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Author Topic: Fuji firmware update  (Read 1692 times)

john beardsworth

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Fuji firmware update
« on: November 30, 2017, 10:08:32 AM »

There's an interesting set of firmware updates and software releases from Fuji today.

  • Recent cameras like the X-T2 now have two different types of highlights alerts (blinkies)
  • There's a Mac (for now) app called X-Raw Studio which uses a USB-attached camera to convert raw files on your computer to JPEG. Might be handy if you need JPEGs quickly? See https://www.fujirumors.com/fujifilm-anniunces-launch-new-fujiiflm-x-raw-studio-system/
  • The tethering utility x-Acquire's update includes a feature to backup and restore your camera's settings. I believe you can use it to sync two or more bodies.


Right now, the first and last seem of most practical use.

Alan Smallbone

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Re: Fuji firmware update
« Reply #1 on: November 30, 2017, 11:10:46 AM »

There's an interesting set of firmware updates and software releases from Fuji today.

....

Right now, the first and last seem of most practical use.

I agree I don't quite see the need for the in camera raw conversion while tethered. Thanks for the notice.


Alan
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john beardsworth

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Re: Fuji firmware update
« Reply #2 on: November 30, 2017, 11:26:21 AM »

I'm struggling to find a use for it, but one I have in mind is if I forget to shoot raw+jpeg, which is best for using LR's new embedded and sidecar option. It is an interesting development though and it is quick if you do ever want to convert lots of raw files to JPEG without going through a raw converter.

JimGoshorn

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Re: Fuji firmware update
« Reply #3 on: November 30, 2017, 12:09:51 PM »

I watched the Fuji Guys video on Raw Studio and what I thought was interesting was the option to process to jpeg or tiff. What wasn't specified was wether the tiff would be processed at full bit depth or still at 8 bit.
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David Sutton

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Re: Fuji firmware update
« Reply #4 on: November 30, 2017, 03:55:08 PM »

There's an interesting set of firmware updates and software releases from Fuji today.

  • Recent cameras like the X-T2 now have two different types of highlights alerts (blinkies)
  • There's a Mac (for now) app called X-Raw Studio which uses a USB-attached camera to convert raw files on your computer to JPEG. Might be handy if you need JPEGs quickly? See https://www.fujirumors.com/fujifilm-anniunces-launch-new-fujiiflm-x-raw-studio-system/
  • The tethering utility x-Acquire's update includes a feature to backup and restore your camera's settings. I believe you can use it to sync two or more bodies.


Right now, the first and last seem of most practical use.

And, AT LAST! SEPARATE LIVE RGB HISTOGRAMS!
An odd way to implement them, but it may work in practice. You assign one of the function buttons to "histogram", and on pressing the button, the 4 histograms are shown in the viewfinder with blinkies where there is overexposure. When the shutter button is half pressed to focus they disappear. They are also shown when reviewing. Press the display/back button to cycle through the various options.
Improvements to being able to zoom in to the focus area may be useful.
I haven't had a chance to test the new ability to use 3rd party flash commanders or the improvement to continuous autofocus.
David
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rdonson

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Re: Fuji firmware update
« Reply #5 on: November 30, 2017, 05:24:53 PM »

The blinkies and RGB histograms are a big improvement for me.

AF-C improvements will likely greatly improve my sports shooting.

I don't do any tethering with my X-T2 (yet?) so the only use I'd have for X-Acquire would be backing up camera settings.  As I think about that though I wonder why the don't provide for backing up camera settings to an SD card and allow us to import settings from an SD card as well.  That would be a whole lot more useful for me. 
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Ron

john beardsworth

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Re: Fuji firmware update
« Reply #6 on: November 30, 2017, 05:41:36 PM »

I agree completely about the SD card point, Ron. Or one might expect it via the iOS app. I only found out about the new feature in x-Acquire when I was looking for a way to sync settings between cameras.

I'm not sure they've got the blinkies right. I'd like just blinkies enabled by a function button, but you can only set the blinkies + RGB histogram from there.

rdonson

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Re: Fuji firmware update
« Reply #7 on: November 30, 2017, 09:21:03 PM »


I'm not sure they've got the blinkies right. I'd like just blinkies enabled by a function button, but you can only set the blinkies + RGB histogram from there.

That would be ideal but for now I’ll live with what they provided. 
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Ron

Chris Kern

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Re: Fuji firmware update
« Reply #8 on: December 01, 2017, 02:04:56 PM »

And, AT LAST! SEPARATE LIVE RGB HISTOGRAMS!

I couldn't find anything explicit on Fuji's website and I don't know how this kind of feature typically is implemented.  Do these RGB histograms represent the real-time luminance values of the light sensor rather than what the in-camera JPEG rendering firmware would produce?  In other words, can they be relied on as an aid to setting optimal exposure when shooting raw?

