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Panasonic DMC-LX5 firmware v2 studio shots posted

By dpreview staff on Sep 13, 2011 at 23:12 GMT

Just posted: Panasonic LX5 studio shots updated with firmware v2.0. The latest firmware for the DMC-LX5 is now available, so we've taken the enthusiast compact back into the studio to see what differences it makes. As well as improvements to the already impressive AF speed, Panasonic has also added an extra 'Noise Reduction' option in the menu. This applies additional noise reduction at ISO 1600 and 3200 (the highest full-resolution settings). We've included both NR on and Off in our comparisons at these settings.

Our first impressions are that the noise reduction is mainly targeted at chroma (color) noise and then has additional sharpening applied. The much greater benefits, over the original studio shots are a dramatic improvement in white balance accuracy (Even with a custom white balance, the original firmware would see a dramatic yellow tinge overtake the images above ISO 800).

Click here to view firmware v2 ISO 1600 noise reduction on and off

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Comments

Total comments: 41
Andrew Higgins
By Andrew Higgins (Oct 25, 2011)

Hi rolanstein, yes once installed the firmware bin file can and should be deleted from the SD card. And then just format the card again in the camera, and you're ready to go.

The AF speed with v2.0 f/w is astounding. A great camera made even better.

0 upvotes
rolanstein
By rolanstein (Oct 25, 2011)

Hi folks. I've just installed the 2.0 firmware update, but am not sure about the following:

1. Now that the update has been successfully completed, can I safely delete the update software (LX5_V20.bin) from my SD memory card?

2. The last step in Panasonic's firmware update instructions is to format the SD Memory Card used for the firmware update before taking photos. I have found the format software here http://panasonic.jp/support/global/cs/sd/download/index.html BUT can't find any instructions on how to actually use this software to format the SD card. No doubt this is so simple that instructions are not provided, but that doesn't factor in tech dummies like me being too scared to try anything out of fear of messing up the card and possibly my camera! Could some kind soul assist with simple instructions pls?

Thanks!

0 upvotes
sudirdjo
By sudirdjo (Sep 20, 2011)

New fw's high iso NR looks better, however at lower iso 100/400 there seems to be too much NR going on.

Does anybody here know how to 'downgrade' or rollback to previous version, please ? Thanks in advance.

0 upvotes
AKayumov
By AKayumov (Sep 21, 2011)

Did you try selecting a lower "noise reduction" setting in the Film Mode menu?

0 upvotes
sudirdjo
By sudirdjo (Sep 28, 2011)

I did, but I prefer to have additional less NR 'margin' :)

In the meantime, that will do though.

0 upvotes
AKayumov
By AKayumov (Sep 18, 2011)

It would be really nice if, in a future firmware update, Panasonic were to do one of the following things:

- add flash compensation to the list of functions that can be assigned to the Fn button,

- add flash compensation to the Quick Menu (perhaps instead of the Picture size option - it doesn't do anything useful, just downgrades the quality of the pictures, and can't be compared to flash compensation in its usefulness),

- either change the function of the left button from self-timer to flash compensation or include the option to do so into the camera menu.

I imagine all of these things are rather simple to implement - and any of these things would most certainly be greatly appreciated by many LX5 owners.

0 upvotes
AKayumov
By AKayumov (Sep 18, 2011)

An improvement in auto-focus speeds is always welcome!

However, it's a great pity they did nothing about the buried place of the <b>flash compensation</b> setting!

Like I've already written here (http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/readflat.asp?forum=1033&message=37981885),

They have <b>exposure compensation</b> as a dedicated function of the rear dial (say, in the P mode), whereas the equally useful <b>flash compensation</b> not only doesn't have a dedicated button, but isn't even included in the Quick Menu! Furethemore, it can't even be assigned to the Fn button!..

I think that's a gross oversight. I mean, surely flash compensation is a more frequently used function, on average, than, say, self-timer - which has a dedicated button, a weird choice indeed!

0 upvotes
Librarian3750
By Librarian3750 (Sep 18, 2011)

Thanks to this message below --"Ignore the instructions to copy to the first level of the directory... simply drag the UNzipped LX5 firmware to the icon of the SD card on your desktop (and make sure the file is unzipped)." -- I did a successful and fast installation using a Mac. Still, this does not replace the hour of frustration three days back when NOTHING worked. I should also point out that, on my desktop at least, the file unzipped (.bin) looks like the file zipped. Thanks for the forum. Here's a case where it made a difference for me.

0 upvotes
graybalanced
By graybalanced (Sep 18, 2011)

Good news: Panasonic has shown with the LX3 and LX5 that they will improve their products after they ship them.

Not so good news: If this just came out, I guess it's gonna be a while before the LX6/7...

