NX300 firmware hack to remove video recording limitations

Started Nov 9, 2015 | Discussions
OP NewToCameras Junior Member • Posts: 31
Re: NX300 firmware hack to remove video recording limitations
2

Similar but different enough that some things still need to be worked out before work on the NX1 and NX500 can really get going.

I haven't taken a look at the NX500 quite yet, but I did poke around the main NX1 camera app earlier. The NX1 and NX500 probably are more similar to each other than NX300 is to either of them, but there are still similarities in the code that I think would allow me to figure out how they work. The very first thing I tried to find was where the 30 minute movie time limit was. Poking around the NX300 first helped me to know more or less what I was looking for, but it's definitely different. To add on to that, the NX1 uses a different CPU, so I'm seeing a few new assembly instructions that I haven't seen at all in the NX300 code. I'd have to read up on those, because I'm seeing them quite frequently. So no, they're not directly translatable, but they're similar enough that familiarity with one probably helps in working on the other.

Right now, I'm still trying to figure out how to safely repackage the firmware. I managed to extract the root filesystem of the NX1 from the firmware file, and look a look around before copying the camera app elsewhere to examine it. That part was easy, the challenge now is making sure that I have everything just right when it comes to putting it all together again. I think I do, but I still have no idea what an 8-byte string in the metadata is for. Might be important, or it might be useless. That's why I'm trying to get an older copy of the firmware to see if there are any differences between them.

 NewToCameras's gear list:NewToCameras's gear list
Samsung NX300 Samsung NX 30mm F2 Pancake Samsung NX 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 OIS Samsung NX 20-50mm F3.5-5.6 ED Samsung NX 50-200mm F4-5.6 OIS +2 more
amanieux Junior Member • Posts: 26
Re: NX300 firmware hack to remove video recording limitations
1

if uncompressed firmware size of the nx500 fw and the nx1 fw are identical then i can do something (my hope is that nx1 and nx500 share the same source code and that the branching nx1/nx500 is done dynamically at camera boot based on hardware specs, which is very flexible if you have multiple camera all sharing the same source code).

OP NewToCameras Junior Member • Posts: 31
Re: NX300 firmware hack to remove video recording limitations
2

BTW, what sort of programming do you do? Are you able to write linux programs or scripts,  I may eventually need to ask someone to write me a small command line program/script that repackages the firmware. Should be a simple task for an experienced programmer, since the format of the final firmware binary isn't very complex. The source code for the NX300 came with such a utility, but I was unable to find anything like that for the NX1/NX500.

 NewToCameras's gear list:NewToCameras's gear list
Samsung NX300 Samsung NX 30mm F2 Pancake Samsung NX 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 OIS Samsung NX 20-50mm F3.5-5.6 ED Samsung NX 50-200mm F4-5.6 OIS +2 more
amanieux Junior Member • Posts: 26
Re: NX300 firmware hack to remove video recording limitations
1

you mention you look at assembly instructions, do you dissasemble the excutable binary code yourself ?

OP NewToCameras Junior Member • Posts: 31
Re: NX300 firmware hack to remove video recording limitations
2

It's closed source, so that's about all you can do, disassemble it. The NX300 source was handy since, while the main camera app is still closed source, there are still many include files available, and a debug version of the di-camera-app-nx300 binary. Helps to make some sense of what's going on inside. The NX1 and NX500 'source' don't offer any of that, but I think just having the NX300 files helps as a starting point when working on those others.

 NewToCameras's gear list:NewToCameras's gear list
Samsung NX300 Samsung NX 30mm F2 Pancake Samsung NX 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 OIS Samsung NX 20-50mm F3.5-5.6 ED Samsung NX 50-200mm F4-5.6 OIS +2 more
amanieux Junior Member • Posts: 26
Re: NX300 firmware hack to remove video recording limitations
1

i do neon coding optimization for 2d graphic rasterization in adobe reader, i am assuming this is ARM code right ?

OP NewToCameras Junior Member • Posts: 31
Re: NX300 firmware hack to remove video recording limitations
1

The firmware code is arm, but the firmware packing utility is run under x86 linux.

 NewToCameras's gear list:NewToCameras's gear list
Samsung NX300 Samsung NX 30mm F2 Pancake Samsung NX 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 OIS Samsung NX 20-50mm F3.5-5.6 ED Samsung NX 50-200mm F4-5.6 OIS +2 more
amanieux Junior Member • Posts: 26
Re: NX300 firmware hack to remove video recording limitations
1

my goal is to bring nx1 features to the nx500

i will install linux and start to work on this only if uncompressed binary fw size of nx500 and nx1 are identical as i will only work if there is a very high chance of success .

manual audio recoding level seems to have a good chance of success as audio hardware is most likely identical between nx500/nx1 but full sensor readout on the nx500 that everyone expects will be more tricky as the nx500 hardware may not just be an underclocked version of the nx1 hardware).

amanieux Junior Member • Posts: 26
Re: NX300 firmware hack to remove video recording limitations

and i will also wait to see if the nx500 is discontinued as the nx1, if the complete nx family is dead (because samsung switches to a new full frame line of camera as someone suggested) i won't spend a second for something that only interest a very few nx500 owners.

tecnoworld
tecnoworld Veteran Member • Posts: 7,232
Re: NX300 firmware hack to remove video recording limitations
4

Imo this is a big mistake. Both nx1 and nx500 are extremely powerful, as to hw. Hacking them could unleash their full potential, which is obviously still unexpressed.

