Model: HP 12C
Type: Programmable scientific/financial calculator
Picture: HP 12C
Batteries: LR44 x 3
Lifetime: Introduced: 1981
Terminated: Still in production (last checked 2023-01-07)
Notes: This calculator is one of HEWLETT PACKARD’s landscape series of calculators, named the HP Voyager series. Extremely (and I mean extremely) robust calculators and some of them were quite successful too.

What I find really amazing about this calculator series is the design, which is actually quite timeless and very elegant. If one calculator series deserves a design award it’s this series. Only HEWLETT PACKARD can create heavy duty casing with such elegance.

The calculators in this series are:
  • HP 10C
  • HP 11C
  • HP 12C (this one)
  • HP 12C Platinum
  • HP 12C Platinum 25th Anniversary Edition
  • HP 12C Prestige
  • HP 15C
  • HP 15C Limited Edition
  • HP 15C Collector’s Edition
  • HP 16C
The HP 12C is a very popular financial business calculator. Its design is from the early 1980’s and it’s still being sold when I write this, in 2006. You can even order it online at HEWLETT PACKARD’s website, just follow this link (link valid 2024-01-13).

The year 2006 marks this calculator’s 25th anniversary, which was celebrated at HP’s site (page no longer active).

There’s also some information on the HP 12C on HP’s official website (link valid 2024-01-13).

I think this is an amazing feat, and think HP should win some sort of award for this! Just try to think of other pieces of computer electronics from the early eighties you would still buy in 2006?

Maybe it’s the looks. This one looks more like an expensive jewel than a calculator. Mine doesn’t have a single scratch and I’m very proud of it.

As a 120 function key-stroke programmable financial business calculator this one has the works. I’ll won’t pretend to know how a business calculator works, so I can not compare this one to other financial business calculators.

For more information on this beauty please refer to the better sources, like The Museum of HP Calculators (link valid 2024-01-13).

The Hewlett-Packard Company Archives site also has some information on this calculator, see The HP 12C: A Best Seller (link valid 2024-01-13).