New Sony Alpha 1 firmware update brings 8K 10-bit video and new lossless RAW options; A7S III firmware update too
posted Tuesday, June 14, 2022 at 12:01 AM EDT
Sony today announced a firmware updates to their two of their top full-frame mirrorless cameras. First, the flagship Alpha 1 full-frame mirrorless camera gets an impressive new video format option as well as some new new RAW format options for still photos. Meanwhile, the Sony A7S III gets a small update, adding a new proxy recording option and some focusing improvements.
First up, the flagship Sony Alpha 1 camera gets updated to Firmware v1.3, which adds two major new features, one of which being a higher-quality recording option for 8K video -- 8K 4:2:2 10-bit. At launch, the Sony A1 could already record 8K 30p but at only 10-bit 4:2:0 chroma subsampling. With the new firmware, the 8K 30 4:2:2 option will allow for improved, more accurate color information to be recorded for even higher-quality footage.
Additionally, the v1.3 firmare adds Lossless Compressed RAW file options now in Small, Medium and Large resolutions. Sony says the Large-sized Lossless Compressed RAW format preserves the same image quality as the uncompressed RAW format yet saves a significant amount of space with regard to file size. The Medium and Small options are lower resolutions, though Sony did not specify the exact image resolutions for these two smaller sizes. Further, users can also select JPEG and any choice of Lossless Compressed RAW size options, depending on use case or preference for what types of images are needed for a given shooting situation.
For the video-focused A7S III, Sony has released firmware version v2.1, which adds a new proxy recording option during connected remote computer shooting. With this option, users can record a smaller, more manageable version of the video internally, as a backup or easier-to-edit file, while still sending out a higher quality video signal to the connected computer.
Sony also states that the new firmare improve the performance of the Eye AF autofocusing feature, thought Sony was not specific on what kind of Eye AF improvements the firmware update included.