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352 of 360 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing camera value!
This is one of those nice cameras that's so well done, it's easier to talk about what the camera ISN'T, rather than what it IS! This camera is not a small, shirt pocket camera, and might be a bit bigger than a woman would wish to carry in a purse. It's not a super-tele camera, but it does have a respectable, bit longer than average 4x optical zoom.

Using the...
Published on September 7, 2006 by Hiram Grant

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90 of 107 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not what I expected
I currently own a Canon A80 (which I love) and was interested in upgrading to the highly reviewed A630. I received the camera in time for Thanksgiving and took about 200 photos with it in a variety of conditions. Everything was great until I got home and downloaded my photos to the computer. About half of them were blurry... but worse, ALL of my indoor shots had a lot...
Published on December 5, 2006 by FlamingJune1967


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352 of 360 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing camera value!, September 7, 2006
This review is from: Canon PowerShot A630 8MP Digital Camera with 4x Optical Zoom (Electronics)
This is one of those nice cameras that's so well done, it's easier to talk about what the camera ISN'T, rather than what it IS! This camera is not a small, shirt pocket camera, and might be a bit bigger than a woman would wish to carry in a purse. It's not a super-tele camera, but it does have a respectable, bit longer than average 4x optical zoom.

Using the camera, it has a good weight and feel for average sized hands. The use of AA batteries helps keep the cost down, and has it's own advantages, although some may prefer the longer life charges of Lithium-Ion batteries (I do). General, controls are well thought out and easy to use. The zoom is nice and smooth.

For those that prefer an optical viewfinder, Canon is probably the strongest supporter, and this is a better than average viewfinder, although it does not have a diopter adjustment. But you'll probably never use it with the tremendous 2.5" rotary screen. Yes, there are 3" screens on the market, but this dwarfs anything on a hinge! It is a great aid in composing photos at low, high, or other odd angles (photos you simply didn't take before).

Another feature that gets high praise is the flex-focus system. Today's AF cameras do a decent job, but occassionally, they just don't hit on the right focus point. With the flex system, you can determine which point to use. This is simply great for crowded rooms or nature photos where the subject may not be the closest item within the focusing areas.

Control for this price point is very good indeed. Multiple "scene" modes make it easy for the novice (ok, or sometimes lazy pro), while the semi-auto and manual modes give even experienced users all they need.

Simply put, this camera could have easily been priced $50 to $100 more. The only real competition is the A640, $100 more, 10 meg, and a bit more attractive black finish.
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244 of 250 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unexpectedly Good Pictures, October 2, 2006
This review is from: Canon PowerShot A630 8MP Digital Camera with 4x Optical Zoom (Electronics)
My first impression of the A630 was less than stellar. After a year plus squinting through the viewfinder of my Rebel XT, I was really looking forward to composing my shots in a big, beautiful LCD again. Unfortunately, the LCD on the A630 may be big, but it's not beautiful. It does a fine job helping you review what's already been captured and presenting menu options legibly, but a mediocre job of rendering what's coming through the lens. The color is inaccurate and interference frequently appeared on the screen when half-clicking to freeze the focus. It still beats a viewfinder for composing an image but, frankly, I'd rather have the smaller LCD on my daughter's A620.

Ultimately, though, picture quality is everything to me, and here the A630 excels. I took 60+ pictures on a recent trip to Door County, WI and not one of them was a clunker, including several taken in very tricky lighting situations. Shooting modes worked as advertised although, with good lighting, the auto mode produced identical results. Indoors, flash pictures were perfectly exposed and the flash had a surprisingly good range.

On average, and I know this is heresy, the A630 took better pictures than my Rebel XT, and I didn't feel the need to Photoshop a single one of them. If I cared more about the LCD, I would have given this camera a lower rating, but a lower rating would not have done justice to the quality of the images this camera produces.
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56 of 56 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent optics, macro range,good manual controls, May 10, 2007
By 
MaxVideo "maxvideo" (Portland, OR United States) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Canon PowerShot A630 8MP Digital Camera with 4x Optical Zoom (Electronics)
Let me preface this by saying I come from the "old school" of photography. I've use good-quality film SLR cameras for years, and have always hated digitals because of all the cumbersome controls and lack of good manual control of the camera (yes, even on digital SLRs).

