My Fujifilm “Classic Negative” Film Simulation Recipe (For X-Trans III)

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November Morning – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T20 – “Classic Negative”

The Fujifilm X-Pro3 has a new film simulation: Classic Negative. This film simulation is supposed to mimic the look of Superia film. The Classic Negative film simulation is expected to make its way to the X-T3 and X-T30 via a firmware update at some point in the near future, but for now the X-Pro3, which is still a couple weeks out from shipping, is the only camera with it. I’ve already had a number of requests for a film simulation recipe that resembles Classic Negative, despite it being so new.

To be clear, I have absolutely zero experience with the Classic Negative film simulation. There’s only a small sampling of examples that I could find online. I have used Superia film before, but sometimes the film simulations aren’t exact matches to the film they’re supposed to look like. From what I can tell, in this case Fujifilm did a decent job of creating a film simulation that resembles the film.

Classic Negative is actually a little different than other film simulations. Fujifilm has increased the color contrast in it compared to other film simulations. How it renders the picture depends on the lighting and exposure. The darker the light, the lower the saturation, while the brighter the light, the stronger the saturation. In addition, warm colors seem to be a little more vibrant, and cool colors appear a little less so. Highlights seem to have a creamy quality to them, while blacks look a tad faded. This is unlike any other option Fujifilm has given us, so you can imagine creating a film simulation recipe that mimics this is very difficult.

Fujifilm X-Pro3 Blog

According to Fujifilm, this new film simulation has the second-most contrast out of all of them, only behind Velvia, while the saturation is in the range of PRO Neg. Std. I found it difficult to create a high-contrast look that doesn’t blow out highlights or create blocked shadows. I also found it difficult to recreate the look of warm and slightly vibrant skin tones while also creating cool and dull shadows, as you can only get one right. I tried to find a happy middle ground that’s not very far off on anything and generally provides a similar aesthetic. I hope that I succeeded, although I’m not completely confident in that I did.

I didn’t initially intend to share this recipe until I had a chance to see Classic Negative for myself. When the Eterna film simulation came out, I created a recipe for it for my camera that didn’t have it. Some time later, once I had a chance to shoot with Eterna, I realized that my recipe wasn’t as close as I thought or hoped it would be. I’m guessing this one might turn out to be the same. However, a Fuji X Weekly reader urged me to share it, even if it might turn out to be wrong, as some people might like it anyway. I hope that you do like it, whether or not it is completely accurate to the real Classic Negative film simulation.

PRO Neg. Std
Dynamic Range: DR400
Highlight: +3
Shadow: +2
Color: -3
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpening: +1
Grain Effect: Weak
Color Chrome Effect: Off or N/A
White Balance: 6700K, -2 Red & +7 Blue
ISO: Auto, up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: -1/3 to +1/3 (typically)

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs made using this “Classic Negative” film simulation recipe:

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Smile of Joy – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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November Red Shed – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Dormant Neighborhood Tree – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Icy Leaf – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Brown Cottonwood Leaf – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T20

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Brown Eye Boy – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T20

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Mixed Use Crate – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Backyard Winter – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Brown Leaf Pile – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Suburban House – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

See also: My Film Simulation Recipes

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My White Balance Shift Solution

As you know, my film simulation recipes rely heavily on white balance shifts. Unfortunately, you cannot save white balance shifts with custom presets. You can only save one white balance shift for each white balance type in the White Balance Menu. In other words, whatever shift you set for auto white balance will be applied to all custom presets that use auto white balance. If all of your C1-C7 presets in the Q menu use the same white balance, one white balance shift will be applied to all of them. For many people, this means that whenever you change recipes you’re also having to adjust the white balance shift, which is a pain sometimes.

The Fujifilm X-Pro3 doesn’t have this problem from what I’ve heard. You can save unique white balance shifts with each preset in the Q menu. You can set it and forget it! There’s a decent chance that this ability will be added to the X-T3 and X-T30 via a firmware update at some point, but right now the X-Pro3 is the only camera that can do this. There’s an outside chance that X-Trans III cameras could also be given this feature, but most likely not. Don’t fret! I do have a solution. There’s a simple work-around that might make things much easier for you.

