Canon 'Camera Connect' App  
Posted: November 6, 2016
The Canon 5D IV comes equipped with a built-in Wi-Fi capability and a free companion app called Camera Connect may be downloaded to remotely operate the camera using a Smartphone or other device. In the past, a separate device would have to be purchased to provide this capability for the camera.

Having these tools readily available and a communication connection established, for all intents and purposes the device becomes your Live View screen.

My expectation was that the app on my iPad Air would provide a larger screen experience while shooting landscape photos in Live View. That in turn could provide a better view than the much smaller camera screen for these old eyes. The "remote" aspect of the app was less important to me than the larger screen view.

I will skip over the technical details of how to setup the network and connect your Smartphone or iPad to it and get right into using the Camera Connect app in conjunction with the Canon 5D IV. I will use an iPad Air in my example below. The technical details of establishing a connection of the camera and the device are here.

The Camera Connect app displays three options on its home screen... Images on camera, Remote live view shooting and Camera settings. I really don't seem much use for the last option and won't cover it here.

As a bit of background, when I am using Live View I typically have the camera set to Manual exposure and the lens to Manual Focus. I have found these settings work when using the Camera Connect app as well.

Remote live view shooting

When you select this option from the Camera Connect screen on the iPad, the camera will remotely enter into Live View and this will also be displayed on the iPad.

A quick tour of the iPad screen reveals a "shutter button" on the right middle of the screen and two icons near the lower right corner of the iPad screen. When you press the top one of these two, the bottom of the iPad screen will change to a display that provides the ability to make adjustment of the various camera settings: shutter speed, aperture, ISO, exposure compensation and manual focus. The options displayed will depend on the mode (AV, TV, M, etc.) the camera is set to. I usually will set the camera mode on the Canon 5D IV to M(anual) and thus TV, AV, ISO and MF will be displayed.

To adjust any of these parameters, simply tap on the desired icon and a sliding scale will appear.

Note 1: even if your lens is set to AF, you can still make adjustments to the focus using the Camera Connect app.
Note 2: obviously, you will not be able to zoom your lens as that is not a motor driven feature of the camera.

If you want to leave Live View mode to conserve camera battery, simply press the "Home" icon in the upper left hand corner of the iPad screen. To re-enter Live View, select the "Remote live view shooting" option again.

Exposure settings:

Once you have come up with your composition with the camera on tripod, use the Camera Connect app and the iPad screen to fine tune your exposure settings. Tap on the TV, AV, ISO, Exposure compensation icons as required and adjust the settings.

Critical focus:

1. Tap on the screen area where you want the focus to occur,

2. Double tap on the screen to zoom in, and

3. Press the "MF' icon. Tap on the various icons as required to make focus adjustments while viewing the image on the iPad screen. The various icons represent small, medium and large adjustments in both directions.

When you have completed all of the necessary adjustments, press the shutter button on the screen. You could use the camera's shutter button but using the iPad button eliminates the camera shake risk. Another benefit I foresee is for times when you wish the camera had an articulating screen. You can setup the camera in the best location (say on the ground) to get the shot and use the iPad to view and take the shot at the right moment (without having to lay on the ground).

There are two weaknesses to this system. Firstly, you take a double hit from both Live View and the Wi-Fi. Battery life is dramatically reduced by the combination. Spare batteries. Spare batteries. Spare batteries! Secondly, the connection will time out and you will have to reconnect your iPad to the Canon 5D. This second weakness can be overcome by disabling the auto time out on the camera (Tools menu 2 -  Auto Power Off - Disable) and on the iPad.

Images on camera

When you select this option from the Camera Connect screen, you will able to review the photos you have taken on the larger screen of the iPad. The pinch and expand feature common to the iPad is available allowing you to view an image at a higher magnification level.

I will often times get the question from a stranger "Did you get any good ones?". My standard reply is "I won't know until I get them on my computer". Now it could be "Let's look on my iPad screen and we will see". With the iPad, you should have more confidence that you got the shot rather than seeing it for the first time on the computer screen and wishing you had done a better job in the field.

You can view images that are shot as RAW as well as JGEG so you don't have to worry about having to make any changes on the camera prior to using Camera Connect. Another feature of this option is you can delete images within the Camera Connect app and they will be deleted from the camera as well.

In summary:

I have not used this setup in the field as yet but do plan to in the near future. From my experimentation thus far, it seems as though this app will accomplish what I want... a larger screen for times when I use Live View.

Pro: Larger screen (improve critical focusing and photo review), Shake free shutter and the equivalent of a articulating display on the back of the camera

Con: Battery life and the time out shut off


Here is a link to a video that describes the process

How to Setup Your Canon 5D IV Wi-Fi - this section needs a bit more work

The first thing you need to do is set up the camera's Wi-Fi. What is accomplished here is the creation of a private Wi-Fi network that is hosted by the camera. Like all Wi-Fi networks, it will have a name and a password associated with it. This is a one time setup.

1. Go into the Tools menu of the camera (the one that looks like a wrench)
2. Select the 'Communications settings' option
3.Select the 'Built-in wireless settings' option
4. Select the "Wi-Fi/NFC' options
5. Select "Enable'

You will then be asked to provide a Nickname your network... I named mine 'EOS5D4'. The camera will generate a Password for this network. Now you are ready to connect your device to this network.

How to Connect Your iPad to the Canon 5D

Go to the App Store for your device and download the free Canon Camera Connect app.

When you are ready to start a session:

1. Go into the Tools menu of the camera (the one that looks like a wrench)
2. Select the 'Communications settings' option
3.Select the 'Built-in wireless settings' option
4. Select the "Wi-Fi function' option
5. Select the Smartphone icon (the first one)

The camera Wi-fi network should be established. If it has, the Wi-Fi icon should be flashing.

To connect the iPad to this Wi-Fi network, go into the Settings menu of your iPad and then Wi-Fi select the EOS5D4 network and provide the password that the camera generates. Once you have gone through the above procedure once, the password will be "memorized" by your iPad.

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