Nikon D5100 unofficial “StarWars” theme firmware now available

After Nikon's firmware was successfully decrypted, we now have the first unofficial "StarWars" firmware update for the Nikon D5100. The new beta firmware includes only changes of the camera's menu labels:

  • Holocron - Playback menu
  • Weapon System - Shooting menu
  • Super Stardestroyer - Custom Setting menu
  • Hyperdrive - Setup Menu
  • Go to Dagobah Luke - Format Memory Card
  • Death Star Codes - Firmware Version
  • A Jedi? - Update? (new update screen)
  • (help: StarWars v1.01)
  • The Cantina - Retouch Menu
  • My Menu - unchanged
  • Dark side of force! - Subject is too dark
  • Light side of force! - Subject is too light


Please note that this is not an official Nikon firmware release - try at your own risk. According to the author, the original D5100 v1.01 firmware can be restored at any time.

You can get the full details on flickr and reddit. There is also a new forum at that is looking for beta testers, assembly programmers, graphic designers and other volunteers for future firmware updates.

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  • Jabs

    Now we are heading down the wrong side of the tracks to ruin, masquerading as fun or innovation.
    Sorry, but messing with your camera means that you are an idiot with nothing better to do with your time or equipment.
    Electronics gives us freedom to be better or more idiotic and this reeks of the type of illiterate use of electronics.
    This should not have been published here as HOW does one undo it when one wants to sell your camera?
    I hope that Nikon sues the person responsible for this awful idea!

    • jezzce

      Jabs, I agree with you, and I will not hack, alter the firmware into my cameras, mobile phone, and other electronics. However, I disagree with you and strongely believe, that one has the rights and freedom to publish and alter his/her own equipment the way he/she sees fit without damaging done to others. By letting people change the firmware will only increase the utilities of the products.

      • Allan M

        What you are saying, is that you don’t believe in copyright. Then I don’t think you are a photographer.

    • Grinch! Why don´t you stop being so negative.
      If you buy something you should be allowed to do whatever the f*ck you want with it without some numbnut like you coming around and point your finger.

      Use your camera in whatever way you want but stop telling others what they can or can´t do with their BOUGHT camera…that THEY own, not Nikon.

      • Yeah, they bought something for now, but in the not farthest future they will sell such a gear to someone in order to get latest and greatest. Would you buy second-hand camera tweaked like that?

        • Ruben

          The firmware is just proof to the “nono”-ppl that they have managed to modify the firmware, it’s not realy suppose to be used. The proper firmware hacks are somewhere in the future. That aside, id happily buy a canon with Magic lantern firmware, but not without testing it.

          • FX DX

            I run CHDK on my S95 and I am very happy with it. It lets me auto-focus and zoom in the movie mode. It certainly is good to have these extra options and I hope that there will be more feature rich firmwares available for Nikon cameras at some point.

      • Daniel

        Mjeeeee, you will be surprised the day you find out that you don’t really own anything on this earth, ok, so I buy a CD and copy it… i find out that I didn’t really own it :/… bummer.

    • I agree with you too. What’s fun with that stupid idea? It even has nothing to do with sense of humor, not to mention real target of DSLR usage. Bad humor makes everyone feel nothing but annoyance.

      Peter, it seems like posting crap like this here on [NR] makes this trustworthy site look awful. I’m seriously starting to dislike Nikonrumors for such a thing and certainly I’m not alone in that. Stop this line, please.

      • Steve

        As someone who has hacked most of my phones in the last five years, I welcome a Nikon hack – and any news about it. I’d love to be able to control video more, button operations, etc – REAL customisation. Yes, renaming menu operations is pointless, but there’s a way to go before the real customisation can happen, so be patient.

        • How that ‘Star Wars’ idiocy is going to improve your camera? There’s a line between usefulness and crap.

          • Mr. Meowmers

            it’s like “Hello World”

            if you don’t get it, don’t bother

            • This does mean ‘unfinished product’. Version

    • Tim

      This statement is so wrong on so many levels it’s not even funny. FIrst off shows you have absolutely NO computer/electronics skills so please, don’t voice an opinion in those cases. Open firmware is the way to go and has been proven by many platforms, by opening it you in effect show that a) you have nothing to hide and you do want people to point out your mistakes (we all make them), b) you want everybody to contribute, which only increases value. THe other thing is — hacks are easily reversible once you have the original package ;). And yes, if you buy something it’s yours, period. You should be able to alter and edit it whichever way you like and for the next buyer, well there is always one 😉 …. I just think that some people here are particularly stupid and uneducated when it comes to electronics and coding/programming…. might be good photographers but…… I am really really putting a lot of efforts not to use offensive language, as it is really annoying how moronic some of you are!

