Turn Your Canon Camera Into A High Quality Webcam With This Free Utility

Canon's EOS Webcam Utility Beta is available only for Windows 10, but macOS could be on the way. 

Sometimes all it takes is a worldwide pandemic for simple, logical solutions to emerge. With more people relying on livestreaming and video calls, Canon has released EOS Webcam Utility Beta. It's software that turns compatible DSLR, mirrorless, and PowerShot cameras into a high quality webcam using a single USB cable. 

The current from is only available for 64-bit versions of Windows 10. However, don't sweat it if you're a macOS user, it's probably coming soon. Plus, there are alternative options available. 

In order to download the software, it must be done through the EOS Webcam Utility Beta page or directly from the camera's product page. If you do not see the software on the camera support page, locate the Operating System drop down menu and change the operating system to Windows 10 (x64). After downloading, unzip the file and install the utility. Once installed, it's important to restart your computer.  

For my test, the utility turned out to be simple to install and easy to use with the EOS R and Zoom.  

The EOS Webcam Utility Beta can be found under the Zoom video options

After restarting the computer, I connected a USB-C cable from the EOS R to the computer input, and then turned on the EOS R in video mode. Windows 10 automatically installed the camera driver. Under the Zoom video options there is a selection for the EOS Webcam Utility Beta. Once selected, Zoom automatically started using the Canon EOS R as a webcam. 

Dante (left) is using a basic webcam, Randal (right) is using the EOS R

All the functions and settings of the EOS R seemed to be working normally including autofocus and each operating mode. Scene Intelligent Auto, Shutter Priority, Aperture Priority, and Manual all worked. 

For audio, the computer's microphone or the on-board microphone of the camera can be used. To use the camera mic, connect a 3.5mm cable from the headphone output into the microphone input on the computer. Be sure the audio settings on the camera are enabled and the settings on the application are matched correctly.    

The EOS R display will switch over to Live View

During the setup the EOS R display will show a computer icon until the EOS Webcam Utility Beta is selected in the application (e.g. Zoom, or other). Once selected, it will switch over to Live View.  

One issue, as the photo above shows, is that the USB-C cable (or any input) does get in the way of the display in selfie mode. It's something that I pointed out in my initial review of the EOS R, and there's no real way around it. There is a give and take with cameras that have smaller foot print and this is one of them.

Other than that, my only other suggestions would be to disable the Auto power settings under the Power savings menu and adjust the time limit to when the display automatically turns off. The EOS R has a maximum time limit of 30 minutes. Maybe a future firmware update could disable it completely like the viewfinder setting. 

Below is a list of compatible cameras. 

Compatible Cameras 

DSLR 

  • EOS-1D X Mark II
  • EOS-1D X Mark III
  • EOS 5D Mark IV
  • EOS 5DS
  • EOS 5DS R
  • EOS 6D Mark II
  • EOS 7D Mark II
  • EOS 77D
  • EOS 80D
  • EOS 90D
  • EOS Rebel SL2
  • EOS Rebel SL3
  • EOS Rebel T6
  • EOS Rebel T6i 
  • EOS Rebel T7
  • EOS Rebel T7i
  • EOS Rebel T100

Mirrorless 

  • EOS M6 Mark II 
  • EOS M50
  • EOS M200
  • EOS R
  • EOS RP

PowerShot

  • G5X Mark II
  • G7X Mark III
  •  SX70 HS

macOS Users

Though the EOS Webcam Utility Beta is not available for macOS yet, there are alternative solutions. Cam Link is one of them. It's a plug n' play device where you can connect a camera via HDMI to a computer. It supports resolutions up to 4K UHD at 30p, but does cost around $159. A free alternative that may work is combination of CameraLive and CamTwist. Instructions can be found here

Final Thoughts 

The EOS Webcam Utility Beta software is a nice addition for Canon users. The upgrade in quality over a computer's webcam is exceptional. Hopefully it's available for macOS soon and more cameras will be added to the compatibility list.

Going forward, it should be a standard feature on all cameras, and not just Canon. That said, if you happen to own a Sigma fp, it does have a built-in webcam function. Canon has opened up a community support page for the software if you've run into bugs or have suggestions. Canon has also set up a livestream support page for those with HDMI cameras as well. 

Have you tried the EOS Webcam Utility yet? Let us know about your experience in the comments below.      

Your Comment

10 Comments

What about Nikon, eh?

April 29, 2020 at 6:08PM

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Cosmin Gurau
Director
406

And Sony, and Panasonic, and Fuji, and (write yout preferred brand here)
the answer is All cameras could send a simple signal over Usb2.0-3.0 is only matter of sdk released or not from Brand. In past most of Fuji had this feature, then later photo cameras are too noble to be used like web cam, today after since 15 years (how time go faster) again someone decide to Gift us with a simple software that drive data to webcam libs to allow windows (or later mac) to use it like webcam. No brand is bound to do that, like release sdk to tether control their cameras, but canon do that for free.
ps before you think i'm fan boy canon, today i'm panasonic, bmd, fuji user, my last canon dslr is from since 11 years :-D

April 30, 2020 at 7:49AM

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Carlo Macchiavello
Director
907

I tested it with my Canon Eos R on a Windows 10 PC and it looks great. It hurts that the built-in microphone of the camera is not heard and neither does it happen by connecting a microphone to the audio input. Someone who can help me? (Zoom does not recognize audio and Facebook live does not recognize the camera)

April 29, 2020 at 7:12PM

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Carlos Hugo Vaca
Director Photography
74

I just read the instructions from Canon and it says to use a separate audio cord from the camera out/headphone jack to computer. USB does not support audio from camera. i have been working on using DSLR as webcam this last week. My Happauge Colosus capture card sees DSLR fine, Audio/Video via HDMI, and shows Youtube and Twitch as streaming services. Acording to canons forum some unsupported models work. (5Dmkll, 70D) going to try after work and post back. R, 70D, 50D w/ML

April 30, 2020 at 9:44AM, Edited April 30, 9:47AM

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James Schindler
Aspiring Film maker
129

I can confirm that the drivers work for the EOS 70D and EOS 50D, a perfect use for an old workhorse. The EOS Utility 3 does not recognize the 50 and Zoom showed a blank screen, so I started the utility v2 and connected the cam, then closed V2 and then Zoom worked fine. Mic needed direct connection to computer and select "same as system" for it to work. Have fun.

May 2, 2020 at 7:55AM

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James Schindler
Aspiring Film maker
129

Hi James, regarding the 70D, I have a black border around it on Facebook. Any ideas on how to get rid of it ? Many thanks

June 1, 2020 at 6:37AM

4
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Hi. Which download did you use for the 70D?

June 4, 2020 at 2:01PM

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I just testet it with the EOS 7d MarkII. First the EOS Webcam Utility in Zoom did not show the cameras picture. The problem was the (normal) "EOS Utility" software that was installed already and running in the background. After closing EOS Utility it work immediately.

April 30, 2020 at 12:23AM

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Exactly same issue.w with 5D MKIV

May 13, 2020 at 10:05PM

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Roger King
Retired
13

Very well explained I must say.

May 5, 2020 at 5:39PM

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Sylvestre Jones
Content Creator
168

please someone tell how to use a non supported canon camera for eos utility
as right now i have a canon powershot SX530HS which is a very cheap and old camera
but my webcam is trash
so please someone either make a hack or a fix or something that sort of please

May 29, 2020 at 8:12PM

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So this apparently works with a 70D but on the download page it is not listed for a windows computer. Which one do I download from the canon EOS Webcam Utility Beta page?

June 3, 2020 at 11:44PM

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