5D Mark II Team

Improvements & Gear

Malfunction in Firmware 2.0.4


  • Malfunction in 2.0.4 – IRIS issue
  • Video Tests
  • Test Update
  • Additional Reports – UPDATED
  • Considerations

Note: please also check the update to this report.


Firmware 2.0.4 is really a GREAT update, an extraordinary effort made by Canon engineers. But after some deep tests we have found and confirmed a bug/malfunction in this firmware.

▪ Description of the problem:

When a Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro USM lens is mounted on the camera and the user manually changes focus (rotates focus ring), the lens suffer from an “IRIS jitter”, even when the camera is in full manual mode.

It is not normal, and should not happen. The tests were made by several users with many copies on many camera bodies, so it’s not an isolated lens problem.

This malfunction always occurs in this situation:

When the camera is set to M (Manual) mode and in Live View mode (set to Still+Movie – Movie Display), which is the correct mode for “full manual control” in movie mode.

Additional details:

. It does NOT happen with Firmware version 1.1.0
. It happens WHEN recording video and also when NOT recording video
. It happens with ISO and every possible automatic setting fixed to a value, or turned off
. It happens in C1/C2/C3 too (if they are registered as “M” modes for movie recording)
. It happens in PAL and NTSC modes
. It happens in  both lens modes: MF and AF mode
. The camera does NOT tell any change in aperture setting (it keeps showing the same value) nor give any kind of advice either
. The iris shifting can be heard (and seen)
. The brightness shifting of the image is visible on the camera’s LCD monitor when the iris/aperture shift occurs
. The iris/aperture usually changes in small values, but enough to make a footage unusable, so using this great lens for movie/video purpose may result impossible


These two videos clearly show the problem when the Canon EF 100mm F/2.8 Macro USM is mounted on the 5D Mark II in the full manual mode for movie mode, and the focus ring is rotated from macro to infinity and vice versa. Remember that this does not happen with firmware 1.1.0.

Iris “jitter” when changing focus:

▪ Image jitter can be seen on the camera’s LCD monitor lot of times
It’s also recorded on the footage, making it unusable. It is much easier to see whilst testing or recording than in this video test. The most evident ones at 0:48, 0:57, 1:01, 1:03:

Please read full descriptions on each video for further details.


We made another simple test to prove this issue is not related to the light entering the lens/sensor/camera: If you reproduce the test, with everything set to Manual as described but in a dark room, the same issue occurs (you can hear the iris jitter when changing focus).

Conclusion: the IRIS jitter is not related to light metering or any kind of “compensation” being done by the camera due the different amount of light entering the lens when focusing, nor any other light/sensor related matter.

Since the test is done in complete darkness we cannot post a video to show it, but every user can reproduce and verify it by their own with ease.


We received some additional reports from many users.

Some of them:

– Regarding the malfunction of the Canon EF 100mm 2.8 Macro USM:

“By observing the IRIS as I adjusted the aperture I noticed that sometimes it doesn’t go correctly to the right size. I even noticed that sometimes as I stopped down the aperture for a step the IRIS would actually open a bit instead.”

– Other reports: We also received reports regarding 3rd party lenses experiencing “weird noises” coming from the iris, or iris/aperture inconsistencies when mounted on 5D Mark II with firmware 2.0.4 that weren’t present on firmware 1.1.0.

It seems very possible that these issues also occur with some 3rd party lenses and maybe other Canon lenses as well.


– We received a video test from a user reporting this iris “jitter” on a Canon EF 300 F/4L IS USM
Check it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=APgK5gdM69M

The user confirmed the camera was set to M and Live View mode to “Sills+Movie-Movie Display”, which is the correct “full manual mode” for video, where “the camera shouldn’t be moving the iris *at all* unless the user is changing it”.

This confirms that this malfunction also affects other Canon lenses when using firmware 2.0.4 on the 5D Mark II.

It might sound weird, but we wonder if this issue could be related to the supposed fix:
“Fixes a phenomenon where communication between the camera and the attached lens is sometimes interrupted after manual sensor cleaning. (This phenomenon only affects units with Firmware Version 1.2.4.)”.


We understand that this firmware update is a VERY hard work. But maybe there weren’t given enough resources to support this extraordinary effort made by Canon engineers.

