A good graphing calculator can help you visualize complex math concepts in a thorough and highly informative fashion, allowing you to get a much better grasp on a multitude of math or graph-based disciplines. By using one, you can optimize your studying and improve your understanding of a wide range of mathematical concepts. It, therefore, comes as no surprise that many students require it to further their curriculum or simply to get better grades overall.
It should be said that a graphing calculator should not be seen as a big investment because most of these devices are quite affordable. Apart from a few high-end exceptions, most graphing calculators can be bought without too much of a strain on your budget, and you can expect even the most inexpensive ones to do what’s required of them at full capacity. As long as you understand what a graphing calculator does and how to best take advantage of its capabilities, you will find yourself improving your learning prowess by considerable margins.
Even so, it has to be said that not all graphing calculators can be expected to perform at the same operational standards, with some standing out as being much better than others. Not to say that there are too many ‘bad’ ones in the true sense of the word, although the few at the top are definitely faster and more versatile than the low-end versions. With this in mind, let us find out what are the ten best graphing calculators money can buy.
Best Graphing Calculators – Reviews
10Casio CLASSPAD330PLUS Graphing Calculator
Designed to feature a large 160-pixel by 240-pixel display screen, the Casio CLASSPAD330PLUS Graphing Calculator boasts a variety of functions and applications. Equipped with a stylus pen, it makes navigation easier and much more convenient. Thanks to its pull-down menu options, users can work quicker and get access to pre-loaded and loaded applications with ease. It also includes an interactive display that automatically fills in various commands without the need of memorizing syntax.
9Ti 89 Titanium Programmable Graphing Calculator
The Ti 89 Titanium Programmable Graphing Calculator is an upgradable calculator that allows users to electronically update all functions and software. With up to 16 applications already pre-loaded into the calculator, it works perfectly for those who require help with college mathematics or engineering. It comes with handy icons on the main screen to give users easier and quicker access to all available software and applications. Users can also create individual folders depending on their work.
8HP G8X92AA LA Prime v2
The HP G8X92AA LA Prime v2 Graphing Calculator is one of the best of its kind and well known for its performance and mathematical functionalities. Extremely easy to operate, users can plot and create any type of graph whether it is related to engineering, trigonometry, biology, geometry, chemistry or even statistics. It comes loaded with functions including conversion of decimal hours to minutes, polar or rectangular conversions, unit conversions, angle conversions, and Boolean graphics. With a memory of 32 MB and a flash memory of 256 MB, this calculator is ideal for students and professionals alike.
7Casio FX-9860GII SD Power
Featuring 61 KB RAM with 1.5 MB ROM, the Casio FX-9860GII SD Power Graphic Calculator is a high-quality mathematical tool that comes with integral advanced functionalities. With a display resolution of 64 by 128 pixels, it is designed with a monochrome backlit display screen and runs on 4 AAA batteries. Ideal for those who are well versed with graphic calculators, this one is a little more advanced as compared to others in this price range.
6Texas Instruments TI-84 Plus Silver Edition
Recommended by most users, the Texas Instruments TI-84 Plus Silver Edition Graphing Calculator is one among the most interactive and easiest to use. With a clear-cut interface and a ton of great functions and features, this calculator is ideal for college and school students. Equipped with a high-speed processor and 24KB RAM, this calculator can easily be connected to a computer via a USB port. Designed with backlit, high-res display screen, this calculator is available in a vibrant attractive purple color.
5Casio FX-CG10 PRIZM Color Graphing Calculator
Uniquely designed with a 3.7 inch LCD screen, full color with over 82,000 pixels, the Casio FX-CG10 PRIZM Color Graphing Calculator is a premium grade mostly utilized by professionals. Thanks to its great features and functions, users can create graphs on images and real-life scenes to help them understand the functionalities better. It also comes with conditional formatting options for creating graphs, tables, and spreadsheets. With a storage space of up to 16MB, this calculator requires 4 AAA batteries.
4Casio fx-9750GII Graphing Calculator
Known for its top-notch products throughout the years, Casio has introduced the new fx-9750GII Graphing Calculator which has earned its place on the top ten list because of its efficiency and accuracy. Calculate and create pie charts, bar graphs and more with this handy tool. Designed with a modern, sleek look, it comes with a high-res LCD display screen and a USB port for easy sharing of files. Extremely easy to navigate, this calculator comes equipped with an icon-based menu as well as an equation solver. Ideal for school and college students, this calculator comes with over 200 hours of battery life.
3HP 50g Graphing Calculator
The HP 50g Graphing Calculator is the latest upgrade to the HP 49g. With an increase of 30% of space, it comes with a new SD card slot that can be formatted to expand the amount of memory directly when inserted into the calculator. Ideal for both students as well as professional users, this calculator comes equipped with over 2300 inbuilt functions with a large equation library than the old version. Including 2.5MB memory with 512KB RAM and 2MB ROM, this calculator allows users to further upgrade in the future, if necessary.
