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Casio FX-502P with PA-1 connector

FX-502P FA-1

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#1 leviset

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Posted 06 July 2021 - 10:48 AM

I’m pretty much a ‘Pure Mathematician’ and pretty useless at ‘Applied’ sciences like practical  electronics or anything that involves making/soldering etc which reared its head when aged 14 at a Boy’s Grammar School when I was thrown out of woodworking for ‘making’ the worst pencil box the teacher had ever seen!

So I’ve just picked up a Casio FX-502P calculator with PA-1 connector in working condition. 
Can anyone help me to understand the following project I’m trying to do please?

 

The black and the white mini plugs fit perfectly into my vintage cassette and reel to reel players to save and load programs. What I’m trying to do (please don’t ask why as it’s just curiousness!):-

 

Can I connect the FA-1 to a digital recorder - I have both a Zoom H2N and a Sony Minidisc player or does it all have to be in the ‘analogue world’?
Thanks 

Dennis



#2 piu58

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Posted 08 July 2021 - 07:01 PM

A digital recorder uses an anlog to digital converter for storing and an digital to analog converter the way back. So it should work.

 

It is necessary however, that the voltage level is right. If you use an earphone plug at the recorder it should and may be adjusted with the volume keys.

 

The only problem which could arise are high frequent signals at the output. You won't have such things in the analogue world, but it may be happen in digital devices. If they are beyond 20 kHz the are unheard, but may be seen by the electronics.



#3 ijabbott63

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Posted 11 September 2021 - 07:59 AM

Hi Dennis, nice to run into the same people on different forums! As I understand it, a linear PCM recorder should be perfectly adequate, and won't suffer from the wow and flutter of the cheap, portable cassette decks that early home computers (and Casio programmable calculators!) were often paired with. You might have to fiddle with the recording and playback levels because a lot of home computers and calculator tape interfaces are very finnicky about that sort of thing. But once you have a set of levels that work for a particular device, you shouldn't need to change them. An MP3 recorder might not work so well because its "psycho-acoustic" compression techniques might mess with the signal too much for the poor little calculator. (But at the end of the day, the signal only has two fundamental frequencies, so you might get away with it.)

 

The FX-502P was my first programmable calculator, which I bought in my sixth form years (in the deluxe package that included the FA-1 tape interface - I had a Saturday job to pay for such luxuries). Those were the days - I loved programming that thing, and also used it through my university years. I can't say it was my first programmable device; that would be the Science of Cambridge MK-14, but that couldn't do much. Eventually, it stopped working after lingering in a drawer for a while, and like an idiot I threw it away along with the FA-1 when flat moving. I've since learned that it would probably have been a fairly easy fix to get it working again. No matter, I have since acquired another one (and lots of other calculators!) via eBay.

 

P.S. You might recognise the object in the background of my avatar picture!


Edited by ijabbott63, 11 September 2021 - 08:05 AM.





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