How to Livestream with Canon EOS R

Ever wonder if you can use your Canon EOS R for live streaming?

Well, the answer is yes!

The Canon EOS R outputs a clean HDMI feed so you can use the HDMI output to live stream with your camera. HDMI capture devices turn your camera’s HDMI feed into a webcam for your computer to use.

In this guide, I’ll show you how to use a Canon EOS R for livestreaming.

Things You’ll Need to Livestream with an EOS R

Step #1: Setup Your Camera for Live Streaming

Now in addition to the equipment above you’ll need to change a few settings on your camera. This includes disabling auto power-off, setting a clean HDMI output, and turning on face tracking.

1. Disable Auto Power Off

You don’t want your camera shutting off while streaming so it’s important to disable the auto power-off function.

2. Set Clean HDMI Output

On the Canon EOS R, you can make the camera output all of the camera overlays or a clean feed. You don’t want your overlays displayed since it’ll overlay your camera feed with focus point, settings, etc. So changing this option will allow your EOS R to only display the camera feed.

3. Enable Face Tracking Autofocus

Since you can’t fiddle with focus you’ll most likely want to turn on face tracking for autofocus.

4. Using Direct Power in Your EOS R

If you are planning on streaming longer than an hour it’s recommended you plug your camera into direct power rather than using the battery. Since the battery dying during a live stream can result in unexpected downtime.

It’s important to know that the Canon EOS R doesn’t charge via USB C while in use so you’ll need to use a power adapter to power the camera directly.

This is where the Canon AC-E6N AC power kit comes in. There are plenty of dummy battery kits for EOS R but this is Canon’s official accessory.

Step #2: Hook Up HDMI Capture Device

The most important device in this setup is an HDMI capture device. This will allow your computer to use your camera as a webcam.

New for 2020: if you do not want to get a capture device you can use Canon’s EOS Webcam utility to use your Canon EOS R as a webcam. You will achieve higher quality using a capture card but the EOS Webcam utility makes it easy since all you need to do is hook your EOS R up via USB-C cable. Now available on Mac and Windows in beta.

Here are a few HDMI capture devices to use:

Different HDMI capture devices will vary by resolution, framerate, audio options, and overall stability.

Once you have your HDMI capture device simply use your HDMI wire and plug in your capture device.

Elgato Camlink plugged into Macbook Pro (with a USB C hub)

Make sure to get the drivers for your capture device, for example, Elgato Camlink will appear choppy without installing Game Capture. You don’t need to use the program but installing it will make the Camlink work optimally.

If your camera is on and you have all of the correct settings you should see your EOS R listed as a webcam in all programs that use webcams on your computer. Note that it won’t actually say EOS R, most likely the brand of HDMI capture device such as “Camlink”.

Selecting the camera in your streaming app

After selecting the webcam in your favorite live streaming software like OBS or Ecamm Live you should see the direct feed from your EOS R. This will also work in your web browser to stream on sites like YouTube, Facebook Live, or Twitch as well. It will also work with any conferencing apps that let you select a webcam like Zoom calls, FaceTime (on Mac), or Google Hangouts.

If you need to change any settings on the camera simply hit a button on the camera and the screen will turn on. This will allow you to change camera settings all without viewers seeing the menu.

For audio, not all HDMI capture devices will transfer the camera’s audio to your computer. For this reason I recommend picking up a USB microphone like a Blue Yeti or Rode NT-USB Mini. Then you won’t have to worry about batteries or the HDMI device’s audio capabilities.

You should now be able to successfully use your Canon EOS as a webcam in any live streaming application.

HDMI plugged into the EOS R
HDMI plugged into the EOS R

If you have any issues or questions feel free to ask me in the comments below.

Leave a Comment

24 comments on “How to Livestream with Canon EOS R”

      1. Hi Andy
        So in your experience you didn’t have any issues with the Canon EOS R overheating when streaming for extended periods of time (eg. 2 hours?)

      2. Sheree, The EOS R will not overheat if using it in an HDMI capture card to my knowledge. The same goes for the EOS R5 unless you are using the 8K or high frame rate modes. That being said I have used my EOS R for a few hours before in a capture card without issue, the battery may die but a dummy battery fixes that (linked in the article above). I think it’ll go 2 hours with a battery though! hope that helps.

  1. Thanks for this write up!

    I’m experiencing a bug I can’t seem to find a solution online for. I’d love to hear your thoughts.

    When using my EOS R with a Black Magic Web Presenter (with HDMI) and OBS, the signal is cropped to 720 regardless of the EOS R HDMI output settings). I know this because it won’t fill a 1080 canvas on OBS

    On top of that, the video signal has a black box surrounding the video, reducing the effective resolution even more.

    I see this cropped-black-box version on my Web Presenter preview screen.

    No such issue with our Panasonic GH5.

    I was beginning to believe this was an EOS R shortcoming, but your article gives me hope this can be corrected. 🙂

    Any ideas?

