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HP 71B funky serial number
09-27-2016, 01:18 AM
Post: #1
HP 71B funky serial number
I've never paid attentions to serial numbers, but I just picked up another 71B that has a serial number that starts with 9999A. Now my understanding is that the first digits are YYWW, and YY is number of years from 1960. Well, I either have a 71B from the future, some sort of prototype (it's ROM 1BBBB though), or I'm not understanding the serial number convention... Am I missing something obvious here?

Thanks!
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09-27-2016, 02:03 AM
Post: #2
RE: HP 71B funky serial number
(09-27-2016 01:18 AM)polbit Wrote:  I've never paid attentions to serial numbers, but I just picked up another 71B that has a serial number that starts with 9999A. Now my understanding is that the first digits are YYWW, and YY is number of years from 1960. Well, I either have a 71B from the future, some sort of prototype (it's ROM 1BBBB though), or I'm not understanding the serial number convention... Am I missing something obvious here?

Thanks!

Your understanding is correct, and it's relatively certain it's not from the future... It's impossible to be sure, but I would guess that it was some form of internal use device; other 9999A devices have been reported in the past. It may not be a prototype in the sense of being one of the first units, but simply used for some internal purpose (e.g. testing or the customer support team) and probably was marked this way to show it was never sold. Just guesswork though, no inside info here.

--Bob Prosperi
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09-27-2016, 02:24 AM
Post: #3
RE: HP 71B funky serial number
(09-27-2016 02:03 AM)rprosperi Wrote:  Your understanding is correct, and it's relatively certain it's not from the future... It's impossible to be sure, but I would guess that it was some form of internal use device; other 9999A devices have been reported in the past. It may not be a prototype in the sense of being one of the first units, but simply used for some internal purpose (e.g. testing or the customer support team) and probably was marked this way to show it was never sold. Just guesswork though, no inside info here.

Thanks Bob, that makes sense. It's also missing the FCC sticker, and has few 4K modules with no stickers. Oh well, my first 1BBBB regardless Smile
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09-27-2016, 05:49 PM
Post: #4
RE: HP 71B funky serial number
If I'm correct, 9999A are sometimes used as a replacement. My HP-71B proto /ROM 0AAAA) has serial XXX1A00001 (X is scratched and in front of that there is H-1)
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