Paleomagnetic analysis of sediment samples from Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) Leg 133, Site 820, 10 km from the outer edge of the Great Barrier Reef, is undertaken to investigate the mineral magnetic response to environmental (sea level) changes. Viscous remanent magnetization (VRM) of both multidomain and near-superparamagnetic origin is prevalent and largely obscures the primary remanence, except in isolated high-magnetization zones. The Brunhes/Matuyama boundary cannot be identified, but is expected to be below 120 mbsf. The only evidence that exists for a geomagnetic excursion occurs at about 33 mbsf (-135 k.y.). Only one-half the cores were oriented, and many suffered from internal rotation about the core axis, caused by coring and/or slicing. The decay of magnetic remanence below the surface layer (0-2 mbsf) is attributed to sulfate reduction processes. The magnetic susceptibility (K) record is central for describing and understanding the magnetic properties of the sediments, and their relationship to glacio-eustatic fluctuations in sea level. Three prominent magnetic susceptibility peaks, at about 7, 32, and 64 mbsf, are superimposed on a background of smaller susceptibility oscillations. Fluctuations in susceptibility and remanence in the ôbackgroundö zone are controlled predominantly by variations in the concentration, rather than the composition of ferrimagnetics, with carbonate dilution playing an important role (type-A properties). The sharp susceptibility maxima occur at the start of the marine transgressions following low stands in sea level (high d18O, glacial maxima), and are characterized by a stable single-domain remanence, with a significant contribution from ultra-fine, superparamagnetic grains (type-C properties). During the later marine transgression, the susceptibility gradually returns to low values and the remanence is carried by stable single-domain magnetite (type-B properties). The A, B, and C types of sediment have distinctive ARM/K ratios. Throughout most of the sequence a strong inverse correlation exists between magnetic susceptibility and both CaCO3 and d18O variations. However, in the sharp susceptibility peaks (early transgression), more complex phase relationships are apparent among these parameters. In particular, the K-d18O correlation switches to positive, then reverts to negative during the course of the late transgression, indicating that two distinct mechanisms are responsible for the K-d18O correlation. Lower in the sequence, where sea-level-controlled cycles of upward-coarsening sediments, we find that the initial, mud phase of each cycle has been enriched in high-coercivity magnetic material, which is indicative of more oxic conditions. The main magnetic characteristics of the sediments are thought to reflect sea-level-controlled variations in the sediment source regions and related run-off conditions. Some preliminary evidence is seen that biogenic magnetite may play a significant role in the magnetization of these sediments.