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I've been recording some stormy nights on my Canon EOS 80D, making use of its built-in timelapse function. Exposure settings varied between 4" f/3.5 ISO 800 and 30" f/3.5 ISO 3200. Dead time between exposures was between 1 and 5 seconds.

This built-in function makes no shutter actuations. It simply locks up the mirror and lets sensor exposed for the determined lapse of time.

I wonder if the sensor is turned on and off once and again to take the programmed exposures. If so, would these kind of timelapses, done frequently, reduce sensor's lifetime or affect its performance?

  • While taking the timelapse, the camera remains absolutely silent. If there was any shutter operation, it should be heard, am I wrong? – Lisan Dec 30 '18 at 16:04
  • I mean "absolutely" silent. I literally kept my ear against the camera while shooting timelapse and no noise could be heard. Shooting mode was manual, and on EOS 80D, timelapse is shot in video mode and therefore live view. Naturally, silent shooting option is not available on video mode, as mirror will stay locked up and stills will be "silent". – Lisan Dec 30 '18 at 16:34
  • Silent shooting modes for most recent Canon cameras in Live View are applicable when the mirror remains up in LV. The 1D X Mark II, 5D Mark III, 5Ds/5Ds R, 7D Mark II, 70D, etc. all have silent shooting modes in LV. It may well be that the 80D's "timelapse" mode uses both first and second curtain electronic shutter, but the previous models listed above at most have electronic first curtain shutter and mechanical second curtain. You can read more here and here – Michael C Dec 30 '18 at 17:05
  • Rather than cycling both curtains, the cameras listed above have at least one LV silent shooting mode that only closes one curtain to end the shot and then reopens that same curtain in the opposite direction to uncover the sensor. – Michael C Dec 30 '18 at 17:07
  • 80D has the same Lv silent shooting option you mention, but just on photography, not on video mode. – Lisan Dec 30 '18 at 17:26

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