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Canon FC-80

Date of introduction:  1974 Display technology:  LED-stick
New price:  $130.00 Display size:  8
Size:  5.4" x 3.1" x 1.4"
 138 x 78 x 37 mm3
    
Weight:  9.8 ounces Serial No:  600673
Batteries:  4*NiCd AA Date of manufacture:  mth 12 year 1974
AC-Adapter:   Origin of manufacture:  Japan
Precision:  8  Integrated circuits:  Hitachi HD3650, HD3656
Memories:  1    
Program steps:   Courtesy of:  Joerg Woerner

Canon introduced already in 1974 with the Palmtronic FC-80 a full metric conversion calculator. That time it was far ahead of competition with both U.S. and U.K. conversion constants stored in the memory. Dismantling the FC-80 gives immediately an answer to the obvious question: 
How could engineers of Canon manage this unbelievable calculator ?

FC-80_PCB.jpg (75694 Byte)The printed circuit board (PCB) of the FC-80 makes use of the Hitachi HD3650 processing chip (CPU), an additional Read Only Memory (ROM) HD3656, and two display drivers. We know this powerful calculator architecture already from the Palmtronic F-7 and Canola F-11 scientific calculators.

Even the housing looks familiar to us, it was borrowed form the F-5.

The FC-80 started a long tradition of metric conversion calculators but it took 8 years until we got with the Texas Instruments Converter a product with similar performance. Most other metric conversion calculators like the Canon FC-43, FC-82, Toshiba LC-838, and
the TI-1889 use a tiny single-chip calculator circuit borrowed form socalled four-bangers.



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

Joerg Woerner, March 26, 2003. No reprints without written permission.