Canon’s Light Leak Issue.
A few days ago Canon confirmed the light leak issue in the 5D Mark III: “In extremely dark environments, if the LCD panel illuminates, the displayed exposure value may change as a result of the AE sensor’s detection of light from the LCD panel. Canon is now examining the countermeasures and once the countermeasures are decided, we will post the information on our Web site.”
This issue is somewhat serious because I doubt it can be fixed via firmware. It is unclear right now if it is affecting the entire production (which would be a major design flaw) or a localized manufacturing problem. Some dealers are reporting that shipments to Canada and the UK have stopped in the past few days, which seems to be either a recall or that Canon is being extra careful.
In reality, the leak will change about 1/3 of a stop from what the camera considers the “proper” exposure. With the high dynamic range that RAW files deliver nowadays I believe the issue is being push a bit too far. Of course I’d be pissed paying $3,500 for a camera with issues, but technically speaking, I would not stop using it if I had it.
UPDATED: Yesterday Canon had this to say:
“Based on the results of extensive testing this change in exposure value will not noticeably affect the captured image. Affected Product Canon EOS 5D Mark III Digital SLR Cameras whose sixth digit in the serial number is 1 or 2 are affected.
For example,“xxxxx1xxxxxx” or “xxxxx2xxxxxx” ([x] represents any optional number.)”
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Under almost all shooting conditions (including dark environments) this phenomenon will not affect your captured images. However, if you would like Canon to inspect your camera, the company will provide this service free of charge upon request beginning in mid-May.
Please contact Canon using the information below to request service.
Contact Information for Inquiries
Canon Customer Support Center Phone: 1-800-OK-CANON
1-800-652-2666 TDD: 1-866-251-3752
For additional support options: www.usa.canon.com/support