Sony adds C2PA compliancy to Alpha 1, Alpha 7S III and Alpha 7 IV

Sony has released firmware updates for the Sony Alpha 1, Sony Alpha 7S III and Sony Alpha 7 IV. In addition, the Sony Alpha 9 III will get an update after April 2024.

Camera Authenticity Solution

Last year Sony announced its commitment to developing technology for its cameras to tackle manipulated imagery and AI-generated fakes. As a part of this strategy, the firmware updates will make more Sony cameras C2PA compliant. C2PA (Coalition for Content Provenance and Authenticity) is a project to develop technical specifications on content provenance and authentication. The firmware updates will provide professional photographers with the ability to preserve a digital signature from the camera through to publication.

In-camera digital signature

Sony’s in-camera digital signature technology signs your images in real-time at the point of capture. This “digital birth certificate” is retained throughout any revisions of the image. In addition, the signature contains 3D-depth information as metadata. This depth information can show if the image captured was of an actual 3D object, or a photograph of an image or video. Sony’s solution also includes an Image Validation Site, which verifies your image even after edits have been made by C2PA-compliant editing software.

Image courtesy: Sony

Other updates

The firmware updates also include 10 new features, along with updates to existing features. Video shooters will be pleased to see that focus breathing compensation is now available on the Alpha 1 and Alpha 7S III. Alpha 7S III owners can also now upgrade to DCI 4K True 24p shooting with a free downloadable license upgrade. In addition, the Alpha 1 and Alpha 7S III can now match the time code with other devices, though you will need to purchase a dedicated adaptor cable. Following the update, the Alpha 1, Alpha 7S III and Alpha 9 III now include sequential playback from one memory card slot to the other.

File transfer and network connectivity

The firmware updates deliver improvements to the post-production workflow. These include the ability to upload directly from your camera to Sony’s Creators’ Cloud. FTP Transfer has also been improved on the Alpha 1, Alpha 7S III and Alpha 9 III. In addition, these cameras now have Secure File Transfer Protocol (SFTP).

What we think

Concerns over deep fake images and videos are increasing as AI created content becomes more sophisticated. It’s good to see that Sony is adding in protections for the users of its cameras to combat these issues. Although it is still in its infancy, hopefully the camera authenticity technology  will be able to keep pace with the advances in fake imagery. In addition, Alpha 7S III owners will be pleased to get 4K DCI 24p filming and focus breathing compensation. If you have one of the relevant cameras, you should update your camera’s firmware as soon as possible to take advance of the updates.

Pricing and availability

The firmware updates for the Alpha 1 (Ver. 2.00), Alpha 7S III (Ver. 3.00) and Alpha 7 IV (Ver. 3.00) are available to download from the Sony website now. The update for the Alpha 9 III (Ver.2.00) will be available after April 2024.

Pete Tomkies
Pete Tomkies
Pete Tomkies is a freelance cinematographer and camera operator from Manchester, UK. He also produces and directs short films as Duck66 Films. Pete's latest short Once Bitten... won 15 awards and was selected for 105 film festivals around the world.

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