On 22 July 2022, Canon released firmware version 1.6 for the EOS R5. As usual, this update includes a number of minor enhancements; but one big one is a new option to improve run times before overheating when shooting video.

Since the release, I've been testing how the new option affects overheating — and it seems to be a big improvement. So I thought I'd share my results.

Overheating Fixed?

The new Auto power off temp setting.

Overheating in video shooting has been an issue for the R5 since it was released. However, it's fair to say that since the initial release, subsequent firmware updates have improved the situation a lot, with firmware 1.5 allowing over half an hour of continuous shooting in 8k, or in 4k HQ, which is essentially 8k but with high-quality downscaling. This means that the big limitation on video is now the built-in 30-minute record time limit — at least for a single continuous shot.

The new firmware version 1.6 improves things more — considerably more. Well, the 30-minute shot limit is still there; but at least overheating seems to be less of an issue than ever before.

The big new feature is a new menu item called "Auto power off temp", with settings "Standard" and "High". The "High" setting basically lets the camera get hotter while filming; the downside being that you need to watch for hot spots on the outside of the camera. I would be concerned that if you're hand-holding the camera for a while, you could suffer low-temperature burns. So be careful.

The new white heat warning.

In "High" mode, there's a new temperature warning, in white, which comes on before the usual flashing red warning. This seems like an advance warning of things hotting up, so you have more stages of alerts before the camera resorts to shutting down.

Since the release, I've been running a battery of tests to see how the new "High" option affects overheating. To get a fair baseline, I've also tested the "Standard" option with the same test setup. My results are presented below.

Settings for Heat

The heat-related menu settings.

There are a couple of settings you can configure in the camera to help with heat management.

Firstly, make sure you’re in movie mode to see these settings. The menus are different in photo mode. And you will need firmware version 1.6 to get the “Auto power off temp” setting.

On the shooting menu (the first one), page 8, “Standby Low Res” is one option you should set; you’ll often see this referred to as “Overheat control”, which is what it was previously called.

Just above this is the new “Auto power off temp” setting, which you can set to “Standard” or “High”. Set this to “High” to get longer shoot times.

The Test Setup

Recording the TV. For the real tests, an external power bank was used.

All tests were shooting the TV, so the camera had some motion to process. The room was about 19-20 °C (66-68 °F). The display was flipped out, to the side of the camera — past tests showed that this helps a little. All tests were running off an external USB power bank; the camera was on a mini-tripod with a small Arca-Swiss plate on the bottom, no other rigging or accessories. Obviously the 30 minute record time limit kicked in (7.5 minutes in 120 FPS), so I just pressed record again each time the camera stopped, until it actually overheated and shut down — or I got fed up and went to bed.

In all cases, once the camera shut down, I stopped the test. Of course you can let it rest a bit and get more time out of it, but how much time depends on how long you let it cool. With infinitely many options, I couldn't be bothered testing this. The camera was allowed to get stone cold between these tests.

The 23.98 tests for 4k were in HQ, i.e. oversampling mode. All the other tests were LQ, because that's the only option available. The noted time is the record time — for 120 FPS, in particular, your playback time would be 4 or 5 times that, depending on how you slow it down.

The Results

PO Temp Mode FPS Result
Standard 4k HQ 23.98 warning @ 31m 02s, shutdown @ 40m 18s
High 4k HQ 23.98 ran for 3 hours, no warning or shutdown, gave up
Standard 8k IPB 23.98 warning @ 25m 50s, shutdown @ 33m 57s
High 8k IPB 23.98 ran for 4 hours plus, white warning after an hour or so, red warning intermittent, no shutdown
Standard 4k LQ 59.94 warning @ 1h 11m, shutdown @ 1h 41m
High 4k LQ 59.94 ran for 3 hours, no warning or shutdown, gave up
Standard 4k LQ 120 warning @ 14m 45s, shutdown @ 19m 53s
High 4k LQ 120 white warning @ 22m 50s, red warning @ 29m 45s, shutdown @ 35m 54s


This is a pretty basic set of tests, but it already seems clear that 1.6 is a big improvement. In 4k HQ, and even in 8k IPB, I basically couldn't get it to shut down. Shooting 120 FPS is a severe strain on the camera, but even that has improved significantly.

In the cases where the camera ran for 3 hours or more, it just didn't seem to be getting hotter, so I couldn't see much point in continuing. The camera was pretty warm after these tests, but not crazy; though the memory card was too hot to hold. It cooled down pretty fast, though.

I do have some reservations about letting the camera get so hot; but if you need a long record run, it seems that you're now covered. Of course the R5C is another way to go; it's bigger and has worse battery life, but the active cooling means heat issues are no longer a concern.

Obviously I can't guarantee that you'll get these run times. Individual variations between cameras, different environments etc., will all have an effect. In particular in the 8k test, the warnings were showing intermittently after the first hour or so, so the camera was clearly close to the edge.

Please bear in mind that in "High", the camera can get hot, so watch out for low-temperature burns if you're holding the camera for a while.