Graphing Calculator Buying Guide

Calculator Buying Guide – The Best Graphing Calculator

Calculator Buying Guide – The Best Graphing Calculator

| July 14, 2013 | 0 Comments

If you’re considering buying a new graphing calculator, you should know that not all calculators are made equal. It’s important to find the best graphing calculator for your current needs so you can use it to its full potential while not overpaying for or getting boggled down by unnecessary functions. Keep in mind that your needs change as you evolve within your career. If you’re still in the early stages of your career, but fairly certain that your path is stable, you might want to consider investing in a good graphing calculator that is more sophisticated than what you need at the moment and leave some room for expansion. This way, you can become intimately familiar with its feel and interface while gradually learning its complexities. Otherwise, if your position is set, and you have a good grip on exactly what you need to be calculating on a daily basis, find a calculator with a smaller range of functions that cater to your needs and stick with it without worrying about navigating through extraneous features you’ll never use to get to what you need.

To get you started we have compiled a chart of the best graphing calculators for sale today.

Who should Buy
ACT/AP/SAT Approved
HP PrimeStudents and professionals who want a fast backlit color touch screen calculator with both RPN and algebraic capability.NoneYes$$4.2/5
Texas Instruments Nspire CX CAS Graphing Calculator

Advanced Engineering, Math, and Science StudentsAP/SATYes$$4.5/5
Texas Instruments 84 Plus Silver Color

Students looking to upgrade from a TI-83 or TI-84 that want full color while still keeping the familiar layout and screen format found in most textbooks.AllYes$$4.7/5
Texas Instruments TI-Nspire Handheld Graphing Calculator with Touchpad

High School, Business, Liberal Arts StudentsAllNo$4.4/5
Texas Instruments Voyage 200 Calculator
Advanced Engineering, Math, and Science students who want a powerful graphing calculator with a full QWERTY keyboard.NoneNo$$$4.5/5
HP 50g Graphing Calculator

Three letters RPN. A chance to use a Reverse Polish Notation calculator. HP fans in High school or students taking college survey classes who want to try something other than a Texas Instruments calculator.AP/SATNo$4.5/5
Texas Instuments TI-89 Titanium

Math, Engineering, Science, Economics students looking for a powerhouse graphing calculator who do not want the distraction of color displays or keyboards. AP/SATNo$$4.5/5
Prizm FX-CG10 Color Graphing Calculator

Students on a budget who still want a color high definition LCD color screen but at a fraction of the price. AllYes$4.2/5
Texas Instruments TI-84 Plus Graphing Calculator

This is the best choice for all but those taking highly advanced university courses. This is one of the most popular graphing calculators for a reason. It is very easy to use and customize and is the text book example in almost all school books.AllNo$4.5/5
Texas Instruments TI-83 Plus Graphing Calculator
Middle school or high school students looking to buy their first calculator. This entry model will last you for years to come.AllNo$4.2/5

So, which is the best graphing calculator for you? First consider whether you need – or prefer – a scientific or a graphing calculator. What will you be using it for? If the math involved in your class or job makes heavy use of fractions, equations and inequalities, financial calculations, etc. then you may want to stick to scientific calculators. If complex matrices, calculus and graphs are not in your daily repertoire of tasks or problem sets, then a graphing calculator will only add a clutter of functions to deal with. 

Graphing calculators are in a whole different category. These powerful calculating machines are for mathematician’s mathematician whose equations look extraterrestrial to the untrained eye. They’re for building bridges and birthing robots. They’re for matrix manipulations, vector calculations and graph visualizations. Just like scientific calculators, though, they come in a variety of capacity levels and designs. When learning trigonometry or calculus, you may be able to settle for a graphing calculator that lacks differential equation capabilities or linear algebra prowess. But, if you’re an established mechanical engineer, you can’t afford to go without these functions and will want to buy one of the best graphing calculator available today like the Texas Instruments Nspire CX CAS.

In terms of aesthetics and usability, graphing calculators have been evolving alongside their scientific counterparts. Many of the newer models of graphing calculators are not only way more powerful and capable, but also way more friendly and aesthetically pleasing. Graphing calculators now come with color display and a touchpad! More of a calculating pocket computer than an old fashioned calculator, these machines are efficient, helpful and intelligent. They are dynamic and interactive allowing the user to manipulate graphs, link datasets, store notes and even upload pictures. If this all sounds just a bit too much to have in your pocket for a day of field calculations, don’t worry, there are more humble graphing calculators out there that carry just as much power and bang without the added glamor.

Whether your needs lead you to a graphing powerhouse, or a straight-forward scientific calculator, remember that choosing a calculator that meets your specific current or long-term needs will be the key to using it efficiently. Lack of capacity can leave a seasoned professional high and dry, while too much power might boggle down the newbie user who just needs to become intimately familiar with very specific functions. It’s all about finding a calculator with a good balance between potential power for the future and necessary functions for now.

>>> Click here to see ratings, reviews, specifications and prices on Amazon < < <

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Other Recent Posts

What Calculators Are Allowed On The GED Test?

