Question about Canon PowerShot S2 IS Digital Camera
I have a black screen on my camera.The pictures takes black. Everything else works fine. I think it's a CCD sensor problem.
BLACK SCREEN OF DEATH – FIXED AT LAST - After doing
several hours of research on the internet, I have been able to eliminate the
problem on my Powershot S2 IS. I
started with the “fix” as suggested by guidofoc in a post on the “flickr” site. Thanks guidofoc! His procedure did fix the problem for me but it only lasted a
day. The next day, back to the same old
black screen. For the next few
days/weeks, when I wanted to use my camera, I did the same procedure and it
would come back to life but would be black again the next time I powered up the
camera or a day later.
Back to internet research! On the “Fixya” site, I found a picture of the camera shutter and diaphragm blades. This picture was posted by “andyhutton” who was also having the same “black screen” problem. He had disassembled his camera and found what appeared to be an oil exuding on the shutter diaphragm blades. He disassembled the camera, cleaned it thoroughly, and reassembled it. This fixed his camera. Other information I found indicated that what appeared to be oil was a little “stiffer” than oil, almost hard. It was thought that this was happening after leaving in a hot car other high temperature environment.
All this made sense to me but I didn’t relish the thought of tearing the camera apart and reassembling it. This procedure reportedly took about 6-8 hours. And this was by a person who considered himself, to have a reasonable amount of mechanical ability. I definitely DON’T RECOMMEND this approach unless you have tried all else and are ready to junk your camera. Using this information I theorized that if I used the temporary fix procedure and then repeatedly activated the shutter, perhaps the “wiping action” may wear down the frictional areas and free up the shutter blades to move more freely. I tried it. Voila! It has worked now for the last 6-8 weeks without a failure. Here is my final procedure:
Set the camera in Tv mode, (delayed shutter mode) set the shutter at 15 sec, click to take a picture and during that 15 secs (like, after 7 seconds) open the battery, compartment which cuts contact with the battery circuit. Close the battery cover. At this point the camera works fine for me but only temporarily as noted above. Sometimes however, this procedure had to be performed more than once. Here is the key to the permanent fix. While the camera is working via the temporary fix, take many, many pictures. Hundreds! I probably snapped 400-600 pics. The idea is to wear down the little patches of hardened oil on the shutter blades. For the next three of days I took hundreds of pics each day. Basically, I just aimed the camera at the wall or whatever and snapped off several hundred pics.
Now that I seem to have my camera working permanently, my plan is to NOT leave my camera in a high temperature environment, and to try to use it regularly. Maybe, not unlike many other things, if it gets no regular use, it may start to deteriorate.
No guarantees but I do hope this helps someone.
Posted on Aug 20, 2009
This is what causes the problem. Oil on the shutter and diaphragm blades. I still don't know where the oil is coming from. Cleaning diaphragm, shutter and all surrounding plastic parts has worked well for me. Not a really easy part to get out though. Some places will repair for around $99.
Posted on May 13, 2009
This is really so helpful to me. Thanks a lot 4 this thread first.
If anybody has any problem how to set the S2IS in 15" exposure mode. Just set the wheel to TV mode first and thn tap the jog dial(left/right/up/down-keys) to the left till it sets to 15".
This technique works for me ....gr8!!!!!!
Thanks again 4 the information...
Posted on May 03, 2008
Opening and closing the battery cover is what brought the viewfinder back to life for me. The problem was that the problem would come back all the time! The real trick (again, for me) for the fix to stick was to use the camera on a regular basis, several times a day, for several days. I would take pictures several times a day, 7 or 8 shots at a time. After a few days, I cut back to once a day and then to every few days. It is totally fine now. I do make a point of snapping a few pictures at least once a week...I don't want this problem to come back to haunt me!
Posted on Apr 18, 2008
To all that has and have the black screen with the S2 series Canon camera. I would like to thank you for your continued support in trying to find a fix for the camera.
