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How to Find the Shutter Actuation Count of your Nikon or Canon Digital SLR

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How to Find the Shutter Actuation Count of your Nikon or Canon Digital SLR

If you are thinking of selling or buying a used DSLR you might want to know how many pictures the camera has actually taken.  For Nikon and Canon owner's you just might be in luck as there are a few ways to get this information.  

Canon DSLR Owners

If you own a DIGIC III or IV digital camera, a programmed called EOSinfo from astrojargon.net will help you find this information.   The EOSinfo software works with most Canon DSLR's that have the DIGIC III or DIGIC IV processor, though it is not compatible with the Canon EOS 1D series and I couldn't get it to work with the new EOS 7D. It does work fine with the Canon EOS 5D Mark II (20,128 shots taken - see photo above) and while it recognized my older EOS Rebel XT with Digic II processor it was not able to provide the picture count.

EOSinfo is for Windows only

If you own an older Canon DSLR (10D, Rebel XT, etc.) there is a free way of getting this information, but it's a bit more technical since it requires using a HEX editor (free as well). You can find out how over at the forums on digital-photography-school.com

Nikon DSLR Owners

If you own a Nikon DSLR you should be able to use one of the following methods.  

  • Preview Extractor is a windows program that will get that information from your Nikon DSLR. 

  • For those that use Adobe Photoshop (Mac or Windows) you can also get that information by opening up the last image the camera has taken, then select File --> File Info  (alt-shift-CTRL-I) from the drop-down menu.  Click on the last item labeled "Advanced" and then expand the fourth item down ("Aux Image Number"). This is the shutter actuation count as of that particular image.

Why is it important to know a cameras picture count?

The shutter in most consumer DSLR's are rated for 100,000 actuation's (newer models like the Canon EOS 7D and Nikon D300/s are rated for 150,000).   This doesn't mean that the shutter will stop working at 100,000, it just means that there is a higher likelihood that you'll need the replace the shutter mechanism sooner rather than later.  It also doesn't mean that the shutter will last 100,000 actuation's.  

This information is important when purchasing a used DSLR or when selling your DSLR.  A prospective buyer will most likely want to know how many pictures the camera has taken in order to gauge it's worth to them.  This information is good to know even if you're not selling your camera.

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