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Intervalometer on Canon Eos M, Billboyheritagesurvey - s Blog

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Intervalometer on Canon Eos M

The Canon Eos M has 4 important characteristics for KAP:

  • it is relatively cheap
  • has an APSC size sensor
  • is fairly light at 380g (less than the 534g Powershot G1x)
  • an intervalometer is availabe for it

This makes it the lightest of the first APSC format mirror-less cameras with a firmware intervalometer. So it looks like a good AutoKAP workhorse.

I’m not a fan of the AutoKAP technique but recent trials with the Powershot A2300 have reminded me of the benefits, it’s a light weight, low stress option allowing full concentration on the kite and can provide good cover for aerial panoramas. The resolution of the A2300 imagery was something of a disappointment so a step up to the Eos M, despite the weight penalty, seemed logical.

As CHDK is to Powershot, Magic Lantern (ML) is to Eos, it includes an intervalometer function and an Alpha version has been released for the Eos ‘M’ model.

I found getting ML working a bit awkward compared to its sister CHDK and because the Eos M is fairly new there is not too much help available. Here is how I got it working after reading though the ML forum thread. The Eos M camera has touch screen control which means a mixture of screen taps and button presses are needed.

Unlike CHDK, Magic Lantern firmware is installed in camera memory and remains there so there is a nasty feeling of irreversible change in all this. There is an uninstall procedure and removing the battery has the desired re-set action when the camera locks up.

The installation procedure is well explained on the ML web site, the only variation for the Eos M is that manual mode (M) is available from a screen tap menu (at ‘CA’ in the top left of the shooting screen below) rather than the more familiar ‘PASM’ dial setting (it doesn’t have one!). Once in manual mode the firmware update option is available from the menu button.

With the camera booted at the shooting preview screen, the ML options overlay the Canon screen info:

Clearly it is loaded OK so how on earth to you get it started then?

A 2 finger tap on the touch screen does the trick. This brings up either a useful menu or an info screen like this:

half-press the shutter release and the first menu screen looks like this:

however *sometimes it looks like this:

In tiny print at the bottom of the screen a message tells me the intervalometer is hiding! Pressing the menu button ( yep the actual button on the camera) reveals the hidden item:

The on/off option works with the ‘set’ buton and the next level menu opens with a single finger screen tap:

Once the interval is set you are returned to the previous menu and a half-press of the shutter button should get things started:

The intervalometer is stopped with the review button. Restarting it requires working through the menus again from the ‘double tap’ on.

A quick slap up AutoKAP rig from the parts bin, weighing in at 480g, and off we go into a building gale…after a short, thrilling, test flight with the PFK I discover the flaw in the idea.

When the camera was recovered from its roller-coaster ride on the kite line it was no longer shooting. Hmm. The rig was still panning manfully..zzt…1..2..3…..zzt…1…2…3… but there was no action from the camera. It was stuck on the preview screen and wouldn’t respond. Power off /power on and it was back. It had managed about 200 blurred shots and then stopped.

A single frame was sharp:

The default shooting setting on the camera is ‘Creative Auto’, I liked the sound of that but it’s biased to low ISO and low shutter speed: a hopeless combo for KAP! That explains the blur but why did the intervalometer stop?

A repeat exercise revealed the red square of death condition showing a failure to achieve AF which stops the intervalometer advancing (in fact the firmware gives up altogether and locks).

The intervalometer is easily stalled if:

  • the AF can’t achieve focus (indicated by a ‘red square of death’ in the preview screen: a ‘power cycle’ reboot is needed to recover control of the camera)
  • excessive movement of the rig moves the focal point in and out of meter range
  • random screen tapping (such as mounting the camera on the rig, attempting to change the focal weighting, or even motion of the rig itself causes ML to lockup after failing to resolve the conflicting commands from screen taps and script.

I have found the ‘AF operation= Servo AF’ to be the most robust using a ‘Flexi Zone = Single’ setting but even this is knocked over fairly easily by camera movement.

