casio pro fx-1

the pro fx-1 is a rather unique machine and the big daddy of the fx-201p & fx-202p family. as far as i am aware, it is the only casio model with a magnetic card read/writer, presumably the source of the pro moniker.

functionally, it is the same as the fx-201p, but unlike the fx-202p, does not have the memory backup batteries; the card reader replaces this. the number fx-1 is rather strange, maybe this should be the pro fx-201 because there was already an fx-1 model. perhaps this was meant to be the first of a new range of pro mag card enabled models. but casio did not return to magnetic storage until much later with the fx-502p and fx-501p which used a cassette interface rather than a card reader.

the build is solid and the extra headroom for the card reader means that this model makes even the 201 look small. there is an additional led error indicator (for read/write errors) and an extended middle switch adding read, record and check selectors onto manual, comp and write. the six position switch a throwback to the al-8.

unfortunately, it still only has 127 steps like the others. it would have been rather cool to have had perhaps twice the memory and mag card storage.

unlike hewlett packard models, like the hp65, the card reader is not motorised, you simply draw the card through the slot from left to right. this is quite a neat idea although (like hp) the batteries need to be strong to operate the writer. like the other models, the unit is powered by 4 AA cells.

casio also published a separate program library for this model that was available as optional extra.