Firmware Friday: New features and bug fixes from Canon, DxO, Leica, Nikon, Panasonic and YI


posted Friday, June 2, 2017 at 9:37 PM EDT


With the weekend on our doorstep, it's time for our regular Firmware Friday roundup of all that's new in the world of camera updates. This week brings news of updates for nine cameras from Canon, DxO Labs, Leica, Nikon, Panasonic and YI Technology, as well as two Leica lenses. (YI's update is technically a beta rather than a final release, however, so probably shouldn't yet be used for critical work.)

There's a lot to cover this week, so without any further ado let's get right down to what's new!

Canon 7D II and 80D

Yesterday, Canon released new firmware for the 7D Mark II to replace that which it pulled a couple of weeks ago due to a bug discovered shortly after release. If you upgraded from version 1.0.5 or earlier firmware to the recent version 1.1.1 firmware, you could potentially find yourself in a situation whereby it was impossible to remote control the camera from your smartphone when using the W-E1 Wi-Fi adapter,  Canon 7D II firmware version 1.1.2 fixes this issue, and you only need upgrade to it if you had experienced the problem. If you updated to firmware version 1.1.1 directly from v1.1.0, or your camera came with it preinstalled, there is no need to update.

For the Canon 80D meanwhile, we've just discovered firmware version 1.0.2 after stumbling on a Latin American service advisory pointing to the release. It actually shipped last February, but if you haven't already installed it, Canon 80D firmware version 1.0.2 resolves problems with lens data registration in EOS Utility 3 caused by unstable USB communications. It also resolves some Norwegian-language menu errors.

You can download Canon 7D II firmware version 1.1.2 here, and Canon 80D firmware version 1.02 here.

DxO One

On Wednesday, DxO Labs released another firmware update for its DxO One addon camera accessory for iPhone and iPad. Accompanied by version 2.2 of the company's DxO One app for iOS, the new firmware makes a number of changes. Perhaps most significantly, it changes update behavior such that subsequent DxO One updates will be discovered and installed automatically without user intervention during battery charging when connected to an iPhone or iPad. Battery management is also said to have been improved, including more accurate charge level display and a switch to a more energy-efficient AF-OD focus mode when shooting standalone. App startup time has also been reduced, and a new exposure level indication has been added when shooting from the camera itself without a connection to your iOS device, and the One app now allows you to check video metadata, as well as making it possible to stop Wi-Fi reconnection without causing your phone to connect to the camera instead.

DxO One version 2.2 is available from the iTunes app store.

Leica SL (Typ 601)

Leica, meanwhile, has released firmware version 3.0 for the Leica SL (Typ 601) and two lenses, the Vario-Elmarit-SL 24-90 f/2.8-4 Asph. and APO-Vario-ELMARIT-SL 90-280 f/2.8-4. The list of changes here is very lengthy, including improved autofocus, significantly faster DNG write speeds and a whole lot else besides. We'll stick to Leica's official release notes for the full story:

  • Up to 35% faster writing DNG files to SD card
    Optimization of the writing process allows to reduce the time needed for saving DNG files up to 35%. This allows to be quicker ready to continue shooting after a burst session.

  • Optimized Autofocus

    • MF-/AF-control optimized

    • Autofocus reaction time is shortened

    • Improved AF tracking of objects with SL lenses

    • Improved: zooming while recording video

    • Improved: AF field chances while recording video

    • Improved: AF-C while recording video

  • New firmware for lenses is included

    • Improved accuracy of the focus position

    • Improved AF-C accuracy if an object moves towards the lens

    • New firmware for the VARIO-ELMARIT-SL 24-90 f/2.8-4 ASPH.

    • New firmware for the APO-VARIO-ELMARIT-SL 90-280 f/2.8-4

    • Bugfixes

  • Additional improvements

    • Store DNG and JPG on separate SD cards

    • Independent exposure control for video and photo mode

    • New video frame rate 24fps for 4k resolution 3840x2160

    • White balance 'flash' improved for use with studio flash system's modelling light

    • Electronic shutter mode for shutter speeds from 1s - 1/16 000s for silent shutter release (ISO 50)

    • Exposure preview in M-Mode improved for continuous preview

    • Improved usability in play mode when zooming to 1:1 (100%) , location gets stored to easy access the same location

    • Improved flash behaviour for Auto ISO setting

    • Improved behaviour of flash units in continuous burst shooting mode

  • New options for customization

    • Swap the dedicated exposure controls of the front and back dial

    • Current control setup of the front and back dial is shown on the top display

    • Renaming from T-Mode into S-Mode

    • New option for AF Tracking "RESET": Start position of the AF tracking is fixed on a specific location which can be adjusted by the joystick.

    • Graphical User Interface of the multi selection and delete functions improved

    • AE-/AF-Lock Button can be assigned to magnification for a quick visual check of focus position

    • New option to show the focus distance in feet or meter

    • Automatic detection of Leica M and Leica R lenses can be turned off

    • Video resolution/framerate can be assigned to the personal favorite menu

    • User experience increased: the "OK" button on any keyboard input screens is touch sensitive

    • Audio in/out levels can be controlled directly by left/right joystick on the histogram screen

    • Several minor improvements made on graphical user interface

    • New default behaviour: the function "Access menu in EVF" is enabled by default. This function enables the upper left button while looking through the electronic viewfinder. Either menu access and quick access to custom functions is available now by default. For users experiencing accidental presses of the upper left button by their nose - it is recommended to disable this function in the "Customize Control" menu.

  • Bugfixes

    • Any shutter speed limitation for any manual focus lens is deactivated

    • Improved stability for tethered shooting with Leica Image Shuttle 3.6

    • If an USB connection is detected by the camera, the warning of a missing SD card is hidden. This allows to use Leica Image Shuttle and Adobe® Lightroom® Plugin without an inserted SD card.

    • For Leica M and Leica R lenses the real-time display of the established aperture is hidden

  • Leica SL APP

    • Support for DNG file download

    • Shutter release by pressing the volume button

    • Vibrate on shutter release

Leica SL (Typ 601) firmware version 3.0 can be downloaded from the company's website here.

Nikon D3400, D5600 and KeyMission 170

Nikon has shipped new firmware for its D3400 and D5600 DSLRs in the last few days, as well as an update for its KeyMission 170 action camera. All three updates aim to resolve issues with the company's SnapBridge technology, which uses both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connections for always-on transfer to your smartphone or tablet, minimal power consumption, and yet greater bandwidth than would be allowed by Bluetooth alone. The two DSLR updates resolve SnapBridge issues on Android devices, while the KeyMission update fixes SnapBridge problems with iOS 10.2.

You can download Nikon's firmware at the links below:

Panasonic FZ100

Panasonic, meanwhile, has new firmware for its Lumix DMC-FZ100 camera. Firmware version 1.3 actually landed a few weeks ago, but we've just now discovered its availability today. The sole change for this release is improved compatibility with the company's own battery packs. You can download this update here.


And finally, we come to the YI 4K camera. Here, the update is not an official release, but rather a publicly-distributed beta version, and so we would strongly recommend that you do not use this firmware in a production environment or for critical work at this time. Firmware version 1.5.8-beta adds a spot metering function with exposure lock, and follows on from a previous 1.5.7-beta firmware release which apparently added raw file support and color correction to the feature list.

If you're willing to take the risks of using beta firmware, you can find YI Technology's beta update for the YI 4K here. (A Facebook account shouldn't be necessary to view the post and download the beta.)

And that's it for this week! 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.)