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Orion TI-84 Plus Talking Graphing CalculatorTM Upgrade Instructions

Copyright 2014
American Printing House for the Blind, Inc.



To gain complete functionality of the new features in this release, two updates are necessary (firmware release v01.00.26 and v1.1.0). There are three main parts to the upgrade: 1) downloading the software, 2) upgrading the TI-84 OS, and 3) upgrading the Orion accessory unit. Each stage of the upgrade is explained in the following three sections of this document. Read each section carefully, as each update requires different cables and software.

Download the Software

To apply this release you need a PC running Microsoft Windows XP SP2 or higher. Click on the link below to download the software needed for the following two sections of this document:

Orion TI-84 Plus firmware file Orion TI-84 Plus Release-1.1.0.zip

After downloading the release file, open the folder on your computer where it was downloaded. Select the file and right click on it to bring up a menu with "extract" as a choice, or press the application key while the file is selected. This opens up a context menu with Extract All as one of the choices. Select Extract All and follow the steps to extract it to a folder of your choice. When finished, your folder should contain the following two folders:

Make a note of the location of these folders for use in the next two sections of this document.

Upgrade TI-84 OS

To upgrade the TI-84 OS it is first necessary to connect your Orion TI-84 Plus to your computer. To enable the calculator to communicate with your computer for upgrading you need two things:

The TI Connectivity USB Graph Link Cable is not included with the purchase of your TI-84 Plus Talking Graphing Calculator. If you do not have the cable, it can be purchased at the Schoolmart website. It comes with a TI ConnectTM Software CD. You may also be able to find one cheaper at an online store like Amazon.

Note: If using the Orion TI-84 at school, check with your Mathematics department before you purchase the Graph Link Cable. You may be able to borrow one.

Step 1: Install and Run TI ConnectTM

To install the TI ConnectTM Software, open the folder called TI-84 OS in your extracted folder . Run the program called TI-Connect- Follow the installation dialogs until installation is complete.

When installation is finished, locate the TI Connect program and run it.

The TI ConnectTM program contains many subprograms. To learn how to use these subprograms, click the Help button in the lower right corner of the program window or tab until the Help button is selected and press enter. Each of the subprograms in TI ConnectTM has excellent Help menus with information about how to use the program.

Step 2: Connect the TI-84 Plus Calculator and PC

Use the TI Connectivity USB Graph Link Cable to connect the calculator to your computer. The TI-84 Graph Link Cable is a serial to USB cable. Because the ends of this cable are different sizes, it is easy to figure out how to connect the calculator to your computer; the small end fits in the left hole on the top of the calculator, and the larger end plugs into one of the USB ports on the computer.

If you are connecting the calculator for the first time, your PC may install device drivers. Wait until the device drivers are successfully installed before continuing. If you are using a work computer, you may need administration rights to complete the driver installation.

Step 3: Upgrading the TI-84 OS

Step 4.1: Install OS

At this point in the upgrade, you should have the TI ConnectTM software running and the Orion TI-84 connected to the computer using the TI Graph Link. If this is not the case, please start again at the beginning. If you are connected, with the software running, follow the steps below.

  1. Open the TI device explorer in the TI Connect software. Depending on which TI Connect software you are running, the Device explorer may already be open.

  2. A dialog box may appear asking you to choose the connection to your TI-84, Select the USB connection and press enter.

  3. Open the Tool menu in the TI Connect software by clicking on Tools or by pressing Alt-T.

  4. Arrow down and select TI OS downloader and either press enter or click on it.

  5. The dialog box shows the connection type, which should be correct if your Graph link and calculator are connected correctly. Select next.

  6. Select browse and look for the folder you extracted in the the Download the Software section of this document. Open the TI-84 OS folder. Select the file named O84p255n.8Xu and choose open or press enter. Note: Make sure you choose the file you downloaded and not the upgrade file from TI. If you choose the wrong file, the calculator will not speak when you are finished updating. If this happens, do not panic, just update again and select the correct file.

  7. Tab to or select Start Downloading to begin the download of the OS file.

  8. When the download has finished, the calculator will shutdown. The upgrade of the TI OS is complete.

If the download is successful, you will be ready to install the upgrade on the Orion Accessory unit, explained in the next section. If the download fails, you will need to start it again.

During the upgrade, if you have trouble with the connection between the calculator and the PC, disconnect the cable, remove and replace one of the batteries, and reconnect the cable. This will reset the USB port.

Upgrade Orion Accessory Unit

The following are required to perform the upgrade the to Orion Accessory unit:

Device Connection Modes

Orion TI-84 Plus Firmware Upgrade Procedure

  1. Turn off the TI-84 Plus, if it is already on.
  2. Connect the Mini-B USB cable to the Orion TI-84 Plus unit and plug the other end of the USB cable into the PC. If this is the first time you have connected the Orion to the PC, the PC may install drivers. Wait for the driver installation to finish before continuing. You may need administration rights to install the drivers.
  3. Run the Orion TI-84 Plus Upgrade Utility. The upgrade utility dialog box displays "Orion TI-84 Plus is connected." At this stage, the device is in Normal mode and the software shows that it is not connected in upgrade mode.
  4. To connect the Orion TI-84 Plus unit with the Upgrade Utility in upgrade mode, press and hold down the Cursor UP key on the Orion unit.
  5. With one hand, press the Cursor UP key on the Orion unit. With your other hand press both the CTRL and Shift keys simultaneously.
  6. Release the CTLR and Shift keys first; then release Cursor UP key. At this point, the utility upgrade dialog box displays "Orion TI-84 Plus is connected" in the device status field, and "Do you want to upgrade/downgrade/repair the device?" in the message field (see Figure 1).

  7. Upgrade Utility screen shot 1

    Figure 1. Device is in Upgrade Mode
  8. If the device is connected in Upgrade mode, the utility shows the device serial number and the software version of the device at top right corner of the window.
  9. Browse and select the firmware file (e.g., "Orion TI-84 Plus Release vxx.xx.xx.bin"). The GUI (graphical user interface) also shows the software version of the selected file.
  10. Click on the Upgrade button.
  11. The utility begins upgrading the device (see Figure 2).

  12. Upgrade Utility screen shot 2

    Figure 2. Upgrading the device
  13. During firmware upgrade, the Orion TI-84 Plus gives vibration indications every few seconds.
  14. Wait for the message "Device upgrade has been completed" in the upgrade utility dialog box (see Figure 3). Do not unplug the cable.

  15. Upgrade Utility screen shot 3

    Figure 3. Device upgrade has been completed successfully
  16. When you hear the "Device upgrade is completed successfully" announcement from the device, unplug the USB cable.
  17. If you have additional calculators to upgrade, you may connect another at this time and begin the upgrade process (see the Upgrade TI-84 OS section of this document). If you are done upgrading, close the upgrade utility.
  18. Done. Device is ready to use.


The firmware version loaded into the unit can be verified using the following steps. The version number can also be read through the Orion Help menu.

  1. Turn the calculator OFF and unplug the USB cable.
  2. Connect the device in Upgrade mode.
  3. The GUI shows the device's hardware serial number and the version of the installed firmware.
  4. If the utility does not show anything, try again from verification step 1.


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