      • Allan M

        You are so wrong in so many ways. The Nikon firmware is NOT a open source code, and for it to be so, Nikon is the one to make it, NOT some hacker.

    • Ronan

      Jabs are you sore because your DELL got hacked and someone published all those nasty sites you go too?h

    • Royster

      If it is your camera you can do what you like with it.

      • Steve

        Well, if only that were true. You cannot use a camera is some public places even for what it was intended for – photography – and in cinemas – video. You can’t use it to invade privacy in some places and of course you can’t use it to bludgeon stupid ppl to death. Anything else ?

        • D7000 Fan

          oh garbage. There is no law saying “thou shalt not bludgeon people to death with a camera” although it might say “thou shalt not bludgeon people to death”

          It is the act of blugeoning that illegal, not the use of a camera to do it. Same goes for using cameras for the invasion of privacy and so on.

    • Andy

      So you’re saying that people can’t tinker and learn how and why thinks work? With that way of thinking, we’d have no open source software or, come to think of it, any technical innovation at all.

      If you’re not technically inclined, great. Leave it as is. Others who want to peek under the hood do so with no risk or peril to you. In fact, you don’t even need to read, let alone post about it.

    • Jabs

      This idea is wrong and irresponsible in at least three fronts to me:

      1. You are breaking into Nikon’s Firmware – an illegal act as you own the camera BUT not the Firmware which is Nikon’s Property.
      2. You are voiding your Warranty and also doing something unethical. How would you like me to change your picture or image and then modify and use it without compensation or credit?
      3. You are illegally using a Star Wars Theme thus violating an obvious copyright.

      Unethical ruses work BOTH ways!

      • D7000 Fan

        I don’t see how the star wars theme is illegal or unethical. If they were making money out of the star wars theme, then it would be illegal . . .

        How is this different to me drawing a picture of luke skywalker? from a copyright perspective?

        (I think you must work for nikon. When are you going to release the d400?)

      • Steve

        Jabs – yes, you could void your warranty but unethical ? how so ? Talk to an IP lawyer. You’ve completely missed the point of IP. From your point of view, it would be illegal (and unethical) to sing a copyrighted song in the shower. Although, that may happen one day, along with Apple patenting white. 😉

    • fred

      Jabs is the same fool who went ballistic when the original firmware decrypt was announced. Don’t feed the troll. Know your rights.

  • George

    This is so stupid.. that is all I’m going to say…

    • If you don’t like this upgrade just dont do it.
      I’ve been waiting for this kind of enhancement FROM Nikon since i bought D7000 last year, to make it fits my needs better. What we got from them is fixing the help menu or so…
      If somebody gives me a firmware that turns my beloved D7000 in a better video camera, I’l break my waranty without hesitation.

  • Brent

    Dear God, no… no, no, no, no, noooooooooooooo! May whoever made this burn eternally in hell. This world was so much better until this was released, we are all doomed.

    This shit belongs on a Coby digital camera or something, not a Nikon (I wouldn’t even dare put this on a Canon).

  • wublili

    Any news if there’s gonna be similar update for D4 and when will it be out ?

    • Tiger1050Rider

      Well, good luck in getting any warranty work done on the camera if you have hacked the firmware.
      When you apply the hack, you invalidate the warranty in an instant.
      This might not be an issue for a camera costing less than $1000 but for a D4?
      Get real or better still move to Canon.

      I might seem to be anti firmware hacking. I’m not. I have a HTC Sensation phone. I could hack it and apply the latest Android by loading a cyanogenmod build. I will do that when it is out of warranty and not before.
      That said, would I load some cacked firmware into me camera?
      Now that I think about it, the more I am coming round to ‘No I won’t’ .

      • Why would hacking the firmware void the warranty? Ok, in the case that the camera’s internals completely stop working you have a point, but in all other cases you can simply load the original firmware again and then send it back in.