That may explain the initial undetected bug/malfunction on version 2.0.3 (that was reported just 1 day after its official release by many professionals and by this team who use 5D Mark II for serious movie/video purposes).

We use Canon gear and we love this camera. That’s why we try to do our best in the most constructive possible way to encourage Canon to give the best features and results to their customers.

We want the best from this extraordinary camera, for every user, and also the best for Canon as company for making it possible.

We request Canon to fix this problem. That’s the priority.

But we also request Canon to carefully read and consider what so many customers are asking: to include some additional functions that are really possible and even easy in many cases.

The 5D Mark II has been a huge success since its release. This could be a great opportunity for Canon to add these features and keep it as a best seller for even longer time.


AutoISO limiters, so much requested by photographers (like the much cheaper Canon T2i/550D)
More frames in Bracketing mode
Movie Crop function, to allow video recording at 1:1 of the central area of the sensor (at the highest possible resolution: Full HD, HD or at least in SD like the much cheaper Canon T2i/550D)
▪ “EDIT” function in playback menu, allowing to Cut and Save part of a video clip (available in most cheaper cameras)
An OPTION to display Audio meters bars in Live View mode and when recording video
An OPTION to disable the “white square” when using HDMI output, to get a “clean” video output (so easy and so requested), and keep that signal at the maximum possible resolution when recording video
More flexibility for the “Info” button in Live View mode (more display options: current Live Histogram is great but it’s only displayed with extra information, reducing the overall frame visibility)

These are hugely requested functions that CAN be implemented via firmware. They don’t require hardware changes.

For a longer and more detailed list, please check this article.

We sincerely want to thank Canon for listening to their customers and being steps ahead of the competition.


April 5, 2010 - Posted by | Articles & Tech Info, Campaigns, EOS 5D Mk II, News & Info, Reports, Tech Ideas | , , , , , , ,


  1. […] not the old 30p only version. It happens in stills and video. For much more info please visit the 5DmkII improvements team’s […]

    Pingback by 5DmkII 2.0.4 firmware bug with Canon F2.8L IS 100mm Macro lens | Philip Bloom | April 5, 2010 | Reply

  2. […] For more information head over HERE. […]

    Pingback by Problems with the 5d firmware 2.0.4 | Poet Zero | April 5, 2010 | Reply

  3. Hmm weird I have not noticed that with my 100 2.8, I will check it out tonight but I shot a lot of footage this weekend and did not notice any iris shifting and I shoot in manual mode with manual focus all the time.

    Have yu seen any other instances where this does not occur or is it 100% in your testing?

    Comment by Bill Pennington | April 5, 2010 | Reply

    • It happens 100% of the time.

      BUT if you don’t refocus, or don’t pull focus much you may not notice it.

      As we detailed, this happens when the camera is set to M, and in Live View mode (Stills+Movie-Movie Display) when recording video and even when not recording video.

      Our two videos show the IRIS behavior, but also what can be seen on the LCD.

      Both videos were shot with the same lens, same settings, same procedure (and of course it was also tested with other cameras and lenses by several users, to discard it was a buggy copy, before we decided to make this public)

      But this behavior could extend to other lenses too, and also 3rd party lenses, we received feedbacks about it, as we commented on the report (we discarded the non detailed feedbacks and those which were due wrong camera settings)


      Comment by 5dmark2 | April 5, 2010 | Reply

  4. I had this problem prior to the most recent two firmware upgrades. I had thought it was a lens issue, but what you describe here is EXACTLY what I experienced when shooting with the 5D Mk II, 100mm f/2.8macro USM at 1920×1080 30p.

    Comment by alan griswold | April 6, 2010 | Reply

    • Are you sure the Live View mode was set to “Stills+Movie – Movie Display” when using Firmware 1.1.0?

      We tested the lens with firmware 1.1.0 and it didn’t show this behavior.

      Comment by 5dmark2 | April 6, 2010 | Reply

  5. same happens for me.
    even if AF set to auto.

