Texas Instruments TI-1890 Converter Kit

Date of introduction:  1981 Display technology:  LCD
New price:  
 $22 (October, 1981)
Display size:  8 (5 + 2)
Size:  5.3" x 2.9" x 0.35"
 134 x 74 x 9 mm3
Weight:  2.9 ounces, 82 grams Serial No:  1946825
Batteries:  2*LR44 Date of manufacture:  wk 15 year 1983
AC-Adapter:   Origin of manufacture:  USA (ATA)
Precision:  9 Integrated circuits:  CD4559
Memories:  3    
Program steps:   Courtesy of:  Joerg Woerner
    Download manual:   (US: 3.8 MByte)

TI-Converter_Back.jpg (320733 Byte)This interesting machine based on a TI-35 is really a converter. Giving the US citizens a chance to work with the International SI units, it converts easily between old-fashioned yards, inches, gallons and ounces to the modern meters, centimeters, liters or grams. The TI Converter has 194 built-in conversions and was delivered together with the "Calculator and Converter handbook" that guides step-by-step through common household and work related projects.

Success in the United States? I don't think so, I used this machine to give you the above data in inches and ounces.
Comment from the editor: "I lived in Germany till June 24, 2006"

Interested in converting calculators? Have a look on the Cessna Sky/Comp.

TI-Converter_PCB1.jpg (72667 Byte)Within the Datamath Museum the TI Converter is placed due to the housing and calculator chip in the "Scientific Calculators" album, nevertheless the number TI-1890 is the name of a BASIC calculator. Four years later the converter functions were really adopted to basic calculators, view the TI-1889.

The first calculator performing metric conversions was introduced already in 1974 with the Canon FC-80.

Recently fellow collector Stefan Klaes discovered an early TI-1890 Converter with a date code of ATA3781 (manufactured in Abilene, TX during week 37 of the year 1981). Dismantling this calculator reveals with the CD4509 single-chip calculator circuit the "buggy" version of the later CD4559 found in the pictured model on the left. Read more about the TP0455 and TP0456 C-MOS calculator chips here.

The TI-1890 Converter is featured in the Texas Instruments Incorporated leaflet CL-199M dated 1983.

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If you have additions to the above article please email:

Joerg Woerner, January 3, 2002. No reprints without written permission.