My Canon EF 50mm 1.8 lens is making a noise I never heard before. It takes pictures and focus as usual but produces a constant ticking noise when using live view.

I honestly have no idea what could be the problem. The noise only stops when I'm viewing the photos, when I remove the lens or when I'm not using the live view. My other lens does not do this, so I'm 100% sure it's just this one.

Should I just ignore it ? I have no place to take it to get fixed.

  • Which camera? Is autofocus active the entire time you are in Live View? Which other lens? Most are a lot quieter than the EF 50mm f/1.8 II when focusing.
    – Michael C
    Sep 25, 2015 at 0:45
  • Canon t3.. I regularly have the AF active while I'm using live view.. I know it tends to be loud, but this ticking noise is constant & very odd. Its never done this before. It stops once i switch the AF off also. But i like to have it on, which is why i can't stand this noise.. & the other lens is just the one the camera comes with when purchased.. @MichaelClark
    – Alysssa
    Sep 25, 2015 at 0:58

2 Answers 2


The noise you are hearing is the lens being slightly refocused by the active AF while using Live View. The EF 50mmf/1.8 II is one of the noisiest lenses in the Canon lineup when focusing. You are hearing it every time it moves just a tad. If the noise really bothers you there are a few options to avoid it.

  • Turn off active AF while in Live View (if possible with the T3). You will need to map a button to engage auto focus when desired. By default when in video mode most Canon models use the AF ON button if the camera has one, or the AE Lock (*) button if it does not. Depending on the T3's menu, you may be able to remap a button to perform the AF ON function while shooting stills in Live View.
  • Turn AF off completely and use manual focus.
  • Use a different lens. The EF 50mm f/1.4 is much quieter and also has a usable manual focus ring. The newer EF 50mm f/1.8 STM has also addressed both the usable manual focus ring and the noisy focus of the older lens.
  • Just to extend the third point, ALL lenses with the STM or USM designation should be very quiet. May 24, 2019 at 13:46
  • Not necessarily. USM and STM lenses with IS can be pretty noisy due to IS, rather than the AF motor.
    – Michael C
    May 24, 2019 at 14:42
  • My one is doing the same and it is not on auto focus
    – jackryrie
    Jun 9, 2019 at 3:31

Turn off AF Mode AI SERVO - that fixed the problem for me. AI FOCUS and ONE SHOT (on a T3) both were noiseless, AI SERVO had the clicking sound.

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