        To most commenters here: please, stop being so negative about this. I agree that this hack probably isn’t the most interesting I’d like to have on a camera, but remember it’s just a first step. Who knows what happens if these guys get good at changing the firmware.
        They might add flash value lock functionality to the camera, or add more bracketing options, or whatever Nikon decides a D5100 doesn’t need…
        I am very much looking forward to a situation in which people who are a *lot* smarter than me add features to various Nikon cameras. Remember it’s our own decision to load an alternative firmware or not; no one is forcing you to do that.

        As for showing this on NikonRumors? I am glad this news is presented here. First: it’s about Nikons, second: maybe some other smart fellows start joining in and more camera’s get hacked soon.
        Again: please stop being so negative. It’s just like news about a D800 that might have too much pixels, or it is too expensive, or whatever reason it’s not your camera: you don’t have to buy it. Same here: you don’t have to load this firmware.

      • wublili

        Sarcasm can be difficult for some people.

        • Sarcasmeow

          well they haven’t invented a sarcasm tone for html yet

          • wublili

            Hopefully upcoming HTML5 will have it someday. Common sense tag would be nice, too.

  • Ball_Lightning

    Some spend their time creating firmware with helpful additions, some waste their time in creating crap like this…

  • Thank you Nikon Rumors for letting us know about every release of D5100 firmware!!! Hope to see some great changes soon.

  • 103david

    Think we could get Kai to paint this one pink, too?

    • Calibrator

      Don’t think so.
      After the D90, the D7000 and now the Leica M9 it really wouldn’t suffice to top this progression.

  • MLWadester

    I’d rather see them playing with their equipment rather than not using it at all. I can’t tell you how many soccer moms have told me, “I’ve got one of those big cameras but I never get it out because it’s too bulky and heavy.”

    • Ben

      +1. Though I doubt a soccermom hacked this 🙂

  • Opinion…

    There’s nothing wrong with customizing your camera. Would you also argue that engraving is stupid if you want to make it more personal? What’s wrong with your shooting menu being called weapon system? You guys are way too conservative- OMG, my Nikon’s menu is different, people might mistakenly think that I’m fun and creative. I wish Nikon released firmware that would allow changing menu labels.

    • nah

      do what you want with your camera but it does not deserve to be posted here

  • steve

    people have been hacking firware for years guys. I love what they have done with panasonic GH2. Made it way more capible of a camera.Now if instead of geeking the camera even more why not work on the live view and video making it more usable. That would be a great trick.If that was stable I would use it

  • frAnk

    Really, that’s the best this shit head can do?!

    Go try the Drone System from Pentagon, why don’t you? Maybe Iran would pay you for your enormous talent!

  • Davix

    That’s stupid..but that’s what geeks are made for.

    • Tim

      …. and thanks to geeks you have the $h1t you are using now!!!!!

      I think this is the BEST idea ever!!!!!

      • so somebody can in binary editor change few strings in firmware. There is no skill in it.
        it is plain stupid. NR should maybe also not even write about it.
        Can only turn cameras to brick if done wrong.

        • Errm no, I am afraid it’s not that simple. The firmware in the D5100 is coded, if you change one bit it stops working.

          The thing they had to do first is understand the coding algorithm so they could change things without the camera refusing to work with this firmware.

          I think you’ll have to see this as a short demo that it can be done. A “hello world!” program if you wish. Not particularly usefull from a feature point of view, but certainly usefull for the people working on this camera.
          I am very curious to where this is headed, though I don’t think they’ll be adding serious video features any time soon: they cannot add things the hardware doesn’t support.

      • Davix

        sorry i should have called you a nerd instead, right?

  • This is really funny. How about a nuke button to delete bad shots?

  • Dee

    Divversity makes the world and the living in it much more fun.
    And then there are people like you…

  • Bubbel

    Without bother to look deeper into it I would guess this is a proof of concept hack, only to show that it now is possible to tweak stuff. Don’t get your panties in a bunch people!

    • enesunkie

      I agree. These guys are probably hard core computer geeks that also like photography and probably not purist photographers that dabble in assembly language. They’ll have there fun with it, but I’m sure there is a learning curve with this. Don’t know enough about copyright law to say one way or the other but a few more options with the function/DOF Preview buttons, 100% zoom and more options with bracketing would nice additions on a D7000.

  • FM-2 fan

    There are many comments, that don’t cover the business, Nikon could make: why doesn’t Nikon offer a software SDK, that allows to do all this legally, based on royalties etc. pp.

    Its is intellecutally a small step from “APPlet” to “CAMlet” – but a big one for manufacturers of black boxes.

