5D Mark II Team

Improvements & Gear

Mode Dial Lock Upgrade

Canon has recently announced a Mode Dial hardware (optional) upgrade for owners of Canon EOS 5D Mark II and EOS 7D. It is already available for USA residents.

According to Canon Product Advisory: “The modification is intended to prevent the Mode Dial from accidentally moving, once set to a particular exposure mode by the user.”

We must note that we NEVER had such a problem with the Mode Dial in any situation at all. It’s pretty sturdy indeed, and we love it since you can change the shooting mode with one hand in a snap. Maybe the mentioned problem is only present on some production batches. We couldn’t tell so far.

What Canon SHOULD fix without a doubt is the Battery Grip knob and design (more on this later).

From Canon USA website:

“Effective December 6, 2010, Canon will start to provide as a chargeable service, a locking mode dial modification for the “EOS 5D MarkII” and “EOS 7D” digital single-lens reflex cameras.

This modification is available, for a fee, to owners of these cameras who would prefer a Mode Dial which locks in place and can’t be accidentally moved during normal camera operation.

For USA residents, the pricing of the locking mode dial modification service for EOS 5D Mark II and 7D cameras has been set at $100 per camera as of December, 2010. (Pricing and availability subject to change without notice.) For further details, see contact information for inquiries below.”

Check the full official Product Advisory here.

BATTERY GRIP ISSUE

Canon SHOULD fix all Battery Grips TOO, which are nicely built, but using a PLASTIC knob (engaging metallic gears) to attach to the camera body, thus giving a potential cause of failure (we have had this problem, as so many other users).

THE BIGGEST MISTAKE: the battery grip design prevents it from disassembling when it’s attached to the camera body, so… when the knob breaks or get stuck inside the battery grip, it CANNOT be removed easily (at all).

TWO big build & design mistakes:

1-Using plastic knob instead of metallic one on battery grips that cost over $230
2-Not possible to disassemble the battery grip when it’s attached to the camera.

These same mistakes repeat in all current Canon battery grips for DSLR cameras.

At least Canon should spend few more dollars on a metallic knob… and improve the design too, allowing to disassemble the grip even when attached to the camera.

Do not misunderstand us: the battery grip is great, and even necessary for lot of tasks (and even better comfort), but be careful and avoid over-tighten the knob.

There is an online store called USCamera which provides the replacement part for the battery grip (original from Canon, obviously with a plastic knob too), in case you don’t have any official Tech Service to take your camera to (or if they don’t know how to remove the battery grip; unbelievable but possible…) and you can remove it by yourself (not easy at all, but possible). Obviously the easiest (but not always possible) solution is to send the camera+battery grip to an official Canon service center.

This is an amazing easy to fix build issue (at least using a metallic knob), but the grip is STILL being made the same way since so many years ago by Canon…

Here is the link to the replacement part for the 5D Mark II’s Battery grip (BG-E6): http://www.uscamera.com/bg-e6.htm

If you need a different part, just send them an e-mail. Very friendly people.

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS

When is Canon going to open an “easy, clear and direct” channel to get users feedbacks and suggestions (that really works)? We don’t know, but indeed we already suggested it too.

As we always say: WHY Canon doesn’t offer non-free upgrades to Firmware (Software) improving some of the features/functions too? Just like most software companies do. If the cameras can be improved (they actually CAN) and IF Canon can’t offer it for free, then offer it as an option!

LOT of people are willing to pay for such kind of firmware upgrades. Just take a look at what Magic Lantern has already done and the enthusiasm around that project to bring the hidden potential of the great EOS 5D Mark II to their users.

It’s even smart from a business point of view: List of Fixes and Improvements.

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December 7, 2010 Posted by | Campaigns, EOS 5D Mk II, EOS 7D, News & Info, Reports | , , , , | Leave a comment

CANON: WHAT IS GOING ON? (2)

On September 1st, Canon has released EOS 7D. It uses Digic 4 (as 5D Mark II) but 2, and it even includes:

1920 x 1080 (29.97, 25, 23.976 fps)
1280 x 720 (59.94, 50 fps)
640 x 480 (59.94, 50 fps)

Canon even fixed the 30.00 fps to the standard 29.97… and also added 720p

NOW WE SHOULD ASK CANON:

– Is that IMPOSSIBLE in 5D Mark II? (NO, according to press report, see below)
– What about THOUSANDS of requests from ALL ARDOUND THE WORLD for the 5D Mark II firmware update?
– Are you still “LISTENING TO CUSTOMERS”?  What is going on?

