Back in the days when I shot a lot of film, I would typically use ISOs of 25, 50, 64, 100 and 160. I would consider ISO 400 film as my go-to high-ISO choice (yes, I considered ISO 400 to be high-ISO!), but sometimes that wasn’t enough. For black-and-white photography there were several good options (mostly involving push-process), yet for color the choices for good film with ISOs above 400 were few and far between. When I needed something faster than ISO 400 for color work, the two options that I typically went with were Fujicolor Pro 800Z and Fujicolor Superia 800.
Fujicolor Pro 800Z was a good indoor portrait film. It had muted colors, low contrast, a very slight yellow cast, accurate skin tones, and fine grain (for ISO 800 film). It was quite popular among wedding and event photographers. For low-light pictures of people it was the best option. I used it a few times.
Fujicolor Superia 800 was a better film choice for things other than portraits. Of the two films, it had more color saturation, more contrast, a green cast, less accurate skin tones and more grain. It was the more bold, gritty, punchy choice of the two. Not that it was particularly wild (because it wasn’t), but Pro 800Z, while it could be beautiful, was especially bland (which is why it was good for pictures of people). I used Superia 800 a lot more frequently than Pro 800Z.
With this in mind, I set out to create a facsimile to Superia 800 with my Fujifilm X100F. I wanted in-camera to create the look of the high-speed film. I experimented with different film simulations and settings, and was able to achieve something similar to the film, using PRO Neg. Std as the starting point. It’s not a 100% match, but I feel like it’s convincing enough that I might be able to fool someone into thinking that I used actual film instead of digital capture.
One issue that I have with this film simulation recipe is the film grain. Even with a strong grain effect selected, it’s not quite as grainy as Superia 800 (specifically, the faux grain is too small). In fact, it might not even be as grainy as Pro 800Z! If there was an extra-strength grain effect option I would choose that instead, but alas there is not. I think it is grainy enough to give the right impression, even if inaccurate.
Another thing that’s not quite right about my film simulation recipe is that skin tones are too accurate when compared to the film. Superia 800 did not render human skin as nicely as these settings do. Even though it’s not true to the film in this regard, it might be viewed as a positive and not a negative.
Otherwise, my Fujicolor Superia 800 Film Simulation recipe produces a convincing analog film look, delivering pleasing results in a variety of situations. I’ve been using it extensively since I created it a week ago. I’m very happy with how it renders photographs, so I anticipate it being one of my go-to film simulation options. I think it’s one of the best ones that I’ve discovered so far. I invite you to give it a try yourself!
PRO Neg. Std
Dynamic Range: DR200
Noise Reduction: -3
Grain Effect: Strong
White Balance: Auto, -2 Red & -3 Blue
ISO: Auto up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: +2/3 (typically)
Example photos, all straight-out-of-camera JPEGs captured using my Fujicolor Superia 800 Film Simulation recipe:
My Fujifilm X100F PRO Neg. Hi Film Simulation Recipe
My Fujifilm X100F Vintage Kodachrome Film Simulation Recipe
My Fujifilm X100F Classic Chrome Film Simulation Recipe
My Fujifilm X100F Astia Film Simulation Recipe
My Fujifilm X100F Velvia Film Simulation Recipe
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