News / Firmware & Software Updates
Nikon has released firmware updates for its 1 System cameras, addressing some of the drawbacks highlighted in our review. The v1.2 firmware updates for the Nikon 1 V1 and 1 J1 correct a series of minor operational issues but also change the program line in most shooting modes so that faster shutter speeds will be chosen. It was these cameras' tendency to use extremely slow shutter speeds that made us conclude they could be disappointing for beginners, despite the very promising underlying engineering. The firmware is available immediately for download.
Canon has released firmware version 2.0.0 for the EOS 7D. The update, originally announced in June, is the most comprehensive we can think of - significantly expanding the capabilities of the 7D. Changes include improved continuous-shooting buffer depth (to 25 Raws, up from the original 15), customizable Auto ISO, control of audio recording level for video and the ability to re-process Raws and rate images in-camera. The update also enables the use of the GP-E2 GPS module.
Olympus has announced a firmware update for its flagship OM-D E-M5 mirrorless camera. Firmware v1.2 promises to improve the camera's performance at re-waking from sleep mode and display the tracking focus point when shooting in low-speed continuous drive mode with continuous focus tracking enabled. Other listed fixes include the addition of features for use in underwater mode with the 12-50mm F3.5-6.3 EZ lens. The update can be downloaded and installed via the Olympus Camera Updater software.
Nikon has updated the firmware of its D4 professional SLR to version 1.02, allowing more-vivid display of images shot in the Adobe RGB colour space, improving the stability of FTP upload connections and fixing various other minor issues. Meanwhile Sigma has released firmware updates for its SD1 and SD1 Merrill SLRs (versions 1.07 and 1.02 respectively), both of which promise to improve startup times, allow a dedicated flash to be used in manual mode with mirror lockup, and fix various bugs. Click through for links to download the updates.
Canon has announced a firmware update that will add a series of features to the EOS 7D. In an unusual move for a camera that has been on the market for almost three years, Canon is performing the most comprehensive firmware upgrade we can remember. This includes improved continuous-shooting buffer depth (to 25 Raws, up from the original 15), customizable Auto ISO, control of audio recording level for video and the ability to re-process Raws and rate images in-camera. The update will also enable the use of the GP-E2 GPS module. It will be available from August 2012.
Ricoh has issued a firmware update for all the camera modules of its GXR modular camera system. Version 1.51 is supposed to improve image quality in photos taken when combining negative exposure compensation with the multi-area 'Multi-P Auto' white balance setting. There are additional big fixes when the firmware is intalled on the GXR M-mount module and the A16 zoom module. Downloads are available from Ricoh immediately.
Canon has announced updated firmware for the EOS 5D Mark III. Firmware v1.1.3 makes an unspecified change to accommodate the EF40mm F2.8 STM pancake prime lens announced earlier this month. Beyond this, the update fixes a series of bugs and corrects a series of linguistic errors in menu screens. The firmware is available for download from your local Canon support site now.
Canon has issues a firmware update for the EOS 60D mid-level DSLR and 60Da astrophotography camera. On the 60D, firmware v1.1.1 corrects a bug that placed the wrong serial number in image EXIF. On both cameras it also fixes language errors in some menus. The company will announce updated versions of its software at a later date to correct existing images with the incorrect serial number. The firmware is available for download from your local Canon support site now.
Panasonic has release firmware v2.0 for its DMC-FX90 Wi-Fi compact, adding a series of features to allow its use with smartphones. The FX90, launched in August 2011 featured the ability to upload images to smartphones, but the latest firmware adds the option to remotely view the camera's live view, zoom the lens and trigger the shutter. These features, which can be used with the associated iOS and Android smartphone apps, bring it into line with the latest 'smart cameras' from Samsung.
Nikon has updated the firmware of both the D4 and D800 professional DSLRs. The D4 receives updates to v1.01 for both firmware A and B, while the D800 and D800E only have B firmware v1.01. In both cases the firmware corrects minor operational glitches, including one that could cause the cameras to occasionally lock up. The updates can be downloaded from Nikon's websites.
Fujifilm has updated the firmware of its X-Pro1 high-end mirrorless camera and the three X-mount lenses that go with it. The updates make a series of changes, including a promise to reduce the aperture 'chattering' that has been common when using the camera. It also adds parallax-correction of frame lines to the optical viewfinder in manual focus mode, along with a series of bug fixes.
Olympus has issued a firmware update for the OM-D E-M5, fixing a few minor issues. Operation with SDXC cards larger than 48Gb is now more stable and the display of the focal length for powerzoom lenses has been improved. The v1.1 update is available for installation immediately via the Olympus Digital Camera Updater.
Fujifilm has issued another firmware update for the X100, fixing a couple of bugs introduced in the previous update. Firmware version 1.21 fixes some problems with using the AEL/AFL button to perform a focus acquisition in manual focus mode, that occurred with v1.20. It is available for immediate download.
Sony Japan has released firmware v1.05 for the SLT-A77 and A65 high-end fixed-mirror DSLRs. The latest changes promise a series of improvements, including more responsive control dials, faster post-shot review images and shorter lag when turning the camera off. The A77's AF accuracy in bright light is also improved. The updates also include correction profiles for more lenses. The firmware has not yet been posted by Sony's European or North American websites but should be available soon.
Olympus has announced a firmware update for its M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-50mm F3.5-6.3 EZ power-zoom macro lens. Firmware v1.1 improves image stabilization performance in Macro mode, when shooting with the Olympus E-M5. It also adds support for the 'Zoom Resume' function when used with Panasonic cameras - meaning the zoom returns to the previously-used focal length when the camera is switched on.
Fujifilm has added more user-interface refinements to its X100 large sensor camera with firmware v1.20. The latest firmware allows the Raw button to be user-customized. It also makes it easier to set up the camera's Auto ISO behavior and built-in ND filter. The update also claims to improve AE and AF performance when shooting movies. A PDF addendum to the user manual has also been released.
Olympus has issued firmware v1.3 for its E-5 DSLR, along with the PEN E-P3, E-PL3, E-PL2 and E-PM1. The updates provide all five cameras with improved stability when using SDXC cards larger than 48Gb. Meanwhile, the E-PL3 and E-PM1 are also tweaked for improved operation when using external flashes in RC mode. The latest versions can be downloaded via the Olympus Camera Updater software.
DxO Labs has updated its FilmPack film simulation software to v3.2, adding 64 bit support and plugin versions for Lightroom, Photoshop and Aperture. The move of both the Essentials and Expert versions to 64 bit means they are almost twice as fast at processing as v3.1. There are improvements to the user interface to make it easier to preview the grain effects offered by the different film effects. Both Mac and PC versions are available, with a free 30-day trail downloadable from the company's website.
Alongside Lightroom 4, Adobe has release the latest release candidate of Adobe Camera Raw. This not-quite finalized version of ACR v6.7 brings all the cameras and lenses supported in Lightroom 4 to users of Photoshop CS5, plus the Canon EOS 5D Mark III as something of a bonus feature. As usual, it is being released on Adobe's Labs site to allow feedback before its final launch.