Firmware Friday: Updates coming from Canon, DJI and Panasonic; Fuji, Sigma and Sony updates arrive


posted Friday, November 15, 2019 at 6:33 PM EDT


Our regular Firmware Friday roundup this week is a little unusual in that most of the updates for which we have news aren't actually available just yet, although a few are already here and more will arrive in the coming days. In all, we have news of firmware updates for two cameras and one lens in the past seven days, plus planned updates for a further seven cameras and an unspecified number of drones. And on top of all this, there are a further four software updates which are already available.

There's clearly plenty to discuss here, so let's get right down to it!

Canon EOS R and IVY REC Outdoor Camera

Kicking things off alphabetically with Canon, the company has both shipped one update in the past week, and announced development of another. The IVY REC Outdoor Camera has received updated software for the second week running, with four changes as follows in version 1.0.2, which can be obtained in either the Google Play Store or the Apple App Store:

  • Fixes an issue in which selecting cancel on the device does not work when  attempting to auto re-connect to the IVY REC Outdoor Camera.

  • Improves ability for devices running iOS 13 to create a WiFi connection with IVY REC Outdoor Camera.

  • Improves the stability of the remote continuous shooting function when connected to devices running iOS.

  • Improves wireless reconnection when the Mode Dial Switch is turned to Photo/Video/Multi mode from wireless mode.

The new firmware for the Canon EOS R, meanwhile, is slated to arrive by year's end and will add support for the RF 85mm F1.2 L USM DS lens. Watch for more on this in a future roundup!

DJI drones (models unspecified)

Next up, we have Chinese drone maker DJI, which this week publicly demonstrated firmware under development for some of its drones. (The company doesn't say which, precisely, will eventually be receiving the updates, but notes that it will be available for "many drones already in widespread use, without any extra cost or equipment", and demoed the new features on both the DJI Mavic Air and Mavic 2 Enterprise models.)

So what's new? Well, with updated firmware and a smartphone app for Android devices from the likes of Google, Samsung and Xiaomi, the updated drones can broadcast flight information using the Wi-Fi Aware standard. DJI says that its own testing found this to work at a range of more than one kilometer (0.6 miles). Flight information which can be broadcast includes the location of the pilot, the location, altitude, speed and heading of the drone itself, plus a unique identifier for the drone and a user-provided description of the purpose of the flight. The idea is that both law enforcement and the general public will be able to obtain information about the flights for safety and privacy reasons, something which will become mandatory in Europe from July of next year, and which is also expected to be mandatory in the USA from 2021 or thereabouts. More info can be found on DJI's website.

Fujifilm X-T3, XF16-80mmF4 R OIS WR and MacOS software

Fujifilm has also both shipped new firmware and announced development of updates in the past week. The new firmware, which you can download here, promises more accurate autofocus and improved optical image stabilization as well as fixes for "slight defects" with the XF16-80mmF4 R OIS WR lens.

There are two planned updates for the Fuji X-T3 mirrorless camera, meanwhile, slated to arrive in December 2019 and January 2020 respectively. The first will bring USB tethered remote control of video capture, exposure mode, shutter speed, aperture, ISO sensitivity, exposure compensation and manual focus from certain drone-based or handheld gimbals from DJI and Zhiyun. The second update will improve face detection performance when faces of varied sizes are within the image frame, as well as eye detection tracking performance and how the camera handles scenes with a complex mixture of foreground and background detail. It will also increase the limit on the number of files per folder tenfold, to as many as 9,999 files per folder.

And finally for Fuji, the company has also released updated versions of three apps to correct issues with MacOS Catalina 10.15.1, on which we reported a couple of weeks back. Updated apps include the Silkypix-based Raw File Converter EX 3.0 (download here), the X Acquire installer (download here) and the Tether Plug-in PRO for GFX for Adobe Photoshop Lightroom Classic CC / 6 (download here). The Raw File Converter and X Acquire updates also add support for the X-Pro3 camera body. A variety of other apps still remain on the list to be corrected, including Fujifilm PC AutoSave, the X Raw Studio installer, as well as the Tether Shooting Plug-in PRO for GFX, Tether Shooting Plug-in and Tether Shooting Plug-in PRO for Adobe Photoshop Lightroom.

Panasonic GH5, GH5S, G9, S1 and S1R

Panasonic's updates were technically announced last week, but since they've yet to ship we unfortunately missed mentioning them. (Sorry!) They won't be available to download until next Tuesday, however.

Firmware version 2.6 for the GH5, version 1.4 for the GH5S and version 2.0 for the G9 will bring the following changes, and will come accompanied by Lumix Sync version 1.0.4 software for wireless tethering with all three cameras:

  1. Expanded compatibility with Profoto wireless transmitters
    Ability to use Profoto wireless transmitters "Air Remote TTL-O/P" and "Profoto Connect-O/P."
    * All functions may not be available depending on the situation.

  2. Other major improvements for all models

  • All [AWBw] has been added to WB mode.

  • [Highlight Weighted] has been added to [Metering mode].

  • [Exposure Offset Adjust] has been added to the Custom menu, which enables the user to adjust the standard exposure value for all metering modes.

  • [0.5SEC] has been added for an option of [Duration Time (photo)] in [Auto Review].

  • AE can be locked with the [AF/AE LOCK] button when ISO Auto is set in M mode.