0 upvotes
Ross Alford
By Ross Alford (Sep 15, 2011)

Fascinating to compare with the LX3 at ISO 800 and 1600--if you look at jpegs, there is no comparison, the LX5 blows it completely out of the water. Look at raw results, though, and to my eyes it is not at all clear there is much difference. Looks like the main improvement over several years has been in image processing algorithms (which is very good, don't get me wrong) rather than in sensors (which is just a bit of a surprise). Since I shoot in raw, and mostly at 24mm equivalent, I still don't feel any need to upgrade from an LX3.

0 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Sep 16, 2011)

What RAW extraction software are you using for the LX3 RAW shots?

0 upvotes
N13L5
By N13L5 (Sep 22, 2011)

its weird that the LX3 is still available in stores, and it still costs almost as much as an NX100 with its APS-C sensor.

I think that's where the sensor improvements went...

I'm waiting for an APS-C sensor camera without swappable system lenses, but just one built-in high quality and perfectly matched lens.

0 upvotes
John Miles
By John Miles (Sep 15, 2011)

You can read "THURSDAY" at ISO 3200 !!!!!

(In the watch face BTW. For those who haven't looked in detail at the watch in the last 6 years)

0 upvotes
systemBuilder
By systemBuilder (Sep 16, 2011)

The thing that always bugged me about this camera is that you cannot read the words from the coin on the front of the martini & rossi bottle. Even at ISO 100, you cannot read it. If they could add a NR mode for ISO 100 that would help, THAT would be something.If

0 upvotes
graybalanced
By graybalanced (Sep 18, 2011)

If you wanted to read the text better at ISO 100, it isn't a noise reduction you need, it's a better base raw engine, like when Adobe rewrote their for the latest versions and everything got sharper.

0 upvotes
gw2112
By gw2112 (Sep 15, 2011)

I'm sorry - on my Macbook using Firefox version 6.0.2 I clicked at "Click here to view firmware ... on and off" and only got five empty frames.

What was wrong?

0 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Sep 16, 2011)

On a Mac the page will open and the file will download with Safari 5.1 without trouble.

No problem opening and downloading to a Windows 7 computer with Firefox 3.6.22 either, why I did the download twice is a different story.

0 upvotes
N13L5
By N13L5 (Sep 22, 2011)

Don't use Macbooks, you're paying the devil to take your soul...

You must realize that's backwards, cause normally you get cash from the devil for your soul.

0 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Sep 14, 2011)

Anyone do the firmware update using a Windows 7 (64 bit) computer?

Download and extraction appear to go correctly, however the file is a bit smaller than Panasonic says it should be, 15.25 MB not 16.??MM.

Then move the .bin file to the photo folder on a LX5 formatted SD card, insert card and start camera, push the play arrow and nothing except the message that there are no pictures--tried taking a few pictures and moving the .bin file to that subfolder the LX5 creates, then restarted the camera with that card in it, hit play, and still nothing.

Given Val Yang's question below, I have to imagine there's something wrong when doing this process on a Windows 7 (64 bit) machine.

Have to try a Mac I guess.

0 upvotes
mr_ewok
By mr_ewok (Sep 14, 2011)

win 7 64bit here, no problems with the update.

0 upvotes
MikePursey
By MikePursey (Sep 14, 2011)

Did mine from windows 7 64bit. Downloaded file, extracted to laptop and then moved .bin to card.Switched on, press play and it updated. Full battery?

0 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Sep 14, 2011)

Thank you for the confirmation that Windows 7 (64 bit) works, yes my battery is full. Odd, will try charging the battery even though it says full.

0 upvotes
Lightracer
By Lightracer (Sep 14, 2011)

Yes, that is correct the file says it is 15.25 MB when you look at the download in the Windows 7 directory. However, if you right click on the file and click on Properties you will see that it has the correct number of bytes in it 16,xxx,xx. I copied the .bin file to an SD card and updated the firmware in my LX5 with no problems.

0 upvotes
HowaboutRAW
By HowaboutRAW (Sep 15, 2011)

Thanks, I managed to update my LX5's firmware, the problem is with Panasonic's use of the term "first directory". Panasonic does NOT mean put the .bin file in DCIM folder, they mean put it on the basic SD card; really both should work. That DCIM folder is what hitting the play button should access.

The NR at 3200 ASA seems pretty good, without being all blurred, but then I further tweaked the files with Adobe Camera RAW in PS CS 5.

Also it's unhelpful that Panasonic's MB numbers are so off.

