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EOS 30D Strange (shutter?) artefact problem

Ahmet ISSIN , Jun 08, 2007; 04:34 p.m.

Dear Forum members; I'm new here

i got my EOS 30D several months ago, last week i got a strange problem,

All shots ive taken with high shutter speeds have an artifact in it. A curved overexposed area in the middle of shots, This curve always look the left side of the landscape oriented photo (right side of sensor) Light orientation, flash usage or aperture doesnt effect on it. It is always there I see it even i shot to a light source without lens attached. This tells me its not a lens flare or etc.

Shots taken below 1/800 sec shutter speed almost does not show that artefact even i adjust images with high contrast with photo editing softwares

higher the shutter speed higher the problem. at 1/8000 its more obvious. below 1/500 it vanishes.

(images adjusted with high contrast to emphasize the artefact, are in these links)




as you see in the photo below , in low shutter speed there is nothing


Since its bought from another country, i cant use my guarantee service in my country. And also i dont shot in high speeds and rarely see that artefact thus i postponed it to return to service.


I really wonder how and why this happens, not more than several thousands of shots taken. It seems like shutter blade (curtain) problem but shutter looks good to me, But i see an arm holding the blades of shutter (i think) , drawing a path just like the artefact in images (curved and excatly in the same position on sensor)

just like in this drawing (red lines shows that arms paths when shooting)


My opinion, It may happen because of the light reflecting from that arms part. if so it must be taken care of canon engineers maybe :)

Can other 30D shooters try similar things with their cameras and tell me if there are similar things pls ?

And every opinion about this issue welcome

Thanks in advance.

Ahmet ISSIN Istanbul/ TURKEY


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James Ng , Jun 08, 2007; 05:17 p.m.

someone else here had the same problem before. I believe the shutter was the issue. can anyone remember? I am sure the vets will remember. This person had the same crescent moon light thing like your pictures showed. I think at the end, it needed repair.

Jim Strutz - Anchorage, AK , Jun 08, 2007; 05:48 p.m.

Looks like a bad shutter to me. Same symptom as other bad shutters.

Steve Dunn , Jun 08, 2007; 07:32 p.m.

Yup, based on responses in previous threads about the same problem, your shutter is broken and needs repair.

Conceptually, a focal plane shutter is a single device which progressively and in a straight line exposes the image (as the first curtain moves) and ends the exposure (as the second curtain moves). And in the old days of horizontal-travel focal plane shutters, that was indeed the case, at least for some cameras. But to achieve higher maximum X-sync speeds, the shutter should travel vertically, since it has a third less distance to travel to do so. Since there isn't room above or below the film/sensor plane to hold the entire shutter in this case, modern vertical-travel focal plane shutters are made out of multiple (usually 4) segments; each segment is now only a fraction of the size of the frame, so the segments don't take up much space above or below the frame. Machinery is required to make the edge of what's exposed and what isn't move as if the shutter were a single, all-moving object.

What you're seeing is that some of the blades are damaged, or the machinery that's supposed to make them move in sync isn't working properly. I don't know which, but either way, it's not something the average user can fix for themselves. It requires repair.

Joel Holcomb , Jun 08, 2007; 08:01 p.m.

I posted the same problem on photo.net less than two months ago. I wound up sending my 30D to a Canon service center where they replaced the shutter mechanism. Fortunately it was still under warranty. Here is a sample image I included with that post:


When I called the service center to arrange for the repair, I was somewhat surprised that the technician was not aware that this has become a fairly common problem, at least with shutters in Canon's APS-C sensor size cameras. As I researched the problem further on photo.net and other websites, apparently this has been happening in everything from the Digital Rebel to the 30D. I saw at least a dozen examples of this failure, and three of them were posted within a few days of each other on photo.net (Mine included). I raised the question at one point of whether this indicates some pervasive problem with the shutters in this line of cameras, but the "powers that be" didn't seem to think so. Still, it seems an unusually high rate of this exact same failure to me.

Joel Holcomb , Jun 08, 2007; 08:04 p.m.

Oh, by the way, one of the posts I saw on this problem was from someone who also delayed having the shutter repaired. He finally suffered a catastrophic shutter failure with the blades getting all mangled and scrunched together. So I advise anyone experiencing this problem to get it taken care of ASAP.

James Ng , Jun 09, 2007; 02:54 a.m.


thats right. You were the poster from 2 months ago. I remember that crescent moon pic now. Looks like Canon got you all fixed up.

Jim Karthauser , Jun 09, 2007; 04:15 a.m.

I remember that post as well. Glad you managed to get it fixed.

Mark U , Jun 09, 2007; 04:35 a.m.

If you open the back of an EOS film camera you will see that the shutter curtains are moved by a linkage that rotates about a pivot. I believe the curtains actually travel vertically (the evidence is the shadow of the second shutter curtain when trying to use too fast a shutter speed with studio strobes), but if the linkage wears it can allow a light leak that gives rise to the arc shaped artifact. If someone was feeling enterprising, photographic evidence could be provided by shooting the open back of a film camera with flash, using a variable delay circuit between the two cameras, but otherwise triggering them from the same remote.

Ahmet ISSIN , Jun 30, 2007; 08:11 a.m.

I finally got my shutter replaced. It cost 85€ for new shutter and 50€ for work.

Here is the damaged shutter that causes this kind of problems.

You may interest.

Damaged Shutter From Canon EOS 30D , The service man was a really skilled master who has worked for canon for 15 years, and as he told me shutters of 20D and 30D is slightly different and its hard to say that 30D Shutters durability is 100k shots. Interesting...

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