The 22m lens has no image stabilisation function unlike the heavier 18-55mm tele/wide option, setting a high ISO, high shutter speed and fixed focus will be required..

…focus fixed to infinity, ISO 400, shutter priority (TV Ae) at 1/125th s a 6-8mph evening breeze (and sunlight…. at last!):

420 shots acquired in 20min before sunset with only a handful of rejects. Most of the duds were as the sun set and the inevitable underexposures occurred.

My next attempt, in stronger light (but softer wind) produced a good block of sharp imagery although just oblique enough to make stitching into a panorama near impossible:

The AutoKAP rig comprises a Brooxes picavet and pan gear, GentLED ‘ClickPan’ and adjuster, a single cell LiPo 3.7 v 550mA battery, gears by KAP shop: pan gear = 40 teeth, servo gear = 20 teeth. The pan step is 12 deg giving 30 steps to the circle. Step speed (variable) is 5s which means it takes 2and a half minutes to complete a circle.

A frame to frame comparison shows the Eos M photo-scale over the A2300 is much improved (no surprise there given the spec!) as is resolution (hard to judge without a parallel rig so these are approximately similar images) Eos M image on the right:

*red menus show hidden options. Options can be hidden from the menu lists by toggling the menu button with the item selected with the ‘arrow’ function of the main dial.

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Thank you ever so much for the thoughtful progress report. As I have a fair bit of Canon dSLR gear and I am currently using a T2i as my regular KAP camera, I have been eyeing the EOS-M with great interest. I am close to purchasing one and welcome any further assessments you might offer.

I find time spent on your site invariably well spent.

Thanks for the comment Chris,

I’d say the Eos M was a good bet IF you can cope with the AF grief. So far I’m pleased with the images but I will try a GentLED shutter release for close up work as Nestor at

found the AF dosn’t fail so often under shutter control as opposed to using the Magic Lantern intervalometer.

Hi, very nice pics.

I am not involved in KAP but I am looking at the EOS M despite its bad AF. Because you are using ML on EOS M and those doing this are certainly not that much, please would you tell me if focus peaking works well OK on EOS M. I have seen it on EOS 550D on witch ML is far more advanced, but never on EOS M.

Excuse my laborious english.

Thanks for taking a look Chris J,

I’m sorry to say I can’t really comment on focus peaking performance on the Eos M under Magic Lantern. As far as I can tell the ML build for the Eos M is not fully fetaured, the focus menu is absent! What I can say is that it is possible to learn to live with this camera and I wouldn’t let the nay sayers put you off. Yes the AF is slow compared to DSLR but its about the same for the Leica X1. The AF speed of the Fuji X100s is exceptional for a mirrorless camera…and so is the price! I consider the Eos M to be very good value for an APSC sensor size compact.

Thanks Billboy for your quick answer.

I’m interested in mirorless camera because I am still doing film photography with my canon new F1 and T90 with some FD lenses and I plan to keep on film for B&W shots and to go with digital camera for color ones. I want to use my good old FD lenses on the digital camera and for that the focus peaking is really a good thing as I have read it.

That said, I am not that afraid of the AF performance. I have to test it once to make my mind.

just picked up an eos m and was reading what others thought on magic lantern. I’ve installed it on my eos m and have to say focus peaking is top notch. Just like on my 5d3. So far my only gripe is how the info on screen overlaps each other (seen in pic 2 above). On my slr i choose info screen for canon info, or ML info.

I’ve been testing out mine using the ef adapter and a few dif lenses, mainly 35 f2.0 and 24-105 f4. Ironically in live view on my 5d3 the focus speed is the same as the eos m. I will try to have a write up on my blog with some video tests in the next week or so. When i can get to it. Hope this helps a bit.

Nice to know the ML focus peaking is there, I don’t use it and couldn’t find it. Most useful to know.

I like your comparison with SLR live view Autofocus speed…I’don’t think any of those work at a life like speed. My D5100 is apalling!

