SIGMA fp Firmware 2.0 Released – External ProRes RAW and BRAW Recording, Dual ISO and More

June 25th, 2020

Firmware 2.0 brings major updates to the SIGMA fp full frame camera. External ProRes Raw & BRAW is now supported, dual ISO enabled, CinemaDNG has improved high speed and delivery frame rates. There is also a Cinemagraph function and improvements to JPEG capture, timecode, flicker control, and auto focus.

SIGMA fp Image credit: SIGMA

In what is frankly a major upgrade in SIGMA firmware update 2.0, we caught up with SIGMA fp Product Planner Wakamatsu-san to discuss the long list of new features.

SIGMA fp – New Video Features

Starting with the new features concerning video on the SIGMA fp:

Additional Raw recording modes have now been enabled over HDMI. ProRes Raw with the Atomos Ninja-V and Blackmagic Raw on the Blackmagic Video Assist. Both will require firmware updates from the recording devices side, but the SIGMA fp now supports three popular flavors of raw – ProRes Raw, BRAW, and CinemaDNG!

SIGMA fp Image credit: SIGMA

Speaking of CinemaDNG, new features arrive in which you can now playback clips on the cameras, capture stills in cine mode, and capture stills from a movie file. DCI 4K 12bit is now supported over HDMI RAW output.

There is also a new HDR recording feature as well as Cinemagraph creation and playback (who’d have thought).

One of the SIGMA fp USPs was the Directors Viewfinder function – the ability to simulate the viewing angle of other cinema cameras. Within this function, you can now record video and take stills.

SIGMA fp camera menu. Image credit: cinema5D

SIGMA fp – Enhanced Video Features

The SIGMA fp has unlocked dual base ISO (ISO100 and 3200). This is discussed in the video with SIGMA stating that ISO100-800 is most effective at 12.5 stops of Dynamic Range.

Video Auto focus has been improved in speed, accuracy, and stability (from our testing, there is some improvement, but don’t expect phase dictation performance).

CinemaDNG has received a fair few updates. 25 and 29.97 are now supported in UltraHD 12 bit shooting, as well as 100 fps in FHD 12bit mode and 100 and 119.88fps in 8 and 10 bit FHD modes.

SIGMA fp camera menu. Image credit: cinema5D

“OFF” option is now available in Color mode. This feature simulates better what the sensor “sees” without an additional layer of color like in other picture modes (Vivid, Natural, and such).

Also, BWF audio is now supported for better audio/video sync when importing video files to DaVinci Resolve.

Timecode in is now available via the 3.5mm mic input of the camera. You can’t record audio whilst receiving timecode in, but it will retain the timecode once you have disconnected to re-establish connection with your microphone.

SIGMA fp camera menu. Image credit: cinema5D

There were a number of reports of the camera flickering under certain lighting conditions, and we were experiencing such an issue too when testing the camera when it first came out. Now we are happy to report that firmware 2.0 made it a thing of the past!

SIGMA fp as a webcam. Image credit: SIGMA

SIGMA fp Expansion

It is clear SIGMA has really listened to users when considering firmware 2.0 – there are some really significant updates in here.

Furthermore is SIGMAs stance on keeping the platform open to third-party companies and users.

Accessories manufactures can also access 3D data of the camera on their website.

There is a Software Development Kit (SDK) scheduled for early July, SIGMA state they have been in conversations with a handful of companies regarding further support.

Compatibility with the Zhiyun Weebill S Gimbal is a good example of this. The function is unclear until Zhiyun release their own firmware, but it is billed as camera movement control.

SIGMA fp and the new 100-400mm L mount lens. Image credit: SIGMA

SIGMA fp – What’s Not to Expect in This Firmware Update

Unfortunately, SIGMA has confirmed that implementing a LOG picture profile for enhanced Dynamic Range and greater creativity when coloring is not possible in this camera due to technical limitations. Turning “off” the color processing (Picture Mode off) is seemingly as close as one will get.

If you are interested to learn more about the SIGMA fp Full Frame camera, please head to our original full review found here and we hope you will take the extra minute or so to watch the short documentary too.

So a pretty hefty firmware update; the advanced RAW support and open platform make it a pretty exciting package. A full list of features can be found below, as well as a few less important updates and bug fixes.

SIGMA fp Firmware 2.0 – New Features

– Supporting cinemagraph creation and playback.
– CinemaDNG footages playback
– Supporting still capture during live view and movie shooting in Cine mode
– Supporting still image capture from movie files (CinemaDNG, MOV) shot with the SIGMA fp
– Supporting HDR in movie shooting
– Supporting still and movie shooting in Director’s Viewfinder mode
– Supporting DCI 4K 12bit / HDMI Raw output
– Supporting RAW over HDMI recording with Atomos Ninja V monitor-recorder*

* A free AtomOS firmware update for Ninja V is required.

