Hand-held Calculators

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Rapid Data Rapidman 800

Rapid Data  Rapidman 800

Rapid Data Rapidman 800

Distinctive features: Low-cost hand-held calculator, achieved by using a one-piece injection moulding for the whole casing and keyboard, and a low-functionality "calculator on a chip" integrated circuit.

Technical details:
Display 8 digits, red LED.

Four-function - Fixed decimal point (2 places of decimals).

Integrated circuit - Mostek MK5010P "calculator on a chip", & 24 transistors.

Power supply - 9v (PP3).

Size - 80 x 137 x 23 mm (3.15" x 5.4" x 0.9").

Introduced February 1972, cost just under US$100 / GBP£40.

Rapid Data Systems & Equipment Ltd., Made in Canada.

Inside Rapid Data  Rapidman 800

The two main parts of the calculator:

  • The circuit board & keypad assembly.
  • The one-piece case.
Inside Rapid Data  Rapidman 800

The main circuit board carries the Mostek "calculator-on-a-chip", a couple of dozen discrete transistors (mainly to drive the display), and the LED display.

Cream coloured version

This calculator can be found, less commonly, in a cream or dark green casing.

This was a very low-cost calculator - the first sub-US$100 / sub-GBP£40 electronic calculator.
This was achieved by using a single "calculator on a chip" integrated circuit, a low-cost keypad design, and an ingenious one-piece polypropylene moulding for the case incorporating the front, the back, the key caps, and the battery compartment cover.  But this does give it a very cheap feel.

Rapid Data manufactured several innovative electronic calculators in the early 1970s, including one of the first with Liquid Crystal Display (LCD), the Rapidman LC1208.

Hand-held Calculators

Vintage Calculators

© Text & photographs copyright Nigel Tout   2000-2018  except where noted otherwise.