Breaking news: Canon 580EX II Flash has Design Errors

At Canon, our customers are number1!

I mentioned just a day ago that karma was going to catch up to Canon Inc. and apparently it is already happening. LPA Design, maker of the PocketWizard flash triggers have identified a couple of design errors in the Canon 580EX II Flash that can, and often do, cause the flashes to fail. Read more here. You may want to download the PDF file with their research to have a look (Flickr discussion).

Not only did LPA Design identify the exact causes of the problem that was causing the 580 EX II to fail, but they also found evidence that Canon Inc. themselves also realized the design error they made, and corrected it in the later 430EX II flash model, WITHOUT SAYING A GODDAMN WORD ABOUT IT TO ANYONE. According to LPA Design:

It has become LPA Design’s theory that design problems with the 580 EX II were realized [by Canon] and needed improvement of the design on these elements to prevent failures of of a similar nature on future flash models.

By reviewing heavily used 430EX II flashes (Canon’s newest) and seeing no signs at all of arcing within the reflector or on the flash tube, we have theorized that possible 580EX II design issues were corrected [by Canon] by identifying the same problems discussed in this document and changing the design to minimize the potential damage on the newer 430EX II flash.

Have you seen any fuckup notices by Canon on this issue? NO! Didn’t I write about this exact behaviour from Canon a fucking day ago? YES! This is Canon Inc.’s policy, it’s how they fucking operate. THEY FUCKING KNEW ABOUT IT AND AREN’T FUCKING TELLING US. They’re not going to say anything about the problems on the 580EX II, they’ll keep quiet and just correct the problem in the new version. And if you get screwed with the older version, then hey, ya had bad luck! In the same way they said absolutely nothing about the original 5D mirror falling off until after the 5D Mark II got out and they were sure the issue would not cause much financial damage. In the same fucking way, they don’t say anything about the design problem on the 50mm f/1.2L, they keep quiet while they have a new version in testing right now which corrects the problems. But are they going to notify you about the problems? No, otherwise you’ll demand a fix, and/or you’ll stop buying. And that is, of course, not in Canon Inc.’s best interest. You might even demand a refund, and that would really suck for Canon Inc. They would have done the same thing with the 1D Mark III if Galbraith didn’t fuck things up for them. And didn’t I just recently mention how Intel handled a similar issue the correct way by just doing a complete recall of all affected products and stopping all sales of those products to correct the issue? I guess we shouldn’t expect this from Canon Inc.

This is how you’re being fucking screwed by Canon Inc. while you may not even realize it. And the thing is, when your 580EX II breaks because of their fucking design error, and you send it in for repair, they’re going to fucking charge you for it too, not to mention the inconvenience and the shipping costs. And you don’t know what the fuck happened, thinking it might be your fault it broke and end up paying for the repairs. THAT is just fucking unacceptable, I can feel my bloodpressure climbing as I type this. I’m going to go fucking crazy here!!! I can already see my inbox crashing tomorrow because of all the emails. Looks like I’m going to be on the fucking phone all day long tomorrow.


Update: If you didn’t believe me about Canon service centers charging you for the fix  caused by CANON INC.’S OWN FUCKING DESIGN ERROR check this out:

thats so annoying, I had the exact problem. Brought it into Canon and they quoted me $380 aud to fix and pointed to a fault to my cameras. I just bought a replacement 580exII just to find out it will fail again… 😦

That’s right, recognize! You’re getting ass reamed by those fuckers at Canon Inc. Without lube. In the same way, if the mirror on your 5D fell off you had to pay for the fix yourself even if the mirror caused other damage in the camera like scratching your sensor (and that did happen and people paid for it themselves just Google this). It wasn’t until after 3 fucking years that Canon issues a fuckup notice and offered to repair the mirror for free. But by then, they had the 5D Mark II on the market, and they know most people would upgrade and that after 3 years not many people would send in their 5D camera’s to get the extra strengtening for the mirror.

16 thoughts on “Breaking news: Canon 580EX II Flash has Design Errors

  1. Well, since I’m going to be buying Nikon flashes in the future, this doesn’t appear to be a problem that will affect me. Thank God.

  2. Canon has lost its morals. Remember Intel with its faulty Pentium CPUs years back? They refused to recall and got hell from users.

    Nothing short of a class action suit to teach Canon a lesson will change the behaviour.

  3. Thanks for posting this info FakeChuck. I recently bought off eBay and fixed up a flash with this exact transistor problem, but I never thought to check the bulb assembly for arcing. I’ll have to pull it apart and maybe make some 430EX II style modifications of my own.

