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EOS 20d shutter count (clicks)

Noli Tan , Jan 21, 2009; 03:47 a.m.

Hello guys,

Just want to know whether on a EOS 20d, there is a way to find out how many shutter clicks the unit has been through ?
This is good to know if one is offering a 2nd hand camera for sale.
Or if one is in the store, one would know whether the camera is a demo or new unit.

I know this sounds lame, but i'm curious if such is possible.

I have owned by 20d for 4 years now & I'm not so sure how much clicks I have accumulated in there.




Peter Meade , Jan 21, 2009; 06:42 a.m.

I found the number of shutter actuations processing a RAW file on Bridge using Vista.
Some other methods are mentioned there. Shortly after those 50K actuations, the shutter failed.

Bueh B. , Jan 21, 2009; 10:27 a.m.

No, it is not possible for a user to get the real number. Peter is wrong and this has been proven. Only Canon can access the shutter count, you can ask them to read it for you when you give them your camera for maintenance.

Yes, it is stupid of Canon not to include an "odometer" for this camera to see its "mileage", but that's the way it is.

Kasper Hettinga , Jan 21, 2009; 02:42 p.m.

I'm not totally sure, but I used a hex-editor based method, and the counts seems quite accurate.

Last 6 months I shot 2675 pics, and the count also increased with this number...also, the total number seems more or less reliable, although I don't know the exact number of pics made...but it won't be far off....

Bueh B. , Jan 21, 2009; 05:46 p.m.

Kasper, I know for sure that the hex editor method is wrong. It may show something connected to shutter actuations, but it definitively is not correct in giving you the total number. I (and several other posters) noted this in the thread Peter linked above.

It seems to be pretty obvious that the true shutter actuations number is neither included in the EOS 20D's JPEG nor RAW files and can only be accessed by Canon.

Peter Meade , Jan 22, 2009; 04:05 a.m.

My "wrong" shutter count, showed just under 50k actuations, within a couple of weeks, the 20D, which has a shutter life of about 50k, failed.
If Bueh B would like to explain how I was "wrong", and where and how the exif data labled "shutter count" was generated, I'm more than happy to hear his opinion.

Henry Clark , Jan 22, 2009; 08:48 a.m.

The most common form of catastrophic shutter failure in the 20D is fracture of the moving contact in one of the shuuter curtain travel switches. This is caused by metal fatigue.
Canon don't define shutter life; they just state so many operations. Life is often defined as the number of operations exceed by 90% of a sample. In Canon's case it's more likely to be the number of operations exceeded by 50% of a sample, roughly equivalent to an average life. It is often measured using accelerated life testing which does not exactly replicate normal operation.
The average life of a large number of shutters may be 50,000 operations. Individual shutters may fail at 5,000 operations, or one may go on to 100,000 operations. It depends on the physical properties of the phosphor bronze material, manufacturing tolerances, differences in bend radii and surface finish.
I believe it's a coincidence that a shutter failed shortly after an undocumented, purported "shutter count" approached 50,000 operations.

Bueh B. , Jan 22, 2009; 02:23 p.m.

Peter, why do you trust anonymous sources on the internet but refuse to trust some fellow photonetters? As me and a couple of other posters noted, the hex editor gives a number that is definitively, absolutely wrong. Some of us know our cameras and know how much we use them.

But just for you, I did the exact procedure (with exactly the same XVI32 editor) as descriped in that weblog for one of my recent RAW files and it gave me the number of "shutter actuations" of 26865. This is 100% wrong, I am sure that the shutter click count is somewhere around 80,000 -- possibly higher. If you like the number the program gives you, cuddle it, hug it, but don't believe that it is anywhere near the true shutter count. As I said, other people have noted this, too.

And you can well see, all shutters are different. As Henry said, it is impossible to say when a specific shutter will fail -- they are not built to break down after 50,000 shots, only that Canon has rated and more or less gave you warranty that the shutter is built to last this number of shutter actuations. It may fail earlier or last a lot longer.

My camera has seen use in tropical typhoons and freezing snowfall, at the beach, in humid jungle and busy city streets. I photographed violent rallies, children birthdays, sport events, casual portraiture and wild parties. My 20D has been dropped twice and looks like a real workhorse with lots of scratches and missing paint ("patina", as Leica aficionados say) -- but it is still going strong and has never shown any issues. I am prepared to replace it anytime because I know that electronic things are not going to last forever, but as long as it works, I will shoot with it regardless of the number of shutter clicks.

Peter Meade , Jan 22, 2009; 04:49 p.m.

Hello Bueh B, thanks for the answer.

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