Hewlett-Packard Voyager series

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from HP-10C series)
Jump to: navigation, search

The Hewlett-Packard Voyager series of calculators were introduced by Hewlett-Packard in 1981.[1] All members of this series are programmable, use Reverse Polish Notation, and feature continuous memory. Nearly identical in appearance, each model provided different capabilities and was aimed at different user markets.

The HP calculators Voyager series consisted of five models, some of which were manufactured in several variants (with years of production):

  • HP-10C – basic scientific calculator (1982–1984).
  • HP-11C – mid-range scientific calculator (1981–1989).
  • HP-12C – business/financial calculator (1981–present).
  • HP-15C – advanced scientific calculator (1982–1989, 2011).
  • HP-16C – computer programmer's calculator (1982–1989).

The HP-12C and its derivatives remains in widespread use today and is still available from Hewlett-Packard. The long-discontinued HP-15C was re-released in a "Limited Edition" in 2011 that has again been discontinued.


HP-10C programmable calculator.jpg
Type Programmable Scientific
Manufacturer Hewlett-Packard
Introduced 1982
Discontinued 1984
Cost USD 80
Entry mode RPN
Display type LCD seven-segment display
Display size 10 digits
Processor HP Nut core (1LF5[2])
Programming language(s) Keystroke programmable (fully merged)
Memory register 0…9
Program steps 9…79
Power consumption 0.25 mW

The HP-10C is the last and lowest-featured calculator in this line, even though its number would suggest an earlier origin. The 10C was a basic scientific programmable. While a useful general purpose RPN calculator, the HP-11C offered twice as much for only a slight increase in price. Designed to be an introductory calculator, it was still costly compared to the competition, and many looking at an HP would just step up to the better HP-11C. Poor sales led to a very short market life, making it one of the most difficult of the series to find today.


Type Programmable Scientific
Manufacturer Hewlett-Packard
Introduced 1981
Discontinued 1989
Cost $135
Entry mode RPN
Display type LCD seven-segment display
Display size 10 digits
Processor HP Nut core (1LF5 / 1LM2 / 1LQ9[2])
Programming language(s) Keystroke programmable (fully merged)
Memory register 0…20
Program steps 63…203
Power consumption 0.25 mW

The HP-11C is a mid-range scientific programmable calculator.


Main article: HP-12C

The HP-12C is a popular financial calculator. It was such a successful model that Hewlett-Packard redesigned it from scratch,[3] added several new functions, and introduced it as the HP 12c Platinum in 2003 as well as the HP 12c Prestige. Over the course of years, several anniversary editions of the calculator were produced as well.

The HP-12C is HP's longest and best-selling product, in continual production since its introduction in 1981.[1]


Main article: HP-15C

The HP-15C is a high-end scientific programmable with a root-solver and numerical integration, produced between 1982 and 1989. It is also able to handle complex numbers and matrix operations. Although long being discontinued its continued popularity among users triggered Hewlett-Packard to offer a HP 15c Limited Edition remake of the calculator in 2011.


Main article: HP-16C

The HP-16C is a computer programmer's calculator, designed to assist in debugging. It can display numbers in hexadecimal, decimal, octal and binary, and convert numbers from one base to another. A number of specialized functions are provided to assist the programmer, including left- and right-shifting, masking, and bitwise logical operations. HP has (as of 2015) never made another programmer's calculator, but has incorporated the 16C's functions in later calculator models.


One of the least-known features of this calculator series is the quality of the arithmetic inside them. Hewlett-Packard retained the numerical analyst William Kahan of UC Berkeley, the architect of the IEEE 754 standard for floating-point arithmetic, to design the numerical algorithms implemented by the calculators.[4][5] He also wrote parts of the manuals.


The HP Voyager series calculator are keystroke programmable, meaning that it can remember and later execute sequences of keystrokes to solve particular problems of interest to the user. These keystroke programs, in addition to performing any operation normally available on the keyboard, can also make use of conditional and unconditional branching and looping instructions, allowing programs to perform repetitive operations and make decisions.

The available programming features differentiate between the various HP Voyager series calculator systems.

Function HP-10C HP-11C HP-12C HP-15C HP-16C
BSP / ← [F 1] No Yes No Yes Yes
LBL [F 2] No Yes No Yes Yes
GSB/RTN [F 3] No Yes No Yes Yes
x≤y, x=0 Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
x=y, x≠y No Yes No Yes [F 4] Yes
x<0, x≠0, x>y, x>0 No Yes No Yes [F 4] Yes
x>0, x≤0, x≥y, x≥0 No No No Yes [F 4] No
DSE, ISG [F 5] No Yes No Yes No
DSZ, ISZ [F 5] No No No No Yes
SF, CF, F? No Yes No Yes Yes
I (I) [F 6] No Yes No Yes Yes
  1. ^ Without BSP (backspace) programs can only be edited by overwriting existing steps.
  2. ^ Without LBL (Label) goto commands can reference only absolute program steps.
  3. ^ Without GSB (Go Subroutine) / RTN (Return from Subroutine) one cannot write subroutines.
  4. ^ a b c Available via the g TEST n function
  5. ^ a b Without DSZ/DSE (Decrement and Skip) and ISZ/ISG (Increment and Skip) writing loops is difficult.
  6. ^ Without indirect addressing only the first 20 (0 .. 19) register can be accessed. Also the programming model is not turing complete.


In 2011 the continued popularity of the Voyager series among users prompted SwissMicros to produce a series of credit-card-sized calculators looking like miniature versions of their HP equivalents and running the original HP firmware in an emulator on a modern calculator hardware. The series consists of the DM-10, DM-11, DM-12, DM-15 and DM-16.[6] All calculators use the same hardware, but differ in keyboard and firmware (which can be changed with an upgrade port).


  1. ^ a b Furr, Richard ‘Rick’ (January 22, 2003). "HP Calculators by Date of Introduction". The Calculator Reference. 
  2. ^ a b http://www.brouhaha.com/~eric/hpcalc/voyager/variants.html
  3. ^ Eric Smith (August 16, 2007). "HP Voyager Calculator Variants". HP Voyager Calculator Variants. 
  4. ^ Kahan, William M. (December 1979). "Personal Calculator Has Key to Solve Any Equation f(x) = 0" (PDF). Hewlett-Packard Journal 30 (12): 20–26. Retrieved 2008-11-14. 
  5. ^ Kahan, William M. (August 1980). "Handheld Calculator Evaluates Integrals" (PDF). Hewlett-Packard Journal 31 (8): 23–32. Retrieved 2008-11-14. 
  6. ^ "SwissMicros.com". Retrieved 2013-06-29. 

External links[edit]