DATAMATH  CALCULATOR  MUSEUM

Texas Instruments TI-83 ViewScreen™

Date of introduction:  March 1999 Display technology:  LCD dot matrix
New price:  ($120.00 in 2001) Display size:  8 * 16 characters
Size:  7.2" x 3.2" x 0.95"
 182 x 81 x 24 mm3
   
Weight:  6.6 ounces, 186 grams Serial No:  V44 00142
Batteries:  4*AAA + CR1620 Date of manufacture:  mth 07 year 1999 (N)
AC-Adapter:   Origin of manufacture:  Taiwan (I)
Precision:  14 Integrated circuits:  CPU: Toshiba T6C79
 ROM: TI883-03©1998
 RAM: SRM2B256
 Display: T6A04A
Memories:      
Program steps:  27k Bytes Courtesy of:  Joerg Woerner

TI-83VSC_I0799_Back.jpg (236654 Byte)The TI-83 ViewScreen Calculator (VSC) is the teacher version of the standard TI-83. It connects with a special port to a ViewScreen panel via a cable. Placing the panel on the overhead projector enlarges the image of the handheld screen so that each student can follow along.

Three ViewScreen panels were available in 2003:

Panel 1: TI-73 VSC, TI-80 VSC, TI-82 VSC, TI-83 VSC,
    TI-83 Plus VSC, TI-83 Plus Silver Edition VSC
Panel 2: TI-89 VSC, TI-92, TI-92 Plus, Voyage 200
Panel 3: TI-85 VSC (2nd design), TI-86 VSC

As an alternative the TI-Presenter video adapter connects to a TV or other projection device with a video input port. 

TI-83VSC_I0799_PCB.jpg (678260 Byte)From a technical point of view the TI-83 VSC is almost identical with the students TI-83. The main difference you notice is a bulgier bottom shell of the calculator housing to accommodate the ViewScreen electronics and connector. Dismantling the TI-83 VSC reveals a small printed circuit board (PCB) with two driver chips connected with a flexible cable to the display PCB of the calculator.

The calculator uses just four main components on the printed circuit boards (PCB’s):

TI-83VSC_I0799_PCBM.jpg (236820 Byte)CPU (Central processing Unit): The Toshiba T6C79 is a so-called Application Specific CPU and combines a Z80 core with an ASIC (Application Specific Integrated Circuit). You’ll find different approaches within the graphing calculator line of Texas Instruments, sometimes the usage of an individual CPU (e.g. Z80 and M68000) with a supporting ASIC or – like with this TI-83 VSC - the integration of the CPU into the ASIC.

ROM (Read Only Memory): The ROM contains the operating system of the calculator. The first products on the market used mask-programmable ROM’s, the program was strored already during the production of the Integrated Circuit. Later calculators changed to Flash ROM’s, a technology allowing the programming of the software during the final production stage of the calculator. With the TI-83 Plus and all later graphing calculators from Texas Instruments even the user was able to reprogram the operating system.

The LH532KZC TI883-03©1998 ROM of this TI-83 VSC was manufactured by Sharp, Japan.

RAM (Random Access Memory): The RAM is used as data memory and is used to store both variables, user programs and intermediate results. This TI-83 VSC makes use of SRM2B256 manufactured by Epson, Japan. The capacity of the memory is 32k Bytes.

TI-83VSC_I0799_PCBD.jpg (107293 Byte)DISPLAY: The Toshiba T6A04A is a driver for small-to-medium-sized dot matrix graphic LCD’s. It is compatible with Z80 based CPU’s and drives displays with up to 120 columns and 64 rows. The display of the TI-83 VSC is just 96 * 64, therefore only one display driver is necessary. The bare chip is mounted on a flexible piece of circuit board attached between the display and the main PCB.


A serial port of the calculators allows the connection to the Calculator-Based Laboratory system CBL, its successor CBL 2, the Calculator-Based Ranger CBR and its successor CBR 2.

Don't miss the colorful slide cases developed for the TI-83 Plus, they fit on the TI-83 ViewScreen, too.


ROM-Versions:

1.02
1.03
1.04
1.06
1.07
1.08
1.10

You can check the ROM version of your TI-83 VSC using the following key sequence and reading the number on your screen:

[MODE] [ALPHA] [S]

Information provided by ticalc.org and Xavier Andréani.

Exam acceptance:

The TI-83 VSC is permitted (as of September 27, 2007) for use on SAT, ACT, PSAT and AP exams.

 

horizontal rule

If you have additions to the above article please email: joerg@datamath.org.

© Joerg Woerner, February 20, 2003. No reprints without written permission.