This camera is quite an improvement. If you are just a point-and-shooter, you can take it out of the box, throw batteries and an SD card in it and just click away. But if you know what you are doing with a camera, there are good manual controls in here for you, too, and that's what I want to focus on.

If you need to take close-up shots of small models, insects, flowers, etc this is the camera for you. If you want something tiny and slim just for snapping pics on vacation, this is NOT the camera for you. It will do a superb job, but it's more than you need and therefore bulkier than you probably want.

It has shutter and aperture priority - the latter being the most important. You can manually stop down the lens anywhere from 2.6 to 8.0. It wish it would stop all the way down to, like f/22, but that's a lot to ask for a $200 digicam. In macro mode, it really truly can focus on things only 1 cm away from the lens, and the focus is still crisp - very impressive.

Put this thing on a tripod, put a good light on your subject, turn the flash OFF, use the built-in timer to avoid shaking the camera, and you'll get magazine-publishable photos, and that's no lie.

White balance is superb. You can take shots under flourescent, incandescent, tungsten (photofloods) and the color rendition is terrific, even if you use the "auto" white balance. But you can manually calibrate it if you really want to. There are also several preset white balance settings (flourescent, incandescent, tungsten, and about 4 others).

It runs on 4 AA batteries, so you can shoot a long time before the batteries are dead, but definitely invest in 4 NiMH AA's and a charger.

It uses standard SD cards, not like those morons at Sony who insist on using a proprietary memory card in their cameras.

The best thing about it is that all the real controls you need if you are used to using a real camera are easily accessible right at the top level buttons - exposure compenstation, macro mode, flash on/off, f/stop.

There is also a full manual mode, so you can set f/stop, exposure, shutter speed and focus all completely manually. I fooled with some of the DSLRs, and those "mid-range" hybrid models like the S3 (sort of in between the things like this A630 and a DSLR). Frankly, they are agony to use. If I spend $800-$1000 on a DSLR, I do not expect it to punish me to find how to change the *(&#$@_)&* f/stop!

A 4x true optical zoom is a pretty darn good range in a small cam, as well.

The door where the USB hooks up is kind of cheap feeling, but I won't know for a long time whether it will hold up or not. Video shoots a smooth, crisp, non-grainy 30 frames per second in normal room light. Nice.

The LCD is large, bright, and clear, and it flips out to the side of the camera (if you like that sort of thing). I don't know why a few people complained about it.

Hooking to a computer - If you've got a Mac with OS/X, don't bother installing ANYTHING that comes with the camera. Just plug the camera into your USB port, and use the Mac's built in camera application. It will pull the photos off neatly in to a folder, and even delete them from the camera for you if you want. This is another nice plus. Who needs those silly bloated custom applications that come with these cameras? (And BTW, I am a computer software engineer by trade.)

I first tried an A550 (also a nice cam) and exchanged it at the store for this A630, because the 550 doesn't have the manual exposure controls I needed. For the extra $30 in price, the A630 is an enormous step up in quality and controls, well worth $30 more.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Love this camera, May 28, 2007
By 
L. Newington (San Jose, CA USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Canon PowerShot A630 8MP Digital Camera with 4x Optical Zoom (Electronics)
I absolutely love this camera. It is hands down the best digital camera I have ever owned. It is extremely easy to use. There are a so many options and settings. This camera can pretty much do anything that you could think of. Great camera for the price. I highly recommend it.
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38 of 38 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Pictures, December 6, 2006
By 
T. Wright (San Antonio, TX) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Canon PowerShot A630 8MP Digital Camera with 4x Optical Zoom (Electronics)
I had been looking for a new digital camera for over a year. I finally made this my pick. At first I wasn't happy with the menus and settings. But after testing it for a few weeks, I'm very pleased with it.

The pictures are outstanding!! If you have never used a Canon digital(I hadn't) the menu settings and multiple picture settings can be overwhelming. Just set it to "auto" the pics come out great. Then you can slowly learn the various setting(if you want to). I'm a geek so I tested them all.

