Texas Instruments TI ViewScreen 85 (1994)

Date of introduction:  1994 Display technology:  LCD dot matrix
New price:  $250.00 (SRP 2008) Display size:  8 * 16 characters
Size:  10.4" x 9.7" x 1.5"
 263 x 247 x 38 mm3
Weight:  29.3 ounces, 830 grams Serial No:  0007679
Batteries:  (4*AAA from Calculator) Date of manufacture:  mth 02 year 1995
AC-Adapter:  AC9201, AC9201E Origin of manufacture:  United States (LTA)
Precision:    Integrated circuits:  2*Toshiba T6A39, T6A40
Program steps:    Courtesy of:  Joerg Woerner

The TI ViewScreen panel connects with a cable to the Texas Instruments Graphing calculators. Placing the panel on the overhead projector enlarges the image of the handheld screen so that each student can follow along. Don't miss the US Patent Application U.S. Pat. No. 5,168,294 with the title “Display demonstration system for providing enlarged projected image of calculator display” filed already in September 27, 1991.

The TI ViewScreen 85 was introduced in 1994 and connects to the second generation TI-85 VSC (ViewScreen Calculator). It was delivered either as the ViewScreen panel package with the power supply and a carrying case or as part of the ViewScreen system including the Graphing calculator. The first generation of the TI-85 VSC was permanently connected to a much smaller ViewScreen panel.

In 2008 four different ViewScreen panels were available for TI's Graphing calculators:

Panel 1: TI-73 VSC, TI-73 Explorer VSC, TI-80 VSC, TI-82 VSC, TI-83 VSC,
   TI-83 Plus VSC, TI-83 Plus Silver Edition VSC, TI-84 Plus VSC,
   TI-84 Plus Silver Edition VSC
Panel 2: TI-89 VSC, TI-89 Titanium VSC, TI-92, TI-92 Plus, Voyage 200
Panel 3: TI-85 VSC (2nd design), TI-86 VSC
Panel 4: TI-Nspire, TI-Nspire CAS, TI-Nspire Touchpad, TI-Nspire CAS Touchpad

Based on the manufacturing year of the TI-85 View Screen Panel, you'll notice different calculators listed on the Product Label on the backside of the device:

1994-1997: TI ViewScreen 85
                     Product Label: TI-85
1997-2008: TI ViewScreen 85
                     Product Label: TI-85, TI-86

Dismantling this TI ViewScreen 85 with Date code LTA95 manufactured in February 1995 by Texas Instruments in their Lubbock, TX, facility reveals no surprises and looks similar to the TI ViewScreen 82 introduced in October 1993 but changed the display drivers to accommodate the larger pixel count of the TI-85 compared to the TI-82. A large, transmissive LCD panel is connected to three Toshiba T6A39 and T6A40 display driver known already from the TI-81 introduced in 1992. The reminder of the electronics resembles the receivers of the signals from the connected ViewScreen Calculator, contrast adjustment of the screen and power supply for the electronics.

The arrangement of two Toshiba T6A39 column drivers and one T6A40 row driver found in the TI ViewScreen 85 is obvious from the layout of the printed circuit board (PCB).

The Presentation Link Adapter connects the student versions of the TI-84 Plus family to the ViewScreen panel using the calculator's USB port.

With the phase out of the overhead projectors from the daily life, Texas Instruments developed with the TI-Presenter a perfect replacement for the ViewScreen panels based on modern video technology.

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© Joerg Woerner, August 9, 2020. No reprints without written permission.