Using the Vintage Agfacolor Film Simulation Recipe (Plus YOUR Pictures!)

Fujifilm X-E4 + Vintage Agfacolor recipe

In the last episode of SOOCNathalie Boucry and myself finished our discussion of the Vintage Agfacolor Film Simulation Recipe. As you know, while we encourage you to use the recipes that we feature, we also use them ourselves. I hope that you find it to be just as enjoyable of an exercise as we do!

If you missed the last SOOC broadcast when it was live, you can find it below. It’s nearly two hours long, so buckle up!

If you don’t have time to watch the whole thing, I hope that you’ll take a few minutes to check out the viewer-submitted slideshow. These are YOUR pictures! I appreciate everyone who uploaded their photographs captured with the Vintage Agfacolor recipe—your participation is what makes these shows great, and it is much appreciated!

Below is the viewer’s images slideshow:

A couple more of my pictures using the Vintage Agfacolor recipe:

Fujifilm X-E4 + Vintage Agfacolor recipe
Fujifilm X-E4 + Vintage Agfacolor recipe

And with that we close this chapter on Vintage Agfacolor, and begin the next adventure: Kodak Portra 400! This new recipe-of-the-month is unique because it’s not just one recipe, but three. For those with an X-Trans III camera, try this Kodak Portra 400 recipe (click here). For those with an X-T3 or X-T30, use this Kodak Portra 400 recipe (click here). And for those with an X-Pro3 or newer camera, this is your Kodak Portra 400 recipe (click here). Use these recipes, and upload your pictures (click here) to be included in the next SOOC broadcast.

Here are a few of my recent pictures where I used the Kodak Portra 400 recipe:

Fujifilm X-E4 + Kodak Portra 400 recipe
Fujifilm X-E4 + Kodak Portra 400 recipe
Fujifilm X-E4 + Kodak Portra 400 recipe

For those who don’t know, SOOC is a monthly live video series, with each episode focused on a different Film Simulation Recipe. It is a collaboration between Tame Your Fujifilm (Fujifilm X-Photographer Nathalie Boucry) and Fuji X Weekly (Ritchie Roesch). SOOC is a fun and educational experience where we not only talk about Fujifilm camera settings, but also answer your questions and give tips and tricks. Basically, we’re trying to help you master your Fujifilm camera, with a focus on simplifying your photographic workflow.

The next SOOC episode will be live on October 20, so mark your calendars now! We’ll finish our discussion of Kodak Portra 400 and introduce the next recipe-of-the-month: Fujichrome Sensia 100! I hope to see you then!

You can find all these recipes and many, many more in the Fuji X Weekly App.

Fujifilm X-Pro3 (X-Trans IV) Film Simulation Recipe: Agfa Ultra 100

Mutual Conversation – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro3 – “Agfa Ultra 100”

Agfa Ultra 100 was a short lived film—introduced in 2003 and discontinued in 2005, although it was still available for a few years after—and was Agfa’s most vibrant color negative film. I’ve been attempting to mimic this film for a little while now (ever since I published the AgfaChrome RS 100 recipe last summer), but I couldn’t get it right. This Agfa Ultra 100 recipe actually has some similarities to the AgfaChrome RS 100 recipe, and (for this particular attempt) I used that recipe as the starting point. I never used this film, so I relied on online references and a couple pictures I found in an old magazine article as samples.

I’m actually not fully satisfied with this recipe. I think sometimes it’s pretty spot-on, and I think other times it is significantly off. Of course, one film can have several different aesthetics depending on how it was shot, developed, scanned and/or printed, and viewed, so perhaps that accounts for some of it. I think an argument can be made that Color should be +3 or even +4, but I also feel that sometimes that’s too much and +2 is just right. I think green is the least correct color, and if you do have a lot of green in the shot, you might consider increasing Color to +3 or +4 for a more accurate facsimile, although you might find reds and blues are rendered too strong if you do that.

Urban Sunstar – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro3 – “Agfa Ultra 100”

Because this recipe uses Classic Negative, Clarity, and Color Chrome FX Blue, this Agfa Ultra 100 film simulation recipe is compatible with the Fujifilm X-Pro3, X100V, X-T4, X-S10, X-E4, and X-T30 II cameras.

