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The Sony Mavica MVC-FD83 Digital Camera
Last updated: 1/3/02

If I had $800 and could sneak it past my wife, Claudia, I'd be sorely tempted to go out right now and buy one of these cameras.  The pictures are even better than an older Sony MVC-FD7 with a 1/4" 380K pixel CCD I borrowed from my brother a few months ago.  The one I used for this review belongs to one of my customers.  He was gracious enough to let me take it for a spin.  So, I spent four days between trouble calls learning about it and snapping pictures.

IN THE BOX.  The attractive retail box includes the following items:

  • Camera.

  • Battery charger and cord.

  • Operating Instructions in English and Spanish.

  • warranty, safety instructions, misc. instructions, etc.

  • CD with..

    • ArcSoft PhotoStudio v. 2.0 SE, a photo editing/paint program.

    • ArcSoft VideoImpression.  Used to create, edit, playback, and E-Mail animated video. 

    • Mavica Floppy Utility.

  • Audio-video cable (mini-plug to two RCA plugs for video and mono-audio).

  • Shoulder strap.

OPERATING INSTRUCTIONS.  The Operating Instructions are well-written, amply illustrated, to the point, logically organized, and easy to follow.  The index rather sparse.

KEY FEATURES.  One of the foremost features of this camera is that stores images on 3 1/2" floppy disks.  Floppies are cheap and provide an immediate interface to almost all PC's.  You can even make copies of whole floppies with the camera and immediately share photos with your friends and family the next time you go to one those family reunions, etc.  In my opinion, after working with cameras which require tapes or CompactFlash cards,  this is the only way to go.  Gone are peripherals, printer interface problems, and the requirement to upload to specially-equipped computers.  The 4X floppy drive in this camera is much faster than the one in the MVC-FD7.  Other key features include:

  • 1/3" 850K pixel Progressive Scan CCD.  This CCD can produce a one million pixel image (1216 x 912) using Sony's interpolated imaging technology.  The Progressive Scan CCD reads all of the pixels in a single pass for sharper pictures--not interlaced.

  • 3X Optical/6X digital zoom lens.  f=5.2-15.6, 35mm conversion (f=37-111mm).

  • Auto/manual exposure with six auto-exposure modes.

  • Auto white balance.

  • Back-lit 2.5" color LCD view panel.

  • Shutter speeds (Auto): 1/60-1/4000 Sec.

  • Voice and MPEG movie modes.

  • Battery good for 1,500 shots per charge (so they say).

  • Delayed shutter.

  • Built-in flash.

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Copyright, Disclaimer, and Trademark Information Copyright © 1996-2006 Larry F. Byard.  All rights reserved. This material or parts thereof may not be copied, published, put on the Internet, rewritten, or redistributed without explicit, written permission from the author.