  • fichael mreeman

    oh my haven’t we got a lot of crackheads in here.

    i think this is most welcome since A LOT has actually been asking that improvements in their nikon DSLRs are made, but nikon has not responded to any of these. now SOMEBODY is trying to do anything, and just for exhibition’s sake, publishes as sample firmware EVERY FREAK FREAKS OUT??? what do you want the guy to do? give you a 1920x1080p 60i video + 12fps in your D7000? autofocus with AF-D lenses in your D40x and every other good thing FOR FREE?


    • Shkacas


    • D7000 Fan


      I am sure this will be followed by usefull firmware updates very soon. Such as changing buttons around. I can’t wait to switch the metering and iso buttons on my d7k.

  • There’s really no reason why you couldn’t implement the Nikon equivalent of the Droid Marketplace or iTunes. If Apple could figure out that proprietary hardware wasn’t the path to vast riches, you would think that either Nikon or Canon will eventually come to the same conclusion. This is just one step along the way.

  • this not like Canon Magic Lartern which is only written on mem card .

  • Chok

    “First feature priorities are to map the subprocs and get access to A:\ drive SD card, then trace memmap IO’s during movie mode, finally use the saved trace info to enable full aperture, shutter and ISO control for movie recording.
    Secondary features are adjusting the bracketing exposure EV range, modifying the interval timer for endless night astrophotography, and other suggestions as time allows.
    Thanks! ”

    doesn’t sound so awful if you would stop whining and read more

    • Perhaps people are whining because:
      a) they don’t read this far, or
      b) they don’t understand what it means 🙂

      • Hamuga

        You left off c.

        c) they are @sshats.

        Just relax people, don’t like it?
        Don’t use it.

        Not that difficult.

  • William Sommerwerck

    Does this firmware include an image of a Nikon bowing in front of an Exakta, with the latter intoning “I am your father”?

  • All these people whining about this hacked firmware, I wonder what you’d think if there was a hacked firmware that allowed 60FPS @ 1080P.

  • disco


    only idiots do not see the potential in tweakable custom firmware.

  • john

    I hope someone can do some more useful custom firmware for all DSLR like…….(because every DSLR have its own computer build in, I believe all of them should be able to do this simple task)

    Trigger the shutter when the on board mic can detect sudden volume peak (for high speed photo)

    Trigger the shutter when the in camera light meter/CMOS can detect sudden light change (for lighting Photo)

    Increase the BKT limit

    Auto release shutter for all number of BKT

    Increase the Multiple exposure limit

    Interval Timer and more advance setting

    • D7000 Fan


      Absolutely! I am exited about the new frontier of firmware hacking. I welcome this news, even though it seems pointless.

  • jake337

    Why is everyone so upin arms? Seriously, its just for fun. It’s not aimed toward pros. It’s aimed towards people who would buy a d5100. That should just about answer it.

    Its so funny how upset people get over something they would never use or enjoy.

    Also, I would never do this to my camera, but who cares what others would do to theirs.

  • CESantos
    • link to this flickr discussion was added to the original post, just click on “read more”

      • CESantos

        I meant to include the what the text says to avoid people starting with the wrong foot thinking that this FW is useless 🙂

  • Mythlin

    All of you need to stop b*tching! At the very least it shows that they are making progress on understanding the firmware, but everyone is so d*mn ungrateful they have to complain that they made some progress in a way that they didn’t ‘want’… If you ‘want’ something try working on it yourself and you will see the pain staking work it takes to make things like this… If your that pissed about this, its as easy as not clicking on this article.

  • Joseph

    I hope admin continue to post this kind of news. I would have never know about it otherwise. People who doesn’t like it can just ignore the posting. And the firmware is easily reversible. Not sure what’s the big fuzz is all about. As long as the firmware publisher did not change anything else but the menu the process and be reverse just like any firmware update. Whats wrong with changing the menu labels if that’s what they can do right now. I could imagine Cushing the menu label is easier than creating new frame rate or feature in a firmware.

  • Mat

    Good post, I like that you are posting more than just nothing. This is pretty interesting. Are they working on a Harry Potter one as well?

  • Gab

    Hdr bracketing on the d3100 would be the most useful 😀

  • broxibear

    Since we’re talking about stupid things, Introducing the Canikon 1D3s…

  • Nikkorthemonk

    This is great. The fact that you can restore any time you want is cool. Lighten up, Francis….

