Firmware Friday: Updates aplenty for Canon, Nikon and Olympus cameras and more


posted Friday, November 14, 2014 at 7:10 PM EDT


After a brief hiatus last week, Firmware Friday returns as a rather mammoth roundup. No less than 14 cameras, two camcorders, one aerial photography platform and one accessory make the list this week, between Canon, Nikon, Olympus and DJI.

Without further ado, let's get to what's new, starting with Canon. The company has new firmware for six different products this week -- the Cinema EOS C300, C300 PL, C500 and C500 PL cameras, XF100 and XF105 camcorders, and WFT-E7A Wireless File Transmitter.

The Cinema EOS camera updates all add support for exFAT file systems on CompactFlash cards of 128GB or higher capacity for improved performance, and make it easier to fine-tune preset white balance settings. For the C500 and C500 PL only, support for the BT.2020 color gamut has also been added, but not for internal recording -- only when outputting via 3G-SDI or MON terminals.

EXFAT file system support is also newly-available on the XF100 and XF105 camcorders, and this is the only change made in their new firmware. Finally, the WFT-E7A Wireless File Transmitter has been updated to support the Canon EOS 7D Mark II. Get all of Canon's updates at the links below:

Switching to Nikon, the company has but one update, for the Nikon Coolpix S6400 digital camera, which you can get here. According to the company, there is only one change in Nikon Coolpix S6400 firmware version 1.2 -- a reduction in the incidence of a problem that could prevent the camera operating properly even if power-cycled after a lens error occurred.

Olympus' updates come en masse, and for all nine OM-D and PEN-series cameras receiving new firmware, there is just one change made. For the OM-D E-M1, E-M5 and E-M10, and the PEN E-P3, E-P5, E-PL3, E-PL5, E-PM1 and E-PM2, the new firmware improves autofocus accuracy with the M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 40-150mm F2.8 PRO lens. Get Olympus' updates at the links below:

And finally we come to something that is admittedly a little outside the norm for a Firmware Friday update, but why not -- plenty of our readers use DJI quadcopters for aerial photography and videography, and we personally find them pretty cool too. The DJI Phantom 2-series firmware update has actually been out for a couple of weeks now, but we've only just recently stumbled upon it ourselves. Quite a list of changes are to be found in the DJI Phantom 2 firmware version 3.08 update, as follows:

  • Dynamic home point: when using a GPS-enabled mobile device and running the VISION app, the Home Point will automatically be reset to the location of the device every 2 seconds during flight.

  • Ability to change the Return to Home altitude added to the VISION app (ability to change this setting in the Assistant software remains).

  • Maximum operating area, based on remaining battery power and current settings, can now be displayed on the ground station map view. This area automatically expands or contracts when new flight plans are set.

  • The aircraft’s current longitude and latitude will be displayed on the VISION app’s radar. When using ground station, the longitude and latitude of each waypoint is also displayed as they are set.

  • New pre-flight checklist that reminds users of important considerations before flying added.

  • Battery cell warning added to the VISION app that alerts users if battery issues are detected. Browse battery cell warning history in the VISION app.

  • New auto-discharging feature to address the issue of fully charged battery swelled when it was stored for an extended period.

  • Battery cell damages detection feature added.

  • New battery cell balancing feature to extend battery life.

  • Maximum descent speed set to 0.6m/s when the aircraft’s altitude is less than 10m and descending automatically (for example in failsafe mode). The maximum speed of descent remains 2m/s in other flight conditions.

  • Propulsion system performance enhancements.

  • German, French and Japanese language support added to the VISION app.

​And that's it for this week's Firmware Friday roundup. Check back next time for more firmware news!

(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.)