– Supports recording Blackmagic RAW codec over HDMI with Blackmagic Video Assist 12G models*

* Requires firmware update of Video Assist 12G models using Video Assist Update 3.3.

– Camera movement control is compatible with ZHIYUN Weebill S gimbal.

* Firmware update of the corresponding device is required.
*Please refer to ZHIYUN firmware release information about functions supported. Since not all functions will be supported in this firmware update, both SIGMA and ZHIYUN will need to continue working on this to make more and more functions to be compatible in future firmware updates.

– Instruction message appears when attempting to use greyed-out items in SHOOT menu
– Supporting camera control in USB mode*

* The SDK (Software Development Kit) for controlling the camera is scheduled to be available by early July.

Improvements

– Supporting Dual Base ISO (ISO100 and 3200)
– Improved AF performance
– Improved accuracy with evaluative exposure metering
– Improved image quality
– Supporting CinemaDNG 25 and 29.97 fps (UHD 12bit) shooting
– Supporting CinemaDNG 100 fps (FHD 12bit) shooting
– Supporting CinemaDNG 100 and 119.88 fps (FHD 8bit and 10bit) shooting
– “OFF” option available in Color mode
– Exposure adjustment available in QS (Quick Set)
– Tone control setting “Auto (Mild / Strong)” available during movie shooting
– Supporting USB Video Class (UVC) setting adjustments while the fp is connected to USB
– Supporting time code generation
– Compatible with BWF format
– Supporting file size changes at aspect ratio 7:6
– Supporting changes of shutter sound effect

Bug Fixes

– The phenomenon of flickering in dark areas in video footages has been corrected
– Bugs in USB Video Class (UVC) setting when connected to USB or during movie shooting have been corrected
– Improved recording stability with recording media
– Other minor bugs have been corrected

* To develop raw data (DNG files) from the SIGMA fp with firmware Ver. 2.00, the use of SIGMA Photo Pro 6.7.4 is required. Users need to update to SIGMA Photo Pro 6.7.4 when applying the fp ver.2.0 firmware update.

SIGMA fp firmware update 2.0 can be downloaded here.

If you own a SIGMA fp camera, how do you like working with it? Please share with us your thoughts in the comment section below.

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Greenidge Lewis
Greenidge Lewis
Member
August 10th, 2020

I am so inclined to buy this camera, the only thing holding me back is Internal 24p (not 23.98) and compressed RAW to SSD. I may still order the camera, but would love to have these two features.

TiiPii
TiiPii
Guest
July 10th, 2020

This statement from Sigma that Log is not possible in Sigma FP platform is really confusing because we know that it *can* apply curves to the raw signal from the sensor. That’s what all those different color modes are, just a curve. A perfectly fine way of implementing Log (or just a really flat) mode is to just apply a logarithmic curve. We know from Pawel Achtel, ACS, test (https://www.sigma-forums.com/forum/photography-discussions/photo-talk/174-deepdive-with-pawel-achtel-acs?p=175#post175) that Sigma FP has really wide color gamut, matching the entire gamut of Rec.2020. So applying a log curve over that gamut would give a really great range suited for preserving both the dynamic range and the tonalities.

So is Sigma really saying that they can’t add a new mode, or are they saying that they can’t even replace or modify an existing mode?

This is relevant of course only when you shoot MOV. If you shoot 12-bit raw then lack of log is not an issue. We have the whole raw 12 bits per pixel data available and that wide gamut can be fitted to whatever color space we want. A simple colorspace transform (LUT) will do. But it can be an issue with MOV. So as long as they could apply that curve for the signal before it gets crushed for Rec.709 or whatever, it would work great.

Sigma, please, more information needed what’s the actual reason for the “we can’t do Log”. Users aren’t asking for more dynamic range from the sensor. Just to preserve the dynamic range (and tonalities) it already has. Maybe they read this, maybe not… Maybe cinema5d can ask?

 Gerald Donovan
Member
July 1st, 2020

“CinemaDNG has received a fair few updates. 25 and 29.97 are now supported in UltraHD 12 bit shooting, as well as 100 fps in the UHD 12bit mode”

Err, no. You really should correct that. Rather a fundamental thing to get wrong!

Johnnie Behiri
Admin
July 1st, 2020
Reply to  Gerald Donovan

Hi Gerald.
Thanks for spotting that! Later in the article we got it right, but somehow there, the F(HD) was misspelled with U(HD). Correcting as we write.

Thanks again!
Johnnie

Tim
Tim
Guest
July 1st, 2020
Reply to  Gerald Donovan

My goodness you are right

Alaydaroos
Alaydaroos
Guest
June 29th, 2020

Do you think it would be a possibility to have 24p on a future update? I don’t mean 23.976 but 24p. Also DCI 4K to SSD would be a game changer.

