Retro Review: Retro Review Radio Shack EC-480
Company: Radio Shack
Batteries: 2 x AA, separate AC power
Operating Modes: Chain
Number of Registers: 1
Display: 8 digits, 1 left character for shift and error indicator
The EC-480 comes to have a brown, thin faux-leather cover.
Pocket Sized Scientific Calculator
The EC-480 is a no-frills, lightweight, scientific calculator: just the basics. Most likely, this would be an on today's smartphones. The keys are plastic and thankfully the keys are responsive. You can hear a click when the keys are pressed.
Every of the 20 keys has a shifted function. A smart move is the put the ON-OFF switch instead of making it a key.
F; cf (Shift; Clear Shift)
÷; arc (for arcsin, arccos, arctan)
The angle measurement used is degrees.
The conv function toggles the screen. When a number is big or small enough to show a exponent, the conv functions shows the mantissa. For example:
5.5.638 E 11
× 1.2365 E 10
= 6.8796 E 21
(conv) 6.8796387 (6.8796387 * 10^21)
(conv) 6.8796 E 21
The one thing I do not like about the EC-480 is that sometimes the 10^x function is sometimes inaccurate due to rounding error. For example:
10^3 returns 1000
10^4 returns 10000
10^5 returns 99999.999
10^6 returns 999999.99
10^7 returns 10000000
Try 2^x * 5^x instead. (Possible keystrokes: 2 y^x x = sto 5 y^x x * rcl =)
No Order of Operations
The EC-480 does not follow the order of operations, instead of the chain operating system. This may be a turn off for some people. Just to illustrate this:
4 + 5 × 6 returns 54
4 + ( 5 × 6 ) returns 34
5 × 6 + 4 returns 34
The display has 9 characters. The right 8 contain numbers, with the left as an indicator.
The first decimal point indicator appears when you press the blue shift key.
The left character is a negative sign with nothing else is when the calculator is sleeping. I like this feature to save battery.
Flow Simulation Ltd. "Radio Shack EC-480" calculator.org 2022. https://www.calculator.org/calculators/Radio_Shack_EC-480.html Retrieved June 5, 2022
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