    • Doug, where have you found the IGBT’s from? I am planning to call Renesas in the morning to track down a reseller but no such luck trolling the net looking for anything near that part number.

  4. Ahh this issue is so annoying! I had 2 580 ex2’s fail within the course of 24 hours. One under warranty but the other I had to pay for! Started up a facebook page for the issue, because as is being said above Canon need to issue a service notice for this and pick up the bill themselves for the mistake they have made!!! checkout and like at: maybe we can get some movement on the issue from Canon

  5. I want to thnk canon. Their lack of service forced me to switch to a MUCK BETTER SYSTEM!! NIKON ! ! ! The focus problems I had with ALL canon bodies was sad. Thank you canon you really did help me!!

  6. My 580 EX II just blew up tonight while taking a flash shot at low power. Exactly as you said there was an arc in the flash tube assy. I heard a POP, took the thing apart and the tube was in pieces and the reflector charred. Totally sucks.

  7. I have had my 580ex for a little over a year and have only shot about 10 jobs with it…. Just last week my 580ex would only work on manual mode at full power… I could not put it on any other power setting. Exposure using ETTL was inconsistent crap. Changed batteries… NO GOOD. Don’t use this flash for professional work. It’s crap. Fortunately I had a 20 year old Vivitar 285 in my bag. It worked perfectly. I fell in to the trap of using this automatic garbage… never again. I am going back to my norman 200c and Vivitar. The 580ex was a bitch to use on manual anyway….. way too fumbly. I was using this with my 5DII. By the way, I think the focusing sucks too. Using 85mm 1.2 ,,,,, 16~35mm 2.8,,,,,, 24~70 2.8… I thought I bought the best, but the pictures prove otherwise.

    • We have a lot in common. My name is Bill. I own a 5Dll, 85 1.2, 16~35 2.8, 24~70, and the 580EXl. After most of my film cameras were stolen (Hassys and canons) I thought I was all set to for the best digital stuff. The lenses were sort of OK… but I think my old F1 with 85mm yielded sharper images on film. Anyway, I barely used the 580… what a piece of shit. I stopped using it on auto because the exposures were way off. Manual settings took way to long to set. I don’t know you you can work professionally with it… totallly stupid. Yes, I went back to my Norman 200B and 200C. Always reliable and dead on accurate. When I get lazy and don’t need the power of the Normans, I use my Vivitar 283ms and 285’s on manual. No problems. We are in the age of corporate thieves. They have no morals. Fuck them.

  8. Pingback: 580exII HS suite utilisation pocket wizard visiblement

  9. I am having multiple issues with my Canon products. If I go into too much detail at this time my blood pressure will boil like yours did… so to make a long story short, my 24-105L failed. Sent it to Canon, along with my 5DMii, for servicing. 3weeks and $500 later the issues were still there. Lens failed again(while shooting a wedding) because, according to Canon rep, the part they replaced was faulty. Sent lens back. 2 weeks later images are soft, focus issues out the yin yang, no possibility of sending the lens back a THIRD time due to a heavy schedule… the real thorn in my side? The fact that a Canon rep confirmed the issue with the 24-105L is known by their company but there is nothing they will do about it! I STILL had to pay for the repair on an issue that they were well aware of when I was sold the camera. Now, to add salt to my wounds, my 580EX(on ETTL) is freaking out and changing ALL OF MY SETTINGS in camera when I am shooting in manual.

    Customer service at Canon was the number one reason why I stayed with them when I upgraded to the 5D and now? Now I wish I could afford to toss it all out and go with another company.

  10. My 580 EXII failed yesterday and is having the exact issues you’re describing. I too have had nothing but horrible experiences from Canon service and I agree – they know what’s going on. The internet is blowing up about this issue.

  11. Thankgod someone has the guts to say this out loud. I have used the 580exii for 4 events in two years and every single time it overheats and dies on me during the shoot. It gets plenty of rest between firing, say two or three minutes between photos so its not like I am firing one after the other for hours. It has time to recoup yet I might get a hour out of it at most then it overheats and stops working. Now, the flash died on me during an event and it won’t even turn on.
    I have missed countless great moments because the flash stopped working. I replaced the batteries each time and it made no difference whatsoever.
    I would strongly advise against buying this flash. I have had nothing but trouble with it. I will not buy a canon flash ever again. It truly is a piece of shit.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s