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Canon S400 Problems

by jkincade / November 26, 2004 5:04 AM PST

I purchased a Canon S400 camera for roughly $500 a little over a year ago. The camera recently stopped working for no apparent reason due to an E18 error (lens focus mechanism). The camera was not mis-handled. The warranty is 1 year. The service center indicated it would cost me $150 to inspect and repair this problem. Alternatively, they offered me a refurbished replacement at an even higher cost! Apparently, the E18 error related to the focus mechanism is common and part of a fault design. Needless to say, I communicated with Canon service reps that their repair/replacement options were not acceptable and asked for an exception to replace or repair the camera for free. I also asked Canon to describe their customer dispute resolution process. They could not.
After speaking with their customer service organization all the way up to senior management and corresponding with their tech service via email, it has become evident that Canon really doesn't stand behind their faulty products and is not customer service oriented. The entire experience was a long process of "passing the buck?. I am extremely disappointed and will never buy a Canon product again. I recommend you do not buy a Canon either.
Has anyone else had this problem?

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Re: Canon S400 Problems
by laffingleigh / December 11, 2004 5:08 PM PST
In reply to: Canon S400 Problems

UN-believeable. I JUST had this SAME problem happen to me TONIGHT! How freakin' frustrating that this just now happened! I am floored at the customer service that S400 is saying. That is completely unbelievable that a faulty piece of theirs would not be on warranty.

If anyone has any new information on this, PLEASE let me know at laffingleigh@hotmail.com

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Memory ERROR here...
by SavageBid.com / February 8, 2005 7:11 AM PST

Hi all,
After searching the web for related problems with my canon s400, I was amazed to how may people had the same problems. CANON REALY SUCKS>>>>>>>>>>> They "should" have a GIANT RECALL out for all of these problems.
They are more than happy to sell us a product and charge $500 with no problem, but after year later when loyal canon customers comes up with a problem they refuse to acknowledge them the problem with the camera. Everyone should write complaint letters to canon, I know I did.
I now have a new born baby which would like to take pictures of and can't because canon sold me a peace of SH**. Now I have to go out and spend another $500 to $600 on new camera.

THANKS CANON, THANKS FOR NOTHING..... VETO CANON>>>>>>>

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Same problem here and it isn't the memory card
by imbatgirl / June 15, 2005 10:37 AM PDT
In reply to: Memory ERROR here...

I started getting this error a few months after I bought the cam but at that point I blamed it on the memory card and returned it to the manufacturer. After a few months it happened again. I contacted Canon and they told me I could return it for repair for around $200. No way was I going to do that when this is such a major problem with so many people. The cam has always taken great pictures but my sister took it to Japan for a trip and after nearly filling a 512MB card, she got the memory card error. She lost all of her pictures from her trip. We took a family vacation and I lost everything. It seems like the error happens when I really need the photos. I hate to just throw a $500 camera away but I don't think it's a good idea to pay Canon $200 more bucks. I also have a digital rebel but that will be my last canon purchase if they don't do something about this camera. It's all over the web that people are having this problem.

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Re: Canon S400 Problems
by jump1127 / December 11, 2004 8:54 PM PST
In reply to: Canon S400 Problems

Geee.. I've been using Canon S500 for nearly 6 months now. It's been very good so far. After I read your information, I'll contact Canon Service Center for more information regard E18. But, my friend's old Canon A75 was totally replaced and offered the free repairing under 1 year warranty. It's never broken down since. Any way, thanks for the information.

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Mine too
by jbposell / December 14, 2004 9:47 AM PST
In reply to: Canon S400 Problems

Same thing just happened to mine, but it was beyond the 1 year period! Grrrrr. Anyone who knows how to get this fixed by Canon please post!

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It's optical zoom
by jump1127 / December 18, 2004 10:02 PM PST
In reply to: Canon S400 Problems

I just read thru' an article in www.canon.co.th. Unfortunately, it's in Thai !!! E18 seems to be the problem caused by the optical zoom. You need to bring in your camera to any Canon service center. I'm not sure how much it cost. But, I don't think the expense would be a lot. Good luck.

