Canon CHDK User Manual

Extra features for powershot cameras.
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Extra Features
For Canon Powershot Cameras
User Quick Start Guide


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   Summary of Contents for Canon CHDK

  • Page 1

    CHDK Extra Features For Canon Powershot Cameras ® ® User Quick Start Guide...

  • Page 2

    Canon Hack Development Kit U s e r Q u i c k S t a r t G u i d e V.1.9.1 December © For Canon Cameras with CHDK For installation instructions go to 2011...

  • Page 3: Table Of Contents

    RAW Parameters Edge overlay Custom curves Histogram Parameters Zebra Parameters OSD Parameters Visual Settings Scripting Parameters Miscellaneous Stuff History of CHDK Stereo Data Maker Bracketing notes RAW notes Bad pixel notes Edge overlay notes Curves notes USB Remote notes Grids notes...

  • Page 4

    Acknowledgements CHDK has to be one of the most innovative improvements to any camera that has ever come along since the beginning of photography. Started out by some people who only wanted RAW out of their raw- crippled cameras, it has now grown into one of the most adaptable, flexible, and full-featured operating systems of any cameras ever made.

  • Page 5

    The new features are accessed through CHDK-specific menus, rather than the default camera menus. As CHDK is continually evolving, new features are added as they are developed. Updating occasionally will ensure you have all the latest features for your camera.

  • Page 6: Using Chdk

    Cameras that have an SD card that has been prepared as with the slide tab on the side of the card), will load CHDK automatically when turned on. This is usually called the “Autoload” or “Autoboot” method, using a camera version specific file “DISKBOOT.BIN”...

  • Page 7

    SX 200 – Press the Direct Print button SX10 , 20, 30 – Press the Shortcut / Print button Note: Check the Wiki for your camera's CHDK Specialties, for instance the on certain models e.g. A480 <ALT> See note on page 6 about Shortcut button.

  • Page 8

    Cameras with a Shortcut Shortcut, Flash, Timer, ISO press the button with a short momentary press, and for the original Canon function, press and hold slightly longer. See: <ALT>...

  • Page 9

    On-Screen Display (OSD) Map <ALT> Mode indicator Mini Console - Current Script info. Battery Indicators File-Space Indicators - icon/text File-Space Indicator - vertical bar Clock See: OSD Parameters on Live Histogram RAW shots remaining Indicator Miscellaneous Values Extra Photo Operations - Overrides Temperature Indicator Fast EV Switch Indicator Page 26...

  • Page 10

    Main Menu The Main Menu is the top-level menu from which all CHDK functions are enabled and customized. To access the Main Menu, set the camera to and press the MENU <ALT> mode press the camera use the Extra Photo Operations...

  • Page 11

    - This is an artificial aperture value caused by the ND filter swung in. With CHDK, you can choose to keep the ND filter out, and just select a faster shutter speed to compensate. To do this, Select one of the options from - ▪...

  • Page 12

    12, and the “Value factor” to 100. This arrangement exists to speed the setting of a custom ISO. Note: Although CHDK may show a higher or lower setting, minimum and maximum ISO overrides will mainly be determined by the camera hardware limits, CHDK enables “fine tuning”...

  • Page 13

    This value is multiplied by the Value factor below to arrive at the final value. < Extra Photo Operations < Main Menu Set camera Custom Timer in Canon Menu See: Bracketing notes: [Off, 1/3 – 4 Ev] [Off, 1/3 –...

  • Page 14

    • Value factor (mm) [Off, 1, 10, 100, 1000] Used as a multiplier for Distance bracketing value. • ISO bracketing value [0 – 100] Set this value to bracket via ISO. This value is multiplied by the Value factor below to arrive at the final ISO value that will be used for bracketing.

  • Page 15

    shutter and minimal ISO when shooting still landscapes) Method - The camera will try to maintain lowest ISO as long as shutter speed is no-slower than user defined (more below). Custom will kick-in whenever Auto ISO manual override by choosing a specific ISO value. Example: Camera set ISO 100 at 1/8s.

