HP Prime/Emulation

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This is a backup copy of the article from the old "HPWiki" of TI-Planet (that only hosted HP Prime info)

This page aims at providing information about emulating the HP Prime.

Official software

HP provides a free Windows software reproducing the handheld behaviour. It runs in Wine on other platforms, but shows pausing and BLIT issues.
It is not an emulator, but a simulator (the codebase has been recompiled for Windows).[1]
It's estimated to run between 5 and 10 times faster than the handheld depending on the application. [2]

Towards the making of a third-party emulator

  • from the HP Prime/Hardware specs, we know that the Prime is using a Samsung S3C2416 ARM926EJ-S processor.
  • the datasheet is publicly available.
  • the mainline Linux kernel has significant support for the S3C241x and S3C244x series (just grep "S3C24" in the Kconfig files), associated with other hardware. See also [1].
  • old, unmaintained forks of QEMU also have support for the S3C241x and S3C244x; the code needs porting to contemporary QEMU versions, but it shouldn't be necessary to write it entirely from scratch.
  • the x49gp emulator, last maintained by Egan Ford, contains files whose names are "s3c2410*", and QEMU 0.12.50, which is a newer base version than that of the forks mentioned in the previous item.

Thanks to all of this, it will therefore be easier for third parties to emulate the Prime than to emulate, say, the Nspire and its still partially undocumented Zevio chip. With some effort, we can leverage tried and true software :)



  1. Tim Wessman, 30 July 2013, 9:42 p.m. - On HP-Museum
  2. Personal experiments show the software is up to 10x faster for graphing advanced plots in the demo gallery