Classic Negative
Dynamic Range: DR400
Highlight: +2
Shadow: -2
Color: +2
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpness: -1
Clarity: -3
Grain Effect: Weak, Large
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
Color Chrome Effect Blue: Strong
White Balance: Daylight, -2 Red & +3 Blue
ISO: Auto, up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: 0 to +1 (typically)

Example photographs captured using this “Agfa Ultra 100” film simulation recipe on a Fujifilm X-Pro3:

Red – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro3
Blu – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro3
Orange – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro3
Walker Reflected – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro3
Common Signs – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro3
Pitched In Street Sign – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro3
Elevator – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro3
Street Crossing – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro3
Sidewalk Seat Shadow – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro3
Blue Boxes – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro3
Urban Congo – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro3
Sidewalk Closed In 150 Feet or Less – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro3

This post contains affiliate links, and if you make a purchase using my links I’ll be compensated a small amount for it.

Fujifilm X-Pro3 Amazon B&H
Fujifilm X100V Amazon B&H
Fujifilm X-T4 Amazon B&H
Fujifilm X-S10 Amazon B&H
Fujifilm X-E4 Amazon B&H
Fujifilm X-T30 II Amazon B&H

Find this Film Simulation Recipe and over 200 more on the Fuji X Weekly — Film Recipes App!

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SOOC – SE01E05 – Agfa Optima 200

Episode 05 of SOOC was yesterday—I had a great time, and I hope you did, too. I want to give a big “Thank You” to everyone who tuned in and participated—you are the ones who make these episodes great! If you missed it when it was live, you can still watch it (above). We had some technical difficulties (related to a power outage) at the beginning, so (as of this moment) the show doesn’t start until about the 8-minute-mark. We’ll get this cleaned up shortly, but for now, just skip ahead a few minutes. Despite the problems at the start, a hundreds of you tuned in—I hope you learned something, that you were inspired, and/or that it was entertaining enough to make it worthwhile. Asking for nearly two hours of your time is a lot, and we really appreciate everyone who journeyed along with us!

For those who may not know, SOOC is a monthly live video series, with each episode focused on a different film simulation recipe. It is a collaboration between Tame Your Fujifilm (Fujifilm X-Photographer Nathalie Boucry) and Fuji X Weekly (Ritchie Roesch). SOOC is a fun and educational experience where we not only talk about Fujifilm camera settings, but also answer your questions and give tips and tricks. Basically, we’re trying to help you master your Fujifilm camera, with a focus on simplifying your photographic workflow.

In this month’s episode we discussed my Agfa Optima 200 film simulation recipe, and viewed the wonderful pictures that you captured with this recipe. We also introduced the next recipe: Cross ProcessUpload your pictures here to be featured in the next video! Episode 06 will be on December 9th, so mark your calendars, and I look forward to seeing you then!

If you haven’t watched the previous episodes, then get yourself comfortable, grab a beverage of choice, and click the links below!

Episode 01: Introduction

Episode 02: Kodachrome II

Episode 03: Fujicolor C200

Episode 04: Kodacolor

Episode 05: Agfa Optima 200

Also, be sure to check out the Viewer’s Images slideshows!

Viewer’s Images: Kodachrome II

Viewer’s Images: Fujicolor C200

Viewer’s Images: Kodacolor

Recipe of the Month: Agfa Optima 200

Golden Oak – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Agfa Optima 200

In the SOOC live video series, Fujifilm X-Photographer Nathalie Boucry and I discuss, among other things, film simulation recipes. If you’ve never watched an episode, we introduce a recipe to shoot with, inviting you to use it and share your pictures. In the last video (which you’ll find at the bottom of this article, in case you missed it), we announced that Agfa Optima 200 was the new recipe-of-the-month. Use this recipe, upload your favorite picture (link here) that you used this recipe to capture, and we’ll share it in the next episode! Be sure to submit before November 18th, which is when the next video goes live.

Nathalie and I, of course, don’t just ask you to try a recipe—we use it ourselves, too. This is a journey that we’re on together, all of us. I wanted to share with you a few fall photographs that I recently captured using the Agfa Optima 200 on my Fujifilm X-T30. This recipe isn’t usually my first choice for colorful landscapes, but trying recipes in various situations is a part of the fun of this—there’s a lot to discover! I’m learning along side you, and that’s a great thing about this project. I look forward to seeing on November 18th what you captured with this recipe. See you then!

