ALEXA Software Update 4.0 released

ALEXA Software Update 4.0 released

We are proud to announce the release of our latest software update for the ALEXA camera system. The ALEXA Software Update Packet (SUP) 4.0 provides a number of new features and improvements for both the ALEXA and ALEXA Plus models, based on our own R&D as well as feedback from film and television professionals working with ALEXA in the field. Epitomizing ARRI’s ongoing commitment to future-proofing the system platform and delivering lasting value to our customers, SUP 4.0 further enhances ALEXA’s already impressive versatility and usefulness.

ARRI Look files

The software update allows customized looks to be applied to all ALEXA outputs via an ARRI Look File, which alters the way the camera image is converted to video color spaces. As an example, ARRI has designed a Low Contrast Curve (LCC) Look File for those who do not want to deal with Log C but would like more dynamic range in a gradable video image. An ARRI application for creating ARRI Look Files as well as support from various third parties are in development.

AUDIO Playback form SxS Pro Cards
SxS recording can be turned off

New options for ALEXA’s on-board SxS PRO cards include audio playback: when playing back a clip, the audio is output to monitors and the recording device as embedded audio, and as an analog audio signal through the headphones jack. A new option to disable SxS recording switches off the compression and SxS boards inside ALEXA but still outputs the HD-SDI record flag.

Auto white balance
False color exposure check for Log C images

In addition to the range of white balance options already available, the new Auto White Balance feature can automatically determine the red/blue white balance and green/magenta CC values. Furthermore, the false color exposure check available in the viewfinder and the monitor output will now show accurate exposure levels for Log C images as well as Rec 709.

Anamorphic de-squeeze

Anamorphic de-squeeze is the first ALEXA feature to be enabled with the purchase of a license key, allowing images shot with 2x or 1.3x anamorphic lenses to be displayed in their proper aspect ratio on set, either in the viewfinder or on a monitor.

More silent operation at higher ambient temperatures
'Rec Low' fan mode for silent operation in extremely hot environments

For situations when ALEXA is being used in hot shooting conditions, improvements have been made to the camera’s thermal management. With SUP 4.0, ALEXA now achieves silent running at ambient temperatures of up to +30 °C with the fan set to ‘Regular’ mode. When it’s even hotter on set, ‘Rec Low’ mode runs the fan fast during standby to pre-cool the camera, but slowly and silently during recording.

Peaking focus check in EVF-1 and MON OUT
RETURN IN video
Compare stored image from SD card with live image

Various refinements have been implemented with the camera operator in mind. A new peaking function makes it easier to determine focus by highlighting everything that is in focus, either in the viewfinder or on a monitor. RETURN IN video has been enabled, allowing the operator to see a reference image such as a second camera feed or a previz image with VFX elements already added. In addition, a JPEG still image can be loaded from the SD card into the camera and displayed for comparison with the live image. The viewfinder zoom function has also been improved in terms of zoom-in options and button controls. 

Master/Slave lens motor control
3D lens sync

Some of the features of SUP 4.0 are applicable only to the ALEXA Plus camera model, including Master/Slave lens motor control and 3D sync. When two ALEXA Plus cameras are connected in Master/Slave mode, the motors of the slave camera will follow the motors of the master camera. 3D lens sync ensures that in a Master/Slave setup, the focus, zoom and iris on the slave camera lens precisely follows the lens on the master camera.

Lens Data System (LDS) info display in EVF-1 and on MON OUT

Lens Data System (LDS) information can now be displayed in the ALEXA Plus viewfinder or on the monitor, detailing the lens being used and its settings. Even non-LDS lenses can be displayed, as long as the lens profile has been added to the Lens Data Archive. SUP 4.0 also allows a virtual horizon to be displayed on the monitor or in the viewfinder; its sensitivity can be adjusted in five stages.

New Features Overview

The most important new features for ALEXA and ALEXA Plus:

  • Custom looks through ARRI Look Files
  • Audio playback from SxS PRO cards
  • Auto white balance
  • Anamorphic de-squeeze in EVF-1 and on MON OUT (paid license feature)
  • Peaking focus check in EVF-1 and MON OUT
  • False color exposure check for Log C images
  • EVF ZOOM target position
  • Compare stored image from SD card with live image
  • RETURN IN video
  • Operating time counter
  • SD card formatting in camera
  • EVF ZOOM and EXP buttons are now latching
  • SxS recording can be turned off
  • More silent operation at higher ambient temperatures
  • 'Rec Low' fan mode for silent operation in extremely hot environments
  • V-mount battery adapter update

 

The most important new features for ALEXA Plus:

  • Master/Slave lens motor control
  • 3D lens sync
  • Lens Data System (LDS) info display in EVF-1 and on MON OUT
  • Lens Data Archive (LDA)
  • Electronic level in EVF and MON OUT