Canon Professional Services: Should You Join CPS as a Photographer?

As a professional photographer, it’s highly important to know you have support from a manufacturer to maintain your equipment. Canon knows this, which is why it provides a dedicated Canon Professional Services (CPS) for its customers; here’s a look into what the service is and whether you should become a member.

Table of Contents

What is Canon Professional Services?

CPS provides the fastest turnaround repair services, ensuring professionals aren’t without their equipment. If a CPS member opts to use their membership level, Canon grants access to a free loan program while their equipment is being serviced or repaired. In addition, depending on their membership level, there’s a discount on the labor costs associated with the repair.

The CPS logo.

While you might find Professional Services offered by other companies, Canon goes above and beyond to serve its customers. For example, during the Olympics and Paralympics Games in Tokyo, Canon announced it would still establish a dedicated photo center built specifically for Canon professional photographers within the Main Press Center. You have to remember this was amid COVID pressures, which saw the Olympic games move from 2020.

Canon’s photo center for CPS members at the Tokyo Olympics. Photos by Canon.

The Benefits of Joining CPS

The major benefit to anyone joining the CPS program is what every pro wants: fast service, direct communication, updates on repairs, exclusive offers, and loyalty rewards. For Canon, it’s not rocket science to put these benefits together; it’s a win-win for both parties. Poor service leads to less adoption, bad word of mouth, and negative press.

Photo by Canon

If you are a professional or semi-pro, you probably know how reliable Canon cameras are. But you’ll also know sometimes the unexpected can happen. You may accidentally drop a lens, get sand in the camera, wear something out due to heavy use, or in rarer cases; you may encounter an error code on a camera.

Whatever the case, it’s imperative you get the gear fixed and returned to you ASAP. Without the gear, you can’t earn an income. Fortunately, having a CPS membership covers you and solves the hassle of dealing with repair departments.

Photo by Stillness InMotion

How to Join Canon Professional Services

To join CPS, you need to meet a certain level of qualification. The way Canon determines membership qualification based on how much eligible Canon gear you own.

“To determine what level of CPS best suits your needs, equipment is assigned a point value on the Qualified Products List,” Canon says. “Points are accrued as they are entered on your CPS account to qualify for Silver, Gold, or Platinum.”

Photo by Matthew Hamilton

Upon registering with CPS, you’ll get instant membership, but you must register your products to accrue points. With a total of 3000 products to register with CPS, you’re bound to have a few. Canon also has 120 products that are eligible for fast turnaround servicing, so do check the official list to see if you are eligible; ensure you have the following information:

  • Product serial number
  • Retailer Name
  • Country of Purchase
  • Date of Purchase

Once the validation period ends, the points for each product will appear in your account. The total of these points can then qualify you for a different tier of membership, which we will discuss below.

Note: Canon checks to ensure there are no purchases from Gray Market suppliers, so ensure all your purchases are from Authorized Deals and Distributors. This is also the case for Canon subsidiaries outside the US. If you are unsure where authorized retailers are in the US, you can use the company’s “Where to Buy Finder.”

CPS Membership Levels and Annual Costs

After registering your gear, you will become eligible for either the free level or three paid levels of membership which renew each year (or an additional option for Corporate clients). You will receive a CPS Welcome Pack at this stage, including the all-important membership card that Canon uses to identify membership level, benefits, and gear in procession.

Stickers are also provided to help identify equipment repair priority when sending gear to Canon, and photographers will also find a handy lens cloth for maintaining equipment.