  • Page 16

    Note also: This change is not saved between camera power-downs. If you would always like to start out with a small negative preset EV value to avoid blown highlights, then use Canon's own EV compensation setting for your startup EV value. This Fast EV Switch will reflect that value on startup.

  • Page 17

    Note: From owners reports of testing Quality overrides, it is evident that settings above the standard Canon setting gain little if any higher quality, however file sizes will increase significantly. Lower settings (minor), will lose little in quality but will reduce file size.

  • Page 18

    Show Remaining Videotime Displays a position-able OSD element to show the video bit-rate, and the remaining video recording-time, on the SD card,… • Don't - No display of remaining recording time and/or video data-rate. • hh:mm:ss - Display a clock of remaining video-recording time left. •...

  • Page 19

    RAW File Prefix [CRW_, SND_, IMG_] CHDK lets you name RAW files with any combination of the standard prefixes IMG_, CRW_, SND. If you are going to process the RAW files with DNG4PS-2 then setting a prefix of IMG_ will allow DNG4PS-2 to retrieve EXIF data from the accompanying JPEG.

  • Page 20

    < Raw parameters < Main Menu This feature is for RAW files created with CHDK, not the Canon native RAW of some cameras. Use this feature to process a RAW file and create a JPEG from it. When selected, a file browser window is displayed.

  • Page 21

    Enable edge overlay Creates and overlays a high-contrast outline of the edges in a scene. With the default CHDK settings the Edge overlay will be visible while the shutter button is half-pressed. Once a picture is taken, the overlay will be frozen and it will not update until a second picture is taken, allowing you to align image features in the new shot to the previous one.

  • Page 22

    A custom curve profile is applied as-is. The following three options require that you have a SYSCURVES.CVF file in your /CHDK folder, this file is included in the "complete" CHDK packages. It is also contained in a file at -;topic=932.0;attach=1816 contains the editor.

  • Page 23: Rgb Histogram

    If the scene does not require you to reduce exposure to avoid blown highlights, the Auto DR feature does not do anything. Load Curve Profile Load your choice of curve profile from the /CHDK/CURVES folder. All curve profile files except for SYSCURVES.CVF...

  • Page 24

    Show live histogram • Donʼt – Don’t show histogram on LCD. • Always – Always show the histogram on the LCD. • Shoot – Only show the histogram when shutter is half-pressed. Histogram layout – • RGB Displays the RGB histogram only. •...

  • Page 25

    Blend • Histogram mode Determines how the Y-axis (vertical) of the histogram will be scaled. Log is useful for scenes with a large amount of a single color, such as an overcast sky (lots of gray.) A 10 MP camera might have its Y-axis scaled like this... 10,000,000 pixels 7,500,000 6,250,000...

  • Page 26

    Auto magnify N.NNx in on-screen display. Another tool for controlling the scaling of the histogram. This option will magnify the Y-axis (vertical) if less than 20% of the histogram area is filled. The purpose of this function is to make the histogram easier to read when there are very tall peaks. This function lies somewhere between the Linear and Log options above.

  • Page 27

    Restore original screen This option only applies to Zebra Blink modes. When exposure indicators are visible, all of the original Canon indicators are erased. When this option is enabled, the original Canon screen items (such as exposure) are redrawn between blinks.

  • Page 28

    Center Menu An adjustment to the CHDK Menu screens to place them evenly on the LCD screen. Auto Select 1st Entry @ Menu Quickly position the menu-selection cursor on the first entry in any CHDK menu. Instead of...

  • Page 29

    (or equivalent). When editing is complete remember to set the User Menu Enable option back from "Edit" to either "On" or "On Direct". Customizing hint / reminder: Some CHDK features require 2 or more options that work together. An example, "Override Shutter Speed" might also need its associated "Value Factor"...

  • Page 30

    Displays the USB remote indicator with an icon depicting a USB socket, or as text - <USB> indicating that a remote shutter release can now be used. OSD layout editor The OSD items can be rearranged to suit personal preferences and to avoid the Canon items on the display. Enter Layout Editor When a feature is selected you can use the camera’s Directional buttons –...

