Nikon D5100 Video Beta Testers Wanted

The Nikon Hackers team would like to announce the release of the first hack for the D5100 (also D3100 & D7000): Removing time limit restrictions on video recording.

The web-browser cross platform patch tool

To use:

  1. Download the D5100/D3100/D7000 firmware
  2. Use Web Tool above
  3. Copy the resulting output to your SD card and remove the “.patched” extension
  4. Upgrade firmware from D5100 menu, as per the normal Nikon instructions

This should not brick your camera, but if it does I and the other Nikon Hacker team members will not have/take responsibility for any damages or liability. I have this firmware on my camera, and have taken a 25 minute video with it, but result may vary. Also damages that may occur due to camera operation times longer than specified by original manufacturer are your responsibility.

The Nikon Hacker forums is the place for discussing this patch, future patchs, or just to get involved.

We would like to invite any interested developers to help progress the firmware decoding process.

Soon we will be releasing the same patch for D3100 and D7000 camera’s but we have not tested these patches at all, so we are looking for VERY KEEN Alpha testers to try it out these changes. Contact me directly ( if you are interested and don’t mind possibly bricking your camera. If you don’t know what bricking means, don’t apply. All three tested and released.

[update] If you apply the patch please report results here or On this Nikon Hackers Forum  post

[Update 31/3] v1.1 has been released with support for D3100 camera’s
[Update 2/4] v1.2 has been released with support for D7000 camera’s

Interested in more, come join the us at Nikon Hacker, or use the Online Patch Tool (Help)


david 2012-03-31 00:03:30

wow so if D5100 custom firmware is a reality, then how about we start fixing manual exposure in video mode?

Simeon 2012-03-31 00:06:29

Easy Tigger! This was low hanging fruit, aka easy to find and alter, it’s not the flood gate event. Just proof that valuable changes can be made.

Seshan 2012-03-31 00:22:21

This is great, I don’t have a D5100, I do have a D7000, it’s just great to see the hacks coming, Hopefully at some point we can get to the level of custom firmware that is available for some Canons.

Pixelke 2012-03-31 01:24:54

This will damage the sensor of the D5100! The time limit for filming is there to prevent the sensor for overheating.

Simeon 2012-03-31 01:27:18

This is very possibly true.

However people asked for it, personally I have no interesting in really long video shots.

PattF 2012-03-31 01:29:40

How does this deal with FAT32’s file size limits?

Simeon 2012-03-31 01:33:50

The firmware already checks for free space, and then calculates the time of recording available at worst case data rates for your video recording mode. It then checks if this time is greater than the time limit, and if so, caps it.

Later in the code is checks to see if it has recorded for the max time limit and if so stops the recording.

Thus the hack skips both the time based checks.

PattF 2012-03-31 01:38:58

So when it hits the 4GB single file limit for FAT32 it stops instead of spanning across multiple files?

Simeon 2012-03-31 01:41:26

The existing file limit seems to be closer to 3.5GB (based off my tests), but yes, no file spanning.

Panomaniac 2012-03-31 09:30:42

If we could have wider AE bracketing. Just dreaming…

Silvio 2012-03-31 10:43:16

Wow, custom Nikon Firmware! Well done. I have a D70s though ;)

Trish 2012-03-31 11:46:03

This hack only add time recording? No manual controls or another improvements?

Simeon 2012-03-31 11:51:50

Yes, this patch only removes the time based restrictions. Nothing else is changed.

BD 2012-03-31 14:13:23

This is not true - do your homework before you post!

You can leave the camera on in live view mode for an hour or more - battery life is more an issue than anything else. The recording limit is for market protection - they want you to buy a video camera for anything beyond cute 2 minute videos of your kid.

Paul 2012-03-31 14:50:47

I’ll be surprised if nikon hasn’t put protection so it shut’s down the camera if there’s any signs of overheating, because you can keep the camera in live view for the duration of the battery life.