The issue is that only one white balance shift can be saved per white balance, but in that statement lies the answer! What you need are presets that use different white balances. Or you can have presets that use the same white balance and the same white balance shift. What do I mean?

So you have custom slots C1 through C7, right? Maybe you use all seven of them for color. Or maybe you set aside one or two for black-and-white, in which case white balance and white balance shift may or may not be important. For each color preset you simply use a film simulation recipe with a different white balance. If each recipe uses a different white balance, then you can set the shift for that recipe and you’re good to go. It will always be set to that unless you decided to change it.

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For example, you could have Kodachrome II, which uses auto white balance, set to C1, Kodacolor, which uses a kelvin white balance, set to C2, Kodachrome 64, which uses daylight white balance, set to C3, Lomography Color 100, which uses cloudy/shade white balance, set to C4, Color Negative, which uses fluorescent 1 white balance, set to C5, Fujichrome Sensia, which uses flurescent 2 white balance, set to C6, and Portra 400, which uses a custom white balance, set to C7. If you did that, since each recipe uses a different white balance, you wouldn’t have to adjust the white balance shift when going between different presets. Also, there a few recipes that share the same white balance and white balance shift as others, such as Kodachrome II and Ektachrome 100SW, so you could use both of those and never have to change the shift.

To make things easy for you, I’ve organized the color film simulation recipes by white balance. Choose one from each until all of your available presets are filled. It’s pretty simple. Unfortunately, you might not be able to use all of your favorite recipes, depending on exactly what the white balance and white balance shifts are. But I hope that you find enough options you like to fill your available presets.

Film Simulation Recipes that use AWB
Film Simulation Recipes that use Kelvin
Film Simulation Recipes that use other White Balances

Since I set up my custom presets this way on my camera, it’s made a world of difference to me. It’s so much easier moving between recipes! The user experience has been greatly improved. I hope that you find this just as useful as I did.

Daylight Savings Ends – Don’t Forget to Turn Back Time

Fujifilm Blog

Daylight Savings Time ended last night in America, so be sure to check the clocks on your cameras. Many of them didn’t automatically “fall back” an hour last night, and so you will have to manually adjust it today. If you forget, the timestamp on the EXIF will be off one hour until spring. While you are thinking about it now, take a quick look at your camera to make sure it shows the right time.

Film Simulation Recipes That Use Other White Balances

Film

I’ve made a list of all my film simulation recipes that use a white balance other than auto or kelvin. Previously I organized them by dynamic range setting, so that they could be seen in a different arrangement. Now I’m doing it by white balance. The film simulation recipes below all use a white balance other than auto or kelvin. Just in case it’s helpful, I’ve also included the required white balance shift.

Daylight:

Kodachrome 64 (+2R, -5B)

Cloudy/Shade:

Lomography Color 100 (-3R, +7B)

Fluorescent 1:

Color Negative (-2R, +4B)

Fluorescent 2:

Fujichrome Sensia 100 (-1R, -3B)

Custom: 

Portra 400 (+2R, -5B)

See also:
Film Simulation Recipes that use Auto White Balance
Film Simulation Recipes that use Kelvin

Film Simulation Recipes That Use Kelvin White Balance

Film

I’ve made a list of all my film simulation recipes that use a white balance with a specific Kelvin temperature. Previously I organized them by dynamic range setting, so that they could be seen in a different arrangement. Now I’m doing it by white balance. The film simulation recipes below all use a kelvin white balance. Just in case it’s helpful, I’ve also included the required white balance shift.