I will consider myself one of the lucky few here. As I have stayed in contact with Canon on their site where I located a place to ask for help. I used this site and started letting them know what my problems with my Canon S2 series camera and exactly what I thought of a company that did not honor their product. With persistence and I am certain getting in touch with the right person, I have a camera that I can now use. They fixed my problem with out charging me anything at all. My camera is almost at the 2yr mark of ownership on my part. Canon came through for me and repaired this camera without a charge. Although they didn't extend any warranty at all on their repairs..But as it stands now, I do have a camera I can use again and get the same good pictures that I originally got when I first purchased the camera.
I would suggest that you do not give up on Canon and stay consistently on their behinds and you could possibly be as fortunate as I have been. Although not one of the us that own a Canon S2 series should have to contend with all of the **** that we have put up with to get Canon to honor their faulty product.
Posted on Jun 22, 2008
I am thankful, too for the solution. It worked! Same two-year-old camera, same problem as everyone else. I don't see where anyone has answered the question submitted a couple of times about how to set the exposure to 15". Here's how: With the camera set to Tv mode, I saw a 1/125 setting at the bottom. I pressed the left arrow button on the back of the camera repeatedly until the setting changed to 15". Then I snapped a picture (while the screen was still black), counted to seven, and opened the battery door. When I put the batteries back in, it worked!
Posted on Sep 03, 2008
Had the same prob. Just had to add my kudo's to everyone else's. Frozen80, you da man! Question tho: how you come up with such an arcane solution? I mean, you just sitting round, and say "Hey, try dis! Set to TV mode, etc, etc, etc..."? Really, where dat come from???? Still, thanks again. I got my camera back in working order!!!
Posted on Aug 14, 2008
Thank you frozen 80, i work at a camera shop and some one brought a camera in with this problem and went on about it was all our fault, our manager ended up giving him a free S3 is, he was going to throw out the camera but i said i'd have a go at it. after about an hour of trying your technique it finally worked. Thank you greatly for this your going to make me look like a genius in front of my coworkers who said it was hopeless :) health and happiness to you sir!!
Posted on Jul 26, 2008
Go to the canon web site they have an advisory out on this I just got mine back actually they kept my S1 IS and sent me a new S5 IS because "they did not have the part and wanted to expedite my repair"
Here is another site I found when I encountered my problem
I sent my camera in per Canons instructions, received an e-mail a few days later(1/9/08) confirming that they would repair it a few more days later (1/16/08)I received another e-mail confirming that it had been repaired and shipped. Today (1/17/08) I got it and to my very pleasant surprise the box contained a new S5 IS!!! I will be sending them a very nice THANK YOU for it after I post this.
PS: e-mail accepting repair 1/9/08
1/16/08 e-mail stating it shipped on 1/15/08,
received 1/17/08 via FED EX
Posted on Jan 18, 2008
I had the same problem. The solution given fixed the issue. Why is Canon not recalling S2 IS models?
Posted on Feb 04, 2008
Thanks! a ton ..... my camera now works ..... I hadn'tused my camera for around 2 years and now it shows black screen with white square..... when I read this blog ... I felt like how come this complex thing can be resolved by this trick ... then I thought to try it .... the difficulty I had is that I have no knowledge of camera and its settings ... so for people like me who knows very little about camera .... here is how you should proceed ....
1) on top of camera is a round button with different symbols ...make symbol TV aligned with small blank line on camera body.
2) on lcd screen you would see some numeric value 1/100 or 1/200 or 1" or 10" somthing like that ..... you just need to press arrow keys left/right < or > to change this value ... arrow keys are above set button ......keep pressing arrow key and you will see that it moves from count 1/400 till 15" and vice-versa .... keep pressing arrow key till you see 15" on lcd screen.
3) press the shuttor button (the button which you press to take photo) and wait for 7 seconds and then open the battery cover ....
4) Keep repeating this till you screen becomes bright and you start seeing something in lcd screen ............
