Canon 5D Mark III Error Message 70 Followup

Greetings!  In an earlier post here, I wrote about a brand new Canon 5D Mark III body shutting down with an Error 70 message.  My home town camera store replaced the body because it was DOA. I then purchased a second 5D Mark III body plus the 70-200 f2.8 L Series II lens, as well as all new CF and SD cards that are dedicated to these cameras.  I chose to use the Sandisk Extreme 16GB, and those seem to work well with all of my bodies.  I have a separate set of cards for my two Canon 7D bodies and this system seems to work well.  So far, the cameras have performed beautifully.  One of the new features of the Mark III that I like the most is the silent shutter mode.  It really makes a difference when shooting in many situations.  It seems that if people are less aware of the noise of the camera, they are much more natural and relaxed.  I also like the HDR option on these bodies for when I’m shooting architecture that would otherwise require merging to HDR in Photoshop or Lightroom.  I haven’t taken the 5D Mark III cameras into any seriously extreme conditions yes, but when I head to Svalbard in June with National Geographic Expeditions, we’ll see how they hold up to the arctic.  Right now I use my 7D cameras for wildlife and underwater, which is really great.  I enjoy being able to have 8 fps when photographing subjects like sea lions or surfing.  The 5D Mark III cameras perform well for most editorial and commercial purposes.

While snorkeling at Champion Islet we encountered some very playful sea lions who had no problem posing for the camera!

While snorkeling at Champion Islet on an expedition with National Geographic in the Galapagos, we encountered some very playful sea lions who had no problem posing for the camera!  Photographed with a Canon 7D with a 10-22mm lens in an SPL under-water splash housing

Canon 5D Mark III Error 70 Message

Last week, I decided to take the plunge and flip my 5D Mark II cameras with 5D Mark III bodies. The other thing I had been drooling over was the Canon 70 – 200mm f2.8 L II IS lens, so added that to my shopping cart. Today, after shooting less than 100 images on my 5D Mark III, I was stopped in my tracks by an Error 70 message. It persisted even though I changed lenses – the error message was still displayed with both the 24-105mm F4 L Series IS USM and the brand new 70-200. The forums suggest that this is a problem with the CF card, but I formatted this card in the 5D Mark III prior to shooting anything. Since I had this problem with the 5D Mark II, and Canon ended up replacing the motherboard, I’m not convinced that this is simply a write problem with the CF card. Right now, the plan is to exchange the camera for a new body. We shall see… I’ll keep you updated.

Canon 5D Mark III Error 70 message - less than 100 frames shot on this brand new body.  Grrrr.....

Canon 5D Mark III Error 70 message – less than 100 frames shot on this brand new body. Grrrr…..

Canon 5D Mark II Error 01 Message Follow-up

I have gotten tons of traffic to my previous blog post about my experience with the Canon 24-105mm lens problem.  Basically, if you get an Error 01 message on your camera and you’re shooting with a 24-105, it is the lens, not the camera.  I now have two of these lenses that I travel with: one new one and the old one which has been serviced.  It seems like there is no rhyme or reason to the failure, it happens spontaneously and without notice, leaving whoever is shooting with that lens stranded.   Canon has been very responsive to all of my problems – their CPS program is top notch.  But it is indeed irritating to be on location and have equipment failure.  On the other hand, I’ve had my fair share of purely mechanical failures before the popularity of shooting digital.  My Hasselblad has fallen apart more times than I care to think, but because it’s mechanical and the problem is usually due to normal wear and tear that a professional would bestow upon heavily used equipment.  This issue with the Canon 24-105mm lens is vexing, but I haven’t been notified of a recall.  If I am, I’ll be sure to post about it and if I get any insight from Canon as to why this problem seems so prevalent, I will share whatever information I can.  All I can say is that if you are going to get the lens repaired, send the body in to a Canon Factory Service Center with it and have everything inspected and cleaned at the same time. If you are a serious pro shooter, apply for the CPS program.  The technicians know their stuff and do a great job with repairs and cleaning.  Happy Shooting!

