Firmware Updates for 100-400mm

Posted Mar. 24th, 2017 by Daniel J. Cox

In today’s world of fast moving technology, Panasonic is making sure our gear keeps pace. To that end, I have a new firmware update to announce for the Leica 100-400mm zoom.

Lumix Leica 100-400mm Firmware Update Instructions

Panasonic recently released a new firmware update for the Leica 100-400mm zoom. The main upgrade is additional Dual IS capabilities. I’m being told it gives another one full stop of stabilization when using the G85 and the soon to be released GH5. Absolutely amazing in my opinion.

My Panasonic colleague and engineer Robert Kozlarek helped me with the information below on a streamlined firmware update process. Here is the current information.

Updating the Leica 100-400mm firmware

1. Go to www.panasonic.com. Click on the Search window in the top right corner of the page that says “Enter Model, category or keyword.”
2. Enter 100-400mm which will show a photo of the lens. Select this option by clicking on the text below the image which will then connect you to the product page. If you want to skip this step click on this link 100-400mm firmware which will take you directly to the 100-400mm firmware download page.
3. On the 100-400mm product/firmware page, scroll down until you see “Firmware and Drivers” on the left side of this same page.  It looks like the image below. The image below is for a visual only. DO NOT click on the ZIP or PDF icons in this image. They will take you nowhere. You have to click on the link and find these icons on the page that comes up.

If you click on this image it will start you through the process to download the firmware update.

4. You will be taken to the latest version which also provides a link to a page with “Download and Install” instructions. Make sure you check the box “Agree to Terms.”

The download will start and it is put in whatever folder you have chosen on the PC. On the Mac, it automatically goes in the Download folder unless you’ve changed the default location.

1) Preparation before attempting the update

A. Make sure the camera’s battery is completely charged. If the battery is not completely charged
the firmware update will not begin. Format the SD memory card in the camera, and then take a
couple of pictures.
B. Turn off the camera.

2) Copying the firmware to your memory card

A. Download the latest firmware update for your model by clicking on the “Download Ver. X.X ” link to a location on your computer (we recommend the desktop).
B. If your computer has a media reader, insert your formatted SD Card from your camera.
C. For PC users, locate your SD Card by clicking on, or opening the “My Computer” or
“Computer” on your desktop or your Start menu. For Mac users, you can use “Finder” if the card does not mount to your desktop.
D. Open the zipped firmware file that you downloaded to the desktop.
E. Drag to copy and paste the .bin file from the opened firmware folder to the SD Card showing in the “My Computer” window for PC users and “Finder” or “Drive” for Mac users. This will copy the file to the card.
F. If you chose to leave the SD Card in your camera rather than inserting it into the computer (step B), connect the camera to the PC with the USB cable. Turn the camera on and set it to “Playback” mode. Then select “PC” on the LCD screen. Drag the .bin file from the opened firmware folder to the device that either says Panasonic or mass storage to complete the transfer.
G. SDXC cards 32GB or larger require special card readers. Depending on your PC and the age of its operating system, you may not be able to directly write to such large cards. If your PC asks
you to format the card, DO NOT—this is one indication that your system is not compatible with
the newer, larger memory cards. In this case, a 16GB or smaller card should be used.

3) Updating the camera’s firmware

A. Turn the camera off, insert the SD Card if you copied the firmware to the card while inserted into the computer.
B. Turn the camera power on and press the “Playback” button. The Camera’s LCD screen should
now be showing a screen asking if you desire to update the firmware. Highlight “Yes” and
press the “Menu/Set” button.
C. When the camera has completed the firmware update it will turn itself off and then back on.
D. This completes the update process.

4) Confirming the update

A. Turn the camera power back on.
B. Set to “Playback” mode.
C. Choose the “Setup” menu.
D. Select Version Disp.

Add Your Voice!
There are 8 comments on this post…
  1. EvleenOn May. 30th, 2017 (6 months ago)

    Hi Daniel. I use the 100-400mm paired with a Lumix GX8. This is a portable and powerful combinaton for my favorite photography: wildlife, with emphasis for birds.

    Will the firmware update benefit this body-lens combination? Reason I ask is that you mention in your intro:

    “The main upgrade is additional Dual IS capabilities. I’m being told it gives another one full stop of stabilization when using the G85 and the soon to be released GH5. Absolutely amazing in my opinion.”

    You don’t mention the GX8…

    Thanks.

    Evleen

  2. Portrait of Carol Clark

    Carol ClarkOn Apr. 13th, 2017 (7 months ago)

    Dan: We all appreciate your tips for how to do things on the panasonic website!

    In this case, what I saw and what happened along the way varied somewhat from your instructions. But with your link directly to the download page, all went mostly well. My only pause came when the downloaded file unzipped so quickly, leaving me with an unexpected .lin file on my mac. Turned out, that — rather than a bin file — was exactly what I needed

    Now I’ll see if I can’t find an earlier corkboard blog, telling us how to check for the firmware version of our cameras and lens.

    • Portrait of Daniel J. Cox

      Daniel J. CoxOn Apr. 14th, 2017 (7 months ago)

      There are things that change form time to time Carol. It’s hard to keep up with Panasonic’s changes. Glad you got it figured out. I don’t think I’ve ever written a blog on how to find your firmware version but would be a good idea. Thanks for joining the conversation.

  3. MikeOn Apr. 4th, 2017 (8 months ago)

    The lens updates fine by using the latest version of the Olympus camera updater.

  4. Les CraneOn Mar. 25th, 2017 (8 months ago)

    Thanks for the post and directions. Updating the firmware through the Panasonic website is about as simple as solving Rubik’s cube, with more false starts.

    …That being said, it’s usually worth the effort. In this case, my unscientific test, consisting of taking handheld shots of my bookshelves, validates the claimed IS improvement. I have gotten between 5 and 6 stops of stabilzation@400mm which is pretty in incredible.

    • Portrait of Daniel J. Cox

      Daniel J. CoxOn Mar. 28th, 2017 (8 months ago)

      Glad it’s working well for you Les. I’ve been encouraging Panasonic to simplify their online instructions but until they do I’m here to help folks out. Thanks for the update.

  5. James NelsonOn Mar. 23rd, 2017 (8 months ago)

    Danial,
    I very much enjoyed reading your blog on evaluating the Olympus OM-1 Mark II camera with the Leica/Panasonic 100 – 400 IS lens for bird photography.
    I have a Olympus OM-1 Mark II camera and would like to purchase the Panasonic/Leica 100 – 400 lens. My question is how do you update the firmware for the Leica/Panasonic 100 – 400 lens using the Olympus OM1 Mark II body. Do you use the OLYMPUS Digital Camera Updater application?

    I would appreciate your thoughts on how the updated firmware will effect the performance of the Leica/Panasonic 100 – 400 lens when used with the Olympus OM-1 Mark II body.

    Best regards,
    James Nelson

    • Portrait of Daniel J. Cox

      Daniel J. CoxOn Mar. 24th, 2017 (8 months ago)

      James, I haven’t had a chance to test the new 100-400mm with the new firmware on the Olympus body. I’ve not had access to the Olympus since I updated the software since I’m on assignment and only take my LUMIX gear with me. To be honest I have my doubts the new firmware is going to offer any benefits with the aolymous bodies since my understanding is the new new firmware is to help improve DUAL IS which is a LUMIX only technology. Dual IS as you may know improves IS overall with camera and lens working together for better IS. Unfortunately, at this time, even though both Olympus and LUMIX offer a version of tech same technology, they don’t work as one unless your using all Olympus Camera and lenses or all LUMIX camera and lenses.

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