Kodacolor (-1R, -4B)
Eterna Low-Contrast 
(-3R, +3B)
Elite Chrome 200 (+4R, -8B)
Urban Vintage Chrome (-1R, -3B)
Fujicolor 100 Industrial (+8R, -8B)
Redscle (+9R, 0B)
Cinestill 800T (no shift)

See also:
Film Simulation Recipes That Use Auto White Balance
Film Simulation Recipes That Use Other White Balances

Film Simulation Recipes That Use Auto White Balance

Fujifilm Film Simulation Blog

I’ve made a list of all my film simulation recipes that use auto white balance. Previously I organized them by dynamic range setting, so that they could be seen in a different arrangement. Now I’m doing it by white balance. The film simulation recipes below all use auto white balance. Just in case it’s helpful, I’ve also included the required white balance shift.

X-T30 Eterna (+5R, -5B)
Expired Eterna
(+5R, +5B)
Faded Color
(shift variable)
“Warm Contrast”
(-2R, -4B)
X-T30 Velvia
(+1R, -1B)
X100F Velvia 
(+1R, -1B)
Classic Chrome (+1R, -1B)
Dramatic Classic Chrome (+1R, -1B)
Astia
(no shift)
PRO Neg. Hi (no shift)
Vintage Kodachrome (+2R, -4B)
Fujicolor Superia 800 
(-2R, -3B)
“Eterna” 
(+2R, +2B)
Ektar 100 
(+3R, -2B)
Cross Process 
(-3R, -8B)
Kodachrome II 
(+3R, -4B)
Ektachrome 100SW (+3R, -4B)
Vintage Agfacolor
(-3R, -4B)
Aged Color 
(+5R, -3B)
Fujicolor Pro 400H 
(+2R, +1B)
Agfa Optima 200 
(-1R, -1B)

See also:
Film Simulation Recipes that use Kelvin White Balance
Film Simulation Recipes that use Other White Balances

My Fujifilm X-T30 Provia Film Simulation Recipe (Fujichrome Sensia 100)

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Evening Flag – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Provia

The film simulation that Fujifilm calls “standard” is Provia, but of all the color options, Provia is my least favorite. For the most part, I prefer the other film simulations instead. In fact, the only recipes that I’ve created that use Provia are Agfa Optima 200 and Cross Process, both of which are great in their own way. The problem with Provia is that it’s somewhat boring. And it doesn’t resemble the film that it’s named after. The Astia film simulation looks more like real Provia film, and the Provia film simulation more resembles Astia film. Weird, huh? Well, I decided that Provia needed a little more of my love, so I created a new recipe for it.

This Provia recipe reminds me of Fujifilm Fujichrome Sensia 100, although that is strictly coincidental, as I wasn’t attempting any specific film look, just a general analog aesthetic. Fujichrome Sensia 100 was a general-purpose slide film that was discontinued about 10 years ago. It was a popular choice for cross-processing, although that’s not the look you find here. There were three different generations of the film, and each looked very slightly different. I shot a little of the second version of Sensia back in the day, but I usually preferred Velvia or Provia film. This recipe’s accidental resemblance is a happy accident.

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Autumn Tree Branches – Riverdale, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Provia

The white balance required for this recipe is Warm-White Fluorescent, which is also known as Fluorescent Light 2 or Neon 2. It’s the second fluorescent white balance option underneath cloudy/shade. It’s a bit unusually to select this in daylight, but it works in this case.

Provia
Dynamic Range: DR400
Highlight: 0
Shadow: +2
Color: 0
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpening: +1
Grain Effect: Weak
Color Chrome Effect: Off
White Balance: Warm-White Fluorescent (2), -1 Red & -3 Blue
ISO: Auto, up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: 0 to +2/3 (typically)

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs using this Provia film simulation recipe on my Fujifilm X-T30:

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Lost In Thought – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Summer Is Over – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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The Last Yellow Leaf – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Abscission – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Leaves of Autumn – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Autumn Sun – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Autumn Tree Trunk – Riverdale, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Neighborhood Snowfall – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Baseball Boy – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Cottonwood Fall – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

See also: Film Simulation Recipes