Sam
Sam
Guest
June 28th, 2020

I am a new owner to sigma fp. And I use mostly canon lens and sam yang cine lens. At the moment I am unable to turn off exposure compensation in Manuel mode, TV and AV mode which makes the exposure jump and cause flickering footage between a bright scene moving into a dark scene because the camera automatically go chase the exposure like +0.7 or -1 or +3. Just wondering if you guys know how to fix this? Only way I was able to fix this issue is to use a Manuel focus lens and set on shutter priority so the camera can’t detect the aperture which stop the camera figuring exposure.

Any help or knowledge would be highly appreciated. Not sure if this is a bug but I am unable to find any solution or answers online.

Thanks
Sam

microobserver
Member
June 26th, 2020

Would love to see an option for an EVF add-on, similar to Canon’s on the C500M2 and C300M3. The Loop is just too big for me, but guess okay for cinematographers. Maybe the ‘next’ version!

Alexander Kharlamov
Guest
June 26th, 2020

I had the chance of testing the new firmware today and the new update seems to be a problem with the dual ISO implementation. The update seems to have crippled the ISO100 images with highlights clipping much earlier than before, so the solution is to under expose much more and then recover the shadows to avoid very harsh clipping of the highlights. My anecdotal tests show that the firmware cut off about 2 stops of dynamic range on the upper end at ISO100, as you increase the ISO this problem disappears (which makes sense given that we are underexposing the image so its the equivalent to boosting the underexposed 100ISO image up). This is not observed with ISO3200 and up, which now looks cleaner.

Also if before reading the sigma DNG files as REC709 and linear gamma and then map that into rec709 worked better, the new changes made highlight information disappear for some reason. Did not have much time to further understand what the problem is and troubleshoot the camera but would be great if anyone could share their experience and if this problem can be replicated across multiple cameras. I only have 2 FPs and they share the same issue after the update.

Johnnie Behiri
Admin
June 26th, 2020

Hi Alexander.
We ran our DR lab rest on the SIGMA fp camera and the new FW installed and did not have this issue (A cut of 2 stops while using 100 ISO)

Thank you
Johnnie

Alexander Kharlamov
Guest
June 26th, 2020
Reply to  Johnnie Behiri

Thank you for confirming! I need to do more tests on this, perhaps I got faulty units.

Member
June 25th, 2020

This is a great update. However, without internal BRAW (which is 1/4 the size of DNG), or at the very least 10bit LOG, I personally wouldn’t have much use for this otherwise mini-wonder camera. It’s the internal abilities that kills it for me.

Jonathan Grijalva
Jonathan Grijalva
Guest
June 25th, 2020

Soooo the big question. Is the sensor a 6k sensor? If so, how will they implement the 4K raw? As someone who had the Nikon Z 6, which pixel binned the image to accomplish the 4K raw and caused horrible moire issues, I would be disappointed if they did the same! But the higher frame rates in raw is something other companies should take note of (looking your way Panasonic)!

BOUNCE
Member
June 25th, 2020

Excellent, my new Sigma fp literally arrived yesterday. I pulled the trigger in anticipation of the imminent release of this major firmware release. I didn’t expect the addition of BRaw, but woohoo! Can’t wait to install it and start shooting.

My experiences with Version 1.01 was less than stellar. The camera had a number of issues: For one, it froze when accessing my SD card. No warning, the red light on the top of the camera would stay lit and the standby message would show on the screen. The only way to clear the error was to pull the battery, card and reinstall the battery (leaving the card out) and then performing a system reset. I’m hoping version 2.0 is not afflicted with this problem. FYI: after the reset the card could be accessed normally again.
My brand new camera with firmware version 1.01 definitely was affected by the “flickering in shadows”, so I’m pleased to learn that also was addressed. It sounds like 2.0 is going to make this camera a serious contender. Color me happy:-D

 Lars Steenhoff
Member
June 25th, 2020

Very nice update!
Thanks Sigma!

Now for the next firmware

-Please research DCI 4K 12bit to SSD
-Allow moving of the focus point with touch screen during zoomed in focus confirmation view.
– Allow focus confirmation zoomed in during recording
– Output 16:9 instead of 4.3 when outputting HDMI with menu overlays. ( I need to see on my external screen if recording is on )
– Allow swipe left/right in CDNG playback mode to swipe to the next Clip
Make audio levels not hidden in the menu, but put it on a higher level.

Thanks for listening!

dude
Guest
June 25th, 2020

Sigma did fix black level flickering :) tested https://youtu.be/1gaaoRgqwXs

 Giovanni Lorini
Member
June 25th, 2020

Is not clear if some kind of HDR has been added.
Seems that Log is not possible but at the same time
an HDR mode is indicated as added in movie shooting?

Pleh
Pleh
Guest
June 25th, 2020

I still think this cam is heavily underrated for what it is and the price. I’m not sure that Im a big fan of L mount yet, but I also wish Sigma Launched a more budget MFT cam as a follow up to this~

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