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[Article] fx-50FHII: Is it really enough for HK students nowadays?

fx-50FHII

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#1 CalcLoverHK

CalcLoverHK

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Posted 13 November 2019 - 05:57 PM

Introduction
Casio fx-50FHII was introduced back in 2013, alongside with fx-50FII and fx-3650PII. Like its predecessor, fx-50FHII is just a fx-50FII without the ability to show formulas in order to get approved by H.K.E.A.A. to use in public exams. But since then, Casio do not have any plan to upgrade the calculator for six years. Does it mean we have already benefited so much from it? In this article, I am going to list some of the major problems the fx-50FHII has.
 
Problems of fx-50FHII
  • Lack of calculus functions

Perhaps it is the most acute disadvantage in this calculator. You may not think it is a problem because in real life you probably will not use it, but for HK students (especially who elect Mathematics Extended Module 2 - Algebric & Calculus, say M2), it is. Most secondary schools in HK recommends fx-50FHII since of its larger bytes for programs. The problem is if they choose to study M2, they will need to buy another calculator that has the calculus functions (e.g. fx-3650PII) and this will lead to spend more money just for these calculations. There are calculus programs for fx-50FHII, of course. However, they are somehow less accurated and complete. They are not perfect compared to the original feature.

  • Feature-lack Casio Basic

Although fx-50FHII have some advanced commands, but it is still not that useful - when you have only four program slots and 680 bytes. Also, this Casio Basic do not support nest. You cannot use any nest-needed commands within any of themself, so you cannot even make an easy-to-understand program involving many structured commands. Besides, it misses Prog, Do~LpWhile, Getkey, etc. It makes the fx-50FHII quite meaningless in programming.

  • Use traditional display

fx-50FHII still uses 16 units of dot-matrix display in upper line and 10 units of match-7 display in lower line as same as its predecessor. In fact, released previous models in 2006, Casio has used such display for its fx-50F and fx-3650P lineup for 13 years. Considering the current prices of them, it is definitely not a great display for them nowadays.

  • Poor user interactions and designs

Because of its outdated display, it adverses the user interactions. For example, you have to keep pressing left or right to check the program word-by-word when the program seems to run properly. In addition, fx-50FHII splits into 6 modes, including COMP, CMPLX, BASE, SD, REG and PGRM mode. During creating a program, you also need to determine one of five modes the program will run in. It is frustrating that users cannot use complex number functions in a program which set in COMP mode.

 

Possible solutions

One of the solutions is to buy fx-3650PII as mentioned. However, if you add the prices of fx-50FHII and fx-3650PII (it is currently ~220 HKD and ~180 HKD respectively according to my research), you will find that spending 400 HKD for only 8 program slots and 1070 bytes in two calculators in total is certainly not ideal for all of us since this price is close to the price of fx-5800P! (Calculator with full dot-matrix display and even better version of Casio Basic)

 

It is suggested that Casio release a lower-priced but satisfied calculator with Exam Mode to give the ability to lock the functions that are prohibited in public exams as fx-CG50 does. Teachers can prevent the students from cheating, while students can enjoy more conveniences of modern features.

 

Conclusion

Whether it is a market strategy of Casio or not, it is hoped that Casio should revise the demand of HK market and develop a better version of approved calculator.






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