Steve's Digicams

Sony Mavica FD-83

Menus & Playback


Sony Mavica FD-83

This is a typical Record mode screen with just about everything possible turned on. Starting in the upper left corner is the battery time remaining, the flower icon indicates that Macro mode is enabled. Image resolution is 640 x 480 and quality is set to Fine. There are 9 pictures stored on diskette already and about half of the diskette is left to store more pictures. The zoom is in about the 4x focal length position and the selftimer is enabled.

Across the bottom you see the Menu Bar which can be overlayed on the screen at any time by pressing the top part of the 4-way rocker switch.

Sony Mavica FD-83

This is the Setup Menu where you can set the Video Out format to NTSC or PAL. Menu language can be English or Japanese. Set the time and date and turn on the Beep sound.

Sony Mavica FD-83

The Camera menu lets you enable or disable the digital zoom feature. Set the White Balance for Auto or manually set it. The Flash output level can be Low, Normal or High. Exposure allows you to override the autoexposure system from -2 to +2EV.

Sony Mavica FD-83

The File Menu lets you Format or Copy the floppy diskette. You can have it reset the filenames every time a disk is put in or continue numbering them in a series fashion. Image size can be 1216 x 912 (interpolated), 1024 x 768 or 640 x480. Quality is Normal or Fine. Record Mode is Normal, Voice or Email.

Sony Mavica FD-83

This is a Record screen when in the MPEG movie mode. It displays the resolution for the movie file 320 x 240 and the selected recording time, in this case 10 seconds.

Sony Mavica FD-83

A typical Play mode screen with all overlay information enabled.

Sony Mavica FD-83

As with most digicams the FD-83 has a thumbnail Play mode where you can see multiple thumbnail pictures and quickly jump to any one desired to display it full screen.

Sony Mavica FD-83

This is the menu of options for setting up a slideshow on your TV.

Go To
FD-83 Sample Pictures

Steve's Conclusion

The Mavica FD-83 is an interpolated megapixel camera, the CCD is 850,000 pixels and the camera's highest native resolution is 1024 x 768. Using in-camera interpolation the FD-83 produces 1216 x 912 pixel images. The 3x optical / 6x digital zoom works very well and has a super macro range down to about an inch from the lens. Unlike other "digital' zooms on most digicams, the FD-83's digital zoom does not shrink the picture down to 640 x 480, it retains the full image resolution.

Besides the floppy diskette storage, the FD-83 also uses the same type of 7.2v InfoLITHIUM rechargable battery as the other Mavicas. This is a fantastic battery system and the user always knows how much battery time is left by simply glancing at the display on the LCD. Charge time is usually two hours or less to bring an exhausted pack back to full speed. Battery runtime is excellent but then it has to be as you use the LCD all the time.

Speaking of LCDs, the FD-83 sports a 2.5" color TFT LCD display that is common to the entire Mavica line. It also has a Solar Window along the top of the camera that captures the outdoor sunlight and allows you to turn off the battery-draining backlight. It works only so-so and is still not optimal for outdoor use which is not good because the LCD is the only viewfinder on this camera.

The FD-83 is very easy to use and makes an ideal point-n-shoot type of camera for novice users. The fact that it stores pictures on floppies means that as soon as you shoot them you can pop the diskette into your floppy drive and have instant access to them, PC or Mac computers. The only I/O port on the entire camera is the Video Out port to let you watch your pictures on the TV.

The image quality of the FD-83 is par for a camera with a sub-megapixel imager. The color balance is good and the lens and autofocus system assures sharp and well focused images. This is a good camera although a little pricey. For anyone who wants the convenience of digital without the hassles of reading memory cards or hooking up cables, the Sony Mavicas are the answer.

Check For Availability at
Click here to check active auctions at eBay

Return To Steve's
Reviews Menu


Note: All photographs and page content
Copyright © 1999 Steve's Digicam Online, Inc.

Nothing on this page may be used, distributed or
copied without the author's prior permission.