-It starts up within 2 seconds and the time between shots is just over 1 second(really).

-The flippable LCD screen is great, but, the quality of the image on the LCD is only fair. If this is important to you, this camera is not for you. It really doesn't matter to me, I prefer the optical view finder for 99% of my shots.

-There is NO information displayed in the optical view finder.

-Very comfortable in the hand.

-There is no battery meter (just tells you need to replace).

-A little larger and heavier than a "pocket" camera.

-It takes four AA batteries - which is great, can get them anywhere - no waiting for recharge.

-For a still camera it takes great videos.

I would recommend this camera. It's not perfect - but after much research, it was a good choice for the price range.

Also, I bought a 1GB memory card - so I don't have to work about running out of space.
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57 of 60 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent camera, October 17, 2006
By 
S. Brooks (Los Angeles, CA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Canon PowerShot A630 8MP Digital Camera with 4x Optical Zoom (Electronics)
I purchased this to replace the Canon A70 (another good camera) as I wanted more megapixels in order to take photos to be enlarged and have greater ability to crop. The camera is easy to use, has lots of useful "one-button" features such as for night shots, aperture priority and shutter priority. The camera can also be put in manual mode which permits manual settings and I've found to be very useful particularly for outdoor, backlit situations.

The clarity of the photos is very good. The movie function is also very good and far better than the A70 which was more grainy and pixilated due to the lower resolution.

The software provided is eay to use (at leat for Windows, I do not know about for Macs).

A couple of features of these Canon cameras I've found very, very useful and you might want to consider in buying any camera, particularly if you travel. First, it uses AA batteries which are easy to find, so you don;t have to worry about finding an outlet and adpator to recharge your proprietary battery. Second, it uses an SD card which are also relatively easy to find and can be used in many devices, as opposed to say a Sony memory stick.
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29 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great - Even for a first-timer!, December 7, 2006
This review is from: Canon PowerShot A630 8MP Digital Camera with 4x Optical Zoom (Electronics)
Aye, this camera is great. I suppose I might be biased, this being my first digital, but I have used cameras borrowed from pals in the recent past, and didn't particularly enjoy them (which is why I wasn't too interested in a digi before).

Quick startup is a big bonus. On my trip earlier this year, I missed many opportunities for good photos with my pal's HP camera, as it took a few seconds to boot, and seconds between photos. The only video I took had to be tossed due to the 15fps blurry quality (and he had no memory card). The digital zoom was horrible, and indoors photos were really crappy - especially at night.

The 30fps movie mode in the A630 is wonderful for a camera of this price - I never use the 15fps mode at all - it's blurry and the picture is 'jumpy,' although if it's done outdoors with good ambient lighting, it seems to work a bit better. I quickly learned to navigate the settings, being a complete novice, but I still need to check the manual on a couple of items that I have no idea about.

Even though it won't fit in my pocket and is heavier than many, the battery life is great. I have the camera over a month now, have taken video, stills with and without flash, deleted and re-shot stuff, and still have not changed the original batteries. If this were my pal's camera, I would have changed batteries after about 8 or so shots. Serious.

I bought a 2GB SD card for it, along with rechargeables and a charger. The only off-key thing I noticed so far is that the images can get pretty grainy on night-time zoomed indoor shots where incandescent (normal) light bulbs are used. As one other reviewer said, I don't know if I have to tinker with the settings to fix this, but that's the only issue I have had.

So basically these things do it for me with this camera:

- Excellent battery life - AA size is easy to get and keep for emergencies

- Excellent video capture with sound

- Quick boot and inter-shot response

- Excellent image quality with little or no blur

- Nice features such as color swap and pre-sets for common situations, apart from manual settings for more advanced users.

- Foldable vari-angle LCD is very very useful - the screen won't get damaged once it's folded in - unlike those with the screen showing at the back. This is great for evaluating your shots, and the quality is pretty good for a small screen.

- Image quality settings allow for maximized space utilization on you SD. (GET a 1-Gig or larger card!)

Drawbacks:

- Some grainy zoomed indoor shots (moreso in nighttime video capture)

- Larger than expected

- Haven't been able to find the correct carrying case up to December 2006! What?!