Attention Canon 5D users: KNOWN MIRROR ISSUE

If you have a Canon 5D camera, Canon has announced on their web site that there is a known issue with the mirror.

“We have discovered that, in rare instances, the main mirror of some EOS 5D Digital SLR cameras may detach due to deterioration in the strength of the adhesive.”

In a previous post, I talked about how my mirror came off in the middle of a shoot.  Assuming that I simply have bad luck with digital cameras, I shrugged it off and shipped the 5D off to the Canon factory repair center as soon as I returned home.  I decided to do a little bit of googling about the issue and up popped the site from Canon, with their mea culpa.  They will fix the issue, free of charge, including shipping.  Call the 1-800 number on the web page listed below for service.

Click on the screen shot to be directed to Canon’s support page and good luck!

Screen shot of Canon's Support Page for the 5D Mirror issue

Canon 5D Mark II Error 01 Message

Two weeks ago, during a critical moment while I was shooting on a photography assignment, my Canon 5D Mark II started giving me an “Error 01” message saying there was a communication error between the lens and the camera.  I called my most favorite Canon rep and he suggested that I try the lens on a second body, just to make sure it was the lens and not the body. (I had a whole boatload of trouble with my first 5D Mark II).  I put the troublesome lens, my favorite 24-105 f/4 IS USM, on my older Canon 5D and instead of intermittent error messages, the camera would lock the mirror up and I’d have to turn the camera off in order to get it functioning again. Both bodies worked perfectly with all the other lenses in my kit.  I started searching for a new lens to buy because I had a sunset location to be at in 2 hours (YIKES).  Every camera store I called had the lens on back order.   I was luckily able to secure a loaner.  Sure enough, the loaner lens worked perfectly on both bodies and I subsequently sent my malfunctioning 24-105 to the Canon Repair Center in Irvine.  I am a Silver member of CPS and they turned the lens around in about a week.  I’ve tested it briefly and it appears to be in good working order.  They even replaced a few extra parts and put the lens back into virtually new condition.  Thank you Canon!!!  Here are a couple of photos which I am fond of, both of which were made with the Canon 5D Mark II and the 24-105 f/4 IS USM lens.


coconut rice for the B.B.Q. and sunset sailing off of the island of Maui

images copyright © 2009 Susan Seubert Photography

Canon 5D Mark II Repair – DOH!!

As is evidenced in previous posts, I was having trouble with my 5D Mark II on an assignment: the camera was giving me an “error 70” message and shutting down.  I sent the camera in to Canon’s Factory Service Center and they quickly replaced the main board and “other electrical adjustments, inspections and cleanings were carried out.”  The return paperwork included the following note, “The service on your equipment has been completed.  As part of Canon’s commitment to its customers, you can be assured that your equipment has been returned to Factory Specifications.”

Ah, so I was resting assured.  I shot a few photos with it, but didn’t really test it rigorously until today as I’ve been on vacation 🙂 Lo, the images the camera is producing are suddenly now full of banding and heavy pixilating.    YIKES!!!  So off it goes to the repair shop again.  The camera was producing very smooth, beautiful files at even the highest iso’s until it shut down with the error 70 message, so I’m a bit mystified by this new problem.  I’ve compared the RAW files I shot this morning to files that were shot before I sent the camera in.  I also looked at photos taken under the same conditions with the same lens with my Canon 5D and the 5D photos are lovely.  (Before I started blogging, I had a similar problem with the first 5D I purchased.  It had all kinds of electrical difficulties, so I had it repaired and sold it.  I then owned two 5D’s and loved them both.  I bought the 5D Mark II because of the 21.1 MP CMOS sensor and gigantic native file size, and of course the video action is irresistible.)

Because I always think that the best solution is often the most simple, I double and triple checked the camera settings before concluding that the camera is having more problems.  It may be that I got a lemon, it certainly happens.  I just hope they fix the camera, or give me a new one, before my assignments coming up this next month.

To all of you Canon 5D Mark II lovers, beware!  Keep a close eye on your camera body… it may betray you…