  • Dany Lefebvre

    That’s a start, the ice is broken. Now let’s hope the next firmware hack is useful.

  • John Caballero

    I don’t understand how wonderful the concept of dumping your worn out equipment on another person is. I use my cameras daily, taking thousandths of pics during the time I have them and by the time I am done with them I won’t sell them to anybody. I will rather give it to somebody that can not afford one and will be able to use it until he/she gets enough money for a new one. And in the meantime, like somebody said before, it is your own equipment and you can do whatever you want to do to it.

  • Jim

    Wow, there are some seriously cranky people on this thread. I find this interesting because people on NR are constantly demanding what amounts to minor firmware tweaks (expanded bracketing, manual video controls, HDMI out with no OSD, etc.). However, when someone actually starts working on things that may lead to the features, they cry out as how bad, dumb, or evil this is.

    To the people who think a Star Wars FW is dumb: Maybe you don’t realize that replacing strings and images in the FW is equivalent to writing a “Hello world” program. It shows that you can modify the code and still get it to run. This is the first step towards doing anything useful with the FW. By making a Star Wars version, it gets geeks excited about the possibility of hacking the FW. I think it’s a brilliant marketing move that will draw more people to the project.

    Running custom FW is not for everybody. Professional photographers probably shouldn’t use hacked FW unless they are absolutely sure it won’t interfere with their job. But the geek / hacker community tends to like this kind of thing. Once it gets more features and more stable, it could become really cool. Just look at CHDK:

    So don’t pretend that everyone will or will not want to use hacked FW.

    I also support Admin posting these kinds of stories. This is one of the things that makes the site cool.

    • D7000 Fan


      From the reddit link above:

      “Current feature requests:

      Trigger the shutter when the on board mic can detect sudden volume peak (for high speed photo)

      Trigger the shutter when the in camera light meter/CMOS can detect sudden light change (for lighting Photo)

      Increase the BKT limit

      Auto release shutter for all number of BKT

      Increase the Multiple exposure limit

      Interval Timer and more advance setting”

  • NoFunBen

    start thinking of useful things that could be added.

    1 more photo bracketing options. more stops between bracketed photos and more photos in a set maybe?

    or one button push bracketing

    or better mirror up anti shake options.

    interface changes

    • jake337

      What’s up with all the auto bracketing everyone seems to “need”.

      I would think one would be better off metering individual areas of scene and using corresponding setting to expose those areas where they want the m exposed.

      Don’t let the camera control you!!!!

      • WoutK89

        auto bracketing:

        no need to touch the camera and “change” the perspective by accident.
        no big difference in time between photos, less chance of ghosting

        there are possibly more reasons, why else would they be in the professional products, and not so much in the consumer products?

      • Jim

        I think most people are interested in expanded auto-bracketing for HDR work. It’s also a hot issue because it’s a really, really artificial limit. It’s likely only one constant in the FW that needs to be changed to make it 9 shots like the higher end cameras. However, Nikon limits it for market segmentation.

        • enesunkie

          Exactly. Most people probably don’t even need 9 shots but would be very happy with 5.

          • NoFunBen

            yes 5 would be good, at 1.5 stops apart.
            but nikon gives use only 3 on the low end cameras.

            very useful for HDR

  • Dchino

    Stupid people never see the potential in new advancements and discoveries.

    I’m just surprised how many seem to frequent Nikon Rumors.

  • Stanley77

    Mavin Wars: What is really funny is folks who waste there time trolling others for wasting there time. PS These mavins seem to be self-appointed.

  • pointshooter

    It would have been nice with something useful added when so much time has been spent to hack the firmware.

  • simpleguy

    the amount of whining here in this blog is simply amazing , stop whining already , there are individuals who hacked nikon structure in order to see what it is really capable of ,

    they did wonders on gh1 , and gh2 from panasonic , so why dont you just sit quite and see where this goes , it might be very interesting , and in the meantime
    for godsake have a Little just a Little Sense of humor – star wars theme – for fun people F U N

    • Funduro


    • D7000 Fan


  • stormwatch

    Ok, it’s nice to have a StarWars firmware, but can we get manual shutter and ISO controls please!!!! R2D2?!!?! MOTHERSHIP!?!?!??!

    • coco


  • Rick Holmes

    Great proof of concept! I’m just disappointed that the theme is Star Wars and not Star Trek!

