ShutterCount 3.2 Released

Version 3.2 of my ShutterCount app for both macOS and iOS was released yesterday. This version adds a few new features and improves others. Camera makers were quiet recently, so the only new camera we certified the app with is the Nikon D850 (for the Mac version).

From the new features, let’s discuss the Usage Meter first. For several cameras the manufacturer publishes an “official” shutter durability rating. Sometimes these are key selling points for the camera, in other cases the numbers are buried deep in a web page or document. We’ve gathered these ratings for all supported Canons, and most Nikon and Pentax models. Both the percentage display after the count and the Usage Meter bar are relative to these ratings.

Usage Meter showing still photo and live view counts

The dark blue part indicates still photos, the light blue live view actuations (the latter is available when you purchased the Live View Pack). Percentage display was formerly available in the Plus Pack, but now it’s in the base app.

Of course these ratings are not hard limits, so your camera may go well over 100% – I’ve seen several ones with 300% or more. If yours is over 100%, an orange indicator will appear on the Usage Meter marking the 100% position.

We’ve received quite a few requests to allow photo count only display even if you have the Live View Pack, and to separate these values. So now you can toggle between photo only and photo + live view display via the menu (as well as the More tab in the iOS version), by clicking/tapping the “Shutter Count” title on the Camera Summary tab and via a dedicated check box/switch on the Graph tab.

Just like the Usage Meter (and the Distribution Chart), the Graph now displays live view actuations in light blue.

New live view count graphing

In case you have live view counts for part of your history data – just like on the above screen shot showing my 7D Mark II – the live view count graph will only appear for the respective part. And forecasting will only take into account history entries having both counters. The trend line also indicates this: with a dashed section marking ignored history data and a dot showing the forecasting start date.

Speaking of history data, that tab was also beefed up. Gray text indicates entries with no live view count (in case you have the Live View Pack) and red text indicating entries with a lower value than a previous one.

The above features are available on both macOS and iOS, but now let’s talk about something that’s Mac only: File Mode changes.

Due to a bug in OS X 10.7 and 10.8 we had to disable automatic memory card scanning on these operating systems. Apple corrected it in 10.9, so contemporary versions are not affected. And while I was working on this, added a preference to turn automatic scanning off if you don’t like it.

New is the Eject after scan preference – which is a huge time saver. With this and automatic scanning on, just pop a memory card into your reader while the app is running, and it will scan the card, do the reading from the latest image and also eject the card properly. The fastest way to get the counter from your Nikon or Pentax. Automatic scanning is on, while ejecting is off by default.

Memory card scanning preferences

Version 3.2 is a free update for existing users on both operating systems. New users can purchase the app in the respective App Store. Live View Pack and Plus Pack are available as in-app purchases.

Change Your Canon’s Daylight Saving Time Easily

I prefer to keep the clock in my cameras set correctly, so I have to go through all of them twice a year to set and reset the daylight saving time setting (which they don’t do automatically for some strange reason). At this time I manage five Canon DSLRs we use exclusively for software development and testing in addition to my three cameras that I also use for my photography – and updating this setting was always a royal pain for me. This is why the Synchronize Date/Time function was born in my apps.

It is available in Kuuvik Capture as well as the Plus Pack add-on for ShutterCount (both the Mac and iOS versions). Just turn the synchronization on in Preferences, and the next time you connect a camera all time-related settings will be updated to reflect that of your Mac (or iPhone/iPad).

My previous posts (here and here) discuss time synchronization for both apps.

6D II and 200D/SL2 Support in ShutterCount 3.1

ShutterCountIcon2xThe brand new Canon EOS 6D Mark II and 200D (aka Rebel SL2 / Kiss X9) are supported in version 3.1 of ShutterCount on macOS and iOS.

As of today, ShutterCount is the ONLY Mac and iPhone/iPad app that can read the shutter counter from these and other post-2014 Canon cameras (like the 5D Mark IV, 5DS R, 80D, etc). In addition to the basic “number of pictures taken”, detailed live view counters are available for these cameras when you purchase the Live View Pack – another unique feature of ShutterCount.

File Mode is also improved in this release. Memory cards are scanned automatically as soon as you insert them into the Mac (or a card reader connected to your Mac). Plus you are warned if you accidentally connect your Nikon or Pentax camera via USB.

In the iOS version, History and Graph tabs are now synchronized to show data for the same camera, and they will show previous readings as well as the graph for the connected camera by default (if any). This is the same behavior the Mac version implements.

Version 3.1 is a free update for existing users on both operating systems. New users can purchase the app in the respective App Store. Live View Pack and Plus Pack are available as in-app purchases.

File Mode in ShutterCount 3

We had received numerous requests to support non-Canon (mostly Nikon) cameras with the app. I thought that since Nikons store the shutter counter in image files it’s easy to get the current value and postponed the project a couple of times. Well, I was wrong.

As soon as I started researching the subject I had to realize that existing methods either require you to install some non-digitally-signed software on the Mac (a major no go in these days), or wants you to upload image files with a host of potentially personally identifying information, such as the camera’s serial number, onto web a site with no privacy and/or data handling policies at all. Even digging out the information with a safe solution (the Mac’s built-in Preview app) is far from being fast and easy – and Nikon only.

Now I totally understand the need for a simple and quick solution.

Enter ShutterCount File Mode

Take a picture with your camera. Pull the memory card and place it into a card reader connected to your Mac (the built-in SD card slot will do). Once the memory card icon appears on your desktop, drag and drop it onto ShutterCount (either the running app or onto its icon). The app automatically scans the card, finds the latest image on it (by date) and displays the result.

The result for my rarely used Nikon D7100. Note that the shutter count and the file number differs – that’s why you can’t use the file number as an “odometer”.

Or if you don’t want to drag & drop, just use File > Scan Memory Card in the menu. Or drop an image file onto the app. Or open an image file with File > Open. ShutterCount adapts to your preferred way of bringing the file into the app.

And you can use any image format your camera can record: NEF or JPG for Nikons, and PEF or DNG or JPG for Pentax models.

Pretty fast and simple, isn’t it?

Nikon and Pentax cameras do not store the owner’s name. So the display changes to “Artist Name”. But other that this, the app behaves exactly as is does for USB or Wi-Fi connected Canons. Even the Plus Pack‘s graphing is available (forecasting is not available only with some models, please consult the Tech Specs for details).

An added bonus: older 1-series Canons

Once I had an improved metadata parser with shutter count reading capability for Nikon and Pentax cameras, it was minimal effort to also add older Canon 1-series models. Actually I had been using a 1D Mark II for 8 years, and became curious…

The very last show made with my Canon EOS-1D Mark II.

There are a few caveats, though. The 1D II (N) and 1Ds II might ruin the counter when restoring camera settings from a memory card (I never did that for my 1D II). And the 1D II and 1Ds III may reset the counter when using auto-reset image numbering (or even under some other circumstances – I’m not surprised since these cameras have Canon’s worst-ever firmware).

So if it works for your oldie 1D, be happy. If it doesn’t, then sorry, we haven’t got the powers to go back in time and fix what Canon messed up in the past.

A fun experiment

My curiosity with the good old 1D II didn’t stop there. So I’ve read the first image of every month during the camera’s service period. Don’t even had to do it in order of taking, since ShutterCount automatically sorts the history by date in File Mode.

8 years of shooting with the 1D Mark II.

Availability

File Mode is included in the base ShutterCount 3 app on macOS. So it is free for existing users. New users can purchase the app in the Mac App Store. For the complete list of certified cameras please refer to the Tech Specs page.