ALEXA Mini LF - The 10 Second Rule for Removing Drives

Mon Aug 17, 2020 3:02 pm

Hello all,

Production is ramping up in most parts of the world and demand for the ALEXA Mini LF is increasing. We are working hard at getting more ALEXA Mini LF cameras out to you as soon as possible.
As part of our regular camera testing, we have discovered a potential issue that can occur when removing the Codex Compact Drive too quickly from the camera after a recording stop. While this would not lead to any data loss - even if the recording stopped unexpectedly, the take recorded up to this point will be safely stored on the drive - it would disrupt production and cost time. Therefore, we are working on a Software Update Package (SUP) to address this issue and are projecting the release in Q4 2020. Until then you can avoid this issue by following the 10 second rule detailed below. This pertains to the ALEXA Mini LF running the current Mini LF SUP 6.0.21.

The 10 Second Rule for Removing Compact Drives

After pushing the REC button to stop recording, wait for 10 seconds before removing the Compact Drive. This should eliminate most error messages #97 and #175.

Resetting Errors Messages #97, #100, #175 or #200
If you encounter the following error messages:
Recording stopped due to FPGA failure (error #97)
Recording stopped due to FPGA failure (error #175)
Connection to recording media is not working properly, please try re-inserting (error #100)
Camera has restarted due to a technical problem (error #200)
Reboot the camera with the drive inside. This will clear up the issue in most cases. If you permanently encounter these error messages, please contact ARRI Service.

Other Drive Handling Notes
Make sure that all cameras on set are running the same and the latest version of the camera's Software Update Package (SUP). The latest ALEXA Mini LF SUP is 6.0.21.
If a Compact Drive is not recognized or only recognized after a very long time, this can be fixed by having ARRI or Codex service update the Compact Drive with new software according to our Email Newsletter "Update Information: Codex Compact Drive 1TB" that was sent out on August 5. If you have not registered to our Email Newsletters, you will also find the information in the ARRI Technical Note in pdf form which is linked below.

Contact
In case you have questions or recommendations, please contact ARRI Service:
Email: service@arri.de
Online service request form
Local service hotline

You can download this information also as an ARRI Technical Note in pdf form here.
Frederic Merten
Product Management Camera Systems
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Re: ALEXA Mini LF - The 10 Second Rule for Removing Drives

Tue Aug 18, 2020 4:11 am

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Last edited by Michael L on Mon Aug 31, 2020 2:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Michael L
 
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Re: ALEXA Mini LF - The 10 Second Rule for Removing Drives

Tue Aug 18, 2020 4:29 am

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Last edited by Michael L on Mon Aug 31, 2020 2:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Michael L
 
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Re: ALEXA Mini LF - The 10 Second Rule for Removing Drives

Tue Aug 18, 2020 7:51 am

I hope this gets sorted out sooner than Q4, especially if only a software update is required to fix it permanently.

I also hope that the software update won't merely hold the red LED longer, as Michael L mentions above. Removing the media prematurely in any way, deliberately or accidentally, should not brick/break the camera. Maybe corrupt files, but not render the camera useless.

I enjoyed shooting with the Mini LF when it worked. But coming from Philippines, it's taking longer to get mine fixed. Shipping problems due to COVID and all. It's a pain.
donfrasco
 
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Re: ALEXA Mini LF - The 10 Second Rule for Removing Drives

Tue Aug 18, 2020 12:30 pm

Michael, we were working on a large number of things at once when Corona hit, and it DOES actually impact how fast we can get things done. That said, we are also not totally satisfied with how long it takes to get things done, so we recently have increased the number of software engineers. I would have liked to get the S35 modes out faster as well, but sometimes it just takes longer.

It is not true that we did not want to bring out the next camera; we are a camera manufacturer, and bringing out cameras is what we do, that is how we make our money. We just have stated, and stuck to, the fact that we did not want to bring out a new camera that did not have an image quality as good or better than the previous cameras. And the sensor in the ALEXA and AMIRA cameras is darn good. That was a tough nut to crack, but I think we have something really nice now.

I am sorry that you had these issues with the Mini LF. Just know that we are constantly monitoring service cases and dealing with issues as they arise. The ND filter slider, for instance, had some teething problems (and, yes, not the first ND filter slider we have built, so the engineers were dutifully spanked) early on that we were able to fix with a new software release. They should be fine now.
Marc Shipman-Muller
Product Manager Camera Systems
Marc Shipman-Mueller
 
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Re: ALEXA Mini LF - The 10 Second Rule for Removing Drives

Tue Aug 18, 2020 12:35 pm

donfrasco wrote:I hope this gets sorted out sooner than Q4, especially if only a software update is required to fix it permanently.


The software is planned for a date relatively soon, experience has just taught me to be careful in what I announce publicly.

And the software will have other fixes that should improve a number of issues related to the communication between the drives and the camera.
Marc Shipman-Muller
Product Manager Camera Systems
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Re: ALEXA Mini LF - The 10 Second Rule for Removing Drives

Wed Aug 19, 2020 4:11 am

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Last edited by Michael L on Mon Aug 31, 2020 2:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Michael L
 
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Re: ALEXA Mini LF - The 10 Second Rule for Removing Drives

Wed Aug 19, 2020 7:10 pm

Marc Shipman-Mueller wrote:
donfrasco wrote:I hope this gets sorted out sooner than Q4, especially if only a software update is required to fix it permanently.


The software is planned for a date relatively soon, experience has just taught me to be careful in what I announce publicly.

And the software will have other fixes that should improve a number of issues related to the communication between the drives and the camera.


Thank you for the feedback, Marc. I'm looking forward to this update. My next film has been pushed to January 2021. I wanna put the camera through its paces well before production in order to rebuild confidence.

By the way, my team and I watch your technical videos on Youtube. So I kinda read your message with your calm, reassuring tone & voice. :D Thanks again!
donfrasco
 
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