    • WoutK89

      * insert Klingon here * 😀

    • enesunkie

      Hopefully some trekkies will get on board with this!

  • frAnk

    This one is for the Admin;

    By publish such garbage, you are condoning the unauthorized altering of someone’s licensed proprietary property(Nikon D5100 Firmware). Also, you are condoning the illegal use of licensed property (Star War).

    How could you lower your blog’s standard to this level?

    • Jabs


    • rwg

      When i buy this camera… Its my camera.
      Nikon has not payed for my camera. I did. So if i was to throw it off a cliff thats my choice.
      if i was to hack it thats my choice. Nikon has nothing to do with it. Unless they want to lend cameras to users then. obviously you should not hack their stuf.

      ps do yo work at nikon? that would explain the rage…

    • a cookie

      How is it their property if you paid for it? If I buy something from someone, that object is now in my posession – not his.

      And honestly, this ‘intellectual property’ bs is one of the biggest impediments to innovation and prevents talented people from making the world a better place. As I see it, firmware hacking projects like CHDK and this one actually help the companies that make the cameras, because the capabilities added in the modified firmware can attract a wider audience.

      About star wars….they’re not trying to make a profit or trying to mislead others into thinking that the D5100 is a lightsaber.

    • So is Flickr and Reddit, I just link to a story they already reported, nothing wrong with that. When CNN reports that somebody was killed it does not mean that they endorse murder.

  • fuzz

    Whilst this firmware in itself is fairly pointless, custom firmwares could have all sorts of benefits. How about metering with MF lenses?
    However as soon as people start to unlock features that Nikon want people to pay for Nikon will go after those people.

    • WoutK89

      Or Nikon will add new features to the cameras, because they see how popular they are amongst people after hacking… free publicity for something they didnt want to try out.

  • broxibear

    Commander Mike Fossum speaks from ISS about the images he’s taken with the Nikon D3…!

  • Firmware hacks (or LEGIT camera improvements in future models?) that I would LOVE to see available for Nikon:

    1.) Allow me to lock-out certain buttons such as QUAL, so that I don’t bump my camera to small JPG in the middle of a crucial job. Not that it’s ever happened LOL, I’m just paranoid I guess.

    2.) Allow me to add ISO to the main / sub command dial’s full-time operation abilities. I mean c’mon, isn’t i time ISO became a bigger part of the exposure triangle? In this day and age we’ve got ISO 100-6400 usable on full-frame cameras; that’s SEVEN stops which is right up there next to the eight stops from 1/60 sec and 1/8000 sec, or the seven stops from f/2.8 to f/22. How come we still don’t have a third command dial, or at least the ability to swap out aperture and ISO from a sub-command dial? I mean I sometimes shoot an entire event without changing my aperture more than a couple times, (theater / stage) …And yet I need to change my ISO constantly.

    3.) Allow me to turn on Auto-ISO by using the sub-command dial when pressing the main ISO adjustment button. Unlike Canon which has two functions dedicated to each top-panel button, Nikon has only a single function dedicated to their top panel buttons. I think it’s high time we start allowing both command dials to control features relating to that buttons’ setting. Like how the QUAL and WB buttons work!

    4.) PLEASE, can we get more than single-stop bracketing increments? THANK YOU!

    5.) Get rid of that dang mechanical pop-up flash release, and allow me to de-activate the button altogether in a custom menu. Then I could finally take the gaffer’s tape off my beautiful camera!

    6.) Okay, okay, there’s still three or four OTHER pieces of gaffer’s tape on my camera, holding that dang grip rubber in place. I know this isn’t a firmware hack, (neither is the last one) …but can Nikon please get over how awesome the grip rubber feels when it’s brand new, and realize that it falls off after 6 months of heavy professional use? I know Canon’s grip rubber doesn’t feel nearly as cool and professional, but at least it stays on! Some sort of middle ground would be great.

    Take care,


    Some of you are way too serious. Who cares if someone wants to hack their gear? Yeah a starwars nikon is silly, but think of the possibilities when these guys really figure out the software. You’ll see new useful features for free that nikon would have happily sold you in a new camera. If you’re able to pick your own firmware with the features you want, this will force nikon not to hold back features that could have been included. Think more frame rate choices, different menu layouts, customizable menus, etc…

    • Funduro

      My 2 cents: Hacking does have a dark side. Adding features on the lower line camera from the high end will cost sales and could threaten the financial health of the company. Installing 3Ds/x software/features on a D700 while possible via hacking is like stealing a 3Ds/x from Nikon. The top line camera does have greater memory and higher CPU speed so they can handle the greater number crunching required so they will always work properly, who can say the D700 will not have damage done to it when “pushed” to act like a 3Ds/x. Would you like to have a squarely CPU if you bought that camera used, but had NO idea what had happened? Nikon would most likely NOT service any hacked bodies.