    Comment by domisol | April 6, 2010 | Reply

  6. Read carefuly this:

    …”Such a solution has its pros and cons. You must remember that, on passing to minimal focus, which amounts to 0.3 m here, the focal length will get shorter and the lens’s fastness will decrease near even f/5.6. You can see it directly when you look inside the barrel – going to about 0.5 m you can notice an aperture appearing in the optics’ field and it gets even narrower when you pass to 0.3 m. It is also good to remember that these 0.3 m are just the minimal focus value, calculated from the lens’s main plane. In reality, shooting in the 1:1 scale, the lens’s end is positioned only 13 cm from its subject.”

    Comment by vapno | April 6, 2010 | Reply

    • We know it.

      We are not ignoring that the lens can actually change its aperture when focusing to macro vs infinity.

      What we detected and reported is a wrong IRIS behavior in the described mode. It does not happen with firmware 1.1.0.

      Please check our two video tests carefully (full description also available on each video on Youtube): The IRISI open & closes back to its position, or closes and opens back to its position, depending on the direction the focus ring is rotated. Actually, in these videos you can see the final iris/aperture size is maintained, but after that rare behavior.

      This behavior and its consequences on the image being recorded make this great lens unusable for serious video/movie purposes.

      This can (and probably) also extend to other Canon macro lenses, and to 3rd party lenses as well.

      Other feedbacks suggest the possibility of a rare communication (“weird noises coming from the lens iris”) between the camera and lenses, especially on 3rd party ones.

      Comment by 5dmark2 | April 6, 2010 | Reply

  7. Canon has cut it’s work force to deal with the financial crisis, and the customers experience the results.

    Personally, the day Nikon releases a 15MP FF camera is the day I put my 5DmkII and 10 lenses (6 of which are L series) on the 2nd hand market and switch to Nikon.

    Comment by Tzalmagor | April 6, 2010 | Reply

  8. […] 5DmkII 2.0.4 firmware bug met Canon F2.8L IS 100mm Macro lens By wimhendriks Er zit een bug in de nieuwe 5Dmk2 firmware 2.0.4. Als de Canon 2.8L IS macro 100mm op manuel handbediening  staat dan verandert de diafragma automatisch: zie de site […]

    Pingback by 5DmkII 2.0.4 firmware bug met Canon F2.8L IS 100mm Macro lens « Filming with digital camera | April 6, 2010 | Reply

  9. […] crew over at 5D Mark II Team have discovered a glitch in the new firmware update 2.0.4  for the Canon 5D Mark II. The Canon […]

    Pingback by Iris Malfunction With Canon 5D Mark II Firmware Update 2.0.4 » cinema5D news | April 6, 2010 | Reply

  10. I just posted a video on YouTube showing the problem is NOT due to a macro lens design.

    Also, please follow the thread I started on Fred Miranda, clarifying the nature of the problem:


    Comment by wickerprints | April 6, 2010 | Reply

  11. […] Malfunction in Firmware 2.0.4 Content: […]

    Pingback by Top Posts — WordPress.com | April 7, 2010 | Reply

  12. […] Al parecer Canon esta batallando un poco con los firmware que ha lanzado ultimamente para la Mark II, ya que al 2.0.4 se le ha encontrado un “bug“ con el lente Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro en el cual el diafragma abre y cierra sin control.Ver más… […]

    Pingback by Falla en el firmware 2.0.4 de la 5DMKII • Blog Archive • Dieciseis:9 | April 7, 2010 | Reply

  13. I have this problem with my new 24-105mm 4.0 L and the updated 5d. Is there any reaction from canon?

    Comment by walter | April 7, 2010 | Reply

    • Are you sure you have set the camera to M mode and the Live View mode to “Stills+Movie – Movie Display” when this iris “jitter” occurs?

      That’s the only “full manual” mode for video.

      If Live View is set to “Stills+Movie – Exposure Simulation” and you try to record a video clip, the camera could change iris, and in that case it could be a normal behavior.

      If you are experiencing a different IRIS issue, then please post FULL details and description of it.


      Comment by 5dmark2 | April 7, 2010 | Reply

  14. […] issue/malfunction found in Firmware 2.0.4 (for full details of the problem please read the original Report here and the Update […]

    Pingback by Canon aware of IRIS issue? « 5D Mark II Team | April 12, 2010 | Reply

  15. I had this experience last Friday. Thought I had somehow changed the aperture from 11 to 5.6 (aperture wheel turned off!). It happened twice…once oops, two times, not likely human error.

