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I have an EOS 60D that has had intermittent focusing issues since a purchased it. I primarily use the Canon 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS kit lens. I also have a new Canon 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM and a Tamron 70-300mm f/4-5.6 Tele-Macro.

I can no longer use any of these lenses as the focus is completely soft. I tried all modes of auto focus on each lens as well as both extremes of aperture and mid range aperture settings. I used manual focus and live view mode. I tried the range of focal length zooms and all to no avail.

This is the second Canon camera that started doing the same thing, the other is an EOS 40D. Both cameras worked perfectly when purchased, and slowly failed over time.

I just talked to customer service at Canon and he told me three things.

  1. Canon MAY stop supporting the 60D on June 30, 2019. which means that will no longer be able to get my camera repaired by Canon.
  2. He said that when I use a third party lens on my Canon camera it can cause something in the camera itself to go out of adjustment or fail requiring repair of the camera.
  3. There is a flat labor rate at Canon of $200. Parts, tax and shipping are extra. I feel that this repair will cost in the neighborhood of $300. But this is a one time shot if they are going to stop supporting this camera at the end of June.

So my question is does anyone else have experience with a 60D specifically or any camera with auto focus failing like this, and does what I was told about the lens damaging the camera make any sense? Also, is it time to buy a new Canon? Or should I sell all of my gear and switch to Nikon?

marked as duplicate by mattdm, Hueco, scottbb, Michael C canon Mar 31 at 18:00

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    Two: He said that when I use a third party lens on my Canon camera it can cause something in the camera itself to go out of adjustment or fail requiring repair of the camera. - Sure. Just as Non-Samsung USB chargers will destroy your smartphone's battery and just as much as using non-Canon printing paper will destroy your printer's head. It's just the default "buy our stuff"-phrase. Those marketing-related ''''advices'''' really drive me up the wall... – flolilo Mar 29 at 16:09
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    As to the rest: What do you mean by "soft focus"? Is it only phase detection AF that fails to focus (i.e. LiveView's Quick mode and regular viewfinder operation) or does CDAF fail as well? How about MF? Can you provide us a sample picture? It sounds like something got properly out of alignment, but then again, it is suspicious that you get that on two separate cameras. – flolilo Mar 29 at 16:16
  • You had the same thoughts I did regarding 3rd party lenses. I thought the guy was full of it. But I wanted to ask, because there are more things that I don't know than what I know about cameras and associated gear. – J Adams Mar 29 at 23:25
  • Regarding the soft focus issue, I tried in AI servo, single shot, Live view auto-focus and manual focus as well as manual focus in normal mode. Most shots were from a tripod (because I know I'm not very steady) and using a remote release. I tried shots with stabilization on and off as well as all the modes of IS available on the lenses equipped with it. I ran my ISO up to 400 and back down to 100, tried long exposures (up to 4sec) and fast exposures down to 1/1000 sec. I tried different subjects with different lighting and different contrast. – J Adams Mar 29 at 23:32
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    Still the question remains: What do you mean by "soft focus"? Is nothing in focus at all, ever? Can yo provide a sample picture and its parameters? – flolilo Mar 30 at 10:52
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The following is assuming that you haven't damaged your equipment. If you have dropped or banged up your camera/lenses recently, that could be your issue right there...

This is the second Canon camera that started doing the same thing, the other is an EOS 40D. Both cameras worked perfectly when purchased, and slowly failed over time. Does anyone else have experience with a 60D specifically or any camera with auto focus failing like this?

Nope. I'm currently sitting on a 20D, a 60D, and a 5DmkII. All 3 work just fine. (That's in addition to a film Rebel from the early 2000's and a 1V)

I can no longer use any of these lenses as the focus is completely soft. He (Canon Tech) said that when I use a third party lens on my Canon camera it can cause something in the camera itself to go out of adjustment or fail requiring repair of the camera.

This is bunk. Attaching a 3rd party lens isn't going to harm your camera (as long as the lens is made for your camera). 3rd Parties have been around a long time - if there were some systemic issue, they would have disappeared long ago. This is just Canon doing the ol' "we only support Canon stuff."

Also, is it time to buy a new Canon?

Not yet. See this question: How do I diagnose the source of focus problem in a camera?

First up, if you aren't actually taking pictures, then have you simply accidentally adjusted the diopter?

Second up, if you are taking test shots - are you making sure to use a tripod and arrange objects at varying distances so that you can see where the focus lies? For example, create a slightly off-center row of cans stretching front to back along a table. Focus on the center one using Autofocus. Take an image. Review it. Was the focus on the center can or was it back/front focused?

Lastly - are you monitoring your shutter speeds during your shooting? Are they at hand-holdable speeds? If you're in Auto modes, you may simply have an ISO-too-low-for-the-environment problem.

Or should I sell all of my gear and switch to Nikon?

Until you diagnose exactly what's causing your focus issue, there's nothing that you should expect to gain by switching brands. This is like selling your Chevy to buy a new Ford because the car won't start (when you forgot to fill up the tank!)

I mean, you could...but you may run into the same exact situation again because, well, you could be the root of your own issue.


Please upload sample images to your question for further help in diagnosing. It's very difficult and overly speculative without images. Please take a note of the ISO, Aperture, Shutter Speed, Lens, Focal Length for each test image. Note also that you used Autofocus and which focus point you selected for the image.

Thanks!

  • Thank you for the info. I went and scanned through the post you referenced. I will have to go back and re-read it several times, some really good stuff there. When I get a chance, I will try to put up some shots in question, but more likely, I will take some sample shots. The can idea makes perfect sense. Again, thank you for your response. – J Adams Mar 29 at 23:35
  • The reason I mentioned switching brands has more to do with multiple failures in my 40D and a botched repair job from Canon on the same camera that caused it to completely fry itself when I powered it up. Now that camera has stopped focusing and Canon informed me that they no longer support it. Checked some repair shops and decided that it was more expensive than the camera is worth. Which brings me to buying the 60D. I bought it used and am afraid the reason it was sold is because it had a problem and now it's my problem. After this, no more used equipment for me. This is just a hobby. – J Adams Mar 29 at 23:40
  • And since it's a hobby, I am ok with buying one camera that works well and using it until the cows come home. – J Adams Mar 29 at 23:42

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