Firmware updates for DSLR

Discussion in 'UK Photography' started by aniramca, Aug 17, 2007.

  1. aniramca

    aniramca Guest

    I seem to notice that camera manufacturers are releasing updates for
    their firmwares more often nowadays. I am curious on how the filmware
    in your camera is updated. Is this only applicable for DSLR, or can it
    be done on any digital SLR? There must be some kind of interface
    between the camera and a PC to download the firmware into the digital
    camera's main "brain". Perhaps is it just a matter or plugging the
    camera to a PC similar to when you are unloading photos from the
    camera, except it goes the otherway around and to a different memory
    location in the camera's computer?
    Thanks for info
    aniramca, Aug 17, 2007
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  2. aniramca

    Guest Guest

    usually one copies the firmware image to a flash card and then puts the
    flash card into the camera. when the camera is powered on (sometimes
    with a certain button pressed), it will check for the appropriately
    named file and then copy the new firmware into the camera. it is a
    very simple process.
    Guest, Aug 17, 2007
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  3. Just as described in the manual.
    My Coolpix had 2 updates in the first year.
    Yep. It is called USB (at least for all cameras I know of.
    However much more convenient is to simply store the patch on the memory
    card, insert the card in the camera, and then simply run the Update Firmware
    option from the camera menu.

    Jürgen Exner, Aug 17, 2007
  4. aniramca

    aniramca Guest

    Is this applicable to all digital cameras, including some of the older
    ones (c. early 2000s)? How do you know if there is a firmware update
    for your digital cameras? Will they notify you by e-mail if you
    registered on-line with the manufacturer when you bought the camera?
    Or, do you have to check such an update from time to time on their
    Thanks for all replies!
    aniramca, Aug 17, 2007
  5. aniramca

    Dave Cohen Guest

    I checked my canon against the website and was told it was up to date.
    There are some firmware enhancements for certain canon cameras done by I
    don't know who (there was a thread on it). This added some neat features
    like raw. The software resides on flash card, is used by camera but not
    permanently stored so if you erase the file camera will behave as
    original. Didn't pursue this further since my A95 wasn't one of those
    Dave Cohen
    Dave Cohen, Aug 17, 2007
  6. aniramca

    l v Guest

    It is applicable to my older Canon 300d (digital rebel). Put the
    firmware on the card using a card reader, put the card in the camera and
    simply turn the camera on - nothing else.

    I check Canon's web site and choose my camera, which has not had a
    firmware update since 2003. In fact, my camera shipped with the same
    version that is on Canon's site.
    l v, Aug 17, 2007
  7. I do not know all digital cameras. But it is how the updates for my Coolpix
    880 (bought in 2000) and D80 (bought 4 months ago) work.
    I never registered my cameras, therefore I don't know if manufactures will
    notify you.

    Jürgen Exner, Aug 17, 2007
  8. aniramca

    ray Guest

    Could you please explain the difference to me? I always thought that DSLR
    stood for Digital SLR.
    Firmware updates have been around for a long time. I have done them on my
    OLD Kodak DC210+ (1mp) and wife's Nikon Coolpix 2100 (2mp) - both quite
    old. Generally it is done by downloading a file to the computer, then
    putting the file in a specified folder on the memory card - placing the
    memory card in the camera and turning it on. One finds out about the
    availability of firmware updates by checking the support area of the
    manufacturer's web site.
    ray, Aug 17, 2007
  9. aniramca

    Andy Hewitt Guest

    Looking at the other responses, it looks like it'll depend on the
    manufacturer (which one is relevant for you?).

    On my Olympus E500 I had an update when I got it, but none since. The
    updates are checked every time I run the Olympus Master software on my
    computer, and if there are any, you just plug the camera into the
    computer using the USB lead, and the Master software does the updates.

