Canon MV630i

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Canon MV630i

The Canon MV630i lets you shoot movies and still images, edit and organize them on a computer. You can also plug the MV630i straight into a compatible...

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Review of "Canon MV630i"

published 18/12/2005 | AlexLucian48
Member since : 09/12/2005
Reviews : 2
Members who trust : 1
About me :
Pro decent zoom, image stabilizer, low light mode, colour viewfinder, pc back up possible
Cons no movies on card, doesn't come with firewire cable, but you can buy it
very helpful
Ease of use
Range & quality of features
Recording quality
Picture quality

"It backs me up every time, A must have!"

I have got this camera over 1 year and a half ago from Pc-world. The thing is that I am very satisfied with it and I do not have a replacement for this sort of price because it was and is still the best good make camera that anybody can buy for around £275 now. It was a bit more when I bought it, but I am still looking and compare with what you can buy for this money.

The camera has two recording types:
I on mini dv tape in mpeg2 compression format
II on secure digital card (16mb) which can be upgraded

The Zoom of this camera also has two types:
I --22X optical
II --700x digital

Audio recording has two settings:
I 8bit stereo
II 16bit stereo (recommended)

Remote control

Very helpful especially for DIFFERENT types of movies.
Some of my friends can tell you the benefit of good, lots of functions, light and easy to hide remote control :) .

The maximum photo resolution is 1024 x 768 pixels, is not the best one that I've seen but the overall result is quite all right.

As you probably noticed in my previous reviews, I'm not the best at taking care of things, but in this more than 18 months that I had the MV630i I've done a few silly things like dropping it in sand while changing the mini dv tape, half a pint of beer over it, dropping it on the floor for several times, and many others…; but despite all this nasty accidents I only had to send it to service only once due to the reading heads failure, and it didn't cost me anything because it was still in the warranty period of course, but this is a normal thing I believe with all the dv cameras. So I do believe is a robust strong heavy-duty camcorder, so if you are a bit clumsy and do not want to spend a fortune, the MV630i should have part of your account number printed on the receipt.

Technical details?
I won't give you too many technical details because you probably already know lots about it, but I'll give you a nice piece of advice that worth's a lot: Pay attention, because you can back up your hard drive periodically using this camera!
Tech. Details:

Good tip!

The one catch in using MiniDV tape as a backup solution is compatibility. Computers are designed to recognize DV cameras as a video source, not as tape drives. You need software to make the connection. Firestreamer is the one reliable solution I've found for consistently backing up data to MiniDV tape and restoring from MiniDV tape. Firestreamer acts as a bridge between your DV camera and the Windows XP Backup software, so go on the internet and look for ''download software firestreamer'' and google or any other good search engine should find in a split of second a good couple of hundreds of link related to ''backing up pc on miniDV tape''

When backing up to MiniDV tape, make sure your DV camera is plugged into a power source (so the batteries don't die mid-backup). Connect the camera using the FireWire (IEEE-1394 or iLINK) connection. Insert a blank tape. Open Firestreamer and click Launch Backup Utility. If you backup to a DV tape previously used to record video, Firestreamer warns that it will prepare the media and erase anything on the tape. The rest is self explanatory and you can do it yourself.
With other words that's the beauty of the MiniDV tapes, thinking that you can back-up up to 30Gb on one single tape, and it is also possible to automatically schedule the back-up without the users intervention.


The original battery lasts for a bit more than recording a full tape (62 minutes), using lots of zooming and stuff, but only if you do not use so much rewinding on the player mode.
You can actually pick up a replica battery of 4200mAh for less than £40 which lasts you lasts say until you need to shave again.  It lasts for quite a lot more than 9 tapes.
I remember that I actually forgot my charger home in a vacation and I didn't miss it either using this 4200Mah battery.

Software provided

In the box, you get 2 cd-s, one for windows and one for Mac. No Linux or any other os.
The drivers are the only thing I installed myself, but there are lots of applications on the net, waiting for you to download them.

Handling and ease of use

Here Canon has an A+ because I personally always liked their menus. This one is not any different, lots of shortcuts and way to personalize your camera as start-up image sounds and the basic date-time-location-message. In the menu you'll find several light settings as well as the video formats, card mix effects and lots of special effects.


This camera does worth your attention, because first of all is cheap, has image stabilizer, a more than decent optical and digital zoom, you can take photos on the sd card, the rechargeable batteries are quite cheap and durable, has lots of features and if you can turn on and of your pc you can learn how to back it up with it too at a very low price of a couple of MiniDv tapes.