It is what i did. I have found that ML seems to put the EOS a little warmer than usual but it works. Unlike stable ML 2.3 on some cameras, there is no way to configure focus peaking. For what I have read, the best config is not available yet on EOS M. Let’s come next releases.

I got my EOS M. Thanks for your advices. It is really a good camera. The AF speed, as I can see in my tests, is ok to take photos, even if it could be quicker sometimes. Let’s wait for this : http://www.canon.co.nz/About-Canon/News-Events/News-Press-Releases/EOS-M-Firmware?cid=scfbnz1306004

Thanks Chris J that is encouraging news:

looks a good bet for KAP and the firmware AF speed increase has got to be better than 1st release.

I have been getting good results

and a wider lens with stabilisation can only help!

An updated release of MagicLantern for firmaware version 2.02 is here:

Sadly even with the much improved AF performance under version 2.02 AF fails still occur and lock up the intervalometer.

Any reason not to turn off autofocus altogether, preset the camera on manual focus to infinity? Everything in the frame is more than 100 feet away, and at f:5.6 or f:8 the 22mm lens has great depth of field, not that much is needed. Wouldn’t this bypass the problem?

No reason not to and in fact this works well but the chance of missing out on a close up shot of, say, my favorite windmill ending up out of focus puts me off the idea! Because I can’t manually adjust the camera as I shoot there is always a little anxiety that can be avoided if AF takes care of things. I have been out with the Olympus EP1 of late and its AF speed is just the job for this sort of work, sadly its lens is not the best but it’s great to know it will shoot sharp when required.

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By fotosiamo on July 20th 2012

Here it is folks! Thanks to Digicame-info.com and Canonwatch.com, we have the first image of the hotly anticipated Canon mirrorless camera.

Contrary to previous information, it looks like that the EOS M may have an APS-C sensor instead of the smaller 1.85x crop sensor from the Canon G1 X. Mounted on the camera is the EF-M 22mm F/2 STM pancake lens (36mm full frame equivalent). The new mount type is said to be designated as EF-M. One thing that worries me though, is that there is no built-in EVF. I have the Panasonic GH2 and am planning to get the Olympus OM-D very soon. One thing I love about them and also the Sony NEX-7 is that all of them have stellar built-in EVFs. As someone who uses wireless triggers to fire strobes, this is a must and I can’t go back to having to choose either an EVF or a wireless trigger.

We’ll continue to bring more information as they come around. Don’t forget about Canon’s big July 23rd Event, possibly for this EOS M.

Readers, are you looking forward to buying the Canon EOS M?


Thanks to the guys at CanonRumors.com and Digicame-info.com, we now have some more photos and information about the Canon EOS M. So from the looks of it, we are looking at a point&shoot style camera, with very few direct access controls, no EVF, and probably a touchscreen-driven system.

Sources who spoke to 43Rumors.com confirmed that it will be an APS-C camera and that Canon did not want to give Sony the sensor size advantage.

Here is the other piece of info that they were able to get: There will be a more advanced Canon mirrorless within a few months. Hopefully that will have EVF and more direct access controls.

Here are some clear photos of the EOS M, courtesy of CanonPriceWatch.com. Looks like there will be no pop-up flash, just a stereo mic.

Joe is a rising fashion and commercial photographer based in Los Angeles, CA. He blends creativity and edge with a strong style of lighting and emotion in his photographs. Be sure to check out his work at www.fotosiamo.com and connect with him on Google Plus and on Facebook


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Why in the hell would you want an EVF? They are a gift from the devil himself. Rear LCD more than makes up for an EVF; if you want a viewfinder it has to be optical, but on a camera like this it’s not really a necessity.

