New 60D buying experience and shutter count, the long version...

Started Dec 30, 2011 | Discussions thread
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SebastianK
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New 60D buying experience and shutter count, the long version...
Dec 30, 2011

I have purchased a new 60D with the 18-200mm package from BB in Canada on Dec 23rd, 2011. I had a lot of fun with my T90 but I put photography on hold for almost ten years. After quite a bit of research I decided to get back into the hobby with a 60D.

The purchase was done in Canada with BB matching the price of a small chain in Quebec with additional +10% off for a final price of $1212 before taxes, which worked out to be better then the Boxing week sale price so I was quite happy with the gamble on the timing of this purchase.

During unpacking I noticed a few things little things that seemed odd. For one the box flaps were quite easily opened and not rigid like you would expect from a "new" cardboard. All the packaging on the battery, manuals, CDs was intact. No marks, smudges or fingerprints were noticeable on battery, memory compartment, camera body, screen or the lens. I did notice that the gold contacts on the lens had a slide mark through the middle indicating that it was previously mounted. I did not think much of it assuming that the lens would be mounted for QC testing purposes during manufacturing. I know that the Canon boxes do not come sealed so that was not a red flag.

I verified the shutter count when new (before taking first shot) with gphoto2 on Fedora 16 and it showed it to be 14 with the internal battery info counter on the new Canon showing 0. I did not think much of it again deducing that QC procedures at Canaon most likely put the body though a test firing sequence.

I tested the camera over Christmas with over 300 shots and noted that a lot of the shots made with the use of built in flash in auto as well as P, TV or AV modes are underexposed by 2/3 to 1 EV. No such underexposure was detectable with shots taken without the flash indoors or outside. I tested the camera with the speedlite 320EX and got the same underexposure issue with the speedlite underexposure slightly more pronounced. I figured no big deal, I will most likely shoot under non auto mode anyways and it is easily corrected by compensating by 2/3 EV under the flash menu settings. But this bothered me a bit. A higher end camera should be a little better calibrated in my opinion.

I contacted Canon service in Canada via email asking if the shutter count might indicate "previous use". I also asked if evidence of mounting on the gold lens contacts is normal for anew lens. The service email reply instructed me to call them back due to "technical nature" of the query. They though it might be easier to discuss this over the phone. I just called them today and was told that the cameras do not come with a shutter count of zero. However, the many "side" questions about the general condition of the packaging and battery shutter release count got me thinking a few hours after the conversation that something did not seem right to the person on the other end, despite the answer he eventually provided me with.

I purchased the camera also for my wife to use and I knew she will find it annoying to switch away from auto mode into another mode such a P to manually compensate by 2/3EV under flash settings to get the lighting wright. In the end I decided to exchange the camera today at BB on the off chance that this was a slightly miss-calibrated unit. I did ask the BB service person about the 14 shutter count and to my amazement she did acknowledge that it might have been "tested" by a customer if they had no display model. After I got the camera exchanged I again verified the shutter count with gphoto2 in Fedora 16 and to my surprise the new unit had a count of 0. I wonder if the service rep just gave me a story line or just did not know and decided to fill in the blanks on his own... In the end it would make sense for Canon to re-set the counter to 0 even after a test sequence prior to shipping new units out. The underexposure is still there to a lesser degree though @ 1/3 EV :). It is still much darker then the the point and shoot cameras which I always found to be on the other extreme and overexpose.

BTW I hear a low level humming noise almost like a fan but with a bit of cracking component to the noise from the lens stabilizer unit (when in "on" position) with the shutter release button half pressed. Is this normal? Not used to the new DSLRs...

Overall so far so good.

 SebastianK's gear list:SebastianK's gear list
Canon EOS 60D
Canon EOS 60D Sony Cyber-shot DSC-T90
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