Community evaluation

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very helpful

Comments on this review

  • maggieedwa published 23/01/2006
    very detailed and helpful review
  • belfin published 19/12/2005
    very helpful review, Belinda
  • COOOEEE published 18/12/2005
    A nice review and not packed with stats and tech details. You could always add the url of a good website for those that would like to look at them though. Fionaxx
  • Did you find this review interesting? Do you have any questions? Sign into your Ciao account to leave the author a comment. Log in

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Product Information : Canon MV630i

Manufacturer's product description

The Canon MV630i lets you shoot movies and still images, edit and organize them on a computer. You can also plug the MV630i straight into a compatible printer to take advantage of Canon's Bubble Jet Direct function. High image quality combined with the versatility only digital technology can offer, makes this camcorder irresistible. The lens technology, which Canon has been developing for 60 years means that whether you're recording videos or shooting XGA still images, all 800,000 pixels will make every image startlingly clear. With the extensive features and accessory range of the MV630i, you'll have no excuse for missing the perfect filming opportunity. The Night Mode lets you film in low light conditions. Everything you record with the MV630i is routed to the appropriate storage media with the best possible results. For instance, videos are sent on the optimum route to miniDV tapes. Still images can be sent to the SD memory card via a different route. Simply connect your camcorder directly to a compatible printer to obtain beautiful color pictures. The MV630i comes complete with DV Messenger software, a service you can use in conjunction with Windows Messenger available on Microsoft Windows XP. DV Messenger enables you to exchange files and have live conversations using your camcorders as webcams.

Product Details

Product Description: Canon MV630i - camcorder - Mini DV

Product Type: Camcorder

Weight: 0.5 kg

AV Interfaces: Component video, S-Video

Memory Card Slot: SD card

Effective Sensor Resolution: Video: 400 Kpix

Focus Adjustment: Automatic, manual

Supported Battery: 1 x Li-ion rechargeable battery ( included ), 1 x Li-ion rechargeable battery - 800 mAh ( included )

Sensor Resolution: 800 Kpix

Media Type: Mini DV

Dimensions (WxDxH): 5.8 cm x 14.7 cm x 10.3 cm

Lens System: 20 x zoom lens - 2.8 - 56 mm - f/1.6

Digital Zoom: 400 x

Image Stabiliser: Electronic

Viewfinder: LCD monitor - 0.44" - colour

Display: LCD display - 2.5"

Min Focus Distance: 1 cm

Localisation: English


MPN: 8431A003, 8431A008, MV630I

Product Type: Camcorder

Image Recording Format: JPEG

Optical Zoom: 20 x

AV Interfaces: Component video, S-Video

Optical Sensor Size: 1/6"

Optical Sensor Type: CCD

Camcorder Media Type: Mini DV

Effective Video Resolution: 400 Kpix

Camcorder Sensor Resolution: 800 Kpix

Faders: Corner wipe, Puzzle, tide, flip, jump, zigzag, beam, fade trigger

Video Recording Modes: SP, LP

Digital Zoom: 400 x

Auto Focus: TTL contrast detection

Image Stabiliser: Electronic

Localisation: English

Memory / Storage

Image Storage: JPEG 1024 x 768

Memory Card Slot: SD card

Included Memory Card: 8 MB SD

Lens System

Features: Aspherical lens

Filter Size: 30.5 mm

Zoom Adjustment: Motorised drive

Focus Adjustment: Automatic, manual

Type: 20 x zoom lens - 2.8 - 56 mm - f/1.6

Min Focus Distance: 1 cm


Viewfinder Type: LCD monitor

Viewfinder Colour Support: Colour

Viewfinder Diagonal Size: 0.44"

Viewfinder Resolution: 113,000 pixels


Display Features: Rotating

Resolution: 112,000 pixels

Type: 2.5" LCD display


Microphone Operation Mode: Stereo

Additional Features

DV input: Yes

Low Lux / Night Mode: Yes

Flash Terminal: Hot shoe

Self Timer Delay: 10 sec, 2sec

Additional Features: Direct print, built-in speaker, backlight compensation, display brightness control, analogue to digital conversion with pass through


Details: 1 x Li-ion rechargeable battery ( included ), 1 x Li-ion rechargeable battery - 800 mAh ( included )

Exposure & White Balance

Max Shutter Speed: 1/8000 sec

White Balance Presets: Indoor, outdoor

White Balance: Custom, automatic, presets

Special Effects: Art, Sepia, Mosaic, Monotone, Mirror, Colour, wave, Cube, ball

Shooting Programs: Sand & snow, spotlight, portrait mode, night mode, low light, sports mode

Exposure Modes: Programme, automatic, manual

Min Illumination: 1.6 lux

Min Shutter Speed: 1/2 sec

Dimensions & Weight

Weight: 0.5 kg

Height: 10.3 cm

Depth: 14.7 cm

Width: 5.8 cm


Included Accessories: Camcorder shoulder strap, lens cap, power adapter, USB cable, audio / video cable, IR remote control


Software: Drivers & Utilities, Canon PhotoStitch, Canon ZoomBrowser EX, Canon ImageBrowser, Canon DV Messenger


Connector Type: 1 x microphone ¦ 1 x headphones ¦ 1 x IEEE 1394 (FireWire/i.LINK) ¦ 1 x S-Video input / output ¦ 1 x composite video/audio (input/output) ¦ 1 x USB ¦ 1 x DC power input

Memory Card Slot: SD card

Environmental Parameters

Min Operating Temperature: 0 °C

Max Operating Temperature: 40 °C


Listed on Ciao since: 26/12/2003