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Just had the same problem, just after 1 year
by pagbabian / December 19, 2004 4:26 AM PST
In reply to: Canon S400 Problems

After reading my warranty information, I realized I'm out of luck, especially now after reading your posting. I loved the camera otherwise, and although I don't want to reward Cannon for faulty design, I now need to either get it fixed at my cost, or buy something else.

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Canon Reply
by jump1127 / December 22, 2004 12:33 AM PST
In reply to: Canon S400 Problems

Error Code "E18" (Lens unit/Lens barrier error)


When a camera error occurs, an error code like "Exx" will be displayed, where the x's represent numbers.
The "E18" error code indicates an error that involves the lens unit or lens barrier. Or it may appear if you apply pressure to the area surrounding the lens while handling the camera.

Solution

Check the following when you operate the camera to avoid applying pressure to the lens and surrounding area:

- Hold the camera so that your fingers do not touch the lens unit when you are shooting.
- Make sure the camera is off before you put it back in the soft case.

If you cannot clear the error code by turning the camera off and then on again, or if the error code is displayed frequently, a camera malfunction may have occurred.
Please contact the retailer where you purchased the camera or the nearest Canon service center

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lcd does not work
by ld04 / January 3, 2005 9:15 AM PST
In reply to: Canon S400 Problems

My camera is also a little over one year old, therefore out of warranty. Yesterday, after the camera had been working beautifully, the LCD just did not come on. I can see the logo when the camera first turns on, but it is so faint, I can barely make out the word. Same experience with customer service. $150 - 270 for repair. Why should a camera so new, need such an expensive repair????? I hestitate on buying a refurbished s410 model for $175. Anyone else have a way to get a better response from Canon? I had switched to Canon after an awful experience with Nikon.

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S400
by ccriordan / June 1, 2005 9:07 AM PDT
In reply to: lcd does not work

I had the same problem, turened it off, tapped it on a desk, turned it back on and it works fine. This is a great little camera.
Dan

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S400 E18
by stankvt / January 31, 2005 10:09 PM PST
In reply to: Canon S400 Problems

My son and I both purchased the S400. Both of ours are out of warranty. A little over a year old. Both cameras have started to exhibit the E18 problem. My sons will not fuction because of the E18 and mine works maybe 15 percent of the time.
I think Canon has a responsibility to it's customers for a "recall" because of a design flaw. This is no different then a car manufacturer that produces a bad designed part in a car and has a recall.
I will not buy a Canon replacement and I will do my best to alert other people about the corporate culture of hiding behind the 1 year warranty with a design flaw.

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Canon USA are thieves!
by hbtc / February 5, 2005 11:33 PM PST
In reply to: Canon S400 Problems

I had the same problem two days after my 1 year warrenty ended. Circuit City told me to buy a new one, that it was cheaper then to repair, so I bought the s500. I will never buy another product from Circuit City or Canon, they do not stand behind their products.

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Note that Canon cameras are mentioned in:
by rgfitz / February 6, 2005 12:38 AM PST
In reply to: Canon S400 Problems
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E18 Problem -- me too plus another problem
by jsoto / March 26, 2005 4:05 AM PST
In reply to: Canon S400 Problems

I had the same problem while still under warranty, but after the store would normally take it back. I was able to get my local retailer to sell me another S400 and return the original one for refund using the later receipt. I doubt they'd do that again.

My "newer" S400, which is now about 18 months old, has a different problem -- the dial used to switch between print mode, video mode, panorama mode, etc. does not work. Fortunately it's stuck in the default print mode which is my main use. I'll post this again in a new thread to see if someone has a solution to this problem.

These ultracompact Canon cameras seem to NOT have good reliability which worries me as I just plunked down $1400 for a Canon 20D SLR -- Canon quality was my only hesitation.

