Review: Magic Lantern Firmware for the 5D Mark II

 Extreme Mammals!


Here are a few of my thoughts on the Magic Lantern Firmware for my Canon 5D Mark II. It was originally designed for videographers, but I have found the still image features very valuable.

Features for still photography

  • Adds an intervalometer to your camera for time lapses without the need to buy and carry a remote.
  • Extended bracketing up to 9 brackets with up to 5 stop differences for each bracket!
  • Bulb timer for exposures up to 8 hours.
  • Other little goodies like a motion trigger, sound trigger, and added options for the live view screen.

After my wired remote was bitten in two by my tripod, I have used the 2-second delay for 99% of my city shots. I love shooting this way and I continue to use it even after I have fixed the remote. But I miss the intervalometer. The Magic Lantern Firmware fixes this and adds the automatic bracketing and bulb exposures.

So far, I haven’t had any problems, and I love the added features. The camera takes an extra second or to start up, so I don’t use it for family photos or anything with quick action. But for shooting the city, it is the perfect companion to the 5D Mark II. I highly recommend it!

Magic Lantern Firmware is donationware. Donate at their page.




Written by

When I’m not staying up all night figuring out the details of our next Out of Chicago Conference, you’ll find me at the park with our son and daughter, playing my guitar, out on the golf course, or following my favorite (Detroit) sports teams. I love Chicago, but I’ll always root for my Tigers, Red Wings, Lions, Michigan sports, and Pistons.

Latest comments
  • Just installed it last night on the one CF card I currently own. Great stuff. I will be using mostly the HDR portion of the software. Next time I see you Chris at a photowalk, you can maybe show me some tips that you use with this firmware.

    • I’d love to. Hopefully I’ll see you on the 22nd.

  • Awesome, it is compatible with my camera. I was going to look for something like this but you’ve done my work for me. Thanks for the tip!

    • No problem. Give it a shot for sure. I think you’ll like it.


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