ARRI has released the latest Software Update Packet (SUP), v5.0 for the ALEXA and ALEXA Plus cameras. All new cameras will ship with SUP v5.0 installed, and it is available as a free download from the ARRI website for all current ALEXA owners. SUP 5.0 is a major upgrade for the ALEXA cameras, with several important new features and useful improvements.
New features of SUP v5.0 include (for both ALEXA & ALEXA Plus):
High Frame Rates
Access to the new High Speed License
With SUP v5.0, you can now purchase a license through the ARRI website which allows the camera to shoot from 60fps – 120fps and record to ProRes 422HQ on the new Sony 64G SxS Pro cards.
ProRes 4444 recording up to 60fps
The new Sony 64G SxS Pro cards have much higher sustained data read/write capabilities than the 32G SxS Pro cards. This allows the ALEXA to feed up to 60fps of ProRes 4444 to the cards with no dropped frames or file corruption. In previous firmware releases, ProRes 4444 was limited to 40fps and you needed to capture in ProRes 422 HQ or below to record 60fps.
ARRIRAW and HD-SDI 4:4:4 recording up to 60fps
ARRI has developed a unique dual-link 3G signal path so that ARRI Partner recorders can capture up to 60fps of full uncompressed ARRIRAW or 10-bit HD-SDI 4:4:4 in full resolution progressive signals. Codex has released software to enable their Onboard recorder to capture ARRIRAW and HD-SDI 4:4:4 over this protocol.
ARRI Look Files applied to playback
If an image is recorded in ProRes in Log-C while the monitoring has an ARRI Look applied, then that ARRI Look can again be applied when playing back the Log-C file in camera.
Reel & Clip Number on MON OUT
For logging purposes, the Reel & Clip numbers can be superimposed on the MON OUT image.
False Color index display
Available as a selection in the MONITORING menu, this is a chart that shows the color and brightness scales represented in the False Color mode. The Index appears on the camera’s side panel.
Active ARRI Look indicator
When an ARRI Look File is applied to the SxS/REC OUT image path, the “SxS” and “REC” text above the COLOR button in the HOME screen will have a blue background.
New default frameline names
The frameline presets have been renamed to match those of the groundglasses in other ARRI cameras.
Secure camera display dimming
When on the HOME screen, the rotary selector controls the display’s brightness. There is now a lock option to this control.
Horizontal Image monitoring
This function flips the image right/left both in monitoring and recording. This is useful in certain 3D rigging applications.
Dual Recording error handling
Dual Recording mode allows two SxS cards to record identical files simultaneously. Should an error occur on one of the cards that causes it to stop recording, the other SxS card will continue to capture the files.
Open Camera Access (OCA) initiative
ARRI is releasing information to allow third-party manufacturers to develop hardware and software to interface directly with the ALEXA cameras.
New features of SUP v5.0 include (for ALEXA Plus only):
Support for ARRI Lens Data Display for Focus Pullers (LDD-FP)
The LDD-FP is a Camera Assistant display developed for other ARRI cameras. This unit is now supported by the ALEXA Plus.
To download SUP 5.0, ALEXA owners must login after completing a one-time registration on the ARRI website. The file can then be downloaded to an SD card for uploading into the camera. Also available for download are an updated user manual, release notes for SUP v5.0, and a data sheet on the new High Speed License.