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can't believe it
by misterill / April 11, 2005 11:39 AM PDT

well, at this point it's onvious this is a real problem, but to anybody not yet convinced by the numerous accounts prior to mine, let me tell you the same exact thing just happened to my camera. i can't believe it because i bought it based on the 20 or so friends i had at the time (a bit over a year ago) who had purchased the camera and raved about it. it did work wonderfully - up until it suddenly, for no reason, conked out in the middle of a photo session. now i have no camera to take product shots for my business, and i'm going to have to fork over more loot to get one for that purpose and a trip to japan in two weeks. like i needed to spend more money over the airfare and such i've paid for already. canon has just been placed on my list of comapanies never to again support, along with sharp and continental airlines.

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canon e 18 error
by hunter53151 / April 21, 2005 7:48 AM PDT
In reply to: can't believe it

I also had the same problem. There is a possible class action suit.Please call the following attorney-Jim Smith at 1-877-667-9489. There is no cost to you.Please tell others with similar problems.This is being investigated. Thanks.

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e18 error and class action suit
by hunter53151 / April 25, 2005 10:18 AM PDT
In reply to: can't believe it

CALL ATTORNEY JIM SMITH AT NO COST TO YOU REGARDING THE E18 ERROR. THERE IS A POSSIBLE CLASS ACTION SUIT.HIS NUMBER IS 1-877-667-9489.

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canon e18 error
by hunter53151 / April 21, 2005 7:55 AM PDT

I also had this problem. Please contact the following attorney for a possible class action suit- Jim Smith 1-877-667-9489.There is no cost to you.Tell others with the same problem. Thanks.

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CANON E18 ERROR FREE REPAIR
by anewor11 / June 8, 2005 3:17 AM PDT
In reply to: canon e18 error

I had a PowerShot A70 which has the E18 error (lens not retracting, loss of focus, batteries easily get consumed etc...) I wrote to Canon Canada several times and at first they were trying to tell me that it's not their fault and could be mishandling or misuse on my part...I told them that it's a common problem being experienced by many Canon digital camera owners so that means that their product has some problems...They asked me to send my camera to an authorized service shop but I refused because I will be charged ( I called and enquired at the shop). I said they should look into this problem before their corporate image gets tarnished, so they told me to send it to their Service Department in Calgary. I explained the problem in a letter and added that their PowerShot series should be recalled because of the faulty lens...Voila, after less than 3 weeks I received my camera back, all repaired and cleaned at no charge. So, you guys might want to try to send your cameras to Canon Canada or US wherever you bought them...It's the least that Canon could do for us. Yes I'm somewhat relieved that my camera is fixed but I would have been happier if it didn't breakdown in the first place. It's a ******* expensive camera and we deserve to get our money's worth. By the way, I have no more warranty on my camera...just in case you're wondering.

So there...I hope all of you will have this problem fixed. Don't let Canon charge you for the repair, you're just gonna be a victim twice...Don't let them get away with their responsibility. And if all fails, heck, I'll support your class lawsuit even if mine is already fixed...

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S400 issues
by bensil / April 23, 2005 8:15 AM PDT
In reply to: Canon S400 Problems

I feel lucky that I haven't encountered the E18 error...yet. I did have a problem when my S400 was just over the 1 year mark (of course). It stopped recognizing the CF memory card. Nothing I did helped, so I contacted Canon. Same story - hefty price tag to repair the unit, and absolutely no remorse. Luckily, I tried another card and was able to read it. Other devices read the "problem" card, just not the S400. I wasn't thrilled with Canon's support, either. I also purchased a Rebel 35mm package with thoughts of adding the digital body later, but I don't see that happening now. I accept equipment problems as part of life, but I won't accept poor support.

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Memory Card
by snapshot2 Forum moderator / April 23, 2005 12:23 PM PDT
In reply to: S400 issues

The problem you described for the Memory Card is likely not the fault of your camera.

It happens on all types of digital cameras.

One cause is failing to format the card with the camera, before storing photos on the card. It may not bite you right away but will bite you later.

In most cases, if you have a card reader you can use your computer to delete all files and folders on the card. The camera will then recognize the card and you can format it with the camera.

...
..
.

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this is getting repetitive
by suekim75 / May 9, 2005 8:39 AM PDT
In reply to: Memory Card

Same problem. I will try the memory card reformatting fix. If this does not work then I will call Jim Smith and join the class action suit. Thanks.

