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How to Check how many Shutter Clicks are on your Nikon or Canon D-SLR

Updated on October 1, 2012
Camera Shutter
Camera Shutter | Source

Some photographers may not pay much attention to the fact that one day the shutter of their prized D-SLR will eventually give out. Mind you, you can replace a shutter at a pricey value or you can try your best not to take many pictures! Is this really a good idea though? Lets explore this as well as how to find out how many shutter clicks you have already made on your D-SLR.

Your D-SLR's shutter lifespan

Let's face it, you'll need to take roughly over 200,000 images before your shutter comes to a grinding halt. The actual 'end figure' depends on the model camera that you have, and even then most shutters go beyond that figure. An online expectancy lifespan database will give you actual average lifespans of various model D-SLR cameras that can be useful to predict the lifespan of your D-SLR. There’s no guarantee beyond the threshold given by your camera’s Manufacturer. Manufacturers may give hints of this threshold figure, but is not something that they advertise for obvious reasons.

What's so special about the shutter?

The shutter can be perceived as the life force of a camera, and is the reason we can speak of shutter speed and aperture -- two of the most foundational concepts in photography. When you press on the shutter release button, the shutter curtains will open allowing a certain amount of light, and close to complete the capture of a scene. With each click, actuation or snap, your shutter is worn a little more.

Online utilities for checking shutter clicks

There are several ways to check out the number of shutter clicks that you have already made. We’ll explore the utilities, all web-based, that you can use on your brand and model camera to determine the number of shutter clicks.

NIKON

To be able to determine the shutter clicks from your Nikon D-SLR, you’ll need to be able to extract such information from the EXIF data from an image file. The file may be an NEF or JPG file depending on the utility that you use. Some popular online utilities used are:

CANON

It’s not as easy to determine the shutter count of Canon D-SLRs as it is with Nikon and other brands. The shutter information is apparently not stored on the EXIF data of image files. Canon, Inc. suggests to its customers to carry their D-SLR to a Canon service center or ship it to the nearest outlet. Not very convenient, but it maybe the method best suited for the super-safe photographer.

If you wish to use an online utility, then check out: Astrojargon’s EOSInfo (for Windows Users) or 40DShutterCount (for Mac Users). Alternatively, you could also use EOSCount that requires you to connect your camera to your computer via USB cord. There are several other free utilities that you can use, and you can check [here] more detailed information. With any of these utilities, find out if your model camera is supported.

Preserving your shutter by taking less pictures?

Now that you have the info on how to check shutter actuations on your Canon or Nikon D-SLR, we return to the matter of preserving your shutter. It’s just inevitable that the shutter will wear, and it really shouldn’t cramp your shooting intensity. If you focus on taking quality photos, those very photos may be able to compensate for the replacement of a new shutter or better yet a new D-SLR.

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