Because you can’t have a proper OVF on a mirrorless. You obviously haven’t tried the great EVF on the GH2, OM-D, or the NEX-7. They are amazing and almost as good as OVF, they are 100% coverage and as bright as top of the line dSLRs, but with the ability to overlay information, to show over/under-exposure effect in real time, zoom in/focus peaking for manual focus, and even playback your files on it, which really helps when there is a lot of sun and you can’t see the LCD. Oh, and if you are doing all that and trigger strobes wirelessly like I do, it’s very important to have a built-in EVF, not an external EVF. A viewfinder does not have to be optical, it just have to be really good. – Joe

fair point, any EVF i have ever used has been awful with lag and shocking quality. obviously a proper OVF isn’t possible on a mirrorless but my point was more “anything but an EVF” but apparently they have improved since I last tried one. Thanks for the correction:)

EVF is essential for shooting in bars, Blues/Jazz joints, concert halls, back stage. The rear LCD is like carrying a flashlight.

The article states that there is no built in EVF. I may be a little dense, but what is the screen on the back of the camera? What other meaning could EVF have other than electronic viewfinder? Help me understand.

EVF = electronic viewfinder. The LCD on the back of a camera is not a viewfinder – an EVF is a viewfinder you can look into with the camera pressed up to your eye, similar to a traditional SLR or rangefinder.

I think for the camera size, price, image quality, camera control, etc that mirrorless camera is between DSLR and Point and Shoot. In other word, you can get a really good image quality with a mirrorless camera in a much smaller body. This is what I understand. Correct me if I am wrong.

Price-wise, I figure it would be close, if not over $1,000, just like the Pentax K-01, since it’s an APS-C. It’s most likely higher priced than most mu4/3 cameras and the Canon G1 X, as well, because of sensor size and interchangeable lens. – Joe

I like how you take rumour and speculation, even if it is a good image and call it fact and infer that this is official news

At what point did I use the word “official” or the word “fact”? Everything I said is speculative, barring the obvious visual cues, like the lack of built-in EVF, sparse buttons/dials, pop-up flash, or compact camera-like design.

I’m curious about what seems like some switch button on the front top right corner… any idea what it is?

Ohhh, I think is a infrared light or LED and a sensor

what are the benifits of having a mirrorless over a dslr or a regualr point and shoot

When there’s no mirror box, the back of the lens can be closer to the surface of the CCD. This makes for easier, smaller and lighter lens designs, especially for wide angle lenses. Also, the camera is smaller because you don’t have to have a mirror box and space for the mirror to flip up into during capture.

I hope that rear photo isn’t taken with one of these.. focus much?

If anyone can do it well, it will be Canon. However, they will be hard pressed to beat Sony. The NEX lineup is amazing!

I’m fairly disappointed at the way this camera looks. Seriously, look at MOST of the newer mirrorless camera’s and they’re really nice, this thing is ugly. lol

agree. I’m sure the technical specs will be nice, but what an UGLY camera… I’ve been looking at the competition, drooling over the aesthetics and nostalgia… and this is what I’ve been waiting patiently for? Hope the future models aren’t the same body…

[…] Hyundai Veloster https://www.slrlounge.com/hot-off-the…eos-m-revealed HOT OFF THE PRESS! Canon Mirrorless EOS M Revealed! Contrary to previous information, it […]

Hmmm…it would be much nicer if it had a control ring around the lens mount to adjust aperture and a physical shutter speed knob on the top, just like the Leica Ms its name reminds me of

“Readers, are you looking forward to buying the Canon EOS M?” Er..no.

so you speak for all of the readers then?

so you speak for all of the readers then?

Lack of a decent hand grip. Ugh.

If it needs a cage, D|Focus Systems will build it!

Looking really great! I really hope though that you can mount EF lenses on the Canon EOS M body… We’ll have to see.

For the Dutchies. Check my site with updates on this cam. :-)

The mount looks physically compatible with other EF mounts other than the dot placement. I bet EF-M is like EF-S but without the need for mirror flip clearance. That means they could produce a few compact EF-M lenses, probably all STM for video use, but retain body compatibility with all EF and EF-S lenses too. Well, it sounds good in my head at least.

