What calculator do I use the most? It’s called PCalc and it could be the most beloved (as opposed to the most used; which is Apple’s built-in calculator) calculator. Why? What makes one Mac calculator more popular than any other?
New Under The Hood
Calculators are much like word processors. You find one you like; one that does most of what you need to do, one that’s comfortable and not missing features you may need but don’t use all the time.
Then, you stick with it. That’s PCalc. It’s not the most expensive Mac calculator in my personal arsenal, but it’s the most used.
PCalc is more like the rich, sophisticated uncle to Apple’s built-in Calculator app. There’s an optional RPN mode, multiple button layouts, and an easy-on-the-eyes feel that’s very, well, Mac-like.
This is the kind of calculator that spans the spectrum of usage– students, programmers, engineers, even scientists can find benefit here.
It comes with built-in unit conversions, multiple undo and redo options, scientific and engineering notation, a very useful paper tape (digital, of course).
PCalc has built-in support for hexadecimal, octal, and binary calculations.
I use the more traditional calculator theme and layout (as depicted above), but there are many themes available. The digital paper tape is a must and it can be torn off and placed into a floating window, though I prefer to have it attached to the calculator (my Mac’s screen is busy).
As I noted in my headline, the latest version of PCalc has a lot that’s new, but under the hood, though not every new feature is hidden. The app is now 64-bit and features a much-needed and desired multiple line display (also visible in RPN mode).
User functions and conversions can be synchronized to PCalc on other Macs using iCloud (which also syncs to PCalc for iPhone and iPad). The Mac version has the same keyboard layouts as the iPhone and iPad versions.
One very neat feature that’s new is the trend arrows for currency rates. Check a currency and see what the trend is on the rate. You won’t find many Mac users who’ve had PCalc for any length of time with many complaints. Out of more than 40 reviews on the Mac App Store, all are five stars except for one lonely four star review, and one three star review.
This is the Mac digital calculator done right. Yes, I’m a fan. What tipped you off?