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Ask about returns
by mrobzo / May 10, 2005 1:46 PM PDT
In reply to: Canon S400 Problems

To the best of my understanding, Canon is the most frequently returned DC. In second place is Nikon. Before I ever buy a product, I go to several stores and ask an experienced clerk, "Which products are returned the most freqently?" They all seem to have the same answers if they are allowed to talk about it so keep it low when you ask. After talking to some clerks, it became clear to me that I would never waste my hard earned dollors on a Canon! Ask the people who know.

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My s400 Stopped working?!
by hummertd / May 17, 2005 10:33 AM PDT
In reply to: Canon S400 Problems

I bought my s400 a year ago for 375 on NEWEGG.com (Great Deal and webssite) I figured the money would be worth it since I would finally have a digital camera for a few years. Worked great untill one month after warranty! Just stopped turning on?! Called Canon...165 to fix 175 to upgrade to refurbished s410 with a 6 month warranty. No thanks I can go to staples and buy it new for 200 with a 1 year warranty. Great Product awfull customer support. Any one know how to fix this problem (wont turn on) please help.

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S400
by ccriordan / June 1, 2005 9:04 AM PDT

Greetings,

My camera turned on, but, just showed a blank screen. This happened just before a year of ownership, and just before a year of the repair date. It happened a few times in-between, but, removing the battery overnight usually solved the problem. I did not drop it prior to not working, but, figured that something might be loose. I turned it off, tapped it on a desk, turned it back on, and it is fine. I've only had to do this a couple of times since.
Hope this helps,
Dan

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Blank screen
by ccriordan / May 20, 2005 1:00 PM PDT
In reply to: Canon S400 Problems

My S400 showed a black screen when in shooting mode. Pictures taken were black. Review of older pictures was fine. I sent it in for warranty repair, just under 1 year of purchase, they replaced the mainboard. Since then it has done this a couple of times. I had to remove the battery for about 24 hours then the camera has been fine. Now camera has the same error again. It has been just about a year since it was repaired. Hmmm... A e-mail back from support said that I could pay for a repair (for the same problem), or upgrade. Can I trust Canon? My brother in-law swears by the high-end digitals that work great, but, I do not want to spend $2000 just for a camera right now. Anyone else come across the black screen?

Dan

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(NT) S400
by ccriordan / June 1, 2005 9:08 AM PDT
In reply to: Blank screen

I think I fixed it by tapping it on a desk.
Dan

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E 18 Error
by jefface / June 6, 2005 1:29 PM PDT
In reply to: (NT) S400

Apparently the cause is not easy to fix. try tapping on the desk, but it could mean that anywhere in the lens mechanism there is resistance above the spec. Gears, tracks, etc... If your camera is dead and you're going to throw it out any way, you can try to fix by ripping the thing apart. Loose Instructions for a similar model are here:
http://www.ixus-world.de/index.htm?tips/repair_guide/e18_01en.htm

I will try it myself when I get a change but I doubt I will be able to get it back together.

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when all else fails, hit it against your desk!
by nay_sayer / June 14, 2005 6:31 AM PDT
In reply to: (NT) S400

>> I think I fixed it by tapping it on a desk.
>> Dan

Add me to the list of folks who have fixed the blank screen problem by "tapping it on a desk." I also removed the battery for a few minutes so it could have been either that fixed it, but so far so good!
Jay

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My Canon is Fine.
by nycboy0156 / May 27, 2005 8:07 PM PDT
In reply to: Canon S400 Problems

I've had a canon camera for over 3 years now and it continues to work flawlessly. They make the best cameras and the best lenses and I would not hesitate to buy another canon camera simply because your unit failed to operate more than a year after you purchased it. I would imagine that something had to happen to bring this error message to appear. I know my cousin had a mishap when his camera went on while in the camera bag and the lense could not extend. I'm sure you can imagine the damage. Fortunately for him HP replaced his cam with a brand new one because it was still under warranty. I'm sorry to hear of your unfortunate experience, but I'm sure there is more to it that what you told.

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