Make your VOICE HEARD

If you care about 23.976/25/29.97 and LOT of other possible fixes via Firmware Update you can call Canon and make your voice heard:

– USA: 1-800-828-4040  /  1-800-OK-CANON
– CANADA:  1-800-OK-CANON (1-800-652-2666)
– UK: 0844 369 0100
List of European PRO Representatives:
http://cpn.canon-europe.com/content/contact_us/representatives.do

If you contact Canon: be RESPECTFUL and handle the right and solid arguments. For your reference, please read NEXT POST too.

– Ask to register a “Feature request” for the 5D Mark II and to be entered in the system and leveraged to higher departments.
Your call IS important. EVERY effort in the right way can help.

You can still sign the Petition to Canon Inc. wich includes many improvements that can be still implemented in the 5D Mark II (and mention it when you call, BUT keep in mind that calling Canon is MUCH more effective than *only* signing or complaining online)

FIXES & IMPROVEMENTS REQUEST

UPDATE:
Check updated “List of Fixes & Improvements”, information and testimonials links at: 5D Mark II Features Request.

– What we strongly REQUEST:

  • FIX “at least” the current non standard 30.00 fps to the standard 29.97 fps as in 7D
  • Add these frame rates as in 7D: 29.97 / 25 / 23.976 fps (STANDARD 30,25 and 24p)
  • Add 720p mode at 29.97 fps. It will allow LONGER video recording time before reaching the 4GB file size limit
  • Improve AF contrast detection algorithm and/or ADD Focusing Aids (like Magic Lantern has done, and proven it is completely possible and extremelly useful). This is REALLY important and useful for video mode.
  • Add “Digital Zoom” and “Crop Sensor Video Mode” (“Sensor Windowing” recording function) allowing to record native 1920×1080 sensor’s area wich extremelly minimizes or even avoid “jello” effect and aliasing issues/arctifacts. This is very possible in a similar way that Zoom level x5 and x10 works to help manual focus
  • Add 720p mode at 59.94 fps if hardware possible
  • Add File Spanning Function (a new file is created when 4GB is reached without stop recording)
  • Allow Audio Manual Gain when recording video (so easy to fix…)
  • Add EDIT option in playback mode, allowing Cut and Save part of recorded video clip
  • Allow more frames in Bracketing mode (so easy fix…)
  • Allow (working) Auto ISO in Manual mode (for still photography)
  • FIX dropped frames bug that happens when aperture changes or in some other situations
  • FIX exposure shift / flashing that often happens when zooming
  • Add function to Remap” hot and stuck pixels. This is VERY important, and will save Canon Tech Support LOT of money and time. It’s an essential feature (we still don’t understand why it wasn’t already implemented)

Until now the 5D Mark II has not even a single frame rate compatible with any other video camera made by Canon, 7D included !! That’s why we “AT LEAST” request the standard 29.97 fps.

A SIMPLE EXAMPLE OF ACTION:

From other blog:

“Reader Eugenia commented (..) that she’d called Canon’s product feedback line and politely requested a choice of HD video frame rates on the 5D MarkII.”

If you care about 24p support on the 5D Mark II and would like to see it added in a future firmware update, PLEASE DO THE SAME.

Eugenia wrote:

“I called (800) 828-4040, for the US. I pressed then the 3rd option, and the guy was set up to take feedback immediately…”

She requested both 23.976 and 25 fps modes, as well as the standard 29.97 fps.

Please do call and make your voice heard. There are definitely enough of us who care about this to encourage Canon to take the decision.

** A BIT MORE OF INFORMATION **

According to a Press Conference Report in Japan, a single Digic 4 is capable of handling 24p and 60p:

http://dc.watch.impress.co.jp/docs/news/20090901_312421.html

It also tells that Canon didn’t take a decision yet, regarding the 5D Mark II.

