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DIT House News

On-Set Rentals for DIT, Data Management, Dailies & Transcoding

Filtering by Category: Digital Film Cameras

Alexa "High Speed" 120fps with 5.0 Update Packet

DIT House


In response to feedback from end users and the rapid take-up of the ARRI ALEXA camera system on professional productions of all kinds, ARRI has created a High Speed mode that allows the ALEXA family of cameras to run from 60 to 120 fps with Apple ProRes codecs, using newly released Sony 64 GB SxS PRO cards that offer a write speed more than twice as fast as the current 32 GB cards.

The 120 fps feature will become available with the upcoming release of ALEXA Software Update Packet (SUP) 5.0 and the introduction of Sony’s new 64 GB SxS PRO cards. Like the ALEXA anamorphic de- squeeze feature, 120 fps functionality can be activated with the purchase of a license. Each license is coded to a particular camera and can be enabled by copying the license to an SD card and loading it into the camera. Licenses can also be disabled, allowing rental facilities control over which cameras are sent out with the High Speed mode.

Read more: Download the Alexa High Speed Datasheet PDF

Arri releases Software Update 4.0 firmware for Alexa

DIT House


Today, Arri released a new software update for the Alexa camera. New features and improvements include:

  • Customized looks to be applied to all ALEXA outputs via an ARRI Look File
  • AUDIO Playback from SxS Pro Cards
  • SxS recording can be turned off
  • Auto white balance
  • False color exposure check for Log C images
  • Anamorphic de-squeeze
  • More silent operation at higher ambient temperatures
  • 'Rec Low' fan mode for silent operation in extremely hot environments
  • Peaking focus check in EVF-1 and MON OUT
  • RETURN IN video
  • Compare stored image from SD card with live image
  • Master/Slave lens motor control
  • 3D lens sync
  • Lens Data System (LDS) info display in EVF-1 and on MON OUT

As for the new "Arri Looks Files" feature, this a great new addition to the camera's output monitoring. ARRI Look Files are editable XML files that contain a number of parameters including the ASC CDL primitives slope, offset and power. They can apply a customized look to all outputs (EVF-1, MON OUT, REC OUT and/or ProRes) that are set to either Rec 709 or DCI P3. ARRI Look Files can be created with the ARRI Look Creator software, which is a new Mac program developed by ARRI that will be released soon. Various third party companies are also working on ARRI Look File compatible applications, including The Foundry, Gamma & Density's 3CP, Pomfort and others.

One of the most critical items in this update is the "Removed Adaptive De-saturation (ADS)". An image processing step, called adaptive de-saturation, has now been removed. This step was necessary before SUP 3.0 in order to prevent color clipping in highlights. With the introduction of the new color processing in SUP 3.0 it was found that adaptive de-saturation is not necessary anymore, and in some cases even resulted in image artifacts and slight hue shifts. While this will make no difference to most images, color or saturation of highlights might be different from SUP 3.x. We recommend that you shoot test images before you switch during a show from SUP 3.x to SUP 4.0.

Another cool feature that was added is the "Compare Stored Image from SD Card with Live Image". Now, a JPEG image can be loaded from the SD card into the camera and displayed on the EVF and MON OUT. This can be a JPEG that had previously been grabbed with the ALEXA, but it can also be any JPEG image. JPEGs should be 1920 x 1080 for best image quality, or if not, at least have a 16:9 aspect ratio. ALEXA will try her utmost to scale images that are not 1920 x 1080. It is then possible to compare the stored image with the life image. There are two modes for comparing: Interleave and Toggle. Interleave will create an interlaced image from the stored and the live image, alternating line by line between the two. Toggle switches between the life image and the stored image each time the Toggle button is pressed.

Visit the Arri website to download and read more: Alexa Software Update 4.0