Canon Motor Drive MA Set for A series SLRs

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Canon Motor Drive MA The Canon Motor Drive MA is an accessory designed originally for the Canon A-1 in 1978 which will wind the film automatically. But it can also be used with the AE-1 Program that was introduced later in 1981 (It is not advisable to use it with other A series models). Two separate power sources, the Battery Pack MA or the Ni-Cd Pack MA are available for the Motor Drive MA. With Battery Pack MA, sequential shooting at up to five frames per second (fps) is possible ( 4 fps with the AE-1 Program) and an instant high speed button permits instant access to the highest speed for fast-breaking shots.

Ni-Cd Pack MA is remarkably small, requires no batteries and is rechargeable. However, with the manual series Canon cameras, FD lenses and accessories already discontinued from production, users of the Motor Drive MA are encouraged to use the Battery Pack MA which uses 12 AA-size batteries.

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Download a motor drive and Winder system file in PDF Format (223k).

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Three automatic film drive speeds, including single frame shooting, are provided along with two shutter buttons for maximum ease of operation depending upon the position of the camera. An integral part of the A-1's pulse-controlled, digital computer system, it is amazingly compact and flexible for the most wide-ranging applications.

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Usable Camera Bodies: Canon A-1 and AE-1 Program models

Construction: Motor drive section with a film driving motor and battery section with an automatic electric cut-off circuits. Two kinds of battery sections separately available: Battery Pack MA and Ni-Cd Pack MA.

Other than the two models mentioned earlier, it is
Not advisable to use with other models within the A series as other models are without the motor drive coupling at the base of those bodies.

Shooting Speeds:
Positions on Selector Switch/Power Source




Battery Pack MA*

Single frame

3.5 fps

5 fps

Ni-Cd Pack MA

Single frame

3 fps

4 fps

* Using new carbon-zinc or alkaline-manganese batteries.

Usable Shutter Speed Range: All shutter speeds except "B" usable at " L" or "H" positions. All shutter speeds usable at "S".
Battery Life: Using 36-exposure film with the selector switch at "H":

Temperature / Battery

Normal Temperatures


Battery Pack MA

60 rolls

5 rolls

Ni-Cd Pack MA

60 rolls

15 rolls

Power Sources:
Battery Pack MA for size AA dry cell batteries (size AA dry cell Ni-Cd batteries cannot be used);
Ni-Cd Pack MA with a built-in Ni-Cd battery


Automatic Electric Cut-off Circuit: Motorized film driving stops automatically at end of film and warning lamp lights up. Warning lamp also lights up when motorized film driving takes longer time than specified indicating battery exhaustion.

Operable Temperature Range: - 10 to 45 C.
Size and Weight:
Motor Drive MA: 151 x 67 x 80mm, 200g. Battery Pack MA: 151 x 67 x 40mm, 395g. including batteries. Ni-Cd Pack MA: 151 x 61 x 29mrh, 205g

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- Operation Manual of the Canon Motor Drive MA Set

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Shared Resources:
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Maintenance Team: Kaipin, Terry Carraway & Dr Strangelove; Pawel Nabe for his image on the Data Memory Back. EEwyn Foo, my nephew, who has spent quite a number of nights converting the original manual in HTML format. Mr. Richard Yeow, General Manager -Optical Division of Canon Marketing for granting special permission to reproduce this manual into HTML format in his site as a form of obligation to all Canon FD mount users worldwide. * Canon, FD Lenses, Canon Marketing are registered trade names or trademarks of Canon Inc. Japan.