Texas Instruments TI-83 ViewScreen™

Date of introduction:  March 1996 Display technology:  LCD dot matrix
New price:  ($120.00 in 2001) Display size:  8 * 16 characters
Size:  7.2" x 3.2" x 0.95"
 182 x 81 x 24 mm3
Weight:  6.6 ounces, 186 grams Serial No:  VS 044925
Batteries:  4*AAA + CR1620 Date of manufacture:  mth 06 year 1996 (F)
AC-Adapter:   Origin of manufacture:  Taiwan (I)
Precision:  14 Integrated circuits:  CPU: Toshiba T84C00A
 ASIC: Toshiba TC14L010
 RAM: SRM2A256
 Display: Toshiba T6A04
Program steps:  27k Bytes Courtesy of:  Joerg Woerner

The TI-83 ViewScreen Calculator (VSC) is the teacher version of the standard TI-83. It connects with a special port to a ViewScreen panel via a cable. Placing the panel on the overhead projector enlarges the image of the handheld screen so that each student can follow along.

Four ViewScreen panels were available in 2008:

Panel 1: TI-73 VSC, TI-73 Explorer VSC, TI-80 VSC, TI-82 VSC, TI-83 VSC,
   TI-83 Plus VSC, TI-83 Plus Silver Edition VSC, TI-84 Plus VSC,
   TI-84 Plus Silver Edition VSC
Panel 2: TI-89 VSC, TI-89 Titanium VSC, TI-92, TI-92 Plus, Voyage 200
Panel 3: TI-85 VSC (2nd design), TI-86 VSC
Panel 4: TI-Nspire, TI-Nspire CAS, TI-Nspire Touchpad, TI-Nspire CAS Touchpad

As an alternative the TI-Presenter video adapter connects to a TV or other projection device with a video input port. 

From a technical point of view the TI-83 VSC is almost identical with the students TI-83. The main difference you notice is a bulgier bottom shell of the calculator housing to accommodate the ViewScreen electronics and connector. Dismantling the TI-83 VSC reveals a small printed circuit board (PCB) with two driver chips connected with a flexible cable to the display PCB of the calculator.

Disassembling this TI-83 manufactured in June 1996 by Inventec Corporation in Taiwan reveals no big surprises. It makes use of just 5 main components on the printed circuit boards (PCBs):

Z80 microprocessor
Toshiba TC14L010 ASIC with glue logic
Sharp LH531©1995 - Mask ROM for internal program storage
Samsung KM62256 - 32k Bytes SRAM for user program and data
Toshiba T6A04 - display driver

The glue logic of the TI-83 is integrated into a Toshiba TC14L010 ASIC, known already from the first edition of the TI-82. Learn more about the Hardware Architecture of TI’s Graphing Calculators.

A deeper exploration of the display board shows the unbelievable high density of electrical connections between the Toshiba T6A04 display controller and the graphics screen.

A serial port of the calculators allows the connection to the Calculator-Based Laboratory system CBL, its successor CBL 2, the Calculator-Based Ranger CBR and its successor CBR 2.

Don't miss the colorful slide cases developed for the TI-83 Plus, they fit on the TI-83 ViewScreen, too.

The design of the TI-83 VSC was changed shortly after the introduction of the TI-73, find the official statement from Texas Instruments' website below:

The slightly different look of the popular TI-82 and TI-83 graphing calculators is in response to the very positive educator reaction to the design, display viewability and rugged construction of the new TI-73 middle grades graphing calculator. Appearance changes to the TI-83 are limited to rounder key shapes and a raised display. The TI-82 change is more dramatic, as the product looks much rounder than the original boxy style. The key shapes for the TI-82 are also rounded. 

© Texas Instruments, March 1999




You can check the ROM version of your TI-83 VSC using the following key sequence and reading the number on your screen:


Information provided by and Xavier Andréani.

Exam acceptance:

The TI-83 VSC is permitted (as of September 27, 2007) for use on SAT, ACT, PSAT and AP exams.


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If you have additions to the above article please email:

© Joerg Woerner, July 17, 2020. No reprints without written permission.