Perhaps higher bitrates could be implemented for video (provided you use a fast enough sd card), focus bracketing would be a great feature, 4:2:2 internal recording (instead of hdmi only) or even raw video ala ML and much more could/would be incredible achievements and the nx users would be more than willing to donate to see those implemented.

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Samsung TL500 Samsung NX100 Samsung NX200 Samsung NX300 Samsung NX1 +15 more
Melidonia Regular Member • Posts: 228
Re: NX300 firmware hack to remove video recording limitations
2

I totally agree with you.

 Melidonia's gear list:Melidonia's gear list
Samsung NX1 Panasonic GH5 Sony a7 III Samsung 50-150mm F2.8 S Panasonic Leica 100-400mm F4.0-6.3 ASPH +9 more
flip 21
flip 21 Senior Member • Posts: 1,289
Re: NX300 firmware hack to remove video recording limitations

I don't get it Are you going to work on the Nx300 firmware or the NX500? I'm not a NX500 owner ...snif, snif...

Ironfilm Regular Member • Posts: 186
Re: NX300 firmware hack to remove video recording limitations

Nifty! I own the NX300 specifically, which is the camera the hack was actually just done on. Hearing the limit is removed is the best news I've got today

Reckon I will stick with my GH1 bodies and other m4/3 cameras for my multi camera filming for this wedding season (the good quality GH1 bodies with no record limit, and at a very low price, makes them a perfect set up!), but it now looks very highly likely next season will be done with NX300 / NX500 / NX1 bodies. (their easy ability to be kept charged with a simple USB powerbank is another bonus for using them with long running set ups)

Ironfilm Regular Member • Posts: 186
Re: NX300 firmware hack to remove video recording limitations

tecnoworld wrote:

Imo this is a big mistake. Both nx1 and nx500 are extremely powerful, as to hw. Hacking them could unleash their full potential, which is obviously still unexpressed.

Perhaps higher bitrates could be implemented for video (provided you use a fast enough sd card), focus bracketing would be a great feature, 4:2:2 internal recording (instead of hdmi only) or even raw video ala ML and much more could/would be incredible achievements and the nx users would be more than willing to donate to see those implemented.

I wonder if 10 bit internal recording is possible, or if that is just pie in the sky dreaming? Could be limited by an 8 bit processor in it.

OP NewToCameras Junior Member • Posts: 31
Re: NX300 firmware hack to remove video recording limitations
1

I'm going to release a new one soon-ish that will make 24fps videos 1920x1080 instead of 1920x810. I thought it was dumb to keep 24fps at that resolution with no way of changing it. I figure if someone really wants 810p, they can crop the 1080p video instead.

I'll be testing out bumping up the resolution too. I highly doubt the NX300 is capable of 4k, but I'm thinking it might be able to handle 2560x1440p. Someone else will have to be the guinea pig since I won't be getting my camera back for a week or so.

 NewToCameras's gear list:NewToCameras's gear list
Samsung NX300 Samsung NX 30mm F2 Pancake Samsung NX 18-55mm F3.5-5.6 OIS Samsung NX 20-50mm F3.5-5.6 ED Samsung NX 50-200mm F4-5.6 OIS +2 more
cmcfirm New Member • Posts: 1
Re: NX300 firmware hack to remove video recording limitations
1

I have both an NX1 and an NX500. I am located in New Jersey. How can I help? I'm willing to learn more about hacking these cameras or assisting someone who is so inclined. Fortune favors the bold. Good to meet you all!
-Justin

Kisaha Senior Member • Posts: 2,213
Re: NX300 firmware hack to remove video recording limitations
1

Excelent news. Well done!

tecnoworld
tecnoworld Veteran Member • Posts: 7,232
Re: NX300 firmware hack to remove video recording limitations
2

Speaking of resolution, I'm pretty sure that nx1 could do 6.5k. It samples the whole sensor and then resizes to 4k. If you did it, you would become a king

 tecnoworld's gear list:tecnoworld's gear list
Samsung TL500 Samsung NX100 Samsung NX200 Samsung NX300 Samsung NX1 +15 more
MOD Taffy Veteran Member • Posts: 5,010
Re: NX300 firmware hack to remove video recording limitations. Tecno............

tecnoworld wrote:

Speaking of resolution, I'm pretty sure that nx1 could do 6.5k. It samples the whole sensor and then resizes to 4k. If you did it, you would become a king

It's funny you should say this I read it yesterday, in one of the forums here, that the NX1 gets its 4k from a 6k readout. When I have time later, I'll try to remember to hunt it out to post here.

-- hide signature --

Have a good day.
Regards, Allan.

tecnoworld
tecnoworld Veteran Member • Posts: 7,232
Re: NX300 firmware hack to remove video recording limitations
1

I'm uploading it to Gdrive while I'm posting this. As soon as it is finished, I'll send you the link via PM.

EDIT: LINK SENT

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Samsung TL500 Samsung NX100 Samsung NX200 Samsung NX300 Samsung NX1 +15 more
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