comes closest to the old HP 12C ideals?

BTW, I am undecided on the utility of having an algebraic mode - I don't know if I consider that a plus or a minus. I don't think I will use it - and I dislike having the solutions/documentation provided in the algebraic format. I have downloaded a bunch of 12C documentation and exercises from HP and other places that use the stanard HP12C RPN format - and I have a 12C windows emulator that I'm playing with - but I find that simulations simpley increase one's appreciation of the genuine article. ;-)

Also, 12Cs on e-bay seem to go for nearly the price of a new one off amazon or somewhere else.

Finally, I'm undecided as to whether the speed improvements on the newer models are of interest to me. I find that my "think time" working with a calculator far exeeds the "wait time" of running the programs or formulating the problem. I'm not trying to save money though and could be convinced otherwise.

Anyone have any opinions? ;-)




Other than a good made-in-the-USA model from the early to mid-1980s, the 25th anniversary edition version of the HP12c platinum is a good second-best.

It has more program storage space, the color scheme is "pretty good", and it is faster than the original HP12c.



I have a "recent" 12C serial MY 7 20 02125, which I bought at Fry's in 1997. How would you rate this one?

Speaking of Fry's the San Francisco Chronicle this morning, Monday August 21, has a very interesting article about the founder, John Fry. He is building a $50 million, 167,000 square-foot palace-bigger than a typical Wal-Mart in Morgan Hill, CA. The purpose is for a retreat for mathematicians which will be called "The American Institute of Mathematics. The design is based on the Andalusian fortress The Alhambra. Read the Chron for more info.



The 12c's are pretty much the same internally until the 25th anniversary edition, which is faster as I said.

Externally, of course, one can see a change in the key make-up, the color of the shifted colors (what happened? Did they run out of light blue shade?), and the keys seem to rattle more.

I have some 12c platinums of various versions (of course), but the 12c black/gold I use is a 1983 model.


OK. But rate them on a scale of 1 to 10.



So to paraphrase - I guess the 25th anniversay edition is the best of the current bunch. Nice to have the extra speed all the keys/fit/finnish might not be up to those early/mid 80's models, eh?

I'm amazed at how perfecly my early 1980s vintage 41cv works. The bottom says that it was made in Singapore. Admittedly, it's had light use over the years and stayed in a comfortable environment - but to still work perfectly after 25 years - they don't build 'em like that anymore, do they?



I'll let you know in 25 years time. :-)

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