David Sutton

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Re: Fuji firmware update
« Reply #9 on: December 01, 2017, 03:43:56 PM »

I couldn't find anything explicit on Fuji's website and I don't know how this kind of feature typically is implemented.  Do these RGB histograms represent the real-time luminance values of the light sensor rather than what the in-camera JPEG rendering firmware would produce?  In other words, can they be relied on as an aid to setting optimal exposure when shooting raw?
Hi Chris.
I'm assuming they are off the in-camera jpegs. This means I set take a couple of typical shot saved in raw, convert them in camera (or use X-Raw studio) to the film profiles I'm likely to use and then compare the histograms to get an idea of how much difference there is. With my Canon camera I could get the exposure very accurately this way with a little practice.
Most of the time I find I can spot overexposure with the WYSISWG viewfinder, so the blinkies are not vital. But the red and blue histograms may prove valuable for specialist subjects (red roses and blue fungi for example where it's so easy to clip the red and blue channels. Even skies can be problematic here in NZ with the amount of extra UV).
David
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rdonson

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Re: Fuji firmware update
« Reply #10 on: December 01, 2017, 08:47:24 PM »

I couldn't find anything explicit on Fuji's website and I don't know how this kind of feature typically is implemented.  Do these RGB histograms represent the real-time luminance values of the light sensor rather than what the in-camera JPEG rendering firmware would produce?  In other words, can they be relied on as an aid to setting optimal exposure when shooting raw?

http://www.fujifilm.com/support/digital_cameras/manuals/pdf/index/x/fujifilm_xt2_manual_01_en.pdf

Since it's a mirrorless camera my bet is that the histograms reflect what the sensor is perceiving.

FWIW I mapped the F2 button to histograms.  Just pressing the F2 button on the front of my X-T2 turns on/off the RGB histograms and blinkies.
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Ron

rdonson

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Re: Fuji firmware update
« Reply #11 on: December 01, 2017, 10:55:09 PM »

Something else learned today.  You can get "blinkies" only without the RBG histograms but only on the "Live View" (LCD screen)

In the menus go to:

- wrench
- screen setup
- disp custom settings
- check "Live View Highlight Alert"

The downside might be that the blinkies are always on until you go back into the "disp custom settings" and turn it off

I'm going to stick with my choice of mapping the blinkies and RBG histograms to F2.  I use the EVF a LOT.
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Ron

john beardsworth

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Re: Fuji firmware update
« Reply #12 on: December 02, 2017, 04:13:30 AM »

I get the always-enabled blinkies in both EVF and LCD, Ron. But your point about its downside seems to match my "I'd like just blinkies enabled by a function button". I am going to live with the function button enabling the histogram+blinkies, but it does seem odd that Fuji only allow certain functions to be mapped to the buttons.

armand

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Re: Fuji firmware update
« Reply #13 on: December 02, 2017, 10:14:03 AM »

I get the always-enabled blinkies in both EVF and LCD, Ron. But your point about its downside seems to match my "I'd like just blinkies enabled by a function button". I am going to live with the function button enabling the histogram+blinkies, but it does seem odd that Fuji only allow certain functions to be mapped to the buttons.

I have yet to install this update but did you try to cycle through the display view?

The one thing that Olympus got so right is that you can enable both the highlight and the underexposure blinkies in the same view; this way I can play with the exposure compensation and decide what I want to sacrifice if the scene’s dynamic range exceeds that of the sensor.

Rand47

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Re: Fuji firmware update
« Reply #14 on: December 02, 2017, 11:01:45 AM »

Just a note on an added functionality.  When in playback mode, you can now cycle through blinkies + historgram (and the other info screens) by pressing the “up button” on the pad, OR by presssing the joy-stick “up.”

I find this more natural feeling than using the display/back button - which also brings up other “select/rate” type stuff in which I have zero interest.

Give it a try . . .

I have also mapped the blinkies + histogram to the front fn button.  Also very natural feeling.  I’m alternating between this way of “checking” and of just leaving the blinkies “on” via the screen setup option.  So far it’s a toss up (the best option as others have said would be to be able to just toggle blinkies only, on and off via fn button - I’m amazed that no one at Fuji came to this conclusion in the discussion of implementation).  I’m leaning in the direction of just leaving blinkies on all the time. (That way I can map the front fn button “back” to being DOF preview, which on occasion, is really helpful.)

