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Thread: Does the number of shots of a camera matter?

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    Senior Member limwhow's Avatar
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    Default Does the number of shots of a camera matter?

    I read in one of the forums someone was mentioning that it's difficult to find a second hand camera (5dmkII) that hasn't been fired for less than 20,000 shots (or something to that effect).
    Does it matter how many shots a camera has been fired? Something like the mileage of a second hand car?
    Does it mean that there is an actual finite number of exposures a camera can take before it starts to fail? All along I thought cameras can last a long time with no major problems, at least not one that is related to the number of exposures.
    Would appreciate all your advice.

  2. #2
    Member Cartman2000's Avatar
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    Default Re: Does the number of shots of a camera matter?

    Well, the 5D2 will last you 150k shots according to the rated shutter life. It depends on the price, if its not too far from a new set then I guess we know which one to get.

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    Senior Member limwhow's Avatar
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    Default Re: Does the number of shots of a camera matter?

    Cartman2000, thanks for your info. Actually, a simple day outing would easily translate into about 500-1000 exposures (approximately lah). So let's say if we do 1000 exposures, then wouldn't that mean that in about half a year's time (if we shoot everyday), a brand new MkII will expire? That's terrible, isn't it?

  4. #4

    Default Re: Does the number of shots of a camera matter?

    I think if you shoot at 1000 shots a day, you better be making money with your camera system. Today I managed to shoot about 100 shots. This is the most I can do in a day. i normally just shoot about 20 shot a day average.
    5D MK.II, 50 f/1.8II, 70-200 f/4L IS, 430EX II

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    Default Re: Does the number of shots of a camera matter?

    Well, i dont believe every outing u will be taking 1000++ shot rite..sometime maybe lesser..if everyday 1000shot may i knw wat r u shooting?hehe.,,.,red light camera and speed camera work everyday i dont think they shot so much in total also.hehe.,..

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    Senior Member limwhow's Avatar
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    Default Re: Does the number of shots of a camera matter?

    Hahaha... Just wasting batteries and shutter life lor - firing away!

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    Default Re: Does the number of shots of a camera matter?

    1000 shots a day is possible when you are an event photographer. It is the average number of shots that I bring back after a serious event coverage for my school or church, depending on the duration. For my cousin's wedding, I shot as a guest and managed 1.4k shots.

    So yes, 1k per shoot is a possible number. 1k per day for someone who isn't earning money from it seems overkill. But if your computer can take it, why not?

    The issue here is the shutter life. I'm not a pro, but I managed to shoot 54k on my 400D in one year. Shutter mechanisms are replaceable. I replaced my 400D shutter (with 2 year warranty i.e. no labor cost) for S$50 excl GST. For the 5D2 that'll definitely be more expensive.

    If you can afford the memory space needed to sustain 1000 x 21mp shots a day, you should be able to sustain the cost of the shutter replacement per half year imo.
    Our pictures are our footprints. Itís the best way to tell people we were here - JoeMcnally | Flickr

  8. #8

    Default Re: Does the number of shots of a camera matter?

    Quote Originally Posted by limwhow View Post
    Actually, a simple day outing would easily translate into about 500-1000 exposures (approximately lah). So let's say if we do 1000 exposures, then wouldn't that mean that in about half a year's time (if we shoot everyday), a brand new MkII will expire? That's terrible, isn't it?
    Actually it's pretty hard to average 1,000 shots a day for half a year and I don't even think you have time to post process that many photos. Anyway, 150,000 MCBF (industry term to measure reliability) is only an average. For every camera shutter that is DOA (and it does happen), there will be a shutter that last 300,000 (statistically at least). My whole point is.. worry less, shoot more. For professionals, if one of the 1,000 shots a day for half a year is the money shot, it could more than pay for the camera many times over.
    Canon 5DII/7D 15 35L 50/1.4 85II 100L 300/2.8IS 10-22 17-55 16-35II 17-40 24-105 70-200/2.8IS 580EX

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    Senior Member limwhow's Avatar
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    Default Re: Does the number of shots of a camera matter?

    Quote Originally Posted by Headshotzx View Post
    1000 shots a day is possible when you are an event photographer. It is the average number of shots that I bring back after a serious event coverage for my school or church, depending on the duration. For my cousin's wedding, I shot as a guest and managed 1.4k shots.

    So yes, 1k per shoot is a possible number. 1k per day for someone who isn't earning money from it seems overkill. But if your computer can take it, why not?

    The issue here is the shutter life. I'm not a pro, but I managed to shoot 54k on my 400D in one year. Shutter mechanisms are replaceable. I replaced my 400D shutter (with 2 year warranty i.e. no labor cost) for S$50 excl GST. For the 5D2 that'll definitely be more expensive.

    If you can afford the memory space needed to sustain 1000 x 21mp shots a day, you should be able to sustain the cost of the shutter replacement per half year imo.
    Thanks, man, for making me feel more reassured.
    For a moment I really thought I was going cuckoo shooting so many shots (of course, ending up throwing away a great chunk of unwanted ones lah). But your second part was even more reassuring. Because if we can change the shutter mechanism then I guess it's not that scary to fire away, knowing that at the end of the day the cost of a repair/change is not that daunting.

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    Senior Member limwhow's Avatar
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    Default Re: Does the number of shots of a camera matter?

