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Back-To-School Guide 2012 Part 1: Buying a Graphing Calc
Published by KermMartian on August 27, 2012 at 12:34:26 AM CST | Discuss this article (29)



Welcome to Cemetech's Back-to-School guide to graphing calculators. This article is Part 1 of 3; in Part 2, I'll discuss putting games and educational programs on your calculator, while in Part 3, we'll look at how you can use your calculator to learn to program. It's been nearly a year since Cemetech's 2011 Back-to-School guide, in which I recommended the TI-84+ Silver Edition for high school students and a TI-84+SE, Casio Prizm, or TI-89 for college students, depending on their field and personal interests. What about this year? What calculator should you get, and what accessories will you need to help you get the most from your purchase? Don't worry, as Cemetech has you covered. I'll help you pick the best calculator for yourself, your child, or your students. Please go to the full article to read all about these contenders.

As you may know, Texas Instruments currently holds the lion's share of the graphing calculator market, and has the most widely-recognized lines of graphing calculators. Casio fills in as the second-place contender, with HP a distant third. I'll take you through four majority categories of calculators that you might be interested in getting: the TI-84 Plus Silver Edition, the TI-89, the Casio Prizm, and the TI-Nspire CX. All four of these calculators are accepted on standardized tests like the SAT and the ACT. All four are powerful, (relatively) modern graphing calculators, and with a few small caveats, all would be appropriate for the average student. However, even among these top contenders, the playing field is hardly level.

:: The erstwhile TI-84 Plus Silver Edition. The quintessential calculator for high school math and science, still applicable in many college courses. Continue reading>>

:: For more advanced math, the TI-89 Titanium is a good choice. Perfect for higher-level college math, science, and engineering courses. Continue reading>>

:: The first semi-modern, color screen graphing calculator was the Casio Prizm, now about a year and a half old. A simple, modern color-screen graphing calculator for high school students and programmers. Continue reading>>

:: Last of all, the TI-Nspire CX is the latest in TI's Nspire product line. A late entry to the graphing calculator race, a color screen calculator centered around the idea of "Documents". Good for some high school students. Continue reading>>


The Final Verdict:
Picking a graphing calculator was for a long time a no-brainer; you simply chose the latest in the TI-83 Plus / TI-84 Plus series. With more choices appearing and more options available to consumers, a better but more confusing selection now confronts students, parents, and even teachers. Continue on to the full article to read in-depth reviews of each of these four models, plus a recap simplifying which calculator you should get.

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2012 Articles
January 2012 January 2012 [Back to News Archives Index]

» Happy New Year; Cemetech's 2011 In Review published January 5, 2012 by KermMartian
» Defeat SOPA/PIPA; Contest 8 End Looms published January 18, 2012 by KermMartian
» 900K Downloads; Contest 8 Ends Today published January 22, 2012 by KermMartian
» [InDev] jsTIfied, a Javascript TI-83+ Emulator published January 24, 2012 by KermMartian

February 2012 February 2012 [Back to News Archives Index]

» [Prizm] Tetrizm v1.0 published February 2, 2012 by KermMartian
» Public jsTIfied Beta: a TI-83+ in Your Browser published February 6, 2012 by KermMartian
» Cemetech Contest #8 Results published February 22, 2012 by KermMartian
» State of the Prizm: February 2012 published February 24, 2012 by KermMartian
» Introducing "Programming the TI-83+/84+" published February 28, 2012 by KermMartian

March 2012 March 2012 [Back to News Archives Index]

» Cemetech to Bring Full-Color Prizm 3D Graphing published March 3, 2012 by KermMartian
» Graph3DP Video Demo; Prizm OS 1.04 published March 15, 2012 by KermMartian

April 2012 April 2012 [Back to News Archives Index]

» Graph3DP v1.0 Beta 1; Prizm Hacking Continues published April 1, 2012 by KermMartian
» Prizm Successfully Overclocked, Underclocked published April 4, 2012 by KermMartian
» United-TI To Merge Into Cemetech published April 15, 2012 by KermMartian
» United-TI Forum Archives Open at Cemetech published April 21, 2012 by KermMartian