I’m also currently testing to see “how much blink-if-i-cation” (“W.” would say it that way, I’m sure  ;D) there can be w/o highlights “actually being blown” in the raw file.  (Another “boooo” to all the camera mfgs who can’t get it in their head that lots of people actually shoot raw files and would like an accurate raw histogram - can it be that hard?). So far I’m at about 2/3 stop additional exposure from the onset of blinkies (specular highlights nothwithstanding).

Rand
« Last Edit: December 02, 2017, 11:09:47 AM by Rand47 »
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Chris Kern

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Re: Fuji firmware update
« Reply #15 on: December 02, 2017, 11:45:47 AM »

(Another “boooo” to all the camera mfgs who can’t get it in their head that lots of people actually shoot raw files and would like an accurate raw histogram - can it be that hard?).

This is admittedly conjecture, but I suspect it's not that it would be so difficult to program—the RGB luminance data presumably are already available in the sensor, available to be sampled—but that it would require launching another parallel process, and the firmware designers want to reserve every CPU cycle at their disposal to keep the electronic viewfinder up-to-date and have a JPEG ready to be embedded in the raw file the instant the shutter is snapped.

rdonson

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Re: Fuji firmware update
« Reply #16 on: December 02, 2017, 12:14:01 PM »

I get the always-enabled blinkies in both EVF and LCD, Ron. But your point about its downside seems to match my "I'd like just blinkies enabled by a function button". I am going to live with the function button enabling the histogram+blinkies, but it does seem odd that Fuji only allow certain functions to be mapped to the buttons.

Perhaps with enough feedback from users we might see improvement in a future update.
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Ron

Rand47

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Re: Fuji firmware update
« Reply #17 on: December 02, 2017, 12:31:30 PM »

This is admittedly conjecture, but I suspect it's not that it would be so difficult to program—the RGB luminance data presumably are already available in the sensor, available to be sampled—but that it would require launching another parallel process, and the firmware designers want to reserve every CPU cycle at their disposal to keep the electronic viewfinder up-to-date and have a JPEG ready to be embedded in the raw file the instant the shutter is snapped.

Thanks for the insight, conjecture though it may be - I think it’s valuable insight.  What it says to me, though, is that mfgs see our cameras as essentially jpeg machines that “happen to capture raw data also” - rather than raw data capture machines that also “happen to spin out jpegs.”  I say this because your premise above (and I think it is correct!) drives from that direction.  Ergo, the whole design, processing, display paradigm of the mfgs springs from this... making the difficulty (assuming so) of deriving a raw histogram (etc.) a draw-down on “principal” processing resources.  If the design paradigm were reversed, perhaps that wouldn’t be the case - or at least not be perceived as an issue leading to compromise.

Rand
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Chris Kern

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Re: Fuji firmware update
« Reply #18 on: December 02, 2017, 01:11:52 PM »

What it says to me, though, is that mfgs see our cameras as essentially jpeg machines that “happen to capture raw data also” - rather than raw data capture machines that also “happen to spin out jpegs.”

Unquestionably, Fuji in particular places a great deal of emphasis on JPEGs: their in-camera film simulations play a prominent role in their marketing strategy.  (Although if I want the "look" of particular flavors of Fuji film, I think the Lightroom-supplied profiles—which apparently were developed with Fuji's assistance—do a fairly decent job of simulating them when applied to raw files.)

I also suspect that it is the JPEG rendering code that is being used to continuously update the EVF.  This is presumably a complex process which involves interpolation of all the intermediate colors from the RGB luminance data collected by the sensor, selecting and setting a white balance, resizing the demosaiced pixels to fit the viewfinder dimensions, and probably a number of other operations I'm not aware of: i.e., a lot of stuff.  And it all needs to be performed in real-time at a high refresh rate and without unacceptable latency.  So there may not be many or even any idle CPU cycles available to read the raw luminance values from the sensor, calculate the clipping points, and produce an accurate raw histogram.  In other words, it could be more an issue of processing priorities than of design policy.

Again, I should emphasize that I'm trying to guess what's going on inside the Fuji image-processing engine without authoritative information to go on.  For that matter, I ran a bunch of searches yesterday and couldn't find anything online that explained even in generic terms how electronic viewfinders work from a software (firmware) design perspective.

rdonson

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Re: Fuji firmware update
« Reply #19 on: December 10, 2017, 06:47:38 PM »

Continuos Focus improvement...

Last night I photographed the NC HS 3A championship football game and it was snowing.  I shot continuous focus, CH, Boost with the 100-400 and my keeper rate was significantly improved over previous outings. Most OOF results were my fault not the camera’s. I was pleased that the snow didn’t negatively affect anything. It was my first time shooting a game while snowing.

I’m very pleased with the results I got. I do have to give credit to the excellent, even lighting at Duke University stadium.  No strange colors that AWB had to deal with either.
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Ron
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