So I just found out how to turn on the Live View mode on my Canon EOS 40D (turns out there's a setting for it, big surprise) and I was pretty surprised to notice that while the camera is in the Live View mode, it produces a continuous noise (not sure if it's coming from the body or the lens, though I suspect it's the lense). It's pretty quiet, I wouldn't have heard it if I wasn't sitting in my room with no other noise around. Sounds a bit like a running computer fan. Is that normal or is it a symptom of some kind of malfunction? In the Viewfinder mode, the camera is completely quiet ...

EDIT: Following @null's advice, I tried out a couple of things. The noise is not present when I take off the lense and activate Live View. I have also tried another lense, which doesn't produce the noise as well. It's only occuring with my Canon EF-S 55-250mm IS lense. Is that normal?


2 Answers 2


With some image stabiliser lenses this is normal. Just like when you hold the trigger half pressed, the IS keeps running. If the IS motors are audible, the noise will come from the lens continuously.

  • Even if I don't hold the trigger half pressed?
    – MoritzLost
    May 16, 2016 at 12:16
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    +1, the IS seems to make a noise as described. @MoritzLost does the noise change when pressing the trigger half way? Switch to manual focus so that you do not get the additional noise from the focus motor. Do you have another lens with IS to test this?
    – null
    May 16, 2016 at 12:40
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    I believe that for many things having live view on has a similar effect to holding a half press. What happens to the focus in live view? (I have used it about twice ever on my 40D as I'm often in bright sunlight).
    – Chris H
    May 16, 2016 at 12:52
  • @null No it doesn't. But autofocus doesn't seem to work in that mode anyway, nothing really happens when I half press the trigger ... yes I do, I don't get the same noise with another lense, see my edition of the original question
    – MoritzLost
    May 16, 2016 at 13:00
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    Yeah I really don't like the Live View, especially in the 40D ... even with that c.-function it's so clunky x) You are right! To test it, I've changed my settings to back-button focus and used AE lock so that half-pressing the trigger should only activate the IS. Without the noise from the AF-motors, I can hear the same noise as in Live View in the Viewfinder mode when I half-press the trigger. That means what I heard is indeed just the noise of the image stabiliser, I guess there's nothing to worry about then. Answer accepted!
    – MoritzLost
    May 16, 2016 at 14:29

it produces a continuous noise

Even in direct contact with my ear, I could not hear any such noise on my unit.

Visit a camera repair store familiar with Canon (preferably CPS) and let them have a look.

not sure if it's coming from the body or the lens, though I suspect it's the lense

You can activate LiveView without a lens attached if you have no other lens to test. Take your lens off, cover the sensor (either with the official camera cap or some substitute for that) to protect it from dust and activate LiveView (I have it on the Set button, btw).

  • Good idea, I've tried that and narrowed it down to the lense (see my edit of the question)
    – MoritzLost
    May 16, 2016 at 12:18

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