DATAMATH CALCULATOR MUSEUM
Rapid Data Rapidman 800
|Date of introduction:||February, 1972||Display technology:||LED-modules|
|New price:||$99.95||Display size:||8|
|Size:||5.5" x 3.2" x 0.95"|
|Weight:||5.1 ounces||Serial No:||405517|
|Batteries:||Date of manufacture:||mth 12 year 1972|
|AC-Adapter:||9V||Origin of manufacture:||Canada|
|Precision:||8||Integrated circuits:||Mostek MK5010P|
|Program steps:||Courtesy of:||Joerg Woerner|
Canadian based Rapid Data Systems & Equipment Ltd. introduced with the Rapidman 800 the first portable electronic calculator selling below US$ 100.
How was this possible - a similar Bowmar 901B was about US$ 240 ? We disassembled a Rapidman 800 for you and found the answer. Just take your time and watch the next four pictures carefully.
|The internal construction is based on a rigid plastic frame holding all mechanical and electronic components. Instead using a lot of screws the parts are simply folded together.|
|The electronic circuit uses a "Basic 1KS" Klixon™ keyboard without the usual keycaps. The display is a Litronix type with discrete instead integrated drivers. And the calculator chip is a Mostek MK5010 type instead the usual TMS0100.|
|Instead expensive housing parts we notice a cheap looking and cheap feeling mold made of a single piece. Even the On/Off-switch is avoided and a simple slider pushes on of the keyboard contacts down.|
|The Mostek MK5010 looks expensive with its 40-pin ceramic housing. But expect that they offered a really good price to be compete with the market leader Texas Instruments and the famous TMS0100.|
The next calculator in the Rapidman line was introduced one year later with the Rapidman 801. It uses a much more conventional approach than this unique Rapidman 800. Sandwiched between these two calculators was a small series of Rapdman 800 in a white housing.
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© Joerg Woerner, May 7, 2003. No reprints without written permission.