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Texas Instruments TI-30X Plus MathPrint™

Date of introduction:  February 20, 2018
 Available: May 2018
Display technology:  LCD dot matrix
New price:   Display size:  4 * 16 characters
 (5 * 19 for menus)
Size:  6.7" x 3.2" x 0.45"
 170 x 81 x 12 mm³
   
Weight:  3.7 ounces, 106 grams Serial No:  
Batteries:  Solar cells + 2*CR2032 Date of manufacture:  mth 05 year 2018
AC-Adapter:   Origin of manufacture:  Philippines (L)
Precision:  13 Integrated circuits:  
Memories:  8    
Program steps:   Courtesy of:  Joerg Woerner
Download leaflet: DE: 0.2 MByte)  Download manual:   (DE: 1.5 MByte)

Texas Instruments announced on February 20, 2018 at the didacta 2018, an Education Trade Show in Germany, with the TI-30X Plus MathPrint and TI-30X Pro MathPrint the stylish successors of both the TI-30X Plus MultiView and TI-30X Pro MultiView.

It is rather unusual to discontinue and replace a scientific calculator within just three years after its introduction but in this case there was a serious reason behind the unexpected move from Texas Instruments. In July 2017 the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport of Baden Wurttemberg, Germany informed all schools in the State that it is known since March 2017 to "hack" with a few keystrokes the TI-30X Plus MultiView and upgrade it to the original TI-30X Pro MultiView. One has to understand that the TI-30X Plus MultiView was removing some features from the original TI-30X Pro MultiView:

Numeric derivative
Numeric integral
Numeric equation solver
Polynomial solver

The reason for this down-grading are pretty obvious - two States in Germany (Bavaria and Baden Wurttemberg) don't allow these features in their High Schools exams anymore. Texas Instruments consequently informed in Summer 2017 to release an updated version of the TI-30X Plus MultiView for Back-to-School 2018/2019.

Comparing the original TI-30X Plus MultiView with its successor reveals three major differences:

Modern design matching the TI-84 Plus CE series
LC Display with higher resolution
Reset function shows Operating System version

The new LC Display of the TI-30X Plus MathPrint sports a resolution of 64 * 192 addressable pixels compared to 31 * 96 pixels of its predecessor allowing a much nicer font for both numbers and characters. Interesting trivia: Texas Instruments' first graphing calculator, the TI-81 introduced in 1990, featured only 64 * 96 pixels.

The "MathPrint" mode displays equations as they would be printed in a text book while the "Classic" mode emulates the TI-30X IIS calculators.

Texas Instruments introduced with the TI-30X Plus MathPrint a new feature for a Scientific calculator - obviously initiated by the "hack" of the TI-30X Plus MultiView: Pressing the [reset] button displays immediately the current Operating System version of the calculator.

Dismantling this TI-30X Plus MathPrint manufactured in May 2018 reveals a pretty common construction with two printed circuit boards (PCB's). The main PCB hides the single-chip calculating circuit under a small protection blob of black epoxy and drives the graphing display with a heat sealed fine-pitch connector. The keyboard makes use of a much simpler second PCB and a heat sealed connector, too.

The prominent SR-36 designation on the main PCB proves that this calculator was manufactured by Kinpo Electronics, Inc., a famous company located in Taiwan and doing calculator production for well established companies like Texas Instruments, Hewlett Packard, Casio, Canon and Citizen.

The featured calculator was purchased in June 2018 in Germany with an Online Shop and was delivered in a simple cardboard box, most likely bulk packaging for schools.

The box was surprisingly including three different manuals in German, French and Italian language.

As of July 2018 the TI-30X Plus MathPrint was featured on TI's website for the following countries: Austria, Germany and Switzerland.

The TI-30X Pro MathPrint was featured in some additional countries: Denmark, Finland, Italy, Norway and Sweden.

 

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

© Joerg Woerner, July 28, 2018. No reprints without written permission.