I tried 15 times without any success .... I was disappointed and was going to leave this exercise but suddently on my 18th attempt ...it worked .....
Now it takes picture like new ....
I figured out after 12th attempt to set the exposure interval through diff way ..... so that 12th attempt I set the exposure time as below:
1) set camera on TV mode
2) Press menu option
3) there are 3 major categories on top ....select the first with camera symbol .... under this catefory there are multiple options (first option is Flash Sync) select option self-timer .... it has three options underneth.... 10, 2, C ...select C .... under option C you need to select exposure time as 15" and number of shots as 1 .....
4) press set button to select option C and then press menu option .....
5) Now between shuttor button and camera on/off button ...there is a small round button .... when you press this button ....the value on lcd screen changes ....... keep pressing until value C comes ..... this means you have choosen exposure time as setup under C (we setup as 15" as above) ....
6) Press shuttor button ..... a red light will keep flashing till 15 seconds and then it takes picture ......... you need not to take picture here but just count 7 after pressing shuttor button and open the battery cover .....
7) Again press that small round button and selectC and then press shuttor button ...wait for 7 seconds and open the battery cover ..... keep repeating this for 20 times atleast .....
I am writing in hurry hence pardon me for any spelling mistakes
Take care ...bye
Posted on Apr 08, 2012
I have the same issue with my S2 IS model. I tried the trick here and tried resetting to factory default. But no luck..Then i contact canon, after couple of emails and phone call they asked me to send my camera to service center. And now they are asking me $110 to repair a crappy known issue. When i told that this is a known issue and there are 10000s people facing same issue.. they are offering 50% off on labour cost and i feel thats really disgusting way to handle customers.
Posted on Feb 23, 2012
I have an S1 IS with same problem and after trying for several times solution of Frozen it works. Camera stay in an arm-pack and in a indoor enviroment ... so don't know why it stuckes. I set to TV and start taking pictures, after 2 pictures taken I take off batteries and then insert them again, camera restart automatically and start working.
Posted on Jan 02, 2012
I had the same problem with my Canon PowerShot A610 and with the solution that Frozen80 posted it worked (note took about 15-20 attempt). I can not thank you enough.
Posted on Aug 31, 2010
Ive got some possibly good news. My camera got to the point every time I shut it off even for a few seconds I had to do the TV/open battery door several times. Well I stuck it off in a corner for a couple months. I got it out the other day and it took me about 20 minutes of doing the trick to get it to work but when it finally broke free I swear I felt it. Ever since that it has not messed up once. I just picked it up after it sit a day and a half and it worked when I hit the power button 1st time. Only time will tell if it is fixed. In the mean time I have contacted the BBB. No answer yet but its only been a week and with the holiday I figure give it a couple more weeks.
Posted on Dec 26, 2008
I also kept fighting with Canon, and finally sent a letter to the Better Business Bureau and to Canon's Corporate office.
That seemed to do the trick, I got a call back from CS yesterday, and after arguing with them some more, they said they would do a one time courtesy repair that won't be waranteed.
I'll take it, I just want a working camera again. I'm sorry, but a $500 camera should not die after 2 1/2 years.
Posted on Aug 13, 2008
I am so excited! This technique fixed my camera and most likely saved me a lot of money! I was ready to buy a new camera! Thank you Thank you Thank you!!!!!!!!!!!
Posted on Jun 06, 2008
S1is problem was faulty Sony CCDs - the S2is problem is related to a sticking iris. Canon will not play ball at the moment.
Methinks a consolidated action is required to make Canon realise how many people are suffering with an expensive lump of junk!
My S2is has just started doing the same thing (24 months old) and having researched it appears that it's a very common failure of the camera - the iris seizes and doesn't open. Setting the camera to AV mode, 15 sec exposure, firing the shutter and then opening the battery cover sometimes solves it, albeit temporarily. The S1is had a recall based on the CCD failure, but so far Canon have refused to do anything with the S2is. I contacted them last week in the UK, and the response was "tough"! I'm very p***ed off with them - it cost me £400. Hoping that eventually it will be recalled and I'll get it fixed.