May 2012 May 2012 [Back to News Archives Index]

» More Prizm Gaming: 3D and OverClui published May 2, 2012 by KermMartian
» New Moderators: Tari, Weregoose, Xeda112358 published May 9, 2012 by KermMartian
» Kernel Hacking: Connect an SSD1289 LCD to a Beaglebone published May 17, 2012 by KermMartian
» SourceCoder: A TI-83+ Emulator in your TI-BASIC Editor published May 28, 2012 by KermMartian

June 2012 June 2012 [Back to News Archives Index]

» First Impressions of the Casio ClassPad 330 published June 19, 2012 by KermMartian
» "Programming the TI-83+/84+" Heads to Production published June 21, 2012 by KermMartian
» Doom, 3D Graphing Advance on Casio Prizm published June 25, 2012 by KermMartian

July 2012 July 2012 [Back to News Archives Index]

» Doors CS 7 Ornament, IRC Stats, Updates published July 12, 2012 by KermMartian
» A Formal Unveiling of WikiPrizm published July 20, 2012 by KermMartian

August 2012 August 2012 [Back to News Archives Index]

» TI-89 Titanium Disassembly and Backlighting published August 9, 2012 by KermMartian
» [Prizm] Introducing LuaZM published August 17, 2012 by KermMartian
» Back-To-School Guide 2012 Part 1: Buying a Graphing Calc published August 27, 2012 by KermMartian

September 2012 September 2012 [Back to News Archives Index]

» Graph3DP 1.0 Release Candidate 1 published September 2, 2012 by KermMartian
» Back-To-School Guide 2012 Part 2: Put Games on Your Calc published September 4, 2012 by KermMartian
» [Prizm] Graph3DP 1.0 Released published September 6, 2012 by KermMartian
» LuaZM v0.1 Beta: Lua for the Casio Prizm published September 8, 2012 by KermMartian
» Back-To-School Guide 2012 Part 3: Learn to Program published September 12, 2012 by KermMartian
» Calculator Hacking at Maker Faire 2012 published September 13, 2012 by KermMartian
» jsTIfied Online Emulator Adds Beta TI-84+/SE Support published September 18, 2012 by KermMartian
» "Programming the TI-83 Plus/TI-84 Plus" Published published September 28, 2012 by KermMartian
» Maker Faire 12 Day 1: Educators' Choice; Hackaday Interview published September 29, 2012 by KermMartian

October 2012 October 2012 [Back to News Archives Index]

» Cemetech at World Maker Faire 2012 Recap published October 3, 2012 by KermMartian
» Games: Alien Breed 5 and Bloxorz published October 6, 2012 by KermMartian
» jsTIfied 1.0 Release Candidate 1 published October 9, 2012 by KermMartian
» Play @ Cemetech: MC and UT2004 published October 14, 2012 by KermMartian
» "Programming the TI-83+/84+" for Kindle/eBook published October 20, 2012 by KermMartian
» Cemetech Gets a Fresh Look published October 25, 2012 by KermMartian

November 2012 November 2012 [Back to News Archives Index]

» TI-84 Plus C Color-Screen Calculator Discovered published November 8, 2012 by KermMartian
» Cemetech Founder to Speak at Texas Instruments T3 Conference published November 9, 2012 by KermMartian
» Official Updates About TI-84 Plus C Silver Edition Software published November 12, 2012 by KermMartian
» Cemetech Contest #9 Announced published November 14, 2012 by KermMartian
» Nspire Ribbon Repair And Miscellany published November 18, 2012 by KermMartian
» 200K Posts, Other Stats published November 18, 2012 by KermMartian
» Exploring Options for Expansion published November 19, 2012 by Alex
» Casio Announces ClassPad fx-CP400 Color Touch Calculator published November 29, 2012 by KermMartian

December 2012 December 2012 [Back to News Archives Index]

» Official TI-84+CSE Updates: Specs, FAQs, More published December 12, 2012 by KermMartian
» "Self-Teaching a Love of STEM: A Personal Tale" published December 27, 2012 by KermMartian
» Announcing jsTIfied 1.0, an Online Graphing Calculator published December 31, 2012 by KermMartian

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