Be nice to see manual control over iso settings in video mode in your next hack, but i guess you gotta walk before you can run ;)

Great work ;)

Simeon 2012-03-31 14:55:01

Completely agreed, otherwise how does 10 or 20 minutes in Arizona/Australia compare to Alaska? relying solely on time to avoid heat damage is brain dead.

Paul 2012-03-31 17:11:04

Thanks for bringing unlimited record to the D3100, looking forward to future development from you dedicated guys. ;)

yelo 2012-03-31 17:22:05

would you please make something for 5d mark ii?
it can not AF when a used it to shoot a film.

Xander 2012-03-31 23:33:04

I just want to tell that you guys are doing an amazing job. Since Nikon is finally going into some video, it’s great to see support like this. I would love to help, but I have no clue at all in coding or anything related to that.
Anyway, best wishes in the project. Let’s hope it bears fruit. I can tell you that a lot of my friends are looking at the progress.


Michael 2012-04-01 00:54:39

Not true though, videos cameras are cameras able to take videos longer than 30 minutes. Video cameras have extra tax that’s why they limit them at 29:59. I don’t think the companies will be worried about the hack destroying the video market, but instead they would be happier with this hack - ability to shoot more than 30 minutes without needing to pay extra taxes.

hq 2012-04-01 01:19:38

BD- I’m not an expert, and I certainly have not done my homework, but I doubt LiveView puts the same strain on the sensor/camera as video recording - apart from actual capture/encode/record to memory.

But I’ll have to agree with you on “market protection”. The newly announced D4/D800 also employ a recording limit when recording to memory card(s). This limit is lifted when to recording to an external recorder via HDMI output. So the limit seems to be for processing power, buffer capacity, and as you pointed out, battery life.

Stelios 2012-04-01 03:33:28

There should be no overheating problem with longer recording time. Why? Think about this: I can shoot a max. length video, stop recording, then continue immediately with my next video recording, stop at the limit, then again shoot the next clip, and so on. There is no limitation to this, with just a few seconds in between for to press the record button, and/or change my SD card. I don’t think this few seconds of standby are enough to “cool down” the sensor. Does this sound logical? Greetings from Greece, Stelios

AF from Germany 2012-04-01 04:06:47

This is what I picked up concerning video recording limits: in fact it seems to be a protection issue: if a camera is able to record more than 30 minutes (this is the boundary, I think) than it is in some regions on earth (especially in Europe!) considered by government regulations as a video cam. Therefore it is liable for additional charges/tax (in the same way a DVD RECORDER, not a player is). The manufacturers want to avoid this in order to keep the price tag competitive.

Some manufacturers (sorry, I forgot specific examples, but it’s big players perhaps like panasonic, sony, …) did and do indeed differentiate their camera models per continents (let’s say Europe=29min. 59sec., Asia only limited by the memory card). You can read this quite often in product reviews.

Willy 2012-04-01 05:15:21

Amazing work ! Congrats for the first step to make more betters nikons dslrs .
I’m dreaming about having the AF fine tune on my d5100 .

Keep up the good work !

n1one 2012-04-01 11:14:58

Really nice!!!

Works without problems on my D3100.

Thnx a lot!

Simeon 2012-04-02 13:40:48

Cheers for the feedback.

Simeon 2012-04-02 13:50:23

I wouldn’t say “unlimited” as it’s still space, and max file size constrained. This just removes the artificial time restriction.

Simeon 2012-04-02 13:58:29

D7000 owners, I have a patch ready that applies the same fix (to firmware 1.03), just awaiting an alpha tester to try it. Email me directly

Ryan 2012-04-02 14:26:37

Any chance of exposure simulation in live view for d7000? Or the ability to fire the AF assist light, even if it’s not on dead center focus? Modifying the uses of the control dials? I don’t need green box or any of the scene modes :o :o

I’d pledge my undying allegiance to you if this was to happen! :)

JM 2012-04-02 19:51:19


I think you are doing a great job, this is just the beginning , but I have to agree with some posts here about the overheating, if you have time, plese check this website ( ) where it mentions the overheating problem with most DSLR’s .


