Firmware 1.5 “Elf” Released, includes new Bolex Log color space

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We’re excited to announce the release of “Elf,” the latest firmware for Digital Bolex. Focusing mostly on image-correction and fine tuning, the update also includes a false color mode to show peaks in highlights and shadows. This version may be compatible with HDMI recorders, however further testing is necessary.

Full list of features:

  • Display color gamuts
  • Display gammas
  • Accurate display color tuning
  • False color exposure view mode
  • Improvements to image encoding
  • Improvements to ISO accuracy

Bolex Log and Wide Gamut RGB are optimized to retain the most color and lightness information possible from the D16 without jeopardizing the D16’s natural mojo. This makes the camera easier to intercut with others, as well as gives a defined starting point for your grade. Additionally, there is Bolex Gamma. Bolex Gamma is a classical film s-curve. It provides decent contrast giving weight to the image while still allowing the image to be malleable in post-production.

The functionality of ISO has also changed. Switching the ISO now shifts the dynamic range of the D16 around the middle gray point. In raw at 800 ISO, Bolex Log can retain up to 6 stops of dynamic range above middle gray and 6+ stops below. Reducing ISO lowers your highlight range, but increases your shadow range and reduces the appearance of noise.

*Bolex Gamma has a middle gray point of 412/1023

Download Elf here. Read about the new Bolex Log Color Gamut here.

26 thoughts on “Firmware 1.5 “Elf” Released, includes new Bolex Log color space

  1. Sorry to hear about the D16 being discontinued. I’d love to get my hands on the (I assume) final firmware update (ELF). Is there a direct link to download it? The current link on this page just sends us back to the download page, then back here, ad infinitum. Please help! Thanks!!!

  2. Can’t download the firmware! When I click on the link that says “here” it brings me back to the Digital Bolex homepage. Is the link still working? I really want to download the new firmware. Help please. Thanks!

  3. I’m having trouble understanding the implications of the iso implementation. It would be helpful to give some real world examples. For example, would it make sense to shoot a high contrast sun and shadows clip in iso 800? Would this provide more dynamic range for the highlights? Normally I would think high iso is for lower light; should I be looking at it a different way?

    • Shooting at a higher ISO means you are feeding the sensor less light. Which in turn means you have more highlight range before clipping, but this also means less shadow range before hitting the noise floor.

      ISO 400 has been my workhorse option. I’ll use 800 if I really need that extra highlight room. And I’ll use 200 when I want a really clean image or if my scene is really low contrast (<10 stops of range).

      • I thought that raising the iso increases the sensitivity of the sensor. So all other things being equal (aperture, scene) there will be more clipping in the highlights.

        But if I understand the post, raising iso increases the number of shades between middle grey and white – meaning the highlights can be fine tuned more when color grading…

        Is this standard behavior for digital cameras, or is the Bolex alone in this?

      • In a very sunny scene, it may be OK for the shadows to be dark – so would this argue for shooting high ISO in the sun?

        Conversely, in a dark scene, you want as much detail as possible in the shadows, and it may be OK for the highlights (eg light bulbs, reflections off of metal) to be a little blown out. So should one set iso a low as is possible when shooting in the dark?

        Is this rule true generally for all cameras – or is it a special feature of the D16

  4. I passionately love my Digital Bolex and the continued support and updates to the camera are a key part of that.

    I own a number of cameras and I feel like 99.5% of my film equipment are just tools that I need to achieve my vision. The Digital Bolex feels like more than that somehow. It actually inspires me.

    Thank you for all the updates!

  5. I passionately love my Digital Bolex and a the continued support and updates to the camera are a key part of that.

    I own a number of cameras. 99.5% are just tools to me. The Digital Bolex feels like more than that somehow. It actually inspires me.

    Thank you for all the updates!

  6. I’m scared of this update. What exactly does “lowers your highlight range” mean? Are you basically shifting the gamma to get more info in the darks? Does this result in more highlight clipping? Do you have examples?

    • When you expose for a lower ISO you feed the sensor more light. Therefore you get more detail in the shadows, but you end up losing highlight range. More light means your sensor is more likely to clip in the highlights.

    • I should add that you will get no less highlight range than previous firmwares. At ISO 100-200 you’ll have the same range as before, but ISOs 400 and 800 will have more highlight range. So when you shift from 800->400->200 etc. you lose highlight range.

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