# How does a scientific calculator differ from a financial calculator?

Models are widely used by students and professionals, but although many people confuse them there are significant differences between them.

For simpler calculations, any calculator can do. However, when we talk about professional and academic use, more elaborate models come into play. Can you tell the difference between a scientific and a financial calculator?

While many people confuse one another, there are significant differences between them. Knowing the particularities of each of them will make you choose the one that best suits the needs of your company or your day-to-day. To clear all doubts once and for all on this subject, let’s explain what the differences are between them.

## What is a scientific calculator for?

As the name implies, scientific calculators are best suited for academic use. Students who are learning basic math, teachers or professionals who predominantly do calculations that do not involve financial variables will certainly get better results with these machines. The calculation method adopted by them is similar to that of common calculators.

They are suitable for solving logarithmic, linear, exponential, potential, inverse or quadratic regressions, in addition to trigonometry. Students in engineering, mathematics, architecture and physics, for example, have inseparable lifelong companions.

Not all scientific calculators are the same. One of the differences between models is the number of functions they are capable of performing. The simplest have around 58 functions, while the more expensive models can reach up to 400 functions. There are still versions powered by solar energy or that use common cells or batteries.

## What is a financial calculator for?

As for the financial calculators are used with greater frequency in companies although, of course, can also be used by students. They are the best alternative for those who need to make calculations of compound interest amounts, statistical or mathematical functions, rates of return or amortizations. Popularly, many know financial calculators as the “ HPs ”. The brand’s products have become synonymous with this tool, but the manufacturer is not the only one to have these models on the market.

One of the peculiarities of financial calculators is that they require more learning time. This is because these models are manufactured using RPN (Reverse Polish Notation) or algebraic mode. It is precisely in RPN mode that things change the picture because to do a simple calculation, such as 10 + 10, you need to type “10” and press “Enter”, then “10” and then “+”, for only hence define the action.

Financial calculators are used especially by professionals and students in the areas of Administration, Economics, Accounting and Foreign Trade. Salespeople and retailers who work directly with pricing or direct sales can also use these calculators to do multiple-factor calculations.

## Choose the right calculator for your needs

As you can see, there are calculators for the most diverse types of applications. Here, we mention two of the best known, but the list of alternatives is immense. To stay with these two examples, your company may need both or just one of them.

Who will give this answer are the professionals who work in each of the areas. Are your calculations predominantly for accounts? So it’s worth learning to use a scientific calculator and betting on one of the many existing models. In contrast, if the calculations you need to do aren’t about money, then choose a scientific calculator whose system understands the functions you use most.