best scientific calculator

What You Need To Look For in the Best Scientific Calculator

Imagine this – you’ve just come across a complicated calculation and you need answers fast, you whip out your pricey calculator to quickly punch in the numbers to be crunched, only to find that your calculator does not permit “mixed inputs”. You turn desperate, trying to look for some way to go around it, and end up wasting time. You push the calculator away and work on the calculations manually. If you are an arithmetic wizard, you may get the answers right, but at the cost of wasting precious time. This is not an uncommon scene. Many students and employees often find themselves in such a situation. Well, this could have been avoided.

The mistake we make when we look at calculators for trophy value

A calculator is not to be viewed as trophy value. A fancy brand may make you feel good, flashy looks and cool displays may give you a great feeling. But the most important question is – does it give results? The tag of the best scientific calculator is sometimes affixed on every model and every brand. You cannot help it, that is branding, that is marketing. You need to be smart enough to sift through the claims to find out one that meets your needs.

Marketing and branding has conditioned our minds

What comes to mind when you think of a calculator? Possibly Casio, Sharp, Texas Instruments, or Citizen, right? Do you see the point? You have been conditioned over years of marketing, and brand visibility to think of a few brands when you need a product. No doubt, these brands are known for performance and reliability and brand value. But important criteria should never be sacrificed in your pursuit for a reliable brand. You need to look for features/functions. You need to look at the ability of the calculator to work out the complex calculations that you intend to use it for, in addition to the other regular features.


most advanced calculator

The question is, how do we understand the functionality?

This is where it gets interesting.  How on earth are we supposed to understand the functionality? Every brand/model makes the same claim, right? Actually, the answer is NO. You can easily discern differences. Puzzled? Well, read on, you will understand how to identify the best scientific calculator in a few simple steps.

Are you aware of how ROM and RAM impact the performance of your calculator?

Chances are that not many would be actually aware of how the ROM and RAM size impacts the performance of a calculator.  You are obviously aware of ROM and RAM, but did you know that the average scientific calculator has ROM and RAM? Programs are stored in both the memories, and you can transfer programs from one memory to the other. As you are obviously aware, programs stored in RAM are faster but you will lose the programs when the batteries are replaced, whereas the programs stored in ROM are safe.  Did you know that you can archive and unarchive the program? In other words, you can store the programs in ROM or leave it in RAM. Your scientific calculator needs to offer this function. If it doesn’t, then you should realize that its tag of ‘the best scientific calculator’ is not justified.

Tip – Check out the ROM and RAM size of your calculator.


Did you know that memory variables in a calculator make a huge difference to your complex calculations?


Did you know that memory variables in your calculator help you to calculate the values of several expressions/formula that have a common part? You can store the value of the common part and reuse it any number of times in the complex calculation, without having to redo it. This will help you to quickly work out complex calculations without having to repeat certain portions. After all, the whole idea of using a scientific calculator is to save time in arriving at results.

Tip – Choose a calculator that has more than four memory variables.


Does your calculator display results in math notations – pi, square roots, fractions?

Well, any good scientific calculator should ideally display results and inputs in math notations – pi, square roots and fractions. For instance, the degree-minute-second-conversion (DMS). If you are expected to calculate the time taken for traveling from one place to another place on the basis of multiple inputs of starting time and ending time, then the calculator needs to convert the time into minutes and seconds, after which it calculates and then displays the answer again in terms of time.

Tip – choose a calculator that offers display in math notations.


Choose the most advanced calculator on the basis on functions, convenience and capacity.


Far from being an electronic calculator that only performs arithmetic operations, modern scientific calculators carry out a whole range of functions that make lives a lot easier and results more accurate. If you need to choose the most advanced calculator for your needs, look for the functions in addition to multiple other aspects – the scroll and edit options, the power source (preferably dual), multi-line display, user-defined functions, and saving notes on screen which is generally available in any model tagged as the best graphing calculator for engineers. You can also look at additional features like the multi-view option and the multi-replay function. It is always a good option to get bonus features on gadgets; you may find yourself using it more often than expected.

Here is a short list of five calculators that we have reviewed in the market, and have found them to be the hottest among students and employees. This is on the basis of online sales and reviews of verified buyers available in the public domain. We have collated this information into a single source to help you check out the statistics in one single screen, without having to look at different sites and pages to understand.


(1) Texas Instrument TI-30X IIS – This one is packed with features that can sometimes give you the feeling that it is overkill.

Texas Instrument TI-30X IIS

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Overall rating – 5

Functions Display Power Source Visual Appeal Additional features
5 rating 5 rating 5 rating 5 rating 5 rating


(2) Texas Instrument TI-36X Pro – The multi-view display is a winner and the functions meet the needs of students in schools.

Texas Instrument TI-36X Pro

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Overall rating – 4.6

Functions Display Power Source Visual Appeal Additional features
5 rating 5 rating 5 rating 3 rating 5 rating


(3) Casio FX – 300 MS – The variable memories, multi line display and replay function and other standard convenient options in this model are good value for money.

Casio FX – 300 MS

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Overall rating – 4

Functions Display Power Source Visual Appeal Additional features
5 rating 5 rating 5 rating 3 rating 4 rating


(4) Texas Instruments TI – 30XS – It offers a clean cluttered display and the buttons are not marked very distinctly, leaving any room for confusion.

Texas instruments TI – 30XS

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Overall rating –  3.6

Functions Display Power Source Visual Appeal Additional features
3 rating 5 rating 5 rating 3 rating 3 rating


(5) Casio FX 260 Solar – This is one scientific calculator that will meet the requirements of students in schools as an entry-level scientific calculator.

Casio FX 260 Solar

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Overall rating –  3.2

Functions Display Power Source Visual Appeal Additional features
3 rating 3 rating 4 rating 3 rating 3 rating

Look for the best combination – coolest features and hottest looks

When you are out to pick the best scientific calculator you need to look at key aspects – functionality, display, buttons and power source. Obviously, you will certainly want one that meets all your requirements, while still being available at a reasonable price. And most importantly, you will certainly want your calculator to be visually appealing, after all, no one wishes to be seen with stuff that is drab and boring.   So, choose one that is hot in looks with the coolest features.


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