  • [MODE1] has been added to the Live View Boost function, which increases the frame rate for smooth image displays to enable easier manual focusing.

  1. Improved AF performance (GH5S and G9 only)

  • [Animal Detect] has been added to AF mode. Utilizing Advanced AI Technology, animals, including cats, dogs and birds, can be detected in addition to humans. The focus frame is automatically set on the target subject by analyzing the size and position of the target subject in the viewing image. The camera continues tracking these subjects even when they turn their back to the camera.

  • It is possible to switch the subject to focus on by pressing the joystick in [Face/Eye/Body/Animal Detect] mode.

  •  All [AF-ON: Near Shift] and [AF-ON: Far Shift] functions have been added. [AF-ON: Near Shift] preferably focuses on a subject nearby while [AF-ON: Far Shift] preferably focuses on a subject far away. 

  • A Focus Peaking function is available in MF and any AF modes.

  • Continuous AF capability is available on the live view screen in Creative Video mode or in other video recording modes when the video recording area is displayed.

  1. Enhanced video and other functions (G9 only)

  • 4K 30p/25p 4:2:2 10-bit internal recording is supported.

  • 4K 60p/50p 4:2:2 10-bit HDMI output is supported.

  • Luminance level for 10-bit video is supported.

  • VFR (Variable Frame Rate) shooting is supported (FHD 2-180 fps/4K 2-60 fps).

  • HDR video recording is supported.

  • V-Log L recording and Waveform Monitor (WFM) are available with the Upgrade Software Key DMW-SFU1(sold separately).

  • [MODE2] has been added to High Resolution mode, which reduces the subject's motion blur.

Firmware version 1.3 for the Lumix S1 and S1R will bring the following changes:

  1. Expanded media compatibility
    Compatibility with CFexpress Type B card: A CFexpress Type B card boasts a theoretical performance of a maximum of 2,000 Mbps. Realizing an approximately 300% higher transfer speed than that of a conventional XQD card, it supports large-volume photos and videos.

  2. Expanded compatibility with Profoto wireless transmitters
    Ability to use Profoto wireless transmitters "Air Remote TTL-O/P" and "Profoto Connect-O/P," enabling wireless connection and control of external strobes for professional shooting.
    * All functions may not be available depending on the situation.

  3. Improved compatibility with Sigma interchangeable lenses and mount converter

  • Ability to assign functions to the Fn buttons of Sigma L-Mount interchangeable lenses.

  • The performance of Body I.S. (Image Stabilizer) when attaching a lens using the Sigma MC-21 mount converter has been enhanced by suppressing roll movement.

  1. Improved compatibility with Panasonic interchangeable lenses
    Assignment of functions to the lens Fn buttons when the Panasonic LUMIX S PRO 70-200mm F2.8 O.I.S. (S-E70200) is mounted.

  2. Improved AF performance

  • [AF+MF] can be used in AFC mode.

  • Setting continuous AF on the live view screen in Creative Video mode or in other video recording modes when the video recording area is displayed.

  1. Improved performance of High-Speed Video
    Ability to manually set the exposure according to the video exposure mode (P/A/S/M) in High- Speed Video mode.

  2. Other major improvements*

  • Ability to select the card slot to save the JPEG images developed by in-camera RAW processing.

  • An Fn button can be used for checking the aperture effect.

  • User can disable any physical operation by assigning the action to an Fn button.

  • AF Assist Light is now on the Focus tab of the Video menu.

  • The luminance level of photos (including 6K/4K Photo and Post Focus images) can be preset when played back over HDMI output.

  • Ability to lock (with the [AF/AE LOCK] button) when ISO Auto is set in M mode.

  1. Improvements for the S1 only

  • Previously, some users experienced a blue clipping effect in V-Log recording. This problem has been improved.

  • Afterimages occurred in V-Log recording for some users. This problem has been improved.

Sigma fp

Firmware version 1.01 for the Sigma fp also arrived last Friday after we'd already written that week's roundup, and so rolled over to this one instead. Its development was revealed in a late-October roundup, and as well as the two fixes promised at that time, also corrects two further operational issues which have been discovered since. In all, changes are as follows:

  • Corrects the phenomenon when the recording to the external SSD drive. Regardless of the recording bit and frame rate part of the first and second frames of playback will be enlarged as well as the thumbnail images when the recording format is set to Cinema DNG and the resolution is set to UHD.

  • Corrects the phenomenon whereby shooting in the Cinema DNG format, depending on the ISO sensitivity the level of the dark area changes for each frame.

  • Corrects the phenomenon whereby some parts of the recorded video become disordered.

  • Corrects the phenomenon whereby the camera freeze when the lens firmware is updated through files downloaded via Mac.

The firmware update and its installation procedure can be found here.

Sony RX10 Mark IV

Finally for this week, we have firmware version 2.00 for the Sony DSC-RX10 Mark IV, which can be downloaded here for Windows, or here for MacOS. There are just three changes, as follows:

  1. Adds real-time Eye AF for animals
    * It is not possible to detect simultaneously human and animal eyes. Eye detection may not be possible depending on the environment, animal type or the movement of the animal.

  2. Enables the possibility to operate the real-time EYE AF by half-pressing the shutter button

  3. Improves the overall stability of the camera

And that's all for this week. Check back next time for more firmware news!


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(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.)