Biju 2012-04-04 02:43:08

Thanx Simeon for the awesome work… any possibility of adding Kelvin settings to D5100? May be copy over the code from D7000? I have no idea of how difficult it wud be… just asking :)

Excited 2012-04-04 14:45:15

Hi guys,
with very great tension I expected something. No matter what, only to get to know if it’s possible to hack anything based on the original firmware of the D7000. I followed some hints in some forums months-long. And now this blog let my heart leap for joy. On the one hand the repeal of the recording time restriction is the first big highlight I waited for. On the other hand the 30fps in 1080p would be the dream I had since I bought the D7000. But no hard feelings. Maybe the second one will come sometime.
I downloaded the patch and applied it to the newest Nik 1.03 firmware for the D7000. And actually the time restriction shifted some minutes away from the 20:00. With an empty 32GB SanDisk Extreme Pro there are 24:18min available now. Of course I will test the real recording time limit the next days. But for now it’s great to get an visible result.
Thank you very much for that hard piece of work!
I hope there won’t occur any errors in the firmware. So I trust you. I think I will report about the new firmware in the next days and if there’s any kinda trouble.
So far, greetz from Germany.

whosthedybbuk 2012-04-04 18:49:34

Great job guys !
I really like your job. I’m a d5100 user and i’m in love with it ! only the manual control of ISO/shutter speed is annoying, I will be grateful if there’s a solution for it :)
good luck !

Excited 2012-04-05 15:02:57

Hi there,
I couldn’t wait no more and tried it out. I didn’t shot any photos since yesterday, only video. The real recording time for my D7000 was set to the already mentioned 24:18 minutes. But I don’t have an explanation for exactly this time limit.
The filesize which may vary a bit amounts about 3,51GB. That isn’t the 4GB limit of the FAT32 file system. Maybe someone can give an explanation for this. And believe me. The limit isn’t my SD card because it’s empty. Thus far I don’t have any erros in my cam.
Here’s a pic of it

Guilherme 2012-04-06 09:20:57

Is it possible to remove the AF locking of the shutter button (the thing that does not allow you to shoot pictures while the AF system thinks that the image is out of focus)?

GfK 2012-04-06 09:31:50

I own a D4 and A D800
Any future on un-limiting these cameras ???

Slowtrekker 2012-04-06 10:50:51

Great job guys

Slowtrekker 2012-04-06 10:53:06

Great job guys, any chance of getting it for the D800.

R: 2012-04-06 11:20:42

Use EXFAT format like on the SDXC cards this is why they exist :getting more than 4go files!!!!!!!! use same format on ssd!!!!!!!

Jim 2012-04-06 13:25:33

If you look, that article was from 2010, so it may not apply to newer cameras.

I’ve shot continuous video with my D7000 for an hour and a half (stopping the video just long enough to start a new recording). I haven’t experienced any adverse affects from that or other hour long events I have recorded. Then again, I don’t exactly do pro video, so maybe other people would have seen something I didn’t.

Dov 2012-04-06 13:52:23

Actually live view and recording are exactly the same thing there is no second live view CCD chip in the camera. The only difference is that the data is also saved to the card when you record. Welcome to the fact that Digital imaging devices are pretty much the same thing when they are acting as a vid cam or a still cam, there really isnt any difference.

This is why canon was at one point selling the same camera for different prices. one version the ore expensive one could shoot raw the cheaper one could only shoot JPG.

Think about it and how weird its gonna get in the next 5 years as the camera makers struggle with the question what is a camera and how do we squeeze you for more money.

Paulo Cesar Saito Lopes 2012-04-06 14:02:17

What about the D5100 HDR and Night Vision features on the D7000?

Simeon 2012-04-06 14:06:41

Yes. It’s called manual focus.

