Firmware Friday: More than a dozen updates from Canon, Fuji, Leica, Olympus, Panasonic, Ricoh, Sony


posted Friday, June 29, 2018 at 9:46 PM EST


This week's Firmware Friday roundup is a biggie, bringing news of firmware and software updates from no less than seven manufacturers in all. If you're shooting Canon, Fujifilm, Leica, Olympus, Panasonic, Ricoh or Sony gear, you'll want to read on for the full story below to find out what's new. Since there's a lot to discuss this week, we're going to keep the intros very brief and let the release notes do the talking instead.

Let's get right down to it!

Canon VIXIA GX10, XF400 and XF405

Last week, we told you of several potential issues for users of the Canon VIXIA GX10, XF400 and XF405 video cameras. Just seven days later, fixes arrive for all three models in the form of new firmware version for the XF400, XF405 and VIXIA GX10. (Links take you to the downloads.) See last week's coverage for what's fixed by each update.

Fujifilm X-A3, X-A5 and X-A20

Next up, we have the Fujifilm X-A3, A5 and A20. The X-A5 is now on firmware version 1.10, and receives the following changes:

  1. Introducing a new PDAF algorithm
    Applying the newly developed PDAF algorithm first featured on the FUJIFILM X-T100. The improvement in autofocus speed and accuracy ensures that you capture those beautiful photographic moments quicker.

  2. Extended movie recording time
    The optimized movie processing algorithm extends the individual movie recording time up to approximately 30 minutes in any movie quality.
    <Note> Although movie recording will continue without interruption when the file size reaches 4GB, subsequent footage will be recorded to a separate file which must be viewed separately.

  3. Initial setting of ISO is changed to “AUTO” from “200” when switching to P, S, A, M, and Adv mode.

  4. Visibility on the LCD is improved during CL shooting.

  5. Improved HDMI output usability
    This upgrade eliminates the time limitation.

  6. Graphic interface is modified when the main LCD monitor is inverted by 180 degrees.

  7. The phenomenon is fixed that in rare cases, INTERVAL TIMER SHOOTING stops.

The X-A3 and X-A20 are now on firmware version 2.21 and 1.11 respectively, and each receives just two of the changes shared by the X-A5:

  1. Initial setting of ISO is changed to “AUTO” from “200” when switching to P, S, A, M, and Adv mode.

  2. The phenomenon is fixed that in rare cases, INTERVAL TIMER SHOOTING stops.

Leica CL, M10, Q (Typ 116), T (Typ 701), TL , TL2

It's been a long while since Leica made an appearance in a Firmware Friday roundup, but the company returns in style with new firmware for six different models at the same time. In all, they are...

Leica CL firmware version 2.0:

  1. NEW MENU ITEM: Double dial customization
    Swap functions between dials for each PASM mode enabled

  2. Button and Dial lock
    Long push of left dial button lock causes lock for all buttons and dials except from Power Switch, Release Button and Left Dial Button long push.

  3. NEW MENU ITEM: Power Saving Mode implemented
    The camera automatically goes to Auto Power Off after 10s.

  4. Touch AF field navigation with EVF usage
    In Touch AF Mode whilst using EVF, the cursor keys can move the AF Field/AFs, Spot/AFs.

Leica M10 firmware version

  1. Optimization of the delete menu

    The graphical user interface for deleting images has been reworked

  2. Longer exposure times available

    At base ISO it is now possible to capture an exposure up to 4 min long

  3. New continuous burst mode with lower speed

    An additional continuous burst shooting mode (Continuous Low Speed, 3 frames per second) is now available, making it easier to release single images while in continuous mode

  4. “Load Profile” now available in the favorites menu

  5. An estimation of the selected aperture is now shown in the EXIF data

    The camera estimates the used aperture by comparing the brightness measured through the lens and the brightness measured externally. This value is now recorded in the “Aperture Value” EXIF tag. Photographing subjects with high contrast or black or white objects can sometimes lead to misinterpretations in the estimated aperture.

  6. LED disable function

    The blinking red LED on the rear of the camera can now be disabled in the Customize Control menu. This allows users who find the light distracting or too conspicuous to prevent it from blinking, thus making the camera more stealthy and discreet.

  7. Auto-ISO adjustment

    Auto-ISO now defaults to ISO 200 for the base ISO, to maximize dynamic range performance.

  8. Additional bug fixes and minor improvements also included.

Leica Q (Typ 116) firmware version 3.0:

  1. Favorites Menu
    User can now enter and save up to 15 settings for faster access in a Favorites Menu.

  2. Power Saving Mode
    If required, the camera can now be set to switch to Stand-By Mode after 10 seconds.

  3. Extended functions for the FN button
    Even more options can now be selected for programming the multi-function button.

  4. User Profiles
    Profiles can now be imported from and exported to a memory card.

  5. OIS – optional ‘Auto‘ setting
    This setting enables automatic activation of optical image stabilization at shutter speeds of 1/60s and slower.