In that conference appears Dr. Masami Kawasaki, President and CEO Canon Marketing and Masaya Maeda Director and Chief Executive of Image Communication Products Operations

Questions & Answers

This is a WORLDWIDE effort to encourage Canon to improve what CAN be improved. It will benefit everyone, Canon included. After all, customers are EVERYTHING for a company. Without customers’ purchases and loyalty, the company wouldn’t survive.

Q: WHAT WOULD CANON GET improving the Firmware?
A: MORE SALES on an already designed camera wich is already in production and has been the best seller over 9 months, so no extra costs needed to keep the profit.

Q: Isn’t that a GREAT deal?
A: Of course!

Q: Would it keep Canon on TOP of DSLR market, also at good place in competition with RED?
A: Absolutely!

Q: How do we contact or let Canon know about what we need and request?
A: You can CALL Canon, it’s the best and fastest way. You can also contact Canon by online support and ask that your request be forwarded to the product manager. Be respectful, explain valid arguments and also what you think.

Read the previous post and the next post before contacting Canon.

September 3, 2009 Posted by | Articles & Tech Info, Campaigns, EOS 5D Mk II, Tech Ideas | , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

CANON: WHAT IS GOING ON?

Edit: Please also check next post  Canon: What is going on? (2)


In the light of the 7D having the features we all (owners of 5D Mark II) want and NEED,  we will say this very clear this time:

1- Canon DID have a Firmware with “full manual control” for the 5D Mark II since many months before their release on June 2009. Actually, the firmware was created around end 2008. So the statement about “big engineering efforts” to bring full manual control to customers due “popular demand” is NOT true, is a farce.

The only truth is that they already had it, and the demand was HUGE. So they decided to give it to customers (after improving the unofficial firmware a bit, to give more accuracy on settings and ease of use)

2- Canon ALREADY has 24/25p firmware for 5D Mark II, it was tested in many productions since months ago.
It seemed it needed to be improved though.

1 & 2 are something that some few more people do know for a fact.

NOW, WE SHOULD ASK CANON :

– Are you still “listening to customers”?
What about all the cinematography/videography market that invested in 5D Mark II and Full Frame expensive lenses?

What about the so long requested 24/25p and some other (very possible) improvements?
And the HIGHLY needed 29.97 instead of the current non-standard 30.00?

– Even more, what about a 720p option, that could help so many customers/professionals a lot in many jobs, which would also extend the current recording time limit (which is in fact a 4GB file size limit)?

– Are you going to offer 24/25/30 at Full HD (1080p) and HD (720p), and even 60fps at VGA (640×480) in a $1,000 cheaper, cropped sensor camera and forget everything you achieved in the market with the 5D Mark II and all your customers?

– Or are you going to put more efforts and improve the 5D Mark II Firmware too ?

The full manual control was publicly released due the HUGE demand and popularity, it was a convenient move in business terms.
If we all (community around the world) hadn’t requested it by every possible way, it could have probably been never released (officially, cause it was already “there”).

– Canon should take care of customers loyalty, even for a matter of business.
So many responses given by tech support when asking about manual control were kind of joke, completely unprofessional, like some statements in the original 5D Mark II White Paper (removed from 5D MK II webpage after a while)

– If Canon does not improve 5D Mark II, we are getting used to be treated VERY unprofessionally, with silence as answers to our questions/request, or with responses that say nothing but “we can not tell anything about what Canon is or is not going to…”

– Customers of a professional camera and professional line of lenses, investing thousands of dollars in Canon equipment deserve respect, good customer service, attention, and clear answers to their inquiries and requests.

We are not talking about a $200 camera, but a $2,700 body-only camera…

– Magic Lantern Project team has proven to be more efficient and creative in few months, than Canon with all their resources in a much longer period of time.

So, WHAT IS GOING ON CANON? ARE YOU STILL LISTENING TO THOUSANDS OF CUSTOMERS AROUND THE WORLD?

We are tired of being a kind of toys in the business topic.
In the facts, customers are EVERYTHING for a company. Without customers’ purchases and loyalty, the company will not survive.

September 1, 2009 Posted by | Campaigns, EOS 5D Mk II, Special Info | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

   

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