Simeon 2012-04-06 14:09:55

At this point of time Nikon would need to release a firmware update. You could dump the firmware using a destructive process, but I’m not junking my gear for the cause.

Dov 2012-04-06 15:11:14

DONT equate One camera with all cameras, also how old is the camera in the article.

Now that manufacturers like canon and Nikon are seriously aiming at the video market the cooling problem isnt an issue either due to improvements in heat dissipation in the camera body design or just better sensors. In either case as has been mentioned here by people talking about how many videos they shoot in a row and there seems to be no sign of any form of heat sensor in place in the nikon bodies.

poorpeter 2012-04-06 15:48:44

Any chances to see your precious hacks on the glorious D90?
Many of us are hoping and waiting…

AluK 2012-04-06 18:12:40

If you’re using a D5100, D7000 and over, yup. Dunno about the D3100. You need to select Release Priority instead of Focus Priority (Custom Option A1 in the D5100). It only works on AF-C, though. If you’re using AF-S, you’re out of luck.

Simeon 2012-04-06 18:47:27

Cheers for the real answer, will have to try that out sometime.

Simeon 2012-04-06 18:48:21

At this point no firmware update has been released for the D90 (it’s just too good), so there is nothing to work with.

Parampreet Dhatt 2012-04-07 00:33:37

Great job guys.
I’m not really into video, so will very likely give this a miss.
But I hope this is just the beginning and there will more firmware hacks in the future for still photography also. I would love something like Magic Lantern for my D5100.

Today.Kin.G 2012-04-07 04:13:53

It’s so great to get this limit away.
It makes my no worry when I was filming an interview as part of my section assignment with my own little D5100 with a nex 7 (which always be force to stop record becouse of the heat of its sensor and body) . The film I took was about 23m 15s in 1080 30p (due to my 8GB sdcard) . The temperature is acceptable with the screen was open and some cool air by a paper like a fan in my hand . It’s great for no worry about the 20minutes limit .Thanks for Simeon ,what about next step would you take ,could you predict something , THX …… (my poor english …….)

Dizzy 2012-04-07 04:15:25

What about to unblock buffer limit in the D7000? I know that D7000 buffer capable to store up to 50 RAW files, but locked for 10 RAW by software(firmware). Can you help with this?

Chicagrafo 2012-04-07 11:35:36

Congratulations on this hack, I think it is very important for us owners to do with our devices as we please, I can not thank you enough for your efforts. I am also a software engineer, I will help down the road when you guys are doing something I can help with

Marcelobtp 2012-04-07 11:50:29

Dov i disagree, my sony Nex3 as you people might know is always on “live view” mode, only when I record Videos it gets really hot.
My guess is that this limitation is not only for the sensor but for the processor, on live view mode the processor probably don’t have to process the same quality as recording a video. When recording you get 1080p, with many more things that are processed on the video to look great on your computer, when only showing live view they probably forfeit some quality that you can’t see on the rear LCD, to extend the battery life and mantain the temperatures of the processor and the sensor as low as possible to prevent damaging the camera. Remember you guys that the LCD of nikons is just 921k, while not recording they can make a crop mode and not a downscaling mode. I did not made my homework but it’s a possibility.

Simeon 2012-04-07 12:41:26

The screen is not even 921k, but 307k, it’s a 640x480 (VGA) screen with three dots per “pixel”. The 921k number is number of dots.

Dov 2012-04-07 19:23:23

Sorry you need to make some distinctions here.

1. your camera gets hot because the camera processor and or subsystems are no working at capacity to process the data from the CCD into data that will be stored on the storage device in your camera. You also have to consider the heat generated by the data being pumped through the the bus of the circuit boards as the camera is now in a high energy use mode.

2. The functions of what will case damage to a chip is when heat damages parts of the chip that are susceptible to heat think thermal stress on solder in the camera.

Now lets look at your camera which is no offense a very dense compact camera with very little ability for heat dissipation. SO of course its gonna get warm the issue is whats is actually damaging to the chip and the camera.

