Canon Announces Comprehensive Firmware Updates for 1D X and 1D C Digital SLRs
OCTOBER 22, 2013
Canon has announced new firmware updates for its EOS-1D X and EOS-1D C digital SLRs, which enable several key changes to the two cameras' autofocus performance, custom controls, and user-programmed functionality. The firmware updates are quite comprehensive with the new 1D X firmware containing ten new improvements and the 1D C firmware adding two key new features.
• Enhanced AI Servo AF Performance in Low Light Conditions – The AI Servo focusing algorithm has been improved to allow more time for light sampling during AF activation prior to shutter release, enhancing AF performance in low-light situations. Additionally, initial AF control is now based on the new “+2 focus priority” setting of AI Servo 2nd Image Priority, which has higher distance measurement capabilities under low-light conditions. Upon full depression of the shutter button, settings from AI Servo 1st Image Priority take over and then settings from AI Servo 2nd Image Priority are applied on any subsequent images in the burst. This increases the probability that the first image in a burst sequence will be as sharp as possible.
• Improved Acceleration/Deceleration Tracking Parameters – To improve tracking performance of fast-moving subjects that fill the frame, additional parameters for acceleration/deceleration tracking in AI Servo AF have been added to provide photographers with more precise control when photographing rapidly moving subjects that accelerate or decelerate quickly or unexpectedly. In response to feedback from professional photographers, these new settings have been added to handle larger differences in speed (i.e., the rate of change in image magnification) compared to the previous firmware.
• Selection of Initial AF Point While Shooting in 61-Point Auto Selection AF – This new option in the AF Menu provides more continuity when switching to 61-Point Auto Selection AF from any other AF Point Selection mode. The option maintains the AF point selected from the previous Selection mode as a starting point for 61-Point Auto Selection AF. It also maintains the ability to change to a pre-programmed AF point when changing the Selection mode. This time-saving option is designed to help eliminate the need to stop and think, and helps photographers to customize their individual shooting style.
• AF Point Switching According to Camera Orientation – In addition to programming the EOS-1D X camera to automatically switch to a different AF point and area selection mode based on camera orientation, firmware version 2 adds the option of programming only the AF point according to camera orientation (horizontal, grip up and grip down). This new ability to select up to three different AF points according to camera orientation allows for greater customization of the camera to specific shooting styles.
• Expanded Minimum Shutter Speed in Auto ISO – In response to user feedback, this improved functionality in Auto ISO enables photographers to select a minimum shutter speed as high as 1/8000th of a second to freeze moving subjects.
• Exposure Compensation in Auto ISO with Manual Mode Set – This new function enables photographers to manually set a desired shutter speed and aperture, use Auto ISO to control the exposure, and use Exposure Compensation to adjust the exposure for challenging lighting conditions (e.g., a very dark or very bright background). This new function can be activated through the Quick Control Dial or by using the Main Dial while pressing the SET button.
• Toggling Between Alternate Camera Settings – EOS-1D X camera users can now toggle between three groups of camera settings instantly by pressing the shutter button, AE Lock button [*] or the AF-ON button. Selectable settings that can now be assigned to the AE Lock and AF-ON buttons via Custom Controls include:
• Same Exposure for New Aperture in Manual Mode – This new firmware feature provides users with the ability to maintain consistent exposure levels in Manual mode when the aperture changes, for example when a photographer shoots at maximum aperture with a variable-aperture lens (such as the Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM telephoto zoom) or when using a lens equipped with built-in extender (such as the EF 200-400mm f/4L IS USM Extender 1.4X). The feature gives users the option to have the camera adjust the shutter speed or the ISO to compensate for the aperture change.
• Display Protected Images Only – Users can now page through protected images only via an option on the main dial. This feature already exists with rated images, and is an expansion of that capability.
• Audio Recording – In response to user requests, audio on the EOS-1D C camera has also been enhanced. Currently audio recording is limited to a MIC input, but the forthcoming service update will permit selection of LINE or MIC input, allowing use of a wider variety of external audio sources.
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