  • Page 31

    The name of the currently loaded grid. Override grid colors This setting will override the grid colors defined in a CHDK grid file. It will not override the grid colors of the original Canon grids selected from the Canon menu.

  • Page 32

    I-R in Miscellaneous Values. Displays the actual ISO value after overrides or bracketing have been applied. Show ‘market’ ISO I-M in Miscellaneous Values. Displays Canon’s ISO value, which is not always the same as the actual ISO value. Show ISO only in Autoiso mode Display the ISO value only when the camera is in Auto ISO mode.

  • Page 33

    Show Canon overexp. Value Indicates the overexposure value calculated by the camera. Show Scene luminance (cd/m2) B in Miscellaneous Values. Run average in standard illumination scenes candelas per square meter… calculated from a ratio to Bv = 12.5. DOF Calculator The Depth Of Field Calculator displays 5 distances in meters…...

  • Page 34

    Show Depth of Field in Misc. Enable to show in Miscellaneous values on OSD. Subject distance from lens When enabled, distances displayed are measured from the front of the lens rather than the sensor. This is useful for macro photography. <...

  • Page 35

    Filespace < OSD parameters < Main Menu Show Filespace Icon Displays a small SD card shaped icon on the screen to show how much filespace is left on the SD card. Opaque means remaining free space. Transparent means that space has been used. Use the OSD Layout Editor to position the icon anywhere on the screen.

  • Page 36

    < OSD parameters < Main Menu mode. Do not confuse this with Playback mode. Review REVIEW to lock it into Review Mode) or when you have your Canon's...

  • Page 37

    0x11 (white), 0xFF (black), 0x22 (red), 0x55 (green), 0x44 (transparent light grey). Also see:- Draw palette, Green Menu Text < Main Menu (RBF format) for the CHDK menus. If you have chosen a RBF font but ……………………... Colors Page 43. Green Cursor Background...

  • Page 38

    Shutter button. To return to normal shooting, exit mode. CHDK saves your last user-selected script parameters from one session to the next. The default script is the one you load when you don't need a script.

  • Page 39

    Parameter Set and then change your user-setting script parameters, CHDK will now remember your settings for each set. (The script parameter sets are saved in a CHDK /DATA / directory named by the script in use at the time.) Now you can have up to 10 favorite settings for any one script.

  • Page 40

    file, RIGHT for Cut, Copy, Delete, Select Inverse, RAW sum, RAW average, Purge RAW, Sub from marked, DNG -> CHDK RAW. LEFT page 64. FUNC.SET button for pop up menu...

  • Page 41

    - You want to erase the occasional mischievous RAW file stored in a different folder. Go to CHDK File Browser, select DCIM folder, push the left button to display the popup menu and select "Purge RAW" (See image above). A warning will ask you to confirm (See image next page) and voila! You have regained some SD space.

  • Page 42

    Select "Purge RAW". A warning will ask you to confirm and all the RAW files in ONLY that folder will be erased. This option works like the previous one but only on the selected Canon folder, the rest are untouched.

  • Page 43

    • Open last opened file Will display the most recent text file that was viewed. • Select RBF font Open the file browser in the CHDK/FONTS directory. Allows you to select a different font for displaying text. • Codepage [Win1251, DOS] Select the text file format.

  • Page 44

    MENU Reversi If colours are not displayed properly, try entering and exiting Canon menus before entering <ALT> mode. Flash-light For Cameras with fold out LCD. Turns the LCD panel into a flashlight! When in Record Mode and the LCD panel is swiveled facing forward, the LCD display turns all-white so you can see your way around in the dark, or to illuminate some close object while setting up to take a photograph.

  • Page 45: Draw Palette

    Visual Settings menu. Use arrows to navigate palette, press FUNC.SET Show build info Displays the current version of CHDK in use, ie: 0.9.9 - 1491, date Dec 17 2011. Show memory info Displays free RAM available, also CHDK size and load address. Make card bootable...

