Not all calculators will be useful in your classes and not all are allowed as well during the test. Among the types of calculators, a graphing calculator will be the most capable and also required for advanced math. The options are plenty such as Casio FX-9860GII Vs TI-84 Plus that are both very reliable and user friendly. If you wonder which of the two will be the better choice, let’s see below about what they can offer and which of them to buy.

In this comparison, we are going to talk about:

  • How Graphing Calculator Evolved
  • What are Casio FX-9860GII and TI-84 Plus
  • How are the Design of Casio FX-9860GII and TI-84 Plus
  • How are the Interface of Casio FX-9860GII and TI-84 Plus
  • How are the Graphing with Casio FX-9860GII and TI-84 Plus
  • How are the Programming with Casio FX-9860GII and TI-84 Plus
  • How are the Apps in Casio FX-9860GII and TI-84 Plus
  • Casio FX-9860GII Vs TI-84 Plus

Graphing Calculators History

Most of us today have at least one smart device in the home whether it is the smartphone, tablet, smart TV, smart speakers, etc. It is easy to forget that these devices were not around when we were still a kid. Technology has been developed since forever but the huge leap actually not long ago. Calculators for example, a tool that we are already familiar with, was so traditional back then that a graphing calculator seems impossible to imagine, moreover made.

The most traditional form of calculator actually has been made and used since the 1980s but the tool that resembles our modern day product shows up in the middle of the 20th century. The ANITA was some of the earliest but the more similar to what we know today show up around the 1970s and was developed by British Sinclair Research together with Japan’s Busicom. They were a simpler four-function arithmetic machine however with fluorescent displays that used to be very common during the era.

A noticeable leap was not made until Texas Instrument made the SR-10 which is a pocket calculator that is capable of using scientific notation and algebraic entry and then continued with TI-30 that you can still find today. Another big leap happened in 1985 with Casio making FX-7000G or the first commercially-viable graphing calculators and this began the era where the tool became more capable. What makes this powerful are the ability to process calculation and storing it to deliver the graph.

It is a very complicated process for a tool that was very rare back in the day. Not only the internal processing, it is a challenge for the display as well and Casio used to have the 96×64 dot matrix black and white display back then. Thanks to the display, this calculator is able to plot algebraic graphs and statistical charts including graphs, normal distribution curves, and regression lines. It is also able to present graphs of functions input by user.

Fast forward to modern days, it seems that people are more interested in developing software based graphing calculators. It is easy to see why because calculators are small and they can be pricey as well while most people have at least a laptop or smartphone already. The future is unpredictable whether there is a time when we finally move into the higher technology and convenience or the education itself that evolves tremendously but, it is probably not in the very near future.

Casio FX-9860GII TI-84 Plus
Product Dimensions2.5 x 11 x 7.5 inches7.5 x 3.42 x 0.62 inches
Shipping Weight7.8 ounces
‎12 ounces
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About Casio FX-9860GII and TI-84 Plus

Graphing calculators may not be as fancy anymore but many of us are still going to use them for school and it is required in class as well to help in the learning process. There are more than plenty if you are currently in the market for one. Some are quite affordable but some can be pricey too. The more we pay, the more sophisticated the tool will be. But, it is wise to choose based on what you will need them for.

You can choose from any brand that carries a graphing calculator because usually they are going to have the same basic function but each model can have some differences and when it comes to graphing calculators, we usually shop between Texas Instruments, Casio, or HP. These are few common names and also very popular with their products. If you are still confused about which calculator to buy, it is convenient to ask your teacher or professor for recommendations.

They may advise you to get one from these companies such as Casio FX-9860GII and TI-84 Plus from Texas Instruments. Both of them are very popular and widely used but in comparison the TI-84 Plus is probably the most commonly used across High Schools in various countries, including the US. These calculators are very much capable for all of the basic functions and in terms of level they are probably in the middle, not actually entry level nor high-end.

You will be able to use them for a long time depending on the requirement of your study. TI-84 Plus itself is currently available in 4 variants but we are talking about the basic and most common model today. In terms of ability they are rich but you may have different concerns when using them. TI is arguably the richer but the view is not as attractive as the FX-9860GII. None of them have CAS as well but they are using natural displays for convenience. 