The reality is that the chips in a video camera and a still camera are the same technology and nothing special so the whole argument is still very moot. While there may be more heat generated when he camera is doing more there is nothing special about the chip other than how the camera is effected by bad design i.e. bad heat dissipation.

Punnyabrata 2012-04-07 20:23:27

@ Simeon: Firstly thanks lot for the patch.

Can you also advise if there is a way to get Auto Bracketing on my Nikon D3100?

Simeon 2012-04-07 22:22:39

re patch, you’re welcome.
re d3100 clueless.

Simeon 2012-04-07 22:23:21

Based on what do you “know” this?

Dizzy 2012-04-08 03:09:42

In dpreview forums i have read the message from somebody that says that have unlocked D7000 with 50 RAW capable buffer and 8 Fps. This is unofficial firmware for testing purposes from Nikon, and they provided this model for him for short time.

dK 2012-04-09 02:43:35

This is not the place to ask for Canon stuff, go to MagicLantern for that…

Johannes 2012-04-09 04:03:03

What I can see on the Swedish website it is an update for Distortion control data.

Excited 2012-04-10 14:08:55

Some time ago I filmed with my D7000 almost 2 hours without an interruption. Of course with only the 20min lock. So I had to resume my taking immediately after the interval. But the sensor never got too hot or gave out a warning message.
A pals Canon had an emergency shutdown at the same time after about 25min. So who’s gonna telling me that Canon cams have best video results ever?
In my opinion the overheating problem is relevant yet. But I never saw a Nikon shutting down.

Trowa Barton 2012-04-11 00:14:21

You did a great job dear hackers! as a D3100 user I fell so happy when seeing this news! Additionally, will you consider to hack the camera so that user can control aperture/shutter speed manually?

Johannes 2012-04-11 03:06:47

My virus program (Norton internet Security 2012) blocks the FirmwarePatch tool file. So is it possible to upload the firmware file in a zip-archive, I think its more people than me that can get this problem.

When do you think its possible to release a hack for D90/D5000?

If something get wrong when someone install this firmware, what happens if he do a complete reset to factory settings via the little hole (on the D5000 beside the memory card slot)? Is the firmware also restored. I mean is it some way to restore the original firmware?

(Sorry if my English i not so good, I am Swedish)

Sourav 2012-04-13 12:22:00

How soon until someone can add iso control to the FN button on the D7000?

Simeon 2012-04-13 12:46:26

At this point specific features are not being worked on a planned order.

But to check I understand your question. Can the D7000 not have the ISO level assigned to the function button. So you could press the button and spin the dial to change ISO setting? (this is how it works on the D5100)

Diogo Coelho 2012-04-14 13:46:31

Thanks for this hack, good work. A Nikon D3100 can record more than 30fps?

Simeon 2012-04-14 14:28:54

Hi Diogo,

I’m not aware the D3100 can record faster than 30fps.

Matthew 2012-04-15 13:38:04

Actually, you may wish to consider the following:

When the camera is in live view mode, it is only reading from the sensor the required pixels to fill the VGA (640w) screen. When the camera is in record mode for full HD (1920w), it is reading a considerably larger number of pixels by comparison.

VGA - 270k pixels because aspect ratio = 3:2
While the screen may very well be a 4:3 screen, you must remember that the sensor is 3:2.

Full HD - 2,458k pixels (2.46MP) because aspect ratio still = 3:2 The camera reads 1920x1280 pixels from the sensor and removes 100 from the top and 100 from the bottom before recording. This is indicated by the darkening of the image on top and bottom in Live View while recroding.

Since pixel utilization is proportional to heat, we can conclude that running the camera in Live View would NOT tax the sensor as much as recording. So to say that Live View is representative of the camera’s tolerance to heat during full HD recording is a fallacy.

Whether or not the sensor can dissipate enough heat during full HD recording, I do not know. I imagine it will depend somewhat on the temperature of the environment in which you’re shooting.

