Firmware Friday: Better AF for Sigma 30mm f/1.4, feature-packed updates for Panasonic video cams


posted Friday, February 23, 2018 at 11:03 PM EDT


Our Firmware Friday roundup this week is short and to the point, with only two new updates landing in the past seven days, and one more announced but not slated to arrive for a few more weeks. Unless you're shooting with a Panasonic video camera or the SIGMA 30mm F1.4 DC DN | Contemporary lens in Sony E-mount form, you can continue along to another story. (We'd suggest our Panasonic G9 field test, Olympus PL9 first shots or Fuji X-H1 hands-on as being particularly interesting!)

Still with us for the firmware news? Great, let's get right down to it!

Panasonic AU-EVA1 and VariCam LT

Panasonic's updates this week are for its pro-oriented AU-EVA1 and VariCam LT video cameras. One update has been released, with the other slated to arrive later. Already available is firmware version 27.98-00-0.00 for the VariCam LT, which comes with a lengthy laundry list of changes, both in terms of new features and bug fixes. Courtesy of Panasonic, here's what's new:

  • Enhancement of usability in the state of being connected with ROP (AK-HRP1000/1005/HRP200 *)

    On the premise that the camera is used at live events, specifications and functions are added.

    • AK-HRP1000/1005 (It will be supported by updating.)

    • AK-HRP200 Ver.4.01.00 or higher

    • Items are added to MENU.

      • SHADING is added to GRADING in V-Log mode selected for MAIN COLOR.

      • SHADING is added to MAIN COLOR.

    • Some of the specifications related to the connection with ROP are changed.


      • Support for ROP 5600K SW
        If 5600K SW is turned on, W/B works as PRESET 5600K regardless of its list.

      • Specification change of the camera’s GUI

    • To simplify the setup process of connecting AK-HRP1000, this ROP’s IP connection account is added to the default account settings.

    • Support for RETURN input

    • TALLY light up according to the commands from ROP On AU-VCVF10.

  • The time required for displaying GUI at boot-up is reduced.

  • SYSTEM MODE can be changed by selecting the preset item.

  • ISO BASE ([800B] / [5000B]) is displayed. (VF, MON OUT, LCD (VIEW))

  • Support for the playback of multiple clips in succession as well as in order of selection

  • RESTART button is added so that the camera can be rebooted, after NETWORK SEL is changed.

  • For the following settings where VFR is possible, VFR ON/OFF Switching feature is provided.

  • REC FORMAT: LT codec

  • PIXEL: CROP mode

  • The function of changing TCP/UDP port for IP control by ROP is added.

  • The setting value for the fan’s rotational speed reduction is added.

  • The following compatible wireless LAN module is added.

  • D-Link DWA171 (Australia)

  • The following compatible EF lenses are added.    

  • CANON CN-E70-200mm T4.4L IS KAS S   

  • CANON CN-E18-80mm T4.4L IS KAS S

  • Support for SHADING RAW output

  • LongGOP50 and LongGOP25 are added to the supported formats for HD CROP mode.

  • Improvement: Any of the three operations of REC-stop, card-insertion/removal and card-formatting may cause the system error E36* on rare occasions. That is corrected properly.
    * This problem never affects recorded clips or cards.

You can download firmware version 27.98-00-0.00 for the VariCam LT here.

New firmware is also on the way for the Panasonic AU-EVA1, and slated to arrive by the end of March 2018. We don't yet know what the version number will be, but we'd expect a fairly large increment as there are a lot of big changes.

Among these are support for raw and Panasonic All-I recording, as well as a new interlaced 4:2:2 HD codec, time-lapse recording, and new support for a variety of Sigma lenses and third-party remotes. The updated EVA1 will also be able to output ancillary data including time code, RAC flag and VANC metadata on SDI for raw, and added both the ability to mirror the LCD via HDMI, and some additional home screen indicators for better in-camera monitoring.

Newly-supported lenses will include all of the following:

  • Sigma 12-24mm F4 DG HSM | Art

  • Sigma 24-70mm F2.8 DG OS HSM | Art

  • Sigma 14mm F1.8 DG HSM | Art

  • Sigma 30mm F1.4 DC HSM | Art

  • Sigma 85mm F1.4 DG HSM | Art

  • Sigma 135mm F1.8 DG HSM | Art

New output formats and codecs will include:

  • RAW output on 6G SDI

    • 5.7K RAW up to 30p

    • CROP 4K RAW up to 60p

    • CROP 2K RAW up to 240p

  • ALL-Intra codecs 422 10bits

    • 4K / UHD up to 30p @400Mbps

    • 2K / HD up to 60p @200Mbps

    • 2K / HD up to 30p @100Mbps

  • ALL-Intra codecs for High Frame rate

    • 4K / UHD~30p @400Mbps

    • 2K / HD~120p @400Mbps

  • Interlaced Recording Format

    • FHD (1920x1080) - ALL-Intra 100Mbps 10-bit 422 @59.94i/50i

    • FHD (1920x1080) - LongGOP 50Mbps 10-bit 422 @59.94i/50i

Sigma 30mm f/1.4 Contemporary for Sony E-mount

As for Sigma's 30mm F1.4 DC DN | Contemporary, firmware version 03 for the Sony E-mount variant is all about focusing. Specifically, Sigma says it has improved AF performance when using Eye AF, or with Lock-on AF near the edges of the image frame. Manual focus feeling is also said to have been improved. You can download the firmware update for your Sony E-mount-equipped Sigma 30mm f/1.4 Contemporary lens here.

And that's all for this week. Be sure to 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.)