Posted on Jan 28, 2008
Success!!! After nearly an hour of repeating the steps it finally worked! I bought this S2IS in 2005 when it first came out, and used it for 13 years until I encountered the black screen and at that point I thought it was it. So 2 years later I found this article, and I revived my camera. I love it, so much sentimental value with this camera over the years. Thank you, thank you, thank you!
Posted on Oct 26, 2020
This is an amazing camera with good zoom and have taken nice pics with it. didn't want to junk it. there is no service centre in visakhapatnam (india) where i live. i was told to take it to hyderabad (700 km away) for repair.
this solution is amazing and has saved so much money for everyone. i took out my S2 IS after a gap of 4 years. my batteries had died. so took the chance of buying new set of batteries and wanted to try out the given solution of setting to Tv mode and opening the battery case. it worked for me after trying for about 70-80 shots over a period of 5-6 hours. and now i can't tell you how happy i am. camera working seamlessly after 4 years. amazing. god bless the person who gave this solution. my flash doesn't seem to be working. will have to see why it is not working. thanks once again...
Posted on Jan 25, 2020
Thank you very much it worked I do not have to buy a new camera I took first to a camera shop they suggested to buy a new one these people should be trained for better service.
Posted on Jun 29, 2015
Omg omg omg... I thought I was doing the fix.. about 30 times.. really depressed, no results... Then I started using the RED-centered button near the viewfinder (eyeplace) to shoot the shot.. it showed the red "rec" in the screen, and counted down.. when it got to 7, I'd pop the battery cover and get a beep... and after about 6 of these I got an image! THANK YOU ALL!!!!!
Posted on Aug 06, 2014
Thank you it worked for me but the problem surfaces again after few days.But the battery open trick fixes it quickly.
Posted on Sep 03, 2012
Same issue on the S2 IS with the black screen. Did the TV/15"/Take pic/Open and close battery door about 20 times....VOILA, it works!! On the (approximate) 15th time or so, I could see the image slightly...it was really dark, but for the first time in a year, I saw something. I took about 10 more pics, not it is clear. I guess letting it sit around so long didnt help anything, made things work. I will use it more often now!
Posted on Dec 26, 2011
The same worked for me too.
Much appreciate your help.
Posted on Jan 01, 2011
Thank you for this solution, my canon now works again correctly. When I asked our canon servis, they have only solution to repair it - 190euro
Posted on Jul 10, 2010
I had the same problem and with the solution that Frozen80 posted it worked (note took about 15 attempt). I can not thank you enough. Like everyone else I love my S2 but did not want to pay to get it fixed...
Posted on Jul 05, 2009
Awesome! Excellent! Thank you so much! Certainly saved me a lotta bucks for the service!
Posted on Apr 19, 2009
Amazing, i did not beleive my S2 IS would start working with these instructions until I realized it. It works but perform as instructed. I think the removing batteries exactly after 7 seconds is essential. It did not work well when i removed the batteries immediately i made a shot. Although the black screen does come back after i go to review mode when i switch it off and then switch on my camera works just normal.
Thank you so much for this solution.
Posted on Jun 20, 2008
This solution worked for me (several tries to get it to work). THANK YOU SO MUCH for posting this information!
I will probably follow the advise suggesting to take a few pictures daily for a while to (hopefully) prevent another iris issue.
Posted on Apr 27, 2008
Amzingly, i experienced the same problem with my S2IS, it've been 1 month ago when it's starting to show horizontal lines for all pics i took...
dunno what's caused it, but several weeks before, i see blank image after taking pictures...
here in indonesia, it cost about $30 just to have your camera inspected, not included to fix the problem
Posted on Mar 10, 2008
Wow it did work.
Thanks. So many people with that problem I hope they find this site. :-)
Posted on Feb 19, 2008
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