The Digital Bolex has slowly but surely been improving in big ways.
The Super 16mm CCD camera has come a long, long way since I first tested it, and they've now added ISO 800 back since they worked hard to improve the amount of noise — in addition, they've also put in ISO 160. Besides the stuff in the image above, here's everything else that's been added or improved in firmware 1.4, which they are calling Dirawong:
- 800 ISO and 160 ISO
- Optimized white balances to remove magenta cast
- Added 4 additional white balance options
- Audio in playback via headphone jack
- Long exposures (up to 1 second) in time lapse or single shot mode
- Gamma control in RAW mode to see more information in your blacks
- Ability to switch between frame guides and black bars
- Additional guide/bar aspect ratios (1.66:1, 1.85:1, 2.40:1)
- Hitting left/right arrows on home screen flip the LCD for mirroring
- Dead Pixel Correction update
The magenta cast is something that has been noted by many people who have worked with the camera (including me), and it's great to see them try to address it in the most recent firmware update. In addition, having audio during playback via the headphone jack is huge, especially if don't have a chance to go to a computer and need to make sure audio is sounding fine on the recording — or maybe you need to refer back to something that was said earlier.
If you missed it, the feature film #Horror was shot with the Digital Bolex, and it's a great example of how you can achieve a Super 16mm film look with this digital camera. The film was released last fall:
Here's more on this firmware update, including some issues those with older models might experience:
Due to the nature of this firmware update, to install it you will be required to install a new version of the Digital Bolex Utility, which you can find on the Downloads page.
The loading process for the new firmware may take up to 5 minutes, and the first time the camera boots with new firmware the boot process may be slow.
- Note for owners with older cameras: it is possible that there may be hiccups in updating cameras with a 199 or lower serial number; in the event this occurs, please log into your account and create a ticket. If any bugs are reported, patches will be made available. Until then, you may revert to the most recent version of the firmware.
But the team isn't done there, they are also working on a number of features for the next firmware update:
- Color temperature on crank
- Volume control for playback audio
- 30 FPS
- Long exposure up to 60 seconds
- More work on color output and display
To download the update, head on over to the Digital Bolex downloads page here.