    Quote Originally Posted by flyer View Post
    Actually it's pretty hard to average 1,000 shots a day for half a year and I don't even think you have time to post process that many photos. Anyway, 150,000 MCBF (industry term to measure reliability) is only an average. For every camera shutter that is DOA (and it does happen), there will be a shutter that last 300,000 (statistically at least). My whole point is.. worry less, shoot more. For professionals, if one of the 1,000 shots a day for half a year is the money shot, it could more than pay for the camera many times over.
    Good good. I agree with what you say - don't think too much, just shoot.
    Well, I am definitely not a professional photographer. But maybe that makes me more insecure such that I need to fire more exposures. And then again, I believe my experience is not up to it yet to be confident enough to 'one shot one kill' kind of like that.

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    Default Re: Does the number of shots of a camera matter?

    I think pro cant even one shot one kill...if not wedding event y they take so many shots and only take the good wan n remove all the blur ones..even for sport photographer they have to take how many thousands of test shot before the game start and lets not say during the game..

    BTW,,,for us as a hobbist(most of us) jus enjoy n shot..if wanna enjoy tis hobby, dont be calculative abt what shuttle counter etc..haha

  12. #12
    Member Cartman2000's Avatar
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    Default Re: Does the number of shots of a camera matter?

    Wedding event is a different story. That one you need to make sure that at least a certain number of shots are usable, or else GG to the photographer already.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Does the number of shots of a camera matter?

    In the age of digital photography, casual shooters think less before taking a shot. So certain shutter count will be much higher.

    1000 shots is 28 rolls of film! Kudos to digital.

    However limiting your shots can help in various things imho. Can improve composition, error awareness and gives you time to refresh for new ideas and urge one to carry on. (Many people get engrossed trying to re-fire one shot far too many times!)

    Once technicality and composition has improved, having 1000 casual shots a day would be a bane and not a boon!

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    Default Re: Does the number of shots of a camera matter?

    They were probably talking about the 5D I because it has been around for quite a while liao...

    I think the point about the shuttercount is that it tells you how much that unit was used. I mean it is like if there are two body on sale in the marketplace for same price, why would you not want the one with the lower shuttercount right? But then personally I think a low shuttercount might not mean the camera has not been abused, a high shuttercount does not mean the camera was mist-treated.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Does the number of shots of a camera matter?

    TBH, I can't figure out how many shutter count I have racked up since i got my camera. For most its probably counting the shots they took which is saved inside some PC folders. But that could be an underestimate as you would have removed alot of blurred shots.
    5D MK.II, 50 f/1.8II, 70-200 f/4L IS, 430EX II

  16. #16

    Default Re: Does the number of shots of a camera matter?

    Quote Originally Posted by Alex chong View Post
    TBH, I can't figure out how many shutter count I have racked up since i got my camera. For most its probably counting the shots they took which is saved inside some PC folders. But that could be an underestimate as you would have removed alot of blurred shots.
    There are software available to check the cam's shutter count, though not 100% accurate but definitely better than depending on the file no., which can be reset. Anyway, there's always CSC if you must know the real shutter count.
    Canon 5DII/7D 15 35L 50/1.4 85II 100L 300/2.8IS 10-22 17-55 16-35II 17-40 24-105 70-200/2.8IS 580EX

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    Senior Member CS TAN's Avatar
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    Default Re: Does the number of shots of a camera matter?

    Quote Originally Posted by Alex chong View Post
    TBH, I can't figure out how many shutter count I have racked up since i got my camera. For most its probably counting the shots they took which is saved inside some PC folders. But that could be an underestimate as you would have removed alot of blurred shots.
    since you are using 5D2, you can use this utility to check your shutter count. Follow the instructions and it is quite straight forward.
    http://astrojargon.net/(X(1)S(mwoj3fzyueornjawo5hrjwaf))/40dshuttercount.aspx?AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1
    Canon 5D Mark II | 24-105L | 35L | 85L II | 135L | Samyang 14mm 2.8

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    Senior Member CS TAN's Avatar
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    Default Re: Does the number of shots of a camera matter?

    Quote Originally Posted by limwhow View Post
    I read in one of the forums someone was mentioning that it's difficult to find a second hand camera (5dmkII) that hasn't been fired for less than 20,000 shots (or something to that effect).
    Does it matter how many shots a camera has been fired? Something like the mileage of a second hand car?
    Does it mean that there is an actual finite number of exposures a camera can take before it starts to fail? All along I thought cameras can last a long time with no major problems, at least not one that is related to the number of exposures.
    Would appreciate all your advice.
    Don't worry, the shutter mechanism replacement will cost between $50-200 depends on models. If you can afford a 5D2, then $200 is a fair amount to pay to replace the shutter mechanism.

    If you are not a professional shooting events all the time, I would say you will have a hard time shooting 1000 shots/week consistently. That will take you around 3 years to reach the 150,000 mark. And even if you reach that count, it doesn't mean that the shutter mechanism will stop functioning.
    Canon 5D Mark II | 24-105L | 35L | 85L II | 135L | Samyang 14mm 2.8

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    Senior Member Diavonex's Avatar
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    Default Re: Does the number of shots of a camera matter?

    I would'nt worry because we normally replace our camera before the shutter is worn.

  20. #20

    Default Re: Does the number of shots of a camera matter?

    If it's any gauge, I'm a hobbyist, and my D70 has clocked approximately 33,000 shutter count in its 3 years long relationship with me! Ha! And I handle events occassionally. Even then, I rarely go past 500 shots in a regular 5hr event.

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