D1x D1h experts/owners how do you check firmware vers? Buffer upgrade?

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shaocaholica Contributing Member • Posts: 950
D1x D1h experts/owners how do you check firmware vers? Buffer upgrade?

So I was going to ask a question about how to check firmware version and the existence of the optional hardware buffer upgade and I've found it out already as I was typing up the old post. So now I'll just post the info I found so future people can save some legwork.

So in 2001 Nikon releases the D1x and D1h. There is a firmware upgrade for both cameras as well as a hardware buffer memory upgrade(D1x only) that was only available at Nikon service centers. In the US I believe there were only 2 locations. One on the east coast(Melville, NY) and one on the west coast(El Segundo, CA).

From the actual nikon webpage(still live in 2022) the latest firmware is v1.10 (or 5.0x with the buffer upgrade) and the firmware upgrade service was free(?). The page states "Cost for shipping to Nikon Inc. is customer's responsibility. Nikon will pay the return shipping cost." It just seems like the user was responsible for shipping to Nikon. There are 2 ways to check the firmware version. Without a CF card you can check the setup menu languages section for" Es Espanol". If that option exists then you have either v1.10 or v5.0x firmware which is the latest. Also with a CF card you can take a photo and while reviewing the photo you can scroll through its metadata and the camera firmware will be one of the fields however this requires you to have a working CF card obviously but is more reliable.


The hardware memory buffer upgrade had a separate web page which is no longer live (2022) however there is a version of it archived on wayback machine from 2012 when it was last live:


The hardware memory buffer upgrade fee was "US$234.00, plus local tax, shipping and handling US$12.50". (US$425 in 2022).

Also according to that page if you got the hardware memory buffer upgrade they would also install a special firmware '5.0' which was necessary for the camera to access the additional buffer memory. And this 5.0 firmware had all the fixes and enhancements of the v1.10 firmware.

There are 2 ways to check if you have the hardware memory buffer upgrade. The simplest is to have a working CF card, take a picture, scroll through the metadata and if you see firmware version '5.0x' then you have the hardware memory buffer upgrade on your D1x. You can also check by half pressing the shutter and look at the remaining photos counter "C-REM". This number will change depending on if you have JPEG/NEF selected and if custom setting c36 is on or off.

With custom setting c36 turned off, set the camera to any JPEG setting it doesn't matter FINE/NORM/BASIC and LARGE/MEDIUM will result in the same buffer counter readout. Half press the shutter in continuous or single it doesn't matter. You will either see '9' or '21'. If you see '21' your D1x has the hardware memory buffer upgrade installed. If you have the camera set to NEF(raw) you will either see '6' or '14'. As you can guess if you see '14' you have the hardware memory buffer upgrade installed.

 shaocaholica's gear list:shaocaholica's gear list
Konica Minolta Maxxum 7D Nikon D1X Nikon D2Hs Nikon D2Xs
Nikon D1H Nikon D1X
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