MSI looks to add executive chic to a winning laptop formula
- Performance for the price, DiG!C II colour quality
- 1.23 megapixel resolution on the low side for stills
The Canon MVX 330i gives the serious video enthusiasts all the features required for taking great video, with a simple point and shoot operation. The photo features are well thought out, with simple sharing options for printing, with or without a PC.
Price$ 1,099.00 (AUD)
The Canon MVX330i is ideal for both inexperienced videomakers and for video enthusiasts purchasing their second or third camcorder. An Easy mode takes care of all the exposure settings for you--or you can take creative control by choosing the appropriate exposure, picture effect or white balance setting yourself.
A print/share button, now standard on most Canon still and video cameras, makes it easy to print photos. Stills are captured at around 1.2 megapixel quality and sent to either a printer connected to PC, or to a standalone printer that supports CP Photo, PictBridge or Bubble Jet Direct print.
Although the resolution is lower than some of its competitors, photo-taking tools such as onboard flash and an accessory shoe make it easy to create good quality postcard-size photos. Stitch assist, auto exposure bracketing and a My Camera function provide more than enough tools to get the perfect happy snap.
Driving the MVX330i is a breeze. It sits comfortably in the right hand, with the zoom, record, photo and exposure controls within easy reach. More extensive menu and playback controls are on the left-hand side of the camera, with a series of buttons behind an excellent 2.5" LCD viewfinder with brightness adjustment. An optical viewfinder with dioptric and height adjustment provides an alternative when conditions become too bright.
The 18X variable-speed optical zoom lens (for still and video shooting) is fast and, while not the largest in its class, would be well suited for most picture-taking situations.
Unlike some other cameras in this price range, the MVX330i delivers true 920,000 resolution, 16:9 widescreen video. This is a better option than simply stretching the video footage to fit the widescreen area or adding a black band at the top and bottom of the video screen.
Colour performance on the MVX330i could only be described as vibrant, with reds and greens extremely bright and saturated. Low light performance was reasonable with good quality in most daylight situations. A night mode is also available, but it delivered washed out, sepia-coloured footage.
The MVX330i supports FireWire (or IEEE 1394) and USB 2.0. There is no S-Video connection on the MVX330i, but you do get an AV plug allowing stereo audio and composite video input and output. Although there is ample room to move the camera about when on a tripod, you would need to take the camera off the mount to change a DV tape.
The Canon MVX330i has enough features and quality to make it a cut above the average entry-level camcorder.
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