Post Reply 
A very photogenic couple
08-22-2018, 01:57 PM
Post: #1
A very photogenic couple
I tracked down a couple of these small Casios recently, and they're some of the most attractive calculators I've seen (fortunately they also have pretty good functionality too).


On the right is the fx-4000P. This is a scientific model, that is most easily described as "an fx-7000G without graphing, and with a little more memory". It's got standard 1st-gen Casio BASIC, with one superficial quirk: custom prompt messages are separated into two steps. So "TRIALS"?->T on most other models would be "TRIALS":?->T here. It supports array memories for easy indirect addressing, and actually has more RAM available than the fx-7000G: you get 550 bytes for programs or additional memories, as opposed to 422 on the grapher. Another interesting difference: the fx-4000P will handle 32-bit numbers in binary mode, whereas nearly all graphing models (including its closest relative, the fx-7000G) are limited to 16-bits. Overall, I'd say it compares well to something like a 32S. It's a little better in some respects, and not quite as good in others. It's made more impressive by the fact that it predates the 32S by roughly 3 years.

The left is an FC-200, the financial version of the duo. Unlike the more recent FC-200V, this one is fully programmable. Well, almost - it's lacking some of the Casio BASIC features found on the other 1st-gen graphers or the fx-4000P: no custom string prompts, no array memories, no >= or <= (the other comparisons are still present). But in exchange, all financial functions and variables are usable within programs. There's also not as much program memory on offer: just 262 bytes. I suspect some RAM had to be sacrificed to make room for the financial variables and cash flow data. The way they handled solving for n in TVM is pretty clever. It displays n rounded up to a whole number, like the 12C calculates, but the actual stored value keeps the fractional part. In terms of programming, it easily bests the 12C, as you can use labels and subroutines, insert steps, and see the program text rather than numeric key codes. It does not have built-in bond and depreciation calculations, however. Interestingly, dates are stored as a separate data type. You enter them by pressing [DATE] three times - once each after entering the month, day, and year - and you can perform simple arithmetic between dates, or between a date and an integer, and store dates into memories.

Both have lovely physical design. They're very slim, have good screen contrast, and are equipped with hardware power switches and contrast dials. The keyboard design is... interesting. It's not bad by any means, but it's almost the polar opposite of an HP. It's mushy, with about 2 mm travel, but very responsive and reliable. All in all, very nice machines if you're into 1980s symbolic/formula programmables.
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Quote this message in a reply
Post Reply 

Messages In This Thread
A very photogenic couple - Dave Britten - 08-22-2018 01:57 PM
RE: A very photogenic couple - BruceH - 08-25-2018, 04:41 PM
RE: A very photogenic couple - rickh57 - 02-27-2021, 04:06 PM
RE: A very photogenic couple - Hollerith - 02-28-2021, 04:03 PM

User(s) browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)