If you own the DJI Spark drone, soon you won’t be able to fly it if you don’t update the firmware. DJI is releasing a firmware update this week, aimed at increasing flight safety and the drone performance. All Spark users will need to download the update by September 1st. Otherwise, their Spark won’t be able to take off.
Firmware updates are kind of a mixed blessing. We like when they come out and fix issues we’ve been having or add new features. But when they come out too often, they can be a pain to keep updating. But it seems to be the way these days. Get the products out the door, and we’ll worry about fixing them later.
Well, Sony and Fuji seem to be doing a lot of firmware fixing right now. They’ve released a whole slew of firmware updates for a bunch of popular cameras and lenses. Below is a list of all the updates just released, along with the notes for each and links to the download page. Be sure to check the pages for each update to ensure successful application.
When the GH5 was announced, there was a big deal made about its ability to shoot 10Bit 4:2:2 video. But there were a few issues. Mostly that it didn’t offer it in all resolutions and modes. The first of two planned firmware updates has now officially been announced. Available from April 24th, it offers 4:2:2 10Bit capture at 100Mbps for 1080/59.97p resolution, with 4:2:2 3328×2496 anamorphic at 150Mbps.
Also announced today is a new Micro Four Thirds lens. The Leica DG VARIO-ELMARIT 8-18mm f/2.8-4.0 ASPH and Lumix ZS70 / TZ90 20.3MP 4K compact camera. Taking square aim at the Canon G7X Mk II and Sony RX100 V, the ZS70features the same 30x optical zoom and 4K video of the ZS60. But, it also features a flip up selfie-mode LCD, an all new “Panorama Selfie” mode and more.
This is something that I know my Pentax, Sigma and Panasonic shooting friends will be pleased with. Nine months after releasing the Cactus V6 II and Cactus V6 IIs, there’s new brand-specific firmware updates coming. These let you get HSS and TTL across different brands of camera and flash. Yes, that’s right, you’ll soon be able to use your SB-900s on your X-T2, or your 600EX II-RT with an A6500.
The firmware is system specific, and they’re releasing it in phases. The first is for Sigma, Sony and Fujifilm. Canon, Nikon, Olympus Panasonic and Pentax will follow. And it’ll work with flashes from a multitude of brands. You’ll even be able to mix and match different brands of flash into the same lighting setup.
If you are a long time reader of the blog, you know that we are big fans of Magic Lantern. Magic Lantern is a piece of software that you can install on Canon DSLRs to gain extra abilities that the original camera firmware did not have. They have added RAW video, more dynamic range, and about a million other little features like peaking, zebra lines, better audio control, built in timelapse and more. You can think about it as Jail Breaking a camera. To be honest, I think that Canon is secretly supporting ML.
We have seen Magic Lantern grow into (almost) every DSLR that Canon release and now it the turn of Canon’s new EOS 5D Mark IV. Here is the thing, the Magic Lantern forums are kinda of a geektalk place, so exciting news can slip by. It turns out that first signs of a 5D mkIV port were sent almost a month ago and were buried in the forums.
When live view first appeared in DSLRs, it was seen as a bit of a useless gimmick. No doubt, in those early cameras, it wasn’t always that useful. It was ok if you just wanted to line up a shot that was difficult to see through the viewfinder. Laying low to the ground, for example. But beyond that, it wasn’t very practical. Now that video has come more to the forefront of camera technology, people are finding live view more and more essential.
One feature missing from some cameras, though, is the ability to quickly grab shots while liveview is active. Thankfully, electronic shutters during live view mode are starting to become more common. It’s still lacking in a few bodies, though. Now, both Pentax and Phase One have added an electronic live view shutter to their K1 and XF IQ3 cameras, respectively with a new firmware update.
Things seem to be happening all at once for Nikon at the moment, with several announcements, and one rumour.
First up, for those that have been lucky enough to receive their Nikon D500 body already, the Nikon MB-D17 grip is now available to order from Amazon, offering a very welcome weight balance for those shooting longer lenses, as well as extended battery life, and ease of shooting portrait orientation images.
What if Sony’s camera has so much more power internally than what they expose? We have seen Canon cameras getting a performance boost via
hacked custom firmware – Magic Lantern, so the idea is not unthinkable.
Now, youtube user Nabil Fathi claims to have hacked the Sony A7S to record 4K internally, along with providing higher bitrate and better subsampling (HDMI 10bit 422). The message was attached to a video Nabil uploaded to Youtube:
When I talk to videographers who fly drones (dronists? I donno…) and the issue of DJI vs. 3D robotics comes up, the main point is always how the Solo from 3DR can do clever things autonomously while the DJIs need some babysitting.
Any system has its vulnerabilities. But as we get more and more connected, we sometimes expose ourselves to new threats that did not exist before. Many times on this site (and others) we recommended to backup your photos to a safe location. One of the more popular solutions is the Synology disk station.