Kuuvik Capture 4 : Self-Timer(s)

Kuuvik Capture 4 supports two methods to achieve the self-timer functionality: one built right into the app, and another via the camera.

The app’s implementation is accessible through the intervalometer. In version 4 we’ve lowered the minimum for the Number of Shots field to 1 (it was 2 in previous versions). In this case Trigger Interval is ignored, and the app waits the time specified in Beginning Delay before capturing an image. It also works for brackets, and mirror-lock up (even in auto-release mode) just like the normal intervalometer functionality. Since this is an exposure sequence, you have to use the Run Sequence button (Cmd+R) instead of Capture. This is the method we recommend to use.

There’s one situation, however, in which the camera’s 2s and 10s self-timer drive modes come into play. In a rather awkward fashion, the RC-1/5/6 infrared remote control works only with self-timer drive modes. Kuuvik Capture manages the camera’s drive mode to avoid potential issues caused by some of those (for example continuous drive), and switches back to single frame capture when the camera is in an incompatible drive mode. Now the app accepts both the 2s and 10s self-timer as compatible, so you can use the IR remote to trigger the camera.

You need to set the self-timer/remote control drive mode directly on the camera. While mirror lock-up set in the app will work, auto-release will not.

Kuuvik Capture 4.0 is available on the Mac App Store. It is a free update for users who purchased the app earlier from there. You can see the complete list of new features and changes in the release notes.

Kuuvik Capture 4 : Image Display Enhancements

Kuuvik Capture 4.0 is now available on the Mac App Store. This is the first release in the version 4 series, and brings the first batch of enhancements to the app. The first batch, because instead of waiting for every single feature we planned for version 4 to be complete (and delaying the release significantly), we decided make new features available as they are ready, so you can enjoy their benefits as soon as possible.

Let’s begin discussing the new stuff with the display engine. My FastPath imaging engine, that provides highly optimized image decoding and display, debuted in Technical Camera. Later on the Mark II Artist’s Viewfinder received it. And now Kuuvik Capture joins the club. It provides up to 2x faster JPG display (including the JPG previews embedded into RAW files), plus massive memory savings: I had measured around 100 megabytes less GPU memory usage with 5DS R files, for example.

But the story doesn’t end here. In contrast to this lightning fast preview display, it seemed that RAW loading and decoding (that’s a prerequisite for the RAW histogram and RAW-based clipping warnings) takes forever. And we wanted that users could begin working on the images the instant they appear on the screen. So we made RAW data loading asynchronous, taking place in the background. There’s no more waiting for the “Loading” progress bar.

A circular progress indicator on the RAW histogram’s panel lets you know how the loading goes forward. With the exception of a few operations (such as image deletion and purging) you are allowed to do anything during RAW loading. If you move to another image or capture a new one, loading is automatically cancelled, so you don’t have to waste your time on waiting for something that will be instantly thrown away.

And there’s even more. RAW loading consumes a lot of energy, and there are situations when conserving battery is of paramount importance. Thus we added a new preference to be able to turn off automatic loading completely.

The default is to automatically load RAW data, so that both the RAW histogram and clipping warnings could work as expected. Well, there’s a little difference from previous versions: with the Prefer RAW clipping warning option you’ll see the processed warning layers until the ones generated from RAW data arrive. In previous versions these processed clipping warning layers were not displayed at all.

Should you need the histogram or the warning layers later on, you always have the option to load the RAW data manually. Just click the placeholder on the RAW histogram, or choose the Load RAW data command from the menu, or press Cmd+L.

Power efficiency and speed were always cornerstone features of Kuuvik Capture. This new release brings both to a completely new level.

The last on the list of image display enhancements is support for images in color spaces other than sRGB and Adobe RGB. While images produced by Canon cameras are always in one of these two, images from other sources can be in others as well. For example JPG files produced by Technical Camera can be in the Display P3 color space. ProPhoto RGB and Display P3 are supported on macOS 10.11.2 or later, and arbitrary profiles on macOS 10.12 or later.

Kuuvik Capture 4.0 is available on the Mac App Store. It is a free update for users who purchased the app earlier from there. You can see the complete list of new features and changes in the release notes.

How to Get EOS Utility Out of the Way

Canon EOS cameras do not tolerate when more than one app tries to talk to them over USB. They don’t even give a beep, just silently start operating erratically. This isn’t new, this behavior is present from the dawn of the EOS system.

And yet large manufacturers are routinely caught red handed, keeping a connection to your camera when no one asked. With serious consequences. This arrogant behavior frustrates the hell out of me – imagine solving a user’s problem when he has a pile of these apps on his machine…

To make things worse, Apple had removed the ability to detect such an interference in macOS 10.12, and thus we are unable to pinpoint culprits the way we did in the past.

I already wrote about how to prevent Apple’s Photos from automatically launching when you connect a camera (you can find a longer version in my Kuuvik Capture Inside Out eBook).

This is EOS Utility’s turn. It was a great citizen that coexisted nicely with other camera control apps for years, but recent versions started to do naughty things.

I recommend against installing any Canon software in the first place, unless you have a very strong reason to do so. Don’t get me wrong, I love Canon’s cameras and several lenses – it’s extremely good at making these things. But its apps always were, and still are, sub-par. You can get markedly better results (in terms of image quality, user interface, functionality, power consumption, etc.) with proper third party apps. 

For a long time EOS Utility was a single app. But recently it’s been split into three: EOS Utility 3 for new cameras, EOS Utility 2 for older ones, and a shell around those, which is now called EOS Utility (formerly this was a separate utility for Wi-Fi pairing). The problem child is the latter, EOS Utility, which thinks it has a right to always run and talk to your cameras – without your consent. Start it once, and you need to run extra miles to get it out of the way. These extra steps are the topic of this post.

Once started, the EOS Utility shell’s icon appears on the menu bar. Right-click the icon, choose Quit, and you may think it’s gone. Well, until you start your computer next time.

This is because it created a startup item. But fortunately this item can be removed easily in System Preferences. Go into Users & Groups, and then click Login Items. You’ll see something like the screen below.

Click the line with the EOS Utility item, and click the minus sign below the list. And while you are here, it’s a good practice to remove other suspicious/unwanted items.

If you need to use EOS Utility over USB, I recommend to start the separate EOS Utility 2 or 3 apps instead of this shell. This way you can avoid both unwanted interference as well as doing this cleanup procedure over and over again.