How Long Does a DSLR Last? (2023)

Many professional and beginner photographers use DSLR cameras because of their high image quality, efficiency, and interchangeable lens options.

Like any other electronic gadget DSLR camera also has a light span. So, how long does a DSLR last?

DSLR cameras last anywhere from 3 to 10 years or even longer. However, it depends on how you take care of them.

Even if it’s an entry-level camera, you’re still spending money on it, so you want to be sure it’s a wise purchase.

Even while it might be argued—and perhaps should—that the lenses linked to the camera are more significant, it’s still comforting to know that the camera will survive for a long time.

The durability of DSLR cameras will be discussed in this article along with whether or not you should be concerned about it.

Read 14 Best DSLR Cameras on a budget.

So, let’s get to it. That brand-new DSLR will probably endure for many years.

It is unlikely that you will damage the camera’s shutter, mirror mechanism, or other parts by repeatedly using it.

Dropping, getting it wet, or the camera aging are the most common causes for requiring a repair or upgrade.

In other words, don’t worry about the shutter count; simply keep shooting and do your best to look after the camera.

Count Matter

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A DSLR’s shutter is triggered each time the button is depressed, exposing the sensor and taking a picture.

The shutter count represents all of the times the button has been pushed over the camera’s life. Manufacturers put their cameras through extensive testing to determine how durable they are and provide shutter ratings.

The number of times a shutter may potentially be triggered before failing is known as its shutter rating. High-end cameras may have up to 400,000 shutter actuations, whereas many entry-level DSLRs are listed at 100,000.

Although shutter rates for the majority of DSLRs are published, finding such information is not always simple. The shutter ratings for a few well-known DSLRs now available are shown in the table below.

Does Shutter Count Matter?

Yes and no. A Canon 7D Mark II has a 200,000 actuation shutter rating. Even though the shutter count hits that point, the camera is not always doomed. In this scenario, YMMV (your mileage may vary).

Only 150,000 shutter actuations on a 7D Mark II might cause it to malfunction.

A different body could be functioning long beyond the manufacturer’s rating. Don’t focus too much on the shutter rating figures.

Numerous other factors are more likely to be the root of a camera’s malfunction or to warrant purchasing a new camera.

Although I lack the evidence to support that, I would hazard a bet that the majority of photographers don’t use cameras for long enough to wear out a shutter.

If you shoot 30,000 photos annually on average, the shutter on the majority of mid-range DSLRs will survive at least 5 years.

Possibly even longer the majority of the time. In that period, a lot might occur that could make buying a new camera necessary.

When purchasing a camera on the secondhand market, it might be helpful to be aware of the shutter count.

A careful visual examination may reveal a lot, but it is useful to understand how often a camera body has been used.

If all camera bodies could keep track of the total number of shutter actuations, like a camera odometer, that would be excellent. Unfortunately, manufacturers do not provide this functionality, which in my opinion makes no sense.

You may find out your camera’s shutter count in a variety of methods.

The shutter count is usually included in the EXIF information of your photographs if you use a Nikon or Pentax camera.

Finding this information seems to be a bit more challenging with Canon and Sony, if not impossible.

The majority of Nikon and Pentax camera bodies seem to be compatible with and, but only a small number of Canon DSLRs.

You may learn about your shutter actuations in a variety of additional methods.

Free software called Magic Lantern offers a shutter count option that may be used to unlock a variety of capabilities on Canon DSLRs.

Your DSLR is capable of so many things that you probably aren’t aware of them.

What Should You Worry About?

There are additional issues that a DSLR camera might encounter, even if the shutter count may not be a major worry.

A DSLR’s issues are often the result of human mistakes. Since they are electrical equipment, dampness and impact might harm them.

Nothing is more depressing than hearing your fine DSLR crumble to the ground or splash into a lake or stream. These occurrences are significantly more concerning than the shutter aging.

Using your DSLR on a tripod on a windy day is one potential situation. A wind gust that comes at the wrong moment might topple the tripod and knock the camera to the ground.

The camera could be unscathed or it might be inc route to the manufacturer for pricey repairs.

Outdated Gear

DSLRs have advanced significantly over the last five to ten years, much like the majority of other modern gadgets.

Faster and more precise focus, greater low-light performance, more features, and higher picture quality are all benefits of these quick developments.

It’s not that the “old” camera can’t capture good pictures anymore; rather often, the same identical sensor is utilized for many generations.

But the marketing divisions feed our thirst for the most cutting-edge camera bodies. There are sometimes good reasons to update.

On other occasions, it manifests as Gear Acquisition Syndrome (GAS). More often than I’d care to admit, I’ve been there and done that.

Whatever the situation, the majority of photographers will probably purchase a new camera before their current one breaks.

Shutter Replacement

Assume your camera’s shutter does really fail. A replacement may always be obtained. Depending on the camera, altering the shutter mechanism may be more expensive.

High-end cameras are often more expensive. The cost of changing the shutter may be greater depending on the camera model, ranging from $250 to $400. It is totally up to you whether or not it is expensive.

The age of the camera and the cost of replacing it with a comparable model are major considerations. If your camera is five years old or older, it may be time to upgrade.


Just to be clear, the lifespan of your DSLR is not likely to be affected by the shutter count. Well done if you do manage to destroy the shutter.

That implies that you shoot often. The likelihood of your camera being wet or being dropped and needing repairs or replacement is higher.

If that doesn’t happen, it’s more probable that you’ll outgrow your camera or that it will just become too “old,” requiring an update.

Almost every DSLR available today will survive at least 3 to 5 years with typical usage, and may even live much longer.

In any case, simply keep shooting and try not to worry too much. The best way to appreciate a camera is to use it.

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