FoCal 3.9 brings support for Nikon’s latest mirrorless camera, the Z8. You can now check, calibrate and analyse your new Z8 with native Z-mount lenses and adapted F-mount lenses to make sure you’re getting the very best from your camera.
FoCal 3.9 MR1
FoCal 3.9 Maintenance Release 1 was released on 6th July 2023, bringing Nikon Z8 support for Snapshots from beta to full, stable release.
[If you’re not interested in the details and just want to grab the release download info is here]
- Nikon Z8 support (for all platforms including FoCal Mobile & Snapshots)
- Raw mode added for Z8 and Z9
- Various improvements and fixes
The Release Notes contain a comprehensive list of changes.
Note that as of June 2023, the premium features of the FoCal apps – FoCal Mobile and Snapshots – are both available free of charge to anyone with a FoCal Pro (Desktop) license within their support period. See here for more information about the apps.
The big feature of FoCal 3.9 is support for the new Nikon Z8 camera – an absolute machine in a fairly compact body!
The following FoCal features are available for the Z8:
- Target Setup
- Calibration Check
- Autofocus Calibration
- Stabilisation Test
- AF Consistency
- Aperture Sharpness
- Dust Analysis
- Snapshots (full, stable release in FoCal 3.9 MR1)
Connecting the Z8
The Nikon Z8 is the first camera we’ve seen with two USB-C ports. One is purely for charging (labelled PD, for Power Delivery), and it’s really important that you don’t connect to this port when using FoCal otherwise the camera will NOT be detected by FoCal.
The data port is the top one, so make sure you use this when connecting to FoCal:
There’s a setting in the NETWORK menu on the Z8 which specifies the USB data connection:
It’s critical that this setting is set to MTP/PTP – anything else, and FoCal won’t detect the camera when you connect it to your computer or mobile device.
Changing AF Fine Tune
Another change in the Z8 when using FoCal is an extra confirmation set when setting AF Fine-tune.
After you have set a new value on the screen below, you’ll hit OK:
For all but the very first time you change the value, you will see this message:
You need to hit OK here in order to confirm the value, otherwise, it will not be adjusted. It’s a small change in behaviour, just 2 clicks of the OK button rather than one, but it caught us out a few times when testing due to muscle memory on changing AF Fine-tune with one click (as is the case with all other Nikon cameras).
Don’t worry if you forget – FoCal will catch the error and just instruct you to set the value again.
Snapshots for Z8
The Snapshots feature allows you to capture all available settings from your camera, review and edit them, and then re-apply them to the camera at a later date.
FoCal captures over 360 settings from the Nikon Z8, so you can capture a comprehensive view of your camera setup, edit, review and restore at a later date.
Nikon Z8/Z9 Raw Support
Since the Z9 was added to FoCal, it’s not supported Raw mode, but that’s now been addressed.
Note: Using Raw mode analysis is a specialist feature of FoCal, and its primary purpose is to cleanly separate analyse of red, green and blue channels. It’s not something that most people should be using, but it is now an option available for the Z8 and Z9 cameras.
FoCal 3.9 brings various other improvements and fixes, including:
- Fix to not restoring crop mode on Nikon cameras when using Stabilisation Test
- Fix to detection of Pinpoint AF mode on Nikon cameras (use to trigger contrast-detect focus)
- Fix to detection of AF Fine Tune value on connection to Nikon cameras
- Fixes to shutter life estimation
- All Beta cameras are now available in FoCal Plus File Mode.
- Updates to the Camera Database to provide better information about cameras
FoCal Mobile Update
FoCal Mobile had been updated to support the Nikon Z8, offering Setup Check, AF System Check and AF System Calibration.
NEW: FoCal Mobile Pro is available to everyone with a FoCal Pro (Desktop) license within their support period.
FoCal Snapshots Update
The FoCal Snapshots app has been updated to support the Z8 (full support in Snapshots 1.4.1)
NEW: FoCal Snapshots Premium is available to everyone with a FoCal Pro (Desktop) license within their support period.
Operating System Support
The following are supported Operating Systems:
- Windows 11
- Windows 10 (20H2 and later)
FoCal can be installed and should work on the following versions of Windows, but as they are no longer supported by Microsoft we only do limited testing:
- Windows 10 (pre 20H2) – Microsoft support ended 10th May 2022
- Windows 8.1 – Microsoft support ended 9th January 2018
- Windows 7 SP1 – Microsoft support ended 13th January 2015
- macOS Ventura (13.x)
- macOS Monterey (12.x)
- macOS Big Sur (11.x)
FoCal can be installed and should work on the following versions of macOS, but as they are no longer supported by Apple we only do limited testing:
- macOS Catalina (10.15) – Apple support ended 12th September 2022
- macOS Mojave (10.14) – Apple support ended 25th October 2021
- macOS High Sierra (10.13) – Apple support ended 1st December 2020
- macOS Sierra (10.12) – Apple support ended 1st October 2019
FoCal Mobile will run on any device running iOS/iPadOS 12 or later.
The Android version of FoCal Mobile can be installed on all devices running Android 9 (Pie) or later.
There is a huge variety of Android devices and we can only test on a small subset. FoCal is an intensive application and we recommend using newer mid- to high-end Android devices with at least 4GB of RAM.
The free version of FoCal Mobile offers the ability to connect, Verify Setup and run AF System Check, so you should ensure that these all run reliably before purchasing a subscription.
There are more details in the changelog in the release notes for this release.
Thank you to all our users past and present who’ve used FoCal for their calibrations. An extra special thank you to everyone who’s got in touch with feedback, a lot of changes are driven directly by what you tell us!
Get Reikan FoCal 3.9
Download FoCal 3.9 for Windows or macOS by logging in to the account system via lms.fo-cal.co.uk. Once logged in, you will see a download link to the software.
FoCal 3.9 is available to all users within their Included Updates Period as of 19th June 2023. You can get the software as shown below:
- By logging in to the FoCal Account system via lms.fo-cal.co.uk.
- Go to the About > Update Check option in the software. From here you can hit the Download button to get the software.
If you’re outside of the period above you can purchase 12 months of updates by logging in to the account system via lms.fo-cal.co.uk and scrolling to Included Updates Period.
If you’re not yet a FoCal user you can purchase the software as a download or boxed product, as well as FoCal Hard Targets from the FoCal Online Store.
Get FoCal Apps
Information and store links for the FoCal mobile apps are available here:
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