Casio FX-9860GII and TI-84 Plus Design

Before getting into what Casio FX-9860GII and TI-84 Plus can offer, first let’s take a look into the unit. Unlike some of the higher-end graphing calculators such as Casio FX-CG500 Vs FX-CP400, the display here is noticeably smaller. But, the advantage is that there is more for the buttons layout and it means there are less buttons that we need to access from the display. They are comfy handheld calculators with standard layouts, similar to most calculators from the respective brands.

The housing is very sturdy and as expected they are operating on batteries since there is no solar panel here. Each calculator will need 4 AAA batteries that will last for a very long time, depending on the usage. The DX-9860GII is slightly curved below the display and this is meant to improve the grip but even the streamlined TI-84 Plus feels comfortable on hand. The resolution is good too and personally we have no issue with brightness.

Casio FX-9860GII and TI-84 Plus Interface

Now for the most important part, let’s see what the Casio FX-9860GII and TI-84 Plus can offer starting from the menu. If you have used any graphing calculator from these brands, chances are they will be very similar. The Casio and TI interface is similar but if you have never used one before, we do think it is great to read the manual or watch tutorial videos on how to use the tool. Upon powering the tool you can start using them for basic calculation.

They are easy to understand but require time to remember where and what to press to access the function and mode that you will be using. The screen quality is sufficient so we think there should be no issue but Casio’s mini menu can be quite confusing to read because they shorten it and sometimes it is difficult to read due to the limitation of the resolution and size itself.

Casio FX-9860GII and TI-84 Plus Graphing

As both Casio FX-9860GII and TI-84 Plus are graphing calculators, let’s see how to graph with these two and we are happy that it is very simple. On the menu all you need to do is choose the graphing app and here we can see a list where users can enter the equations but, Casio will allow you to enter up to 20 equations at a time while TI only allows 10. Once you press draw, these calculators will draw the graph quickly.

The graph itself is actually easy to understand or read but again, there is only so much a black and white screen can offer and the resolution is not as great compared to those models with better screen or colored display like the FX-CG50.

Casio FX-9860GII and TI-84 Plus Programming

Another good plus of both calculators is for the programming function which we do think is very similar or identical here. Many people who like the TI-84 Plus will probably like this Casio the same way too. With this function we can create and use some advanced programs from the calculator and use them easily anytime needed. They use BASIC but TI use the TI-BASIC so the interface is not a hassle and if you don’t feel like learning the latter, there are options to download or copy some of the programs from the internet.

Casio FX-9860GII and TI-84 Plus Apps

Lastly we want to talk about the app that you can find on both Casio FX-9860GII and TI-84 Plus. They carry all the necessary but also basic functions on the calculator such as app for finance and drawing conics which is a function to graph the sideways parabolas, hyperbolas, and ellipses. The most noticeable difference is the menu icons itself because TI-84 Plus only uses alphabets while FX-9860GII is using a simple icon which arguably looks better.

Casio FX-9860GII Vs TI-84 Plus

There are so many good alternatives for graphing calculators that are more affordable and both Casio FX-9860GII and TI-84 Plus are two of them. In most cases the differences will most likely be on the interface but ability side they are very much the same. There are some minor differences on app or graphing but it is not affecting the overall performance. They have a natural display as well so the calculation and functions will be shown like in your textbooks.

- REF/RREF function, random integers, unit conversion, new types of regressions, chi-squared GOF function, 9 new probability functions, pie charts & bar graphs, graph X=f(Y) and much more
- 1500 KB Flash ROM
- Built-in eActivity and spreadsheet applications
- Icon-based menu adds to overall intuitive usability
- Graphing calculator handles calculus, engineering, trigonometric, and financial functions
- USB on-the-go technology for file sharing with other calculators and connecting to PCs
- Includes all USB cable + 4 brand new AAA batteries.
- Certified Reconditioned. Looks and works like new.


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There is no bad option and you can go with any of them. Personally we will recommend getting any of the two that is currently cheaper but the menu is better on TI-84 Plus so if you want the higher ease of use, this is an ideal choice.


Casio FX-9860GII VS TI-84 Plus

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