Product Type: Casio gadgets
Newest Review: ... This one lets you turn the calculator off when you want to. Little things! ~ Why choose a Casio? ~ 1. Many of the people who teach mat... more
Great Scientific Calculator
Casio FX 83 MS
Member Name: bluejules
Casio FX 83 MS
Advantages: Easy to use, reliable, batteries last AGES !
Disadvantages: No solar panel to back up batteries
I first got this calculator when I was 13 or 14 years old. Our maths teacher told us we needed a scientific calculator and although I already had one, it was different to the one the teacher had. The teacher told us we could buy one through school and this way we would all have the same calculator. Normally it wouldnít bother me if I was different but in this instance I wanted one the same, as calculations are sometimes worked out slightly differently on different calculators. I love this calculator and have used it happily in many lessons and exams since I first bought it.
~ What is a Scientific Calculator? ~
A scientific calculator is a more complex calculator than the usual calculator you may use. Scientific calculators support mathematical functions such as trigonometry, statistics, algebra and scientific notation.
~ Why would I need one? ~
GCSE maths, and A-level sciences and maths require the use of a scientific calculator. I couldnít have got through my exams without mine. In general everyday use I donít think you would need a scientific calculator though. I still use mine in the house for general use though because it is often handy.
~ Ease of use ~
Personally, I think this calculator is very easy to use. It took a bit of getting used to when I first got it but once I understood how it worked I havenít had many problems. Obviously, I donít know how to use every single function on the calculator but I have found it reasonably easy to use the functions I have needed. One of my A-Level chemistry teachers had a different calculator to me and it took us 15 minutes to work out how to do a logarithm on my calculator as the buttons needed to be entered in a different order to his. I didnít know that I would be doing logarithms this particular lesson so I didnít have my instruction booklet, as it is not something I carried around. To be honest, it is not something I have really looked at since getting the calculator.
For simple calculations it works just like any other calculator as the buttons on the bottom part of the calculator are the numbers and the usual functions (+ - = etc). However, it is worth noting that the calculator must be set on the correct mode or the answers will be incorrect. The instruction book tells you how to do this. It is not complicated and the screen displays a little letter to tell you the mode so once you know the correct mode it should stay like that all the time. You can look at the screen and check the letter is correct (D)
The screen displays all the numbers you are typing in and you can go back and edit it if you have realised you have incorrectly typed a number. The answer from the previous calculation is displayed on the screen even when you are entering your next set of numbers. There is an answer button as well, which means you can use the answer from the previous calculation in the next one without having to type the answer again. If the answer were something like 4, it would be just as easy to type the actual answer but if it is in standard notation (e.g. 4.0 x 10minus6) it is much easier to press the answer button.
The screen displays the answer upto ten significant figures but a lot more digits than this can be entered in one long string.
There is a replay button which means that you can go back through the previous calculations (as long as you havenít pressed the AC or ON button) and the answer will be shown. I find this particularly useful if I think I have made a mistake or if I have forgotten to write one part of the calculation down.
If I havenít used some of the functions for a while it sometimes takes me a couple of attempts to remember which order I need to enter the buttons in. This is only for some functions though and it doesnít take long to remember.
~ Reliability ~
This calculator has been very reliable and has never let me down. It runs on batteries and Iíve never needed to change these. Unfortunately, it doesnít have a solar panel to back up the batteries but I donít think this really matters as evidently the batteries last ages! A week before my exams finished my dad noticed that the calculator hasnít got a solar panel and worried it would run out in my exam as I have had it for years. Initially I panicked (and hoped he wasnít tempting fate!) but then I told him that the school has spare ones. Fortunately the calculator didnít run out of battery power and it currently still works (nearly five years after I bought it!)
There is a small square panel on the back of the calculator, which has a screw holding it down. I believe this is where the battery goes, so if your battery ever does run out (Iím sure it would eventually) you can replace it. The calculator takes one LR44 (1.5V) battery.
~ Durability ~
This calculator has lasted very well. It comes with a protective cover that slides easily on and off (you are not allowed to take the cover into an exam as you may hide something in it). The calculator and the cover are both made from strong plastic. I have dropped this calculator on several occasions (I can be quite clumsy sometimes!) and it is still in perfect working order. I have carried this round in my school bag almost constantly since I got it (apart from the odd time I left it at home after doing homework or when I was actually using it!) and it sometimes got shoved to the bottom of my bag with lots of things on top of it but it has never come to any harm. The cover is starting to look a bit scratched though this doesnít affect the functioning of the calculator.
~ Where can I get one and how much does it cost? ~
This calculator is currently retailing at £6.80 from amazon.co.uk. I think I paid about £4 through school four years ago so if you are at school it might be worth asking your teacher if you can get one through them. Shops such as Woolworths and Asda also sometimes scientific calculators so you may get one from there :-)
~ And Finally ~
This is a very good calculator. It is reliable and easy to use and it retails at a reasonable price. This calculator has never let me down and although I will no longer need it for the scientific functions I will continue to use it for ordinary calculations (like how much pay I will have left after going shopping lol!)
Thanks for reading :-)
Summary: Great scientific calculator, long battery life