Video cameras have sensors specifically designed to properly dissipate the amount of heat generated when the sensor is in use. However, it may not be a limitation on the thermal damage threshold of the sensor at all considering that the majority of the heat generated by a CMOS is the peripheral hardware required to make it work.

With all that said, it would seem you’re back to square 1 on the debate for longer record time. Unfortunately, without dissecting a camera and testing, the practical indicator will likely be trial and error.

Maybe someone should figure out a way to remove the camera hardware, apply some sort of cooling system and attach it to a computer at the signal output block to store the raw data. Oh yeah… Jim Jannard did that already.

Simply put, be thankful for the record time you do have. You paid the price for a still image camera and got the functionality of relatively decent HD camcorder.

So, if the bit rate of the codec can be increased and the manual exposure controls can be added, then we’ll have ourselves a very nice tool with which to tell stories.

Sourav 2012-04-16 14:27:14

You are correct in your understanding that the D7000, unlike the D5100, does not already have this available as a default option. This is what I would like for the D7000 to do, mimic the D5100’s function button.

Dov 2012-04-16 20:53:39

Thank you for the information however even with the the rational you’ve posed your still talking about a chip being made in the same factory of the same materials and probably on the same assembly line as video chips for sony video cameras. So nothing special here, your comments on the supporting hardware are more to the point however the reality again is chips are designed to be utilized and they do give off heat.

In the case of small compact camera like the cybershots and any of the flatish cameras I can see heat dissipation being an issue however you should be able to damage the chips by firing off the camera at its max burst rate.

One camera used in this thread to bring up the issue seems to actually have a thermal sensor the Nikon has a timer which as has been pointed out does not stop you from simply starting a new file and recording a new video as fast as you can hit the record button.

Based on camera manufacturers pen chance for limiting hardware thats the same in different camera using the software provided i am sure the thermal damage scare is exactly nothing but that a scare tactic

Kelly O’Hara 2012-04-19 16:24:44

As I understand it… the D7000 already has a dedicated button for ISO on the back… Is this a nice-to-have feature? The only reason the D5100’s fn button can be set to ISO is because it’s the ONLY button it can use to set ISO without going through nested menu items.

If I had a D7000, I’d probably prefer to set the fn button to some other feature that isn’t already covered by a button on the device… it looks like the fn button on the D7000 is in an awkward location that setting it to ISO would make it a challenge anyway?

Just curious :)

Deepak 2012-04-20 16:22:47

Only one question.. When are you adding manual control to d5100 video? Believe me your efforts will go in vine if you do not do that because everything else is not that important for d5100/d3100.

Simeon 2012-04-20 21:44:02

Wow, what a completely insightful statement. All other efforts will be in vain, if the feature you want, that I’m not interested in the slightest, is not done! Lucky your not paying the bills around here, or I might tell you where to stick your invaluable insight.

Deepak 2012-04-21 00:59:52

Simeon do one thing, arrange for a voting system and ask people what do they want. I am sure they want the manual video and you know it well. I have seen that complain all over the Internet. My only point was you are so creative and what is wrong if you use for something which people want the most, you can even charge for that. But remember do it before Nikon itself does it in d5200 :).

Your fan

Dante 2012-04-22 04:42:36

If you are so interested in that feature try to do it. This is not something straightforward because this is very likely not only about modifying a conditional jump or a memory initialization value. Probabilities of bricking are real here.

There’s a name for guys like u : leechers

I think a more reasonable thing to attack is the genuine battery test (unique message displayed if incorrect, seems to be a unique test when new battery inserted). I think I’ll try to find a generic battery to have a look.

dybbuk 2012-04-23 07:15:50

@Dante : Concerning the straightforwardness of removing automatic exposure adjustment (via ISO & shutter speed) I’m not really agree with you.