More than just a dot placement. The bayonet is rotated counter clockwise by a couple of degrees and the contacts are rotated clockwise by 10 degrees or so. The bayonet looks like the same and maybe the odd EF lens will fit it (I doubt the EF-S lens will fit on there), but the flange distance will make them inoperable, and with the contacts in a different location will not allow them to operate with the EOS functions. Not sure why it’s the same bayonet, but perhaps it’s easier to machine the same pieces but just to relocate the lock pin hole after rotation.

You’re right, I looked closer and there are some changes that I missed at first. Even though everything is rotated a bit the uniform pin spacing seems like it would not play nicely with the gap in regular EF pins. Actually, looking at the ratio of pin sizes to the mount as a whole, it looks like this mount may be smaller diameter overall. I guess that would make some sense if it’s for smaller cameras and will be APS-C. In any case I’d be shocked if there weren’t some way for people to mount up SLR lenses, it’s too tempting an upgrade path not to allow.

PLEASE don’t let it suck . I’m a Canon guy and have been shopping for a mirrorless camera for vacations. I hope this is it.

Where can I get a EF-M to EF adapter?

Probably from canon

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EOS M3 supported in Camera Raw 9 and Lightroom 6: Canon EOS M Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review

Canon EOS M Talk Forum

In case anyone was curious:

New Camera Support in Camera Raw 9

  • Canon EOS 5DS
  • Canon EOS 5DS R
  • Canon EOS 750D (Rebel T6i, Kiss X8i)
  • Canon EOS 760D (Rebel T6s, Kiss 8000D)
  • Canon EOS M3
  • .

verum lens wrote:

In case anyone was curious:

New Camera Support in Camera Raw 9

  • Canon EOS 5DS
  • Canon EOS 5DS R
  • Canon EOS 750D (Rebel T6i, Kiss X8i)
  • Canon EOS 760D (Rebel T6s, Kiss 8000D)
  • Canon EOS M3
  • .

nice. just updated camera raw and photoshop, curious on the new lightroom but i don't have the download yet.

M3 raws are looking pretty good in camera raw.

Lightroom CC works with the M3 . I've been using it for a couple of hours. I also updated Photoshop CC and CS6, but haven't tested them yet.

I have a license for Adobe Lightroom 5.x (5.7 currently). Is there any way to use it with ACR 9.0 ? I installed ACR 9.0 but it doesn't seem to be recognized by Lightroom.

Catalin Stavaru wrote:

I have a license for Adobe Lightroom 5.x (5.7 currently). Is there any way to use it with ACR 9.0 ? I installed ACR 9.0 but it doesn't seem to be recognized by Lightroom.

Lightroom does not use ACR at all, it has its own "built-in" version of ACR, you can't upgrade Lightroom by upgrading ACR.

I think you could potentially use the DNG converter to convert an M3 .CR2 file to DNG and then open that with Lightroom 5.7 though?

verum lens wrote:

Catalin Stavaru wrote:

I have a license for Adobe Lightroom 5.x (5.7 currently). Is there any way to use it with ACR 9.0 ? I installed ACR 9.0 but it doesn't seem to be recognized by Lightroom.

Lightroom does not use ACR at all, it has its own "built-in" version of ACR, you can't upgrade Lightroom by upgrading ACR.

I think you could potentially use the DNG converter to convert an M3 .CR2 file to DNG and then open that with Lightroom 5.7 though?

You can download the Lightroom CC demo and use it free for 30 days.  Outside of that, DNG converter is your best bet.

Lightroom CC seems to be doing a good job with the M3 files.

Lightroom CC seems to be doing a good job with the M3 files.

Very good job, actually, at least color-wise. But I find that I need to lift the shadows quite a lot (at least +60-70) to obtain realistic pictures. By default the shadow areas seem very dark.

Catalin Stavaru wrote:

Lightroom CC seems to be doing a good job with the M3 files.

Very good job, actually, at least color-wise. But I find that I need to lift the shadows quite a lot (at least +60-70) to obtain realistic pictures. By default the shadow areas seem very dark.

I think you're just used to working with the Auto Lighting Optimizer. The Auto Lighting Optimizer of the Canon cameras basically pulls highlights and pushes shadows as needed.

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