Photo by Demian Tejeda-Benitez

The benefits and annual membership fees for each membership level are shown below:

Silver CPS Membership

As the free tier of CPS, semi-pro photographers gain access to the following benefits once they meet the qualification threshold of 10 points:

  • CPS ID card
  • Access to Canon CPS support hotline (both locally and when traveling internationally)
  • 3-5 Business days of expedited service
  • Show and event support
  • Canon live learning program discounts
  • CPS website profile and program discounts

Gold CPS Membership

Offers support for part to full-time imaging professionals who meet a qualification point total of 20 points. An annual membership cost of $100 is also applicable to gain access to the following benefits:

  • Gold member gift
  • CPS Pro strap
  • CPS ID card
  • Access to Canon CPS support hotline (both locally and when traveling internationally)
  • Repair discount of 20% up to 10 pieces
  • Equipment evaluation loans (upon availability)
  • Repair coverage loan (after service turnaround)
  • 3 Business days of expedited service
  • Show and event support
  • 5 Pieces eligible for Canon maintenance service (CMS)
  • Canon live learning program discounts
  • CPS website profile and program discounts
  • Free return shipping when products go into the service facility

Platinum CPS Membership

Platinum is the highest tier for imaging professionals. The annual fee payable is $300, and photographers must qualify with 50 points. Platinum membership benefits are as follows:

  • Platinum member gift
  • CPS Pro strap
  • CPS ID card
  • Access to Canon CPS support hotline (both locally and when traveling internationally)
  • Repair discount of 30% up to 15 pieces
  • Priority equipment evaluation loans
  • Repair coverage loan (after repair received)
  • 2 Business days of expedited service
  • Show and event support
  • 10 Pieces eligible for Canon maintenance service (CMS)
  • Canon live learning program discounts
  • CPS website profile and program discounts
  • Free return shipping when products go into the service facility (both ways)

Cinema CPS Membership

Canon hasn’t left the cinematographers out. With this exclusive program, the cinema industry professional with one qualified cinema product can rely on the following benefits for an annual fee of $1,000:

  • Cinema member gift
  • CPS ID card
  • Access to Canon CPS support hotline (both locally and when traveling internationally)
  • Repair discount of 30% up to 20 pieces
  • Priority equipment evaluation loans (includes Cinema products)
  • Repair coverage loan (after repair received)
  • 2 Business days of expedited service (Cinema EOS and X Series is 5 days)
  • Show and event support
  • 10 Pieces eligible for Canon maintenance service (CMS)
  • Canon live learning program discounts
  • CPS website profile and program discounts
  • Free return shipping when products go into the service facility (both ways)

It’s also worth noting that CPS arranges Partner Offers, which can be redeemed via the CPS Dashboard. For example, at the time of this publication, all CPS members can gain access to 20% off all f-stop gear listed on the company’s website.

Corporate/Enterprise CPS Membership

If you run a large photography or filmmaking business or have an organization that deals with Canon professional equipment, you can contact Canon to discuss a Corporate CPS setup that can be used to track all equipment and photographers from a central database.

A Chart of Membership Levels and Benefits

Here is a chart that breaks down the different CPS membership levels and the benefits that each one comes with:

Chart by Canon

Is It Worth Registering Your Canon Products?

If you have no desire to become a paid member of the CPS program, is it still worth it to register your gear? The answer to this is simple: yes. Even if you don’t want a paid membership, the repair turnaround time of 3 to 5 days is worth signing up and registering your products. By comparison, the normal repair turnaround for non-CPS members is approximately 10 days, or in some rarer cases, longer. Although these turnaround times are not guaranteed due to spare part availability, it’s worth considering a paid membership level for the loan products.

Photo by Maxime Agnelli

CPS becomes even more attractive if you often travel domestically or internationally. For instance, if you find yourself overseas and your camera stops working, you can use your CPS members at a local Canon Service & Repair Centre (CPS Authorized Service Partners) or one of six regional Canon-owned workshops (Canon-owned).

If you purchase any Canon gear on the second-hand market, Canon says it’s okay to register second-hand equipment the same way you would any other products you own. If you experience problems, you will need to contact Canon, quoting your serial number, product, and the issue you are experiencing.

We hope this introduction to Canon’s exclusive Canon Professional Services program was useful in helping you make a decision on whether or not you would like to become a CPS member as a professional photographer.


About the author: Leigh Diprose is a business owner and full-time writer in the imaging industry whose passion is to share knowledge. The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author. His published work has been featured by top imaging wholesalers and leading imaging retailers in over 14 countries.


Image credits: Header still frame by Canon

Discussion