Hi guys, A slightly not-so-significant query: Which calculator will you guys recommend for Level-1? I understand TI BA II Plus is the cheapest while HP 12C Professional is the costliest (3 times the cost). Which is the model used in the worked out solutions in Schweser materials and CFAI study materials? Thanks,


TI BA II has 2 models: TI BA II Plus and TI BA II Plus Professional…which one is better?

The cheaper the better. TI BA II does the job perfectly fine. I have not used professional

The cheaper the better. TI BA II does the job perfectly fine. I have not used professional.

I can see some solutions explained in Schweser as to what keys to use in the calculator e.g. press this, press that etc. Which model have they referred to? Or the keys are the same across all the models? Forgive my ignorance!

^ The instructions that appear in Schweser reviews (i.e. press this and that) usually refer to the BA II. So I think getting that calculator would be just fine.

The most basic TI BA II does the job. You don’t need any fancy whatever calc. Also from my experience, lots of instructions are assuming that you’re using BA II Plus so yea…

Fine guys- i have zeroed in on 2 models: TI BA II Plus and TI BA II Plus Professional. Can someone throw light on which one is better and why? Thanks

I think prefessional has a couple of additional features like modified duration and payback period which you won’t really need to be honest. Best advice is learn fully how to use whichever one you buy. The depreciation function for example can save you a lot of time and mental energy

I’ll be a contrarian on this one. I absolutely LOVE the HP 12c. Getting used to RPN takes a couple of days, but after you do it, you always end up asking yourself how come not all calculators use this. You don’t have to worry about storing things in memory or using parenthesis. There is also the geek/quant jock factor. IMHO the BA screams that you are not an specialist or hard-core finance person, just a simple amateur. After all, the HP 12c is THE calculator that all incoming Goldman and other IB give to their associates. Pull this little baby out of your shirt breat pocket at the car dealership office and you’ll see the salesguy start to sweat. Qualitywise, you can run over your HP 12c with your car or drop it in a pool and it will still keep on going.

I dunno… Reverse Polish sounds like an insult or something

I love my HP12C, RPN is the best!

I used the BA II Plus, lost it and decided to get the Professional version since it was just a few bucks more on Amazon at the time. I thought the professional was significantly better than just the plus. There are a few extra functions such as calculating the various payback periods (which I actually used on the exam last Saturday) but what I really liked about it was the response of the buttons. I always felt like the Plus was wasn’t always registering each button I pushed. So… go Plus Professional is my suggestion.

I like my BAII Prof (good if you are going to just get one)…but now that I’m pretty good with it…I want to get the HP 12c Platinum to see what the who-la is all about. It also works very well to intimidate your clients, since you don’t want to use calculators they could use…LOL, then why would they paid you the big bucks for? Silly logic but I like it :-p Also, you can have two calculators, they don’t have to be the same model, so take both to the exam site. Then you can have the best of both worlds. The “How to use your calculator” book teaches you both.

My job gave me the 12C and I got used to it for a couple of days, but I still like the BAII better.

Thanks guys- quite a mixed bag of reviews! This has made my task all the more difficult- perhaps more difficult than Level-1 itself! Appreciate your help-good luck!