What is Canon CPS?

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A few months ago I joined Canon’s CPS Program. CPS stands for Canon Professional Service and is a membership program that offers some extra perks for power users of Canon products. The program has different tier levels, that give you different benefits depending on your level. 

You can sign up for different levels by accumulating a certain amount of points. Points are earned through Canon equipment you own. It can be pretty much anything from cameras, lenses, printers, and certain accessories. Everything which has a certain cost assigned with it. The newer and more professional (and expensive) the product, the more points you earn for it. For example, I am still using an “old” EOS 5D MkII which is basically not worth any points anymore even though it did cost me over $3000 when I bought it brand new when Canon introduced it.

Besides the need for a bunch of Canon equipment, every level except the Silver level has a membership fee associated with it. An overview of the membership levels and fees can be found here. The same page also has a link to the points list.

CPS Membership Levels

My CPS Story

My story of how I ended up with Canon CPS is rather sad. I was out on a photo hike to take pictures and tripped. I dropped my camera and broke my lens mount. I didn’t notice it right away, but a few screws which connect the mount to the lens housing ripped out. When I was holding the lens a certain way, I couldn’t focus anymore or take pictures. I kinda had to “press” the lens against my camera to regain connection so the camera could take pictures again. That way, I could finish my hike and get all the pictures I wanted to take. 

It is a similar issue to the one when Lufthansa broke my camera lens.

The next business day, I called a few camera repair shops if I could drop off my lens for repair. But every place I called told me it could be a week or longer to get my lens back. That’s when I remembered CPS but I never signed up for it. I did some research and signed up for the program. 

After entering all the serial numbers of my equipment, I was able to achieve the Gold level. I paid the $100 membership fee and got assigned a CPS ID#. With this number, I was immediately able to start a repair claim online and ship my lens out the same day. I shipped my lens for next-day delivery and had it back five days later repaired and all checked out by Canon. 

Thanks to my Gold membership I received a 20% discount on the repair cost, a three business day turnaround, and free return shipping. Was it worth the $100 membership fee just for the repair?

Absolutely! Thanks to my membership level I saved a total of almost $140. That’s on top of the quick turnaround time of Canon’s service department. 

Other Gold Level Benefits

Besides that, Gold members and above also receive a few nice gifts besides their membership card. I received the Canon CPS camera strap, which is actually quite comfortable and I replaced my current and worn strap with this new one. Unfortunately, I should have also received a cap for the bayonet connector of my lens and camera. According to Canon, they were out of stock. However, I still had the one from my camera body and lens. These are the ones you see in the picture below.

CPS Member Package

The gold level also comes with a few other amazing perks. For example, I can send up to 5 pieces of equipment to the Canon Maintenance Service (CMS). Where they get checked out and cleaned. The website shows this service is only available for DSLR and EF lenses. I am sure Canon will extend this offer to the new mirrorless R-line and the RF lenses for these cameras. Another benefit is the Equipment Evaluation Loans. This gives you the option to loan a product before you buy it. I am actually eyeballing the new Canon R5. That way I can have a hands-on experience and see if I even like the camera. 

Upgrading your Membership Level

As you buy more and more equipment, you can upgrade your membership to the next level as soon as you reach the required amount of points. You need to pay the new membership fee or difference for it, depending on your actual membership dates. 

Conclusion

Is it worth signing up for CPS and pay the annual fee? In my eyes, it is absolutely worth it. If you use all the benefits, you even gain more than you pay for the service.

Unfortunately, all the show and event benefits are suspended for the time being as the coronavirus pandemic is still ongoing and pretty much all events are now virtual.

[Header Image Courtesy of Canon]

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