What Calculators Are Allowed On The GED Test?

| June 9, 2016 | 0 Comments

You have spent months, maybe years studying for the GED test and you want to make sure you are prepared and pass the test the first time around. The math portion of the test can be the hardest for many people and everyone always ask me what calculators are allowed on the GED test?

What Calculators Are Allowed on the GED Test?

Luckily the people  who issue the GED test have kept it simple and only one calculator is allowed on the GED math test, you will be using the Texas Instruments TI-30XS. Make sure you buy one in advance and practice with it a lot so that you know how to use it. You do not want to waste valuable time during the test trying to figure out how to make it work. If you do not have one you can get them really cheap here on Amazon.

On the day of the test you will not be using a physical calculator, the calculator will be displayed on your computer screen and will look and work exactly like the one you have been practicing on with all the buttons being in the exact same spot.

Good luck on your GED test!

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What is the Best Scientific Calculator?

What is the Best Scientific Calculator?

| March 15, 2014 | 0 Comments

Competition in the calculator market is heating up with makers releasing or updating several new calculators. With dozens of choices on the market, deciding what is the best scientific calculator can be overwhelming. To help you choose the scientific calculator that best fits your needs we have created this helpful chart for you or you can scroll below to see our pick of the top three best scientific calculators.

Our Rating
TI-36X Pro Scientific Calculator

Casio FX-115ES PLUS

HP 15C Scientific Calculator

Casio fx-300MS

Texas Instruments TI-30X IIS 2-Line Scientific Calculator

Sharp Electronics EL-W516XBSL

TI-30XS MultiView Scientific Calculator


Texas Instruments TI-30XA Scientific Calculator

HP 35s Scientific Calculator

Hewlett Packard 300S+ Engineering/Scientific Calculator

Our Picks for the Three Best Scientific Calculators

Best: TI-36X Pro Scientific Calculator

The TI-36X Pro is fantastic, it comes as close to perfection as we have seen. Heavy users rave about its rich features and ability to easily store previous entries in its stack making solving complex problems a snap.

Adding to the reasons that the TI-36x is the best scientific calculator is that it is virtually universally accepted by faculty and major standardized test making this the only scientific calculator you will need to buy and will want to start familiarizing yourself with it as soon as possible since odds are one day you will be forced to use for an upcoming class or test.
>>> Click here to check reviews and prices on Amazon < < <


Runner Up: Casio FX-115ES PLUS
With the release of the updated version of the FX-115ES the new PLUS version is a rock solid scientific calculator. Math students will appreciate that the calculator can now display repeating decimals in bar notation, PLUS users now have the ability to access previous answers, as well as solve quadratic and cubic equations, just to name a few of the vastly important improvements in this model.

If you choose this calculator we believe you will not be let down as this is a solid well rounded, fully featured graphing calculator.

>>> Click here to check reviews and prices on Amazon < < <

Worth Considering: HP 15C Limited Edition

Old school engineers will drool at the news that the classic HP-15C has been re-released as a special commemorative limited edition. Serious calculators are snapping these up and a hot secondary market is forming around these with prices skyrocketing on Amazon.

This calculator is a classic for a reason though, the design is nearly perfect. Users who have spent the time learning how to use the unique reverse Polish notation would never dream of switching back, and many get a kick when someone who has never used an HP calculator ask to borrow theirs and they cannot even figure out how to add 2+2 on the calculator.

If you want to win the admiration of your professor or boss, whip one of these out and watch their eyes light up.
>>> Click here to check reviews and prices on Amazon < < <

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Cheap Graphing Calculator – How To Spend Under $25

Cheap Graphing Calculator – How To Spend Under $25

| March 9, 2014 | 0 Comments

Graphing calculators prices are an anomaly in the world of consumer electronics. How is it that a smartphone can become obsolete almost as soon as it is released, but a graphing calculator invented decades ago seems to steadily increase in price year over year. It can feel criminal to be asked to pay over a hundred dollars for such a primitive device luckily there are ways to score a cheap graphing calculator.

Where to Find Cheap Graphing Calculators

#3. Thrift Stores and Garage Sales

Second hand shops and rummage sales have been great sources for me when searching for cheap graphing calculators. Unless the seller is currently in school or has a child in class they generally assume the calculators are worthless and price them accordingly. I was once able to score three mint condition TI-84 Plus Graphing Calculators for $2 each at a thrift store and they were shocked I was willing to pay them so much for such and old piece of equipment!

#2. Buy a Used Graphing Calculator Online and Trade it in Afterwards

This may seem like a no brainier but many do not realize you can buy a cheap graphing calculator calculator then trade it in afterwards, much like you do with your textbooks. When buying a used graphing calculator be sure to read the listing descriptions carefully and buy from a reputable site like Amazon. Then after your class head on over to the Trade-In Page and get most of your purchase price back. For example at the time of writing I could buy a perfect condition TI-84 Plus for $57.48 and trade it in for $32.65 bringing the cost of using a calculator down to only $24.83. Much better than paying the $100 plus for a brand new unit!

>>> Click here to check trade in prices on Amazon < < <

#3. Borrow One From a Friend or Relative

You will be surprised to find out how many graphing calculators are sitting in desk drawers never to be used again. Ask around, I bet you will be able to find someone who is not using one at the moment.

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