From my own point of view I think that this mechanism is activated by calling some extra software function or ressource which is not called when AE is locked,

it needs to be verified by doing enough tests around switching to live view from different mode A/S/M with different exposure compensation and ISO values. the only thing that will be more or less difficult is how we will verify the shutter speed value & ISO on the recorded video (I used to pause the playback in VLC and check the blur but it’s not really accurate, same thing for ISO)

If someone can propose to me a tool or manner to check it I will try to write a test document starting from it, we can do some brainstorming to undertaind how the d5100 behave.

If of course Simeon is intersted and decides to focus on this subject :)

PS: Sorry for my english I’m from Tunisia

Dante 2012-04-25 02:28:55

To the best of my knowledge, what you want to do would require a d5100 simulator because we do not have any way to access the memory of the camera while running.
You have to be able to detect that you are in video mode and in this case block or not call something (which could be in a separate thread). This one require a quite good understanding of the firmware.

Barret L. 2012-04-26 00:03:47

Thank you Simeon (and the rest of you)!!!

It would be nice to see 3-shot autoBracketing in D3100.
For god’s sake even my old point n shoot has this feature… its so stupid that Nikon has reserved it for the more expensive cameras.

Anyway you rock guys! Keep it up!!!

dybbuk 2012-04-26 10:05:35

Thanks you for the advice. Yeah, it seems very hard to understand video behaviour using the emulator.
I started to take a look on it :) (big thanks for Vince BTW)

David 2012-04-26 16:44:56

What about D300s? I’d be really glad if the 5 minute cap was removed while in 720p.

Simeon 2012-04-26 17:03:34

The D300s code is structured differently. So the code that implemented the restriction in the DXX00 camera’s was not present.

David 2012-04-27 03:22:14

Oh, so there’s no possibility to get this fixed then? In other words, the “usual” method of hacking it wasnt used in the D300s firmware?

Simeon 2012-04-27 07:45:07

I think your reading too much into what I said. I said “the way the time limit was enforced in the D5100/D3100/D7000 is not present in the D300s, so it will not be the same easy change“.

David 2012-04-27 08:00:33

Oh.. Do you think it can be done? I’d really appreciate it if the D300s could record movies over 5 minutes in 720p.

Robert James 2012-05-07 21:39:47

So can someone help me out here? I am interested in upgrading my D80 to a D5100 (some might not say this is an upgrade but go with me on this) for the video recording capabilities. I’m getting married in a couple months and would like to video the ceremony. We have no need for a camcorder but use the D80 all the time, so ideally I’d love to record the ceremony in 1080p on the D5100 and not buy a camcorder. I am guessing the ceremony will be about 30 minutes max. I have a 64 GB SDXC card. Does anyone have any recommendations? (and no, we have spent enough on this day we’re not spending more on a videographer!) If I used this firmware would I be OK? Any problems I might run into? Help!

Simeon 2012-05-07 23:02:46

Hi Robert, currently at full 1080 30FPS you’ll only get 24 minutes of video out of this firmware. (+4 minutes in this mode).

Due to the way the file size is limited to also less than ~3.5gb. At this point we don’t have multi-file spanning. So if you want 30 minutes with zero cuts @1080p then this firmware will not help you on a D5100, D3100 or D7000

Simeon 2012-05-07 23:03:44

Oh also, I hope you enjoy your wedding day. Congrats.

Robert James 2012-05-08 13:15:46

Thanks for the quick and detailed response Simeon. Looks like I might have to go for a camcorder and just ebay it right after the wedding and THEN upgrade the DSLR :) Oh well, thanks for your hard work on this, and I’ll give it a shot when I do eventually upgrade.

D3100 2012-05-09 11:25:24

great job simeon.
i currently waiting for exposure bracketing for nikon d3100.

Dilom 2012-05-15 09:03:32

Great work! Can we expect manual video controls for the d5100 too? That will be AWESOME!!!

Dilom 2012-05-15 09:07:11

Couldnt say it better than that! I will pay for this feature (before the new d7100 or d5200 come out)

Rick Johnson 2012-05-28 00:18:15

An exFAT formatted SD card sadly doesn’t increase the movie time. My tests have shown it’s still 24m 18s w/ the hack in place.

