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Transfer from camera to computer - best workflow?


First, I have to ask this: All Canon Software that I have downloaded to my new EOS M50 MARK II are painfully slow. It's like a present day application running on a PC from the 1980s. Takes about 10 seconds for every click to register and move on to the next screen. Is this a well known fact that you (or Canon) can't do anything about, or is it something wrong on my side?

I have a Win10 Pro running on AMD Ryzen 5 2600X Six-Core Processor  3.60 GHz.

I'm not too knowledgeable about the network side of things, but somehow I manged to get the two first test pictures transferred to my computer.  After that, I thought that when I turned off and on the camera next time, the transfer would start automatically, but it didn't. I had to start it manually, and didn't really know what I was doing. (Didn't have to set up the router side of things again, though.) What got me believing that it would start without my intervening was some setting saying "Download automatically next time the camera is turned off and on again" or something to that effect. Did I misunderstand that?

So what are the correct settings and workflow if you want the transfer to run as smoothly and magically as possible?




If you simply want to download images to the computer, you don't need the EOS utility or any other software. 

Just turn the camera off
Remove the card with the images you want to transfer
Put it into a SD card reader, either built in to your computer, or via a USB connected reader
When you do so the computer should see the card as a new disc drive.
Select that and open the DCIM folder to see your images
Just select your images (to select all press [Ctrl]+A) and copy them across to a folder on your computer and you're sorted!

This is simple, reliable, doesn't drain your camera battery and doesn't require software that you need to install.

When you have copied your files and confirmed that they are on your computer, put the card back in the camera and then format the card(s) there.  Don't just delete files - this can cause file fragmentation on the card and corrupt it.  Formatting the cards cleans them properly.  Recommend you do this each time so you are not embarrassed to discover your cards got filled up in the middle of a shoot.

cheers, TREVOR

Before you ask us, have you looked in the manual or on the Canon Support Site?
"All the variety, all the charm, all the beauty of life is made up of light and shadow", Leo Tolstoy;
"Skill in photography is acquired by practice and not by purchase" Percy W. Harris

Thank you for the reply.

I do understand that there are other ways to transfer images, like the one you suggested, or by a special USB-cable. However, that is not very practical for me as I will primarily, at least in the beginning, use it to scan thousands of old 120-format negatives and I need to see the result on every image as I progress. To do that they way you suggested sounds extremely time-consuming.

So, if you don't mind, I would like some comments on how to do it the Wi-Fi way.

And what about the very sluggish applications? Am I the only one to experience this, and if so, what could be the problem?

Note that any type of data transfer (e.g. images) will be limited by the slowest item in the chain.  e.g. if you connect your camera to your computer, the entire chain is: memory card -> receiving interface of the cable connection -> hard drive or SSD drive.

For a SD card reader directly in your computer, it will be the memory card -> SD card slot interface -> hard drive or SSD drive.   For an external card reader, it would be memory card -> SD card reader -> cable interface on your computer -> hard drive or SSD drive.

As an example, I use a CF card reader on an external RAID appliance connected to my iMac Pro via Thunderbolt 3 which is also connected to my main data RAID.

The read speed of the CF card is 160 MB/s.  The Thunderbolt 3 bus maxes out at 5 GB/s and my data RAID write speed is 660 MB/s.  So in this example, the card is the slowest in the chain and thus that's the maximum possible transfer speed.  While I have very fast WiFi, it's only 45 MB/s.  So if I'd use that, it would be signficantly slower.   I'd wager a guess that a wired setup for your transfers would also beat your WiFi speed.

Remember that when looking at various read and write speeds to ensure everything is in either Bytes (e.g. MB/s) or bits (e.g. Mb/s)   Network speeds often use bits instead of Bytes.


EOS 5D IV, EF 50mm f/1.2L, EF 135mm f/2L, 600EX-RT (x6), ST-E3-RT
EOS C70, RF 24-70 f/2.8L IS, EF-EOS R 0.71x

Yes, thank you for the suggestions.

But I don't really need to make those calculations. If I were to start a business with ten employees doing this kind of work all day long, I certainly would, but I simply need an answer to my questions about the workflow with Wi-Fi. If it turns out to be too slow even when the process is slim-lined, then I will use a USB-cable instead.

So if anyone has knowledge about the Wi-Fi settings and supposed workflow, that would be really helpful.

And to repeat my question about the Canon software. Is it well known that it's very slow, or is the problem with my computer?


If copying/moving files using a card reader sounds extremely time-consuming, what do you think would be faster?  WiFi sure ain't it.  Also, the USB cable to go from camera to computer isn't "special". It's just a common USB A-to-whatever type connection the camera has.

Do you mean you are scanning 120 negs onto your CAMERA?

Yes, I'm about to start doing that, but I need to understand the basics of the camera first. I haven't owned a camera this powerful in the digital age before. "Scanning" negatives this way is quite common, not only for the superior quality, but also because it is less time-consuming than using a traditional scanner. Do you not approve of the method?

Since I plan to transfer 1-4 images at a time, it's not like it will take hours. I have succeeded in transferring via Wi-Fi a couple of times now and the speed seems to be OK. About the time It will take me to set up the next negative or strip of negatives. What I want to avoid is the nuisance of starting the process from both the camera and computer every single time, which is very time-consuming.

The information about USB-cable not having to be the extensive one that is mentioned in Canon's docs is very useful. I have got a IXUS 870 IS that I have used the USB-solution for, so I'm familiar with the way to do that.

I do appreciate that both of you take the time to answer me, but I would like to give the Wi-Fi solution an honest try, so if there's anybody who can help me out with that I would be grateful. It's not like I have to continue with the Wi-Fi if I find it to be too slow, but to give it up without a proper try doesn't appeal to me.

And to repeat my question about the Canon software. Is it well known that it's very slow, or is the problem with my computer?


How do you scan negatives into the camera?

This is one of many examples. Nothing special about this one, I just linked the first one that came up.

Best way to scan film negatives with a digital camera & Negative Lab Pro 


Oh, OK. I'd call this COPYING, not scanning.

Wouldn't a film scanner directly into your computer give a better workflow?

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