A Community Devoted to the Preservation and Practice of Celestial Navigation and Other Methods of Traditional Wayfinding
From: Sean C
Date: 2020 Nov 14, 00:32 -0800
I have a TI-30X II S (not pro) and a Casio fx-260 Solar (not II). I use them both regularly. Personally, I slightly prefer the TI - for two reasons: the battery and the memory.
The Casio is a great calculator and will do everything you need for celestial (as will pretty much any scientific calculator). But in low-light conditions it struggles to get enough power. Calculations are slower and the display is only readable at certain angles. In normal lighting conditions it functions perfectly. The TI functions perfectly regardless.
I also cannot overstate how much the necessary calculations can be sped up and made easier with the availability of 5 memory slots and the ability to recall multiple past entries. Once I have started reducing a round of sights, I only have to input the fomulae once. Then, it is only a matter of changing the LHA/declination variables. (And including/excluding PA/SD etc., but that is trivial.)
IOW, I would be perfectly happy with either - but given a choice, I would take the TI.
The Casio does score a [major] win in one category: there is no need to go through a menu to enter DMS, as one must do with the TI. Instead, the Casio uses a degree symbol [°] to denote degrees, minutes and seconds (eg. 52°18'34" is entered and displayed as 52°18°34°). This means that one can enter DMS quicker and easier than with the TI - which requires one to select a degree [°], minute ['] or second ["] symbol from a menu, requiring several key presses. If I could transplant this functionality to the TI, I might throw my Casio in the trash. (No ... I wouldn't - I couldn't, who am I kidding?) ;)