Sean 2012-06-06 02:32:44

Hey Simeon, I put the firmware on my D3100 and tried recording long videos and I kept running into this error randomly at 20+ min recording time.

I was recording at 720/24p, and tried different SD cards as well. With my Sandisk 8GB card the time limit displayed was approx 49 mins, but I kept running into ‘Error’ usually above the 20 min mark.

My camera is unresponsive when this error is shown until I pull the battery out and put it back in. Then I can press the shutter to use the camera again. Video isn’t saved on the SD card.

Any idea what might be causing this?

Shashank 2012-06-08 06:49:22

Hi Simeon,
Indeed an awesome work. I dream of having full manual controls in my D3100 video just like t2i has and that day would be probably the best day I’ll ever celebrate (You can see what a low life person I day..a nikon hack? !:/)
D3100 can easily smoke out T2i unless its locked controls are shredded into smithereens.

Keep doing the good work


JD 2012-06-25 23:58:28

Hello Simeon,

I’m so glad to see someone’s working on the Nikon hacks, and that some terrific progress has been made!

I can confirm that there is overheating protection on the 5100, as my camera overheated while I was outside taking video of the recent Venus transit in AZ (in 100+ degree temperatures). A counter appears giving you a number of seconds to shutdown, and it gets kicked out of live view. In hot weather, the camera seems to overheat while it’s actually recording, but NOT while it’s merely in live view.

Thanks so much for the time limit hack– I recently unknowingly ran up against the time limit and missed some important video as a result. Congrats on a great start!

Like others here I’m still struggling with the inability to control the ISO/shutter speed tradeoff in video.

Thanks again!


Loke 2012-06-30 08:46:24

Is it possible to dump the firmware from a D5000, because it is not avialable online? I would like to hack it. Thanks

Simeon 2012-06-30 14:47:49

We don’t currently have a dumping method. So no.

umberto 2012-07-02 04:21:59

I agree…
Nobody seriously want dummies changes, like bigger files or hdr or whatever you should realize in Photoshop or doing three shootings (HDR).
So what are we speaking about?
Anyone on this earth hope to find from your wonderful job those 2 implementations:
1 - Manual Video Control during Record
2 - Kelvin Degrees Control in White Balance
Other issues are of minor importance, i can bet on it.
Only that, anybody has the right to pretend on it, we should only hope on it and say really really thank you.
Best regards.

Paul 2012-07-12 14:58:09

Worked great for me on D3100. Thanks!

tyszkers 2012-07-13 18:39:30

fantastic work in defeating this walled garden approach from manufacturers (genuine battery, good ******* grief).
i understand the notion of this being a ‘low lying fruit’ kind of hack and was wondering where video frame rate would be on this hierarchy?
i would love, really love to be able to shoot for real slow motion playback, 60 or 100 fps anyone??

thanks again

Gordon C Burns 2012-07-29 03:57:43

Awesome. This is a great step towards a magic lantern type hack for nikon. The only things that really let the d7000 down for video are no 25fps in 1080 and aperture can’t be adjusted in live view.

Things many people would love to see added;
- Audio levels on display
- 50fps in 720p
- zebra bars
- peeking

Thank you guys for putting the foot in the door and showing that changes can be made.

Keep it up,
Gordon C Burns

finn 2012-07-29 07:38:57

This is all great some people are going to the trouble of making these patches! personally the patch i would love to see released is the 60fps hack. I wouldn’t mind if this applied to 720p or 1080p video but its a feature i REALLY need. if anyone has any information on when this will be released or how to do could you please contact me at

Swarog 2012-08-06 12:21:24

Thanks. Works great on my Nikon D3100. :D

Wan 2012-08-08 11:14:08

All I humbly request is 1080p at 30fps. I will donate for that considering I may be upgrading for it..