  • Page 46

    Property cases (PropertyCase or PropCase) are basically variables in the camera's RAM that we can read and write from CHDK by using uBasic commands get_prop and set_prop. "Under the hood" some other uBasic commands work by changing propcases, making it possible to use them in a portable way.

  • Page 47

    Update", Select "Swap partitions" and "Make card bootable", write-protect the SD card, (lock with slider on side of SD card) and power-cycle the camera. It should now load CHDK from the small 2 MB partition, but have access to the larger FAT32 partition to store pictures, video and the CHDK folders.

  • Page 48

    The size of the 1st partition is fixed to 2MB in the code (not changeable in the CHDK menu), but you can change it there and compile your own build, if you know how, using Shell, - Normally the creation of a partition deletes all data on the card, the swap command should not delete any data, but you should test this first!

  • Page 49: History Of Chdk

    A file-browser and text-reader followed together with 'flash-light', choice of prefix, extension and save- location for RAW files. Instead of loading each time the camera was turned-on, CHDK was next made auto-loading by using a 'locked' SD card containing a DISKBOOT.BIN file.

  • Page 50

    New cameras were ported, the original WIKI transferred to the current one and in November 2007 a CHDK forum opened to continue discussion outside of 'DP Review'. At the end of December 2007, discussion transferred to the 'CHDK Forum'.

  • Page 51: Bracketing Notes

    DSLRs or high end compacts, and they usually only bracket for exposure, (AEB) and mostly 3 shots maximum, CHDK allows bracketing in all the values mentioned above and for as many shots as you want, for HDR imaging for example. Bracketing can be done with specialized scripts as well, ie: to create HDR timelapse series.

  • Page 52: Raw Notes

    The name RAW actually suggests that this is a file without any changes straight from the camera's sensor, and with CHDK this is the case. In some cameras this is not the case, some have had some kind of processing such as sharpening, adding of a header file, Exif data, compression, and even white balance, it could be suggested even unknown processing (except to the manufacturer).

  • Page 53

    Main Menu > RAW Parameters > RAW Develop Another feature from CHDK developer ewavr. This allows you to select any RAW file on your SD card and then process it into a JPG file so that you may view it in your camera. Exceptionally handy after using any of the RAW Merge features so you can see the result without the need of a computer and extra RAW processing software.

  • Page 54: Bad Pixel Notes

    - start the script with the SHUTTER ! - wait until you see "press SET to save..." (This may take 30 seconds or so, please be patient) - press to store the badpixel.bin automatically in the right place (/CHDK/badpixel.bin) FUNC./SET - press...

  • Page 55: Edge Overlay Notes

    [RawConv] the bad pixels later in the workflow. With this setting CHDK just sets the bad pixel to the value 0 (zero), without any other calculation or modification. Most RAW-capable apps. will detect this and apply their own algorithms.

  • Page 56: Curves Notes, Custom Curves

    When using new Edge overlay for the first time, start with a fresh go to the old one and delete it. There are new configs. with the new Edge overlay which might cause some conflicts. Disable Edge overlay when using the Canon Panorama Stitch Assist mode. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------...

  • Page 57: Usb Remote Notes

    IR or RF. In order to trigger a CHDK camera remotely, you will need to connect a suitable triggering device to the USB socket of the camera, ensure "Enable remote" is selected in CHDK, select a shoot mode (i.e. not...

  • Page 58: Grids Notes

    Normally most cameras only offer you one simple option, a "Rule of Thirds" composition grid, but with CHDK the sky is now the limit on what you want displayed on your viewfinder for these handy photographer's tools.

  • Page 59: Scripting Notes

    In CHDK, scripts are used to automate a command or multiple commands to the camera in order to have the camera perform certain actions, ie: to hold the shutter open for a particular length of time, or to force a particular Av or ISO setting, (and many more actions).

  • Page 60

    V<j then goto "contloop" release "shoot_full" goto "md_burst" ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- This is an example script for study, please do not copy from here as it may not be exact. See:- FAQ-How do I use scripts? and:- Scripting Tutorial Page also:-

  • Page 61: Flash Notes

    Force flash Note: There is another advantage by using force flash - will not be a pre-flash when the intensity is set flashes. See:–,1365.msg39384.html#msg39384 and:- Force flash pics. - below ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Examples Force flash pics Manual flash: low power (0) Manual flash: high power (2) cams, no need for a script anymore.