    Now I know the cause. Thanks for highlighting this disturbing bug.

    I was using a EF24-70mm at 70mm f=11

    Comment by BLP | April 12, 2010 | Reply

  16. Should add I was using full manual mode.

    Comment by BLP | April 12, 2010 | Reply

  17. I had the “jittery iris” issue the other week on a shoot. Fortuately the 100mm f2.8 was only for some close up B-roll, so it didn’t destroy the project…but not good! It was a rental lens, so I kind of put it off to dirty contacts or something. 5D MarkII, 2.0.4 firmware, 24p, 100mm f2.8 marco lens.

    Comment by Zach | April 14, 2010 | Reply

  18. Thanks 5D Mark II Team, Keep up the good work.

    Comment by ennis | April 15, 2010 | Reply

    • Thanks for your words.

      Don’t forget to check the updated and latest reports (posted after this one), they include additional information and news.

      Comment by 5dmark2 | April 15, 2010 | Reply

  19. Hi, just an addition to the list of lenses that went crazy after this update. My Tamron 28-75 2.8 produced such a scary noise that made me remove it at once. As if some grinding wheels working inside on sand.
    My Canon EF 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6 L IS USM is immune and has no problem at all so far, as well as my 16-35 2.8 L.

    Comment by digiteye | April 16, 2010 | Reply

    • Thanks for your feedback.

      We are aware of some 3rd party lenses making “weird sounds”, but didn’t get any to make a good test yet, and then a video if it suffer that issue. If you make a good video (easy to see and hear) and upload to YouTube, please let us know.


      Comment by 5dmark2 | April 16, 2010 | Reply

  20. I’m having the iris jitter problem with my Canon 180 mm macro. Bummer!

    Comment by JeremyW | April 20, 2010 | Reply

  21. […] The “Iris jitter” is VERY easy to reproduce, as we explained with full details in our Updated Report and also the Original Report. […]

    Pingback by Is Canon aware or not? « 5D Mark II Team | April 23, 2010 | Reply

  22. hello from greece.every photographer i know afterthe update 2.0.4 have the same problem.
    i have the problem in almost all my lenses.24 1.4,17-40,28-70,50 1,2,85 1,8.
    it was not any problem until now with the 1.1.0 version.
    is it posible to go back and put again the older version?until canon fix it.

    Comment by yiannis alefantou | April 28, 2010 | Reply

  23. I just shot on Monday with the 2.0.4 firmware and it happened with my 70-200 2.8 L IS. Did NOT happen shooting Broll with my 24 – 105, at least not that I noticed.
    It DID happen with my 24 – 105 a few months ago with the firmware that was before the 2.0.4. I played with the settings and thought I somehow managed to “fix” it and now I realize I just played with it enough to stop it for the time being. Can’t have this continue to happen, even though my amazing client said today as I pointed it out to her: “Oh well, we’ll live with it.”
    I won’t be as lucky next time. Help!

    Comment by John Urban | May 1, 2010 | Reply

  24. […] on this Report to reproduce the “iris jitter” issue. Also check the video posted here to see the iris behavior when directly watching […]

    Pingback by List of Lenses Affected « 5D Mark II Team | May 3, 2010 | Reply

  25. 5D Mk II firmware 1.1.0 . I have seen the jitter problem on this version as well when using my new 100mm Macro (IS USM). Camera on Av, focus on manual and light view. I am now just waiting to see what is going to happen before I make an update.

    Comment by Finn Worsoe | May 19, 2010 | Reply

    • Please carefully read and watch our video tests and reports (the original and the update).

      The camera must be on M mode and Live View set to “Stills + Movie” >> “Movie Display” to allow Full Manual control on Movie mode. Otherwise the user won’t have full manual control on movie/video mode.

      To understand or clarify the iris issue: the “iris jitter” issue is NOT the iris “normal” change, and it’s not related to the amount of light being gathered by the sensor/light metering system (as we explain in the report update). It is not the iris/diaphragm closing or opening a f-stop (or 1/3 step), it is a “judder” or “jitter” instead, which is NOT normal, and it does not happen in firmware 1.1.0 with the proper settings as describe above.

      Comment by 5dmark2 | May 19, 2010 | Reply

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