Kodak V803 Review
Kodak EasyShare V803 Design
Kodak has based the design of its V803 and V1003 on color rather than shape. Longer than a credit card and thicker than a deck of cards, the body shape seems slim thanks to its rounded corners and the chrome trim that runs around the top three sides. At 4.1 x 2.1 x 1.0 inches (10.3 x 5.4 x 2.5 cm), it weights 5.73 ounces (162.5 grams) with a battery and memory card. But it's the color that Kodak hopes will attract you to this digicam. Kodak has tagged the color options Golden Dream, Pink Bliss, Cosmic Blue, Red Shimmer, White Glaze, Mystic Purple, Midnight Black, and Silver Essence, hoping one of those will be "undeniably you," according to the company.
The V803's front panel is dominated by the large chrome circle surrounding the all-glass Kodak Retinar lens, protected by an integrated lens cover. Just to the lower right of the lens is the two-hole grill for the camera's microphone. At the top right of the lens is the video light/self-timer light/autofocus assist light with chrome trim. Left of that is the flash. There's no finger grip.
The right side of the Kodak V803 (as viewed from the rear) has a very small eyelet for the wrist strap as well as a popup plastic corner that covers the AV/USB port.
On opposite side of the Kodak V803 is the uncovered 5V DC-In connector.
The Kodak V803's top panel has a shallow, chrome channel running the length of it. At the far right is the large Shutter button. At the far left is a set of three small buttons with blue LEDs to indicate operational status (Favorites mode, Movie mode, and Auto/Scene mode) and battery charging status. And in-between is the small Power button.
The back panel appears almost generous in its layout by today's cramped standards. The 2.5 inch LCD is bordered on the left by five buttons: Flash (with a small camera status LED above it), Delete, Menu, Review, and Share. On the right of the LCD is a panel with just the Zoom lever (which also accesses the help system) and a joystick to navigate the menu system as well as toggle through display and focus modes, or change the Exposure Value setting.
The bottom of the Kodak V803 hosts the speaker on the left, a plastic tripod socket in front of the dock connector near the middle, and the battery/memory card compartment on the right. Four small feet steady the V803 when you set it down.
Kodak EasyShare V803 External Controls
Shutter Button: Located on the far right of the Kodak V803's top panel, this large button sets focus and exposure when halfway pressed, and fires the shutter when fully pressed. In Playback mode, pressing this button returns the camera to the selected Record mode.
Power Button: Just left of the Kodak V803's Flash button, this button turns the camera on and off, illuminating the LED on the button of the currently active Record mode. You do have to hold it down for a second or so before it will come on.
Auto/Scene Mode Button: To the left of the Kodak V803's Power button, this button also powers the camera on, and toggles between the default Auto and Scene exposure modes. Three rows of Scene icons are neatly arranged in the bottom half of the screen, leaving the top half available for a text explanation of the currently selected one. Options in this mode are Portrait, Panorama Left-Right, Panorama Right-Left, Anti Blur, Sport, Landscape, Close Up, Night Portrait, Night Landscape, Snow, Beach, Text, Fireworks, Flower, Manner/Museum, Self-Portrait, High ISO, Children, Backlight, Panning Shot, Candle Light, Sunset and Custom.
Movie Mode Button: Directly to the left of the Auto button, this button enters Movie mode, for recording video clips with sound.
Favorites Button: The final button in the series on the Kodak V803's top panel, this button puts the camera into Favorites mode, which lets you view images tagged as "Favorites" in a type of digital photo album that resides on the camera.
Zoom Rocker Button: In the top right corner of the Kodak V803's rear panel, this two-way rocker button controls the optical and digital zoom in any record mode. In Playback mode, the lever controls the amount of digital enlargement applied to captured images, to a maximum of 8x. Pressing the Wide (W) button zooms out to a 9-thumbnail view. In the menu system, pressing T provides a help screen to explain the currently selected option.
Joystick: Located in the lower-right corner of the Kodak V803's rear panel, the joystick navigates through menu screens and options. Pressing the joystick straight in confirms menu selections. Outside the menu system, the Right and Left buttons adjust the exposure compensation. The Up button controls the LCD display mode, while the Down button cycles between Normal AF, Macro, and Landscape focus modes. In Playback mode, the controller scrolls through captured images when moved left or right.
Flash Button: To the left of the Shutter button, this button cycles through the Auto, Fill, Red-Eye Reduction, and Off options.
Delete Button: Below the Flash button, this button calls up the Delete menu in Review mode. You can delete individual images or all images on the card. Press the Delete button again to cancel.
Menu Button: Below the Delete button, this button displays the settings menu in Playback or Record modes.
Review Button: Beneath the Menu button, this button activates Playback mode when pressed in any Record mode. Once in Playback mode, pressing the button again, or the Shutter button, returns to the Record display.
Share Button: The final button in the series on the left of the LCD monitor, this button lets you tag images for printing, emailing, or as a favorite image. (A heart icon appears on "favorite" images.) Pressing this button in Record mode automatically enables Playback mode, and displays the Share menu with the following options:
- Print: Designates the number of copies of the current image to be printed.
- E-Mail: Creates a low-resolution copy of an image for easier emailing.
- Favorite: Copies the displayed image to the Favorites section of internal memory.
- Print All: Sets the camera to print all images (when placed in a dock, or when images are transferred to a computer), and allows you to set how many copies.
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Note: For details, test results, and analysis of the many tests done with this camera, please click on the tabs at the beginning of the review or below.