  • Page 62

    HDR (High Dynamic Range) is a popular branch of photography gaining acceptance over the last few years particularly. CHDK has made this much easier for the low end because of RAW capture (HDR from a single RAW), and bracketing (Multiple shots with stepped Tv, etc).

  • Page 63

    This image was created by stitching together 20 sets of HDR images each created from 3 exposures. This makes for a total of 60 photographs used to create this image. I used CHDK to allow for the taking of several bracketed shutter speed exposures without re-metering in between.

  • Page 64

    Grids pics Golden Ratio Stereo Data Maker Photos courtesy of Stereo Data Maker (Kite Aerial Photography) Courtesy Tom Benedict Rulers Diagonal Method...

  • Page 65: Faqs And Facts

    Q. Does using the CHDK program void your warranty? A. Please bear in mind that CHDK comes with no warranty for any use; you use it at your own risk. What follows is just a few thoughts, and is not a legal opinion. Many believe that using the CHDK does not harm your warranty, since it is said to be loaded into the memory only temporarily (turn off the cam and it's gone completely) and that it leaves the original camera firmware untouched.

  • Page 66

    Thus, CHDK appears to be quite safe to use as long as you make sure that it's the CHDK and not a real firmware update (A real firmware update which is not an official Canon update could alter or completely ruin the camera and will void the warranty).

  • Page 67: Miscellaneous Info

    CHDK will be refined, until it is released as v1.0, and perhaps beyond, which seems to be very close, so the future looks good for CHDK. This User Guide has been written up to December 2011. For further firmware revisions refer to the changelog. Have fun with and enjoy...

  • Page 68

    A note on the CCHDK.CFG configuration file. This file, among other things, is where settings the user has made to the CHDK Overrides, OSD elements, etc. are saved. If this file is corrupted for whatever reason, it can cause some weird behavior from CHDK camera settings, so to test for this - find and rename the file so a new one will be created at the next startup, if this eliminates the erratic...

  • Page 69

    Links CHDK for Dummies The Very First Steps Cardtricks (Memory card formatting) User Manual at Wiki Guide Hi-Speed Shutter & Flash-Sync "DoF Stacking" using CHDK Focus Bracketing Grids Software Overview / Link list UBASIC Lua Scripting Download page for latest builds etc How To Test Your Camera ALTMENGD.ZIP Text files...

  • Page 70: Legal Notes

    This User Guide is not for resale, it is a free distribution. distributed in the hope that it will be useful but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. GPL: * This file is part of CHDK. * Copyright 2007 - 2011 The CHDK Team ©...

  • Page 71

    44, 45 Blue led Bracketing in continu’s mode Bracketing notes Calendar Canon overexp. value CCHDK.CFG CHDK Shell (compiler) Clear override values at start Clear video params at start Clock 34, (7, 16, 47) Colors 18, 21, 29, 35, 41, 42, 43 Create badpixel.bin...

  • Page 72

    9, 11, 12, 13, 30, 64 USB remote 36, 55, 56 USB remote notes 55, 56 User menu 27, (8, 28) Using CHDK Value factor 6, 9, 10, 11, 12, 27 Video parameters -Video bitrate -Video quality Video Quality Control Visual settings Volts max.

  • Page 73

    The following steps should work on any card up to 32GB - format the card in the camera - copy the full CHDK download (unzipped) to the SD card (DISKBOOT.BIN, and PS.FI2 plus the CHDK directory) - lock the card and start the camera with the rear playback button - press the Menu button and select 'Firm Update...' from the bottom of the first menu...

  • Page 74

    ✎ Notes...

  • Page 75

    CHDK Canon Hack Development Kit U s e r Q u i c k S t a r t G u i d e V.1.9.1 December © 2011...

  • Page 76

    © CHDK User Quick Start Guide - Dec. 2011 V1.9.1 An0n...

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