- Causes me to waste time instead of preparing for my exams! :)

Overall, an easy-to-use, excellent camera, straight out of the box. Would recommend it (and already did - 3 of my coworkers are ordering it, so Canon please organize my cut).

ML.
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35 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent digital for the money, November 5, 2006
By 
Cajundego "Cajundego" (Northeast Ohio - Go Buckeyes!) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Canon PowerShot A630 8MP Digital Camera with 4x Optical Zoom (Electronics)
I actually happened upon the A630 in exchange for an A620. I am totally please with its performance thus far. This camera was purchased as an underwater camera w/ the optional underwater housing. My "A" camera is a Canon Rebel XT & I would have to say this is almost comparable & easy to use for the high-end amateur. The preset mode for "kids/pets" was perfect as I took photos in a tour van through New Orleans. Not one of the pictures came out blurry. Other preset modes are: snow, fireworks, underwater, macro (which took great shots), and other. I would definitely purchase this camera again. I will update this review after I take the camera diving.
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26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars WOW!, December 3, 2006
By 
T. Foster (Panama City, FL) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Canon PowerShot A630 8MP Digital Camera with 4x Optical Zoom (Electronics)
My previous camera was a Samsung digimax--about 4MP, no optical zoom. It just stopped turning on one day(I had not dropped it or damaged it--just stopped). It's apparently a common problem with Samsung.

This camera is amazing. It takes fantastic pictures. It took a picture of my engagement ring perfectly--I will upload a photo if Amazon lets me. Most cameras cannot focus that closely, and the 1 cm(or something like that) distance was what made me splurge for this over the 5MP Canon. The camera has a function so that it can take panoramic pictures(it holds part of the previous picture on screen so you can line it up), it takes large video for a camera, you can set it to turn everything into black and white except for one color--and can even make said color(say, blue) turn into, red, or any other color you like. It takes pictures fairly quickly even when using the flash. I'm impressed with the battery life. I know I've taken well over 100 photos and several videos, and I haven't had to recharge yet(I picked a camera that used AA's so that I could keep a set handy if I was at a wedding or camping and didn't have the time or place to wait for a specialty battery to recharge).

One gripe is that it isn't small enough--I had one of those little cameras before, and I always always got my finger in the shot. This camera is big enough to hold. It's not "cute" and it won't fit in your pocket, but it's got too many features to do that.

My only problem is that I get the "shake" warning a lot, nearly all the time if I turn the flash off(which is my own fault).

I am very impressed with this camera. Something that I didn't know until I bought this, but I believe that I saw in the manual that you can replace the lenses and attach a large flash to it. For me, this is the perfect camera for anyone who wants to work his way into serious photography, or have that option. I think that 8MP is a great size--not many people will ever need to take more than an 8x10. If you want bigger than that, might as well pay a professional. And the camera has a speaker built in. Rather wasteful on space, but it is nice to play back movies with sound. And the greatest novelty of all--you can buy a waterproof case if you want to take it to the beach or in the pool. How sweet is that?
_______________________________________________________________________________
Edit:
I got the camera in November of 2006. Four years later, it stopped taking pictures reliably. It still turns on, but only a fraction of the time that I try to take a picture, nothing happens. My aunt bought one at the same time, and hers has died as well. I'm trying a Kodak C123 for my next camera; it is waterproof to 10 feet, and the entire camera costs less than the waterproof case Cannon makes. I like the look of the Kodak and Nikon pictures more than Cannon. I am really going to miss the flip screen though. I didn't realize how useful it would be when I got the camera, but it is great for self-portraits, taking pictures above a crowd, and showing kids their picture when you want them to pose.
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply...one of the best cameras you will find, November 23, 2006
This review is from: Canon PowerShot A630 8MP Digital Camera with 4x Optical Zoom (Electronics)
I have owned several canon camera's from the a310 to the a95 and this one the a630 simply blows them all away. pic quality is excellent, especially when I compare the difference in two same shots between the a95 and the a630. the a630 is sharper,more vivid, and the features and ease of use is outstanding.AA batteries is a plus, I do recommend rechargeable batteries.

8 mp is the way to go. also get at least a 1 gig sd card.
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