When Fuji X Weekly reader Jackie asked if I could make a film simulation recipe that mimics the look of Kodak Ektar 100 film, I thought that it would be a simple task. Classic Chrome is halfway there already, providing a Kodak-esque look right out of the bag. But, as it turns out, creating an Ektar look wasn’t easy for one reason: Classic Chrome isn’t vibrant enough, even with color set to +4. Velvia was my next choice, but I couldn’t make it work. It turns out Astia is the key.
Before I get ahead of myself too much, let’s roll things back a little. Ektar is a color negative film made by Kodak. It’s known for vibrant colors, high contrast and fine grain, and, even though it is a negative film, it is more like reversal (slide) film. I would say that, while the results aren’t 100% identical, there are a lot of similarities between Ektar 100 and Ektachrome 100VS. In fact, when Kodak discontinued Ektachrome 100VS, they recommended Ektar 100 as the closest film.
Ektar is ideal for vibrant landscapes or any situation where you want lots of contrast and saturated colors. It’s not usually one’s first choice for portrait photography because skin tones can be off. Some people use it extensively for portraits, but the general advice is to use Ektar for everything other than people pictures. I’ve shot a few rolls of it in the past, but it’s been probably seven or eight years.
I’m actually a little hesitant to call this film simulation recipe Kodak Ektar 100 because it’s not quite right. It’s close, but a little off. The color palette is slightly askew. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get it any closer to being right. I do feel that, if you like Ektar 100 film, you’ll like this film simulation recipe, even though it’s not an exact match.
One thing about this recipe that I’d like to mention is, while I have Dynamic Range set to Auto, almost always the camera selected DR100. If you don’t want to use DR-Auto, set it to DR100 instead and you’ll get the same results. Also, I did not use the faux grain effect for this recipe. I think you could use weak grain if the ISO is 800 or less, but once you get to ISO 1600 and higher the digital noise acts like a convincing weak grain, and adding more grain on top of it is too much. So I elected to set grain to off, but you might consider using weak grain, particularly at the lower ISOs.
Dynamic Range: DR-Auto
Noise Reduction: -3
Grain Effect: Off
White Balance: Auto, +3 Red & -2 Blue
ISO: Auto up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: 0 to +1/3 (typically)
Example photos, all straight-out-of-camera JPEGs captured using my Kodak Ektar 100 Film Simulation recipe:
My Fujifilm X100F Kodak Porta 400 Film Simulation Recipe
My Fujifilm X100F CineStill 800T Film Simulation Recipe
My Fujifilm X100F Fujicolor Superia 800 Film Simulation Recipe
My Fujifilm X100F Vintage Kodachrome Film Simulation Recipe