    You'd really need to check the instructions for your own camera though,
    as each manufacturer may tend to do things differently. It may even be
    different for each model in one manufacturer.
    Andy Hewitt, Aug 17, 2007
  10. aniramca

    Mark Dunn Guest

    Olympus let you check when the camera is plugged in with the USB lead. You
    run the software that came with it (Olympus Master in this case), select the
    update option and it just gets on with it.
    Mark Dunn, Aug 17, 2007
  11. aniramca

    Robert Haar Guest

    I haven't noticed that. My experience with Nikons is that there have the
    firmware updates have been rare.
    That is the big picture. You download the new firmware to a intermediate
    computer and then install it on the camera.

    I have seen three variations on the part where the firmware. Some
    manufacturers have some desktop software that manages the camera, including
    firmware installs. Others package the update in an installation program that
    you run separately. This typically involves connecting the camera to the
    computer with a USB cable. Installs on my Nikons have been done by coping
    the new firmware to a memory card, putting that into the camera and then
    using a camera menu command to load the new firmware.

    The specific mechanism does vary according to what kind of computer OS you
    are using (Windows vs. Mac OS vs. LINUX vs. ???).
    Robert Haar, Aug 17, 2007
  12. Not just DSLRs, any digital camera may be able to have its firmware updated.
    My very first digicam was a fairly low-end Agfa ePhoto CL30 and there was a
    firmware update for it. That was about eight years ago and I don't recall
    now how it was done.

    The method of updating seems to vary from one brand to another. With most
    Nikons the method is to download the latest firmware file and folder from
    the manufacturer's site, then either put that on a memory card freshly
    reformatted in the camera or connect the camera directly to the computer by
    USB, then start the camera in Setup mode and follow the simple directions
    given where you downloaded the file.

    How often new firmware versions come out varies with the camera model. Some
    may have several updates, some may never have any.

    I've never been notified by any manufacturer when a new firmware version was
    available. You just have to check the manufacturer's or importer's site from
    time to time.

    Neil Harrington, Aug 17, 2007
  13. aniramca

    darkroommike Guest

    Like most things photographic there is probably more than
    one way to update the firmware and I'm sure if there were
    twenty camera makers there would be twenty different ways to
    do this task. Check the website for the make and model of
    camera you own (and if it ain't broke don't fix it).

    BTW the Canon Rebel remains the hackers favorite camera,
    much of it's operating system (and yes it's a computer so it
    has an OS) is written in a peculiar flavor of Linux (or so
    I'm told, I don't own one, I was sorely tempted but already
    own a number of Nikon lenses so bought a D50 instead).
    Makes it easy to add "features".

    darkroommike, Aug 17, 2007
  14. aniramca

    ray Guest

    I see. And they supply the 'software that came with it' for MAC and Linux
    as well as MS? Or is this simply one more reason (the main one being Xd)
    why I would not want an Olympus?
    ray, Aug 17, 2007
  15. xD should be reason enough all by itself. That must be the single biggest
    mistake Olympus (and Fujifilm) ever made.

    Neil Harrington, Aug 17, 2007
  16. aniramca

    harrogate3 Guest

    Interestint to note that some Olympus cameras have dual card working
    (as does my C5050Z) with CF being the other, and that Fuji are now
    using SD on some models.

    Not a problem though as most card readers will take xD.
    harrogate3, Aug 18, 2007
  17. aniramca

    ray Guest

    And the xd cards only cost, typically, about twice as much. BTW I have
    other, political, problems with fuji, but that's another story.
    ray, Aug 18, 2007
  18. Well, the newer card readers will. That still leaves the consumer having to
    buy the more expensive xD cards while SD cards are now the standard for such
    cameras, and you can almost always find SDs on sale and/or with very
    attractive rebate offers.

    I'm not up on Fuji models at all now. If they are *switching* from xD to SD
    that's good thinking, even if it tends to make orphans of their recent
    models. Fuji and Olympus have both made excellent cameras and lenses in the
    past, and sooner or later I suspect both will have to bite the bullet and
    essentially admit that xD was a mistake. The sooner they do this the better
    for all concerned.

    I still have my Olympus C2040Z and it's a neat little camera -- except for
    using SmartMedia of course.

    Neil Harrington, Aug 19, 2007
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