Thursday, May 05, 2016

ARRI ALEXA – Digital movie camera – How to update the firmware - Power management – Battery types – battery installation – Battery voltage specifications – Digital camera repair and service

Category: Digital Camera Repair and Servcie 

Contents of this article 

  • Power management
  • Battery types and installation
  • Firmware update procedure 

ARRI ALEXA

Power Management
When using the BAT connector and one or more onboard battery adapters simultaneously, the camera’s power management system ensures that the power source with the highest voltage level is used. When the voltage level of one power source drops below the level of the other, or a power source is disconnected from the camera, the power management system automatically switches to the other power source, avoiding shutdown of the camera.
For example, a 12 V onboard battery can be used as backup for the main 24 V battery. Using a 12 V onboard battery in addition to the main 24 V battery also allows for quick switchover to handheld mode - the power cable can simply be disconnected from the BAT connector.
When using two onboard battery adapters (with batteries in parallel - one on top and one on the back), the camera will treat them as a single source. When used this way, the load is spread across two batteries, creating a strong power source.
BAT Connector
The BAT connector is the primary power input on the ALEXA. It is a Fischer 2-pin socket located at the back of the camera on the cameraright side.
The socket accepts power cables KC-20S and KC-29S. The cables can either be connected to the mains unit NG 12/26R or to 24 V cine-style batteries with three-pin XLR outputs.
Mains Unit NG 12/26 R
Use of the mains unit is recommended for shooting in the studio and when using electronic accessories with high power consumption.
To power the ALEXA using the Mains Unit NG 12/26 R:
1. Set the correct mains voltage on the mains unit using the fuse on the back of the unit. For example, set it to 220 V if the AC mains power source is 220 V.
2. Connect the mains unit to AC mains power.
3. Ensure that the camera power is turned off.
4. Set the voltage switch on the mains unit to 26 V.
5. Connect the battery cable KC-20S or KC-29S (spiral cable) to the power supply socket on the camera and the 26 V socket on the mains unit.
Cine-Style Batteries
Any 24 V cine-style battery with a three-pin XLR output can be used to power the camera through a KC-20S or a KC-29S battery cable.
To connect the battery to the camera:
1. Ensure that the main switch on the camera is off.
2. Connect the battery cable KC-20S or KC-29S (spiral cable) to the power supply socket on the camera and the 28V output on the battery.
Onboard Batteries
The camera can be equipped with adapters for either V-Lock or Gold
Mount video-style batteries. When a battery equipped with the TIprotocol for battery communication is used, the ALEXA will display remaining capacity as a percentage on the Home screen. For these batteries, the user does not need to set the battery warning level.
Four different adapters are available:
BAB-G: Battery Adapter Back for Gold Mount batteries
BAB-V: Battery Adapter Back for V-Lock batteries
BAT-G: Battery Adapter Top for Gold Mount batteries
BAT-V: Battery Adapter Top for V-Lock batteries
V-Lock Batteries
V-Lock batteries from different manufacturers may be used on the ALEXA. When batteries from manufacturers such as ID-X and Bebop, are used, their remaining capacity will be displayed as a percentage on the Home screen.
To attach a V-Lock battery:
1. Align the v-shaped wedge on the battery with the v-shaped notch on the battery plate.
2. Press the battery downwards until you hear a click.
3. Check that the battery is securely mounted on the battery plate.
To release a V-Lock battery:
1. Press the release button on the camera-left side or top of the battery (manufacturer dependent)
2. While pressing the release button, slide the battery upwards.
ALEXA with BAB-V and V-Mount battery
Gold Mount Batteries
If the ALEXA is equipped with a Gold Mount, Anton/Bauer batteries can be used. Their remaining capacity will be displayed as a percentage on the Home screen.
To attach a Gold Mount battery:
1. Align the three pins on the back of the battery to the three corresponding holes on the battery plate.
2. Press the battery to camera-right until you hear a click.
3. Check that the battery is securely mounted on the battery plate.
To release a Gold Mount battery:
1. Press the release button on the camera-left side of the battery plate.
2. While pressing the release button, slide the battery camera-left, and
pull it straight out.
ALEXA with BAB-G and a Gold Mount battery
Power Outputs
The ALEXA, ALEXA M, ALEXA XT, ALEXA HD and ALEXA XT M have two 24 V power outputs and one 12 V power output for accessories. ALEXA Plus, ALEXA Plus 4:3, ALEXA HD Plus, ALEXA XT Plus, ALEXA Studio and ALEXA XT Studio models have three 24 V power outputs and one 12V power output.
Powering 12 V Accessories
One 12 V output with a 2-pin LEMO connector is located on the right side of the camera. It is limited to 12 V and can supply a device with a current of up to 2.2 A, depending on the camera power supply.
Powering 24 V Accessories
Two 24 V remote start/stop (RS) outputs with 3-pin Fischer connectors are located on the right side of the camera. They can supply two devices with a combined load of up to 2.2 A (shared with the EXT connector power out), depending on the camera power supply. When the camera is powered from a source with a voltage below 24 V, they output 24 V. If the camera's power source supplies more than 24 V, this voltage level is also present on the RS outputs. Besides powering accessories, the RS outputs can also be used to send a remote start/stop signal to the camera.
Firmware - Software Update Packets (SUPs)
To update the camera to a new SUP:
1. Copy the new SUP into the Firmware folder on an SD card formatted in the ALEXA.
2. Load the SD card into the camera.
3. In the System menu, select Firmware.
4. Select Select update file.
5. Select the new SUP from the list on the FIRMWARE (SD CARD) screen.
6. Press both UPDATE buttons simultaneously to update the camera's firmware
Note: Update duration may differ between camera models. Do not interrupt the update once it has started. Make sure the camera power supply will remain sufficient for the duration of the update (approx. 15 minutes).
Select update file:  Select to update the camera’s firmware. If an SD card containing update files is loaded in the camera, you can select an update file from the list and perform an update.
Current version: Select to display the release code of current installed firmware.
Licensed features: Select to manage licensed features on the INSTALLED LICENSES screen.
To save the hardware info file:
1. In the System menu, select Firmware.
2. Select Licensed features.
3. On the INSTALLED LICENSES screen, press the HW INFO button.
4. Press the SAVE button. The hardware info file will be saved on the SD card in the root directory. It will look like sn####-AlexaHardware.ipkg. The INSTALLED LICENSES screen displays a list of installed licenses.
New license can be installed from the SD card.
To install new licenses after purchase:
1. Copy the license key - it will have the suffix .lic - into the Licenses folder on an SD card formatted on the ALEXA. Load the SD card into the camera.
2. In the System menu, select Firmware.
3. Select Licensed features.
4. Press the INSTALL button.
5. On the LICENSE FILES (SD CARD) screen, select the license to be installed. The licensed feature enabled by the license key is described at the bottom of the screen for each license selected.
6. Press the jog.