2Texas Instruments TI-83 Graphing Calculator
The Texas Instruments TI-83 Graphing Calculator is uniquely designed to handle all kinds of calculus, trigonometry, engineering and other mathematical functions. Thanks to its large split screen, it displays graphs and tables alongside each other to help users follow while scrolling through. With a clear LCD screen with 64 by 96-pixel res, it also includes an inbuilt memory and the ability to analyze for up to 10 matrices. Extremely easy to use and navigate through, it comes equipped with input and output ports for sharing files.
1Texas Instruments Nspire CX CAS Graphing Calculator
Known for its slim, sleek design and construction, the Texas Instruments Nspire CX CAS Graphing Calculator is the thinnest and most light model available today. With the ability to overlay and color-code math and science, this calculator allows you to use your own images and photographs. Thanks to its heavy duty TI-Nspire Rechargeable Battery, it can last up to two weeks on a single charge. With a screen size measuring 320 pixels by 340 pixels, it can color-code objects, points, equations, and lines, all on full color. Overall, it is one of the best graphing calculators ever made.
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The Buyer’s Guide To Graphing Calculators
At some point during their academic career, students are going to need to use a graphing calculator. In fact, it may even be a required tool for students taking algebra, geometry, or trigonometry—particularly, for students in AP classes. These calculators aren’t just useful for students, however. Many professionals also need to use these calculators during daily life. Regardless of what it’s needed for, the consumer is going to want to make sure they buy the best one possible.
Buying the best graphing calculator can be difficult for many people, unfortunately. That’s because there are hundreds of different models available, and each of them claims to be the one that students and/or working professionals need. That’s why we’ve decided to clear up the situation a bit and not only find out which graphing calculators are truly the best but always find out what consumers should look for when they buy one of these calculators. With those key points in mind, we wrote the following guide that will illuminate the subject quite well.
What Is A Graphing Calculator?
Before we can give our readers an idea of what they should be looking for in one of these calculators, we thought it might be helpful to define these devices first. These calculators are handheld computers (although they’re not as smart as a real computer or even a smartphone) that’s capable of performing tasks with variables. This can be anything from solving several equations at the same time to plotting graphs. Many of these calculators allow the consumer to create their customized programs for tackling educational, engineering or scientific applications, and as such is often considered to be programmable calculators.
Graphing Calculators Versus Scientific Calculators
Another question people have when they’re searching for a new graphing calculator is how these devices differ from scientific calculators. And we have to answer that question by stating that there are subtle, but significant, differences between these two types of calculators. As their name implies, graphing calculators allow the user to graph functions–which is quite helpful with not only dealing with linear equations but also quadratic and polynomial functions as well. They also allow users to manipulate equations in a visual way that scientific calculators are incapable of doing.
Things To Consider Before Buying A Graphing Calculator
Before running out and purchasing the first graphing calculator that you see, you’re probably going to want to consider some of the features that you are going to need. And this may cause you to wonder how you can differentiate between which features are important and which ones are less important. To answer that question, we’ve listed some of the most important features to consider when buying a new graphing calculator.
- Second & Third Functions: Consumers should look for a calculator that has at least two functions. This will enable to user to access a greater number of features.
- Processor: The processor will determine how fast the calculator works. The consumer should try to get a calculator with the fastest processor speed possible.
- Memory: Memory is also an important consideration to consider when buying a new calculator. Choose a model with a least 24 Kb of memory for the best results.
- Graphing Calculators: The student or professional should consider what they need the device to do to find the best one possible.
- Future Upgrades: It’s also a good idea to consider buying a model that has apps or downloads the consumer can download.
- Screen Display: For many people, the display can make or break their decision to buy a graphing calculator. Always be sure to buy one with a nice big screen, and if you need a color screen, then get one.
- Battery Life: It’s also important to consider what type of batteries the calculator has and whether they’re rechargeable or not.
- Price: And finally, price is an important consideration for anyone looking to buy one of these calculators. Graphing calculators can cost as little as $66 and can cost as much as $200.
Reasons Why Students Should Own Graphing Calculators
Before we end this article, we would like to talk about the reasons why every high school and college student should own one of these calculators. Although many parents balk at the price of these devices, which is understandable considering they can cost up to $200, there are quite a few reasons why these calculators should be used. We’ve listed some of the more common reasons below, but we’re sure that there’s probably a dozen more that we could mention if we had space. Our point is that graphing calculators are important tools.
- Since these devices can graph, it’s probably one of the most useful devices for solving algebra and calculus problems.
- Unlike a smartphone, graphing calculators cant be used to check social media, email or surf the web. This allows students to focus on.
- These calculators hold up extremely well and can even be passed on by older siblings to their younger siblings.
- They have resale value. When the consumer is done using them, they can easily sell them and recoup some of their investment.
- They are a keystone tool that will help high school students solve problems.