Firmware Friday on the 4th: New features for Leica M; Panasonic GH4, Canon Pixma printers get bugfixes


posted Friday, July 4, 2014 at 5:23 PM EDT


Happy 4th of July, America! This week's Firmware Friday roundup falls on the fourth, and brings with it some treats for Leica M ((Typ 240) owners, as well as fixes for frustration if you own a Panasonic GH4 mirrorless camera or certain Canon PIXMA printers.

We'll start with the Leica M, given that we're big fans of feature-enriching firmware around these parts. Leica M (Typ 240) firmware version has a truly epic list of changes. In Leica's own words, the new firmware has the following differences from previous versions:

  • Improved description of the lens type in Exif-Data

  • Live view is now possible with every lens (including older screw lenses via an adapter) using “manual lens detection”

  • A “Video off” option is now available in the Set menu (see submenu item “Video recording”) The M-Button on the Top-cover is deactivated when this option is chosen.

  • The Horizon (level) is now visible in Live View, overlaying the live image. This additional infoscreen is enabled using the menu item “Horizon”

  • New menu item “Exposure Simulation”

    • Exposure simulation -> Permanent: Live View accurately shows image brightness according to the shutter speed and aperture set in manual exposure (as long as the chosen exposure time is shorter than 1/30s)

    • Exposure simulation -> Release button half-pressed: Image brightness in live view is adjusted for best visibility, regardless of the actual exposure. Half pressing the shutter button shows the actual exposure.

  • Extended Auto ISO options

    • All Auto ISO options are now visible using the ISO button

    • Extra options for “Maximum Exposure Time” - 1x, 2 x, or 4x focal length - can be selected to help avoid camera shake when using auto ISO and long lenses.

    • “Auto ISO in M mode” is now offered as an option. This varies ISO sensitivity for correct exposure when shutter speed and aperture are set manually.

    • Alternatively the camera chooses the previous manually chosen ISO speed

  • In Live View, new crop marks for 3:4 / 6:7 / 1:1 / and 16:9 aspect ratios can be displayed. By pressing the up/down keys, the crop marks are superimposed on the live view screen (without additional information)

  • Korean is now available as a menu language

  • During video recording, 1/25s is now used instead of 1/24s. This reduces flicker effects with 50Hz mains voltage

  • Exposure bracketing settings are now saved when the camera is switched off

  • An “EV correction” option in the menu enables direct adjustment. EV compensation can be altered by turning the thumb wheel, without having to press additional buttons.

  • In the new Light Metering Mode “Classic / LV disabled”, only Classic light-metering is possible; the LV button is disabled to avoid the activation of live view by accident.

  • For improved visibility, the color of focus peaking can now be set to red, green or blue using the new menu item “Focus Peaking”.

  • Better display of GPS location data for JPG files in Adobe Lightroom®. Where the GPS signal is weak, the last position is now deleted after 5min instead of 24h as in previous firmware versions.

  • Occasional malfunction of Live View at high temperatures has been fixed

  • Bugfix in light metering (Live view)

  • Bugfix regarding sensor cleaning function

​You can download the new Leica M (Typ 240) firmware and get installation instructions here

Moving onto Panasonic, the new version 1.1 update for the Panasonic GH4 compact system camera has just one change. The company says that the reliability of video recording performance has been improved, and the update can be obtained here.

Which leaves us with only Canon's Pixma printer updates to cover. Two models -- the Pixma MG3520 in black, white or red, and the Pixma MG3522 -- are covered by the new update, which resolves issues with the printer failing to power on when the Power button is pressed. In both cases, the fix is to unplug the power cable for two minutes, then reconnect it, power on, and install the new firmware. Get Canon Pixma MG3520 version 1.051 firmware here, and Canon Pixma MG3522 firmware version 1.051 here.

(Camera parts image courtesy of Kelly Hofer / Flickr; used under a Creative Commons CC-BY-2.0 license. Image has been modified from the original.)