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.