    I appreciate your time and thoughts!

    1. Have you tried setting the video mode on the camera to 720? Perhaps it’s an issue when a 1080p feed is going into the 720 feed. Granted I have no issues using the 4k option going into my 1080p Camlink. Also, does the Web Presenter have aspect ratio options? Hard for me to fully test since I don’t have one.

    2. I’m having a similar issue, aspect ratio is clearly off (squished), black bars across the top and bottom. Aspect ratio (4K/1080/720) doesn’t matter, lens doesn’t matter. Works fine with my Canon 6d Mark II, but it isn’t a clean HDMI feed.

      Did you find a fix?

      macOS Catalina
      Canon EOS R (24-105 F4/28-70 F2)
      BlackMagic UltraStudio Mini Recorder

      1. I do (latest version), doesn’t seem to help. I read another user somewhere else with my same setup has the same problem and it was solved with the Elgato Cam Link. My next steps:

        Canon Support
        Black Magic Support
        Bought an Elgato Cam Link (unknown arrival date)
        Interesting item of note, while not clean HDMI, my Canon 6D mark II works fine.

        Thanks for getting back to me and thanks for the article.

      2. Shoot, figured that would help! I wish I had one to debug it, let me know if you figure it out! Maybe a different HDMI wire might help also. Either way keep me posted as it seems to be a common issue.

  2. Hey Andy, I was wondering if I could ask some advice from you.. I connected my EOS R with my Elgato HD60, and wanted to use it as my webcam – In particular for Zoom – however I cannot change the webcam on my MacBook to the EOS R input as there is no option to change.
    After some research, I downloaded OBS Studio and OBS NDI Plugin, but for some reason it is displaying that ‘No capture devices are found’.. I’ve tried uninstalling OBS, and reinstalling it but still not working, I have followed the steps for the EOS R menu system and doesn’t seem to work.
    NB when I open Game Capture I can see the image from the EOS R so it seems the device (Elgato HD60) is working and the feed (mini hdmi – hdmi).
    Any advice would be much appreciated!
    Thank you

    1. Hey Amit, the button next to your camera button in Zoom (the little up arrow) should let you select the Camlink. You shouldn’t need any additional things running, just the Camlink plugged in will have it show up in the Zoom camera list.

  3. Matthew Davidson

    I’m trying to get a clean output from my EOS R. I’m using firmware 1.6.0. Have six ‘shoot’ pages, not four, and none of the pages provide the HDMI display option. What firmware are you using? Is there some option I need to enable somewhere else in order to gain access to the HDMI display option?

    1. This is the latest firmware, you are most likely in photo mode, go to shooting modes and switch it to one of the video modes, then you’ll have the option on page 4 like the screenshot.

  4. Hi
    I found that using a USB-C instead of an HDMI cable works very well. It requires less gears in total.
    For software, I use OBS with the EOS Webcam plugin.

    I use windows 10.

  5. Thank you so much for this comprehensive tutorial.
    Would you mind giving some advice: what lens is better for live streaming, to get this
    blurred background and high quality?

    appreciate your answer

  6. I’ve been struggling to use my Canon EOS R with Zoom using the Elgato CamLink. I have the exact same setup that you have here and it works great for about 10 mins, and then my video feed stops working in Zoom. I have to leave the meeting and re-join. This is not the case if I use a traditional webcam (i.e.: Logitech Brio, C922, etc). Any thoughts?

      1. Are you talking about the Game Capture HD? Yes, I do now. Do I run the video input through that app, or just having it installed is good enough?

        As for power, yes… power saving mode is set to disabled. When the video blacks out, the camera is still on. All I do is leave the meeting and go back in, and it’s working fine again. I have a webinar with 6,000+ participants coming up this weekend and need to figure this out. It’s been a week of trial and error (lots of errors).

      2. Having the app installed should be enough. Hmmm so it just blacks out? I have done hour+ long things with the CamLink without issue. I assume it’s the USB/CamLink aspect, could you try a different USB port or a different computer just to rule it out? Also does it switch inputs on you or just goes to black while still being on the CamLink?

      3. Yeah, I thought it was strange too. It actually doesn’t completely black out. The input stays on CamLink but stops by video. Problem is, I can’t start the video again without leaving the Zoom session and restarting/rejoining. And even more strange… when that happens, I can’t even switch to another video input (my Brio for example). It just stops allowing me to stream video.

        As a quick update, I have a test call going right now that I started after I installed the Game Capture HD software to test that out. I’m at 34 mins so far, so this is promising!! Could that really have been the fix?

      4. 52 minutes and counting and still no issues! Amazing! The quality is just so much better through good glass. It’s worth the time putting into it to make it look great. I’m using a 35mm f/1.2 lens. The depth of field is amazing.

        Thanks for your help!! Greatly appreciated!

        PS. I tried doing all of this using the Canon Webcam Utility beta and the quality was horrible. Very, very choppy. Have you experienced the same thing with that?