  6. EVF/LCD setting options
    This menu item can now be assigned to the FN button.

  7. Settings for the electronic shutter
    The electronic shutter can now be set to permanently active.

  8. DNG files
    The processing speed of DNG files in the camera has been increased.

  9. Autofocus metering fields
    The last AF metering field used is now memorized and recalled when switching the camera off and on again.

  10. Self-timer
    The setting is now memorized and recalled when switching the camera off and on again

  11. Exposure preview deactivation option
    Exposure preview can now be deactivated in manual mode (especially useful when shooting in the studio with flash systems, underexposed settings or in dark environments).

  12. Image review
    Automatic image review remains active as long as the shutter release button is pressed.

Leica T (Typ 701) firmware version 1.8 and Leica TL firmware version 2.3:

  • Simplified pairing process between camera and smartphone/APP

  • Improvement of Color Aberration for all TL lenses

  • 100% support including auto update of the new TL 2.8/18mm lens

Leica TL2 firmware version 1.4:

  1. NEW MENU ITEM: Selection of LCD / Viewfinder settings
    The content appearing on screen and in the viewfinder are identical. Now the user can determine when and where the content appears.

  2. NEW MENU ITEM: Left Dial Customizable functions
    Touching the left function display brings up the available function tiles. These functions are now customizable. The user can choose 6 out of 13 functions

  3. NEW MENU ITEM: More options for Top FN Button
    The user can now assign 1 of 6 functions to the FN button on top of the camera.

  4. NEW MENU ITEM: Electronic Shutter options
    The user can now choose the electronic shutter to be off, permanently on or extended to the mechanical shutter.

  5. Focus Peaking in AF Mode
    In AF mode the user can always take manual focus corrective action by using the MF ring. With FW 1.4 focus peaking is available during this operation

  6. Focus Peaking for M-/R-Lenses
    While using M-/R-lenses via M-Adapter L focus peaking is now available

  7. EV adjustment during video recording
    During video recording the EV value can be adjusted via the left top dial

  8. Enable zoom-in while playback in EVF
    Viewing images in playback in EVF user can zoom-in with right top dial

  9. Enable zooming during rating function

  10. During single image rating function the zoom-in /zoom-out function via right top dial is available now

  11. Video: more options for video resolution
    4K 30fps, FHD 30fps, FHD 60fps, HD 60fps, Slomo 120fps

  12. Improvement of Color Aberration for all TL lenses

  13. Improvement of the AFc precision and AF speed

Download all of Leica's firmware here.

Olympus Viewer 3

Olympus has released very minor updates to its Viewer 3 application for both Windows and Mac OS. The only change mentioned in the release notes is an update to the privacy policy.

Panasonic Camera Control Unit

The new firmware for Panasonic's AK-UCU600 Camera Control Unit makes two changes as follows (get the update here):

  1. Support for connectivity with AK-UC3000/UC3000S
    Able to switch between connected cameras using the menu
    * Supported are only the functions installed in the AK-UC3000/UC3000S.

  2. Support for 3G-SDR output in HDR mode (Menu item added)

Ricoh Theta V

Firmware version 2.30.1 for the Ricoh Theta V brings with it the following changes:

  1. You can save shooting conditions set with a smartphone on the camera.

  2. Shooting conditions registered in My Settings will be enabled when you turn the camera on while not connected to a smartphone.

  3. You can only use My Settings for still images.

  4.   *Requires the latest version of the smartphone app (iOS 2.1.0 or above, Android 1.19.0 or above).

  5. It is now possible to use Developers Mode.

  6.   *The basic app for PC needs to be updated to the newest version (Version 3.5.0 or higher).

  7. Implemented minor improvements

  8. Bug fix

You can install this new version using the Theta apps for Windows or MacOS, or using the Android app from the Google Play store.

Sony Alpha 9, FS7 and FS7 II

And finally for this week's roundup, we come to the Sony Alpha 9 compact system camera, as well as the FS7 and FS7 II video cameras. Firmware version 3.00 for the Alpha 9 is a biggie, with quite a few significant changes:

  • Added functions for professionals engaged in sports/news media:

    1. Adds the Write Serial Number option (On/Off) to the menu for selecting your preference in writing the serial number to the Exif data

  • Improvements in auto focus performance and functionality:

    1. Improves tracking performance of moving subjects in AF-C mode

    2. Improves auto focus speed in low light

    3. Adds AF Track Sens as a selectable option for custom key settings

    4. Adds support for all focus areas when using LA-EA3 mount adaptor
      (Focus Area options added: Zone, Expand Flexible Spot, and Lock-on AF)

  • Improvements in flash control performance and functionality:

    1. Reduced release time lag when shooting with flash

    2. Adds support for Slow Sync and Rear Sync when using flash wirelessly

    3. Adds support for white balance automatic correction when using color filter of external flash (HVL-F60RM)

  • Other Improvements:

    1. Stabilized release time lag when shooting in AF-C mode

    2. Improves overall stability of the camera

The Sony FS7 and FS7 II each share a single update in their version 4.30 and 1.20 updates, respectively.  Both cameras receive a new function to change the ISO sensitivity in CineEI mode. You can download the FS7 update here, and the FS7 II update 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.)