0 upvotes
vtepordei
By vtepordei (Sep 17, 2011)

Panasonic's info is incomplete and incorrect!
When you format the memory card in the camera, 3 folders DCIM,MISC, and PRIVATE, are created by the camera.
You have to delete those 3 folders with the help of your computer BEFORE you copy the firmware upgrade to the card. Because of those 3 folders, the camera does not see the firmware upgrade software! I had the same problem, but finally it worked, after deleting those folders. I notified Panasonic about the problem.
Lets see if they will correct the instructions on their website!

0 upvotes
graybalanced
By graybalanced (Sep 18, 2011)

>"Yes, that is correct the file says it is 15.25 MB when you look at the download in the Windows 7 directory. However, if you right click on the file and click on Properties you will see that it has the correct number of bytes in it 16,xxx,xx."

If that is the case, the discrepancy is the difference between the file size and the space occupied on disk, which is the way disk sectors work on both Windows and Mac. It's why both Windows and Mac display two sizes in Get Info/Properties.

0 upvotes
snake_b
By snake_b (Sep 14, 2011)

I can only dream of Samsung supporting its products like this. Once they put them out, they essentially forget about the customers. They can't even release firmware properly (or openly), let alone enhancing anything.

3 upvotes
Val Yang
By Val Yang (Sep 14, 2011)

When will Panasonic update their CODEC to work on Windows 64 bit systems?

0 upvotes
Val Yang
By Val Yang (Sep 14, 2011)

Downloaded on Vista 64. Had to run the .exe file to convert it to a .bin file. Did I miss that step in the instructions? I see the new menu item. Took a few test shots. Did NOT see any differences. I'll do some 'real' captures as I am very interested in the higher ISO noise reduction for some event captures when not using my D3s.

0 upvotes
Delfin1962
By Delfin1962 (Sep 14, 2011)

I was having the same issue updating the LX5 on a Mac. I finally resolved it by formating an SD card on the LX5 and then copying the .bin file to the newly formatted card.

0 upvotes
JonB1975
By JonB1975 (Sep 14, 2011)

OK - You can make it work with a Mac - but you have to reset the camera to default! (Not necessary in with Windows..... Why?)

0 upvotes
JonB1975
By JonB1975 (Sep 14, 2011)

The download only works in Windows.

I tried on my Mac (Snow Leopard) - the camera did not recognise the update file. I bootcamped to Windows 7 and re downloaded the update and it worked.

Annoying.

0 upvotes
m_spoke
By m_spoke (Sep 15, 2011)

i called panasonic about the 15.5 mb that was stated on my mac .
they said to use it , and the download went very easily . i like that it keeps the same focus size . will have to try high iso . so far so good .

0 upvotes
MadQDog
By MadQDog (Sep 18, 2011)

I downloaded to my Mac with SnowLeopard with no problems. AN SD card MUST be formatted on the LX5 (or other current Panasonic camera). Ignore the instructions to copy to the first level of the directory... simply drag the UNzipped LX5 firmware to the icon of the SD card on your desktop (and make sure the file is unzipped). The rest is easy, but instructions must be followed to the "T".

0 upvotes
Viramati
By Viramati (Sep 14, 2011)

Having been playing it with it a little and like wow.improvement in focus speed is great and high iso is much better

0 upvotes
hosseinlx
By hosseinlx (Sep 14, 2011)

i test it.it very good.awsome.good in NR.good in anti shake.very good min sutter.and many think.g12 its not comparable .

0 upvotes
Humboldt Jim
By Humboldt Jim (Sep 14, 2011)

Interesting to compare to Canon G12 at same ISO.

HJ

0 upvotes
tkbslc
By tkbslc (Sep 14, 2011)

I think the G12 does look a little better, but remember the lens is a stop slower. So really for the same light, you'd need to put the LX5 at 800.

0 upvotes
Razgriz
By Razgriz (Sep 14, 2011)

Congratulations to Panasonic for the recent firmware updates.

Its great to see commitment to products that have been on the market for a while.

I've considered the LX5 as an addition to my 4/3rds set up as an even smaller take anywhere camera for a while now. I think I might invest. Thanks

3 upvotes
Bill Faulding
By Bill Faulding (Sep 14, 2011)

Go invest ! I've had an LX-5 since January to complement my Canon EOS 7D and the LX continues to blow me away with its performance. It's a pleasure to use and the images are fantastic. I've cropped images and printed them out on A3+ for my office wall with no problems. Cannot fault it.

0 upvotes
BillTex
By BillTex (Mar 13, 2013)

Have been using the LX5 for 2 yrs now, great camera. Recently in any Scene mode, the images are blurred. Does not happen in A-iA-S or any other mode.
I do not have camera with me at the moment so cannot verify FW version (I will verify that tonight) has anyone else seen this problem?
Will FW update fix this?

Tx, Bill

0 upvotes
Total comments: 41