      • Mr. Meowmers

        for the same reason, this should also push manufacturers to develop FWs that would fully utilize the hardware and fully show the capabilities of each body

      • a cookie

        Look at it in a different way: you paid for some very nice hardware. What’s wrong with getting the most out of that hardware?

        And if you want to push the hardware, that’s your choice (with your property). People should have the right to make such a choice. Nikon would have no obligation to support modified firmware, but that’s part of the risk that you might take to get more out of a camera you put down money for.

      • Jim

        I doubt many people would choose a lower end camera instead of a higher end one just due to a few firmware niceties. This is the kind of thing that hobbiests or people with older second cameras will install.

        You’re not going to turn a D5100 into a D3x. All the main aspects are hardware limited (sensor performance, image size, FPS, AF sensors, etc.). What people are talking about doing is minor tweaks that mostly change the interface, button mapping, or small behaviors. These would be bells and whistles, and annoyance fixes.

        The only way I can see it cannibalizing sales is if there is some tweak that fixes a really, really annoying problem that all camera models have. (maybe like the ISO things Matthew posted about above). If fixing it somehow made a lower end camera better than a higher end one, then Nikon would be really stupid for not fixing it.

        A good example of this is the Linksys routers. Years ago they were forced by the GPL to release their source code. Since then, there have been many custom firmwares developed that add tons of new features; many of them only found in really expensive gear. Despite being able to buy a $60 router and get similar features, no self respecting IT person would replace an enterprise grade, level 3 managed switch with a home router.

        If anything Nikon will probably just steal the good ideas and incorporate them into later cameras (like Apple does with the app store). Speaking of which, allowing apps to run on the camera could fix most of these problems…

        • WoutK89

          “allowing apps to run on the camera could fix most of these problems…”

          yeah, I want the flashlight app for my Nikon, getting tired I cant see in the dark with my AF-assist light, lol.
          Please don’t make a free for all app store, at least put some quality in it, the Android store is already full of sh.. and that is because more is better (right?). BUT will it have an app store, it will have built-in wi-fi, so any negative about an app store will give a positive in return.

  • D7000 Fan

    then don’t read it

    • D7000 Fan

      This was origionally a reply to a post that appears to have been deleted.

  • after 100 downloads no issues were reported with this firmware hack:

    • D7000 Fan

      please keep us up to date on future firmware improvememts. Ignore the people who say you shouldn’t be posting this, this is news, no newspaper ever go busted for reporting crime, and this is not criminal.

  • Art

    I used to belong to the Hewlett Packard Users Group. (I wonder if they are still around.) We would hack our calculators and break into assembly and then program them to do all sorts of things they weren’t supposed to do. We could get 256 tones out when they were only supposed to have eight for example. There were a number of useful functions that people added. The interesting thing is that it wasn’t long before HP added a number of these features.

    Sure, it could “hurt” sales as some might add features of higher end cameras. At the same time, it could help sales for the very same reason. (There is probably a better margin on a lower end camera anyway.). The fact of the matter is that this is only ever going to be a small percentage of users. (Only 6% of iPhones are “jail broken”) That small percentage of users are typically the “early adopters” and innovators and these same groups push product lines forward with innovation. IMHO Nikon should embrace these renegades and they will be Nikon’s most loyal customers in return. (They aren’t going to mod a camera they hate — only love. )

    I know for myself, there are a small handful of features I’d like to see (such as the ISO resetting to 200 after 6-8 hours of inactivity so I don’t take a bunch of pictures at ISO 1600 by accident.) Perhaps the mods will help prompt Nikon to add these features.

    There is a long tradition of modding the things we own including our cars. Our cameras should be no different.

    • Art

      I should point out that there is no way that 6% of Nikon users will mod their cameras. Photographers tend to be a much more conservative bunch than iPhone users where a disproportionate number are also programmers. I’d bet that the real percentage would be less than 1% and 0.5% would probably be generous unless the Mod added some really cool stuff that we can’t live without

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