Red Leaves in the Forest – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Agfa Optima 200
Vine Leaves in Autumn – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Agfa Optima 200
Pop of Color in the Canopy – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Agfa Optima 200

Photoessay: Fujifilm X-Pro3 + 18mm f/1.4 + AgfaChrome RS 100 Recipe = A Photowalk To Remember

Rental boats at Lake Schluchsee. Photo by Thomas Schwab.

Thomas Schwab, who has helped create (and downright created) a number of film simulation recipes on this website, recently went on a 12-mile photowalk through the Black Forest in the beautiful German mountainside between Hinterzarten and Lake Schluchsee. The weather was “Octobering” (as Thomas put it), which means that it was overcast and rainy. Thomas carried his Fujifilm X-Pro3 camera with the new Fujinon 18mm f/1.4 lens attached—both are weather-sealed, so a great combination for the conditions. He used the AgfaChrome RS 100 film simulation recipe, which Thomas said is “the best for color photography on rainy days.” He “seasoned to taste” the recipe with Sharpening set to 0 (instead of -2) and Grain Weak (instead of Strong). He used ISO 640 for all of the images.

The adventure began with a train ride to Hinterzarten, then a hike down the Emil-Thoma-Weg trail. After visiting Lake Mathisleweiher, Thomas trekked through Bärental (Bear Valley)—thankfully he didn’t encounter any bears—all the way to Lake Schluchsee, passing Lake Windgfällweiher and a small unnamed lake on the way. The adventure ended with a train ride back home. This really was a photowalk to remember, through some incredible rural scenery!

The pictures in this article were captured by Thomas Schwab while on his mountainside adventure. They aren’t in chronological order, but they do tell a story. Thank you, Thomas, for allowing me to share your wonderful photographs on Fuji X Weekly! Please follow Thomas on Instagram if you don’t already, and leave a kind note to him in the comments to let him know you appreciate his pictures!

Through Bärental. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Houses in Hinterzarten. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Traces of forest work. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Forest work. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Lonely Path. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Stone steps in Bear Valley. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Big equipment in Bear Valley. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Between Bärental and Lake Schluchsee. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Small nameless lake. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Grass meadow. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Little leaves. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Raindrops on leaves. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Bee on thistle flower. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Leaf captured with large aperture. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Water droplets, at Lake Mathisleweiher. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Small blossoms at Lake Mathisleweiher. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Pine branch at Lake Mathisleweiher. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Umbrella at Lake Mathisleweiher. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
At Lake Mathisleweiher. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Boat at Schluchsee village. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Lake Schluchsee beach. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Lake Schluchsee from the village. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Blue boats on Lake Schluchsee. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Boat dock at Lake Schluchsee. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Dock on Lake Schluchsee. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Lake Schluchsee. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Glass bottle at Lake Schluchsee. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Old hotel in Hinterzarten. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Passing train. Photo by Thomas Schwab.
Train stop at Himmelreich Station. Photo by Thomas Schwab.

Fujifilm X-Trans IV Film Simulation Recipe: AgfaChrome RS 100

H&M – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-E4 – “AgfaChrome RS 100”

I was asked to create a film simulation recipe for AgfaChrome RS 100 color transparency film. Agfa made this slide film from 1984 through 1995, with an “improved emulsion” released in 1992. I never used AgfaChrome RS 100, so I have zero experience with the film. It was difficult to find examples of, and old issues of Popular Photography and Photographic magazines were my best resource. Despite the challenges, I was able to create a film simulation recipe that I’m very happy with.

This AgfaChrome RS 100 recipe renders pictures beautifully! It has a great vintage analog feel to it. People might think that the images are old film pictures that you scanned, and they certainly won’t suspect that they’re straight-out-of-camera JPEGs! I’m confident that this recipe will be an instant favorite for many of you.

Flower Garden – Park City, UT – Fujifilm X-E4 – “AgfaChrome RS 100”

Because this X-Trans IV recipe requires Classic Negative, Clarity, and Color Chrome FX Blue, it’s only compatible with the Fujifilm X-Pro3, X100V, X-T4, X-S10 and X-E4 cameras—unfortunately it’s not compatible with the X-T3 and X-T30. I believe that it is compatible with the GFX100S, although results will likely be slightly different. If you have a compatible camera, be sure to give this AgfaChrome RS 100 recipe a try!

Classic Negative
Dynamic Range: DR400
Highlight: +1
Shadow: -1
Color: +2
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpening: -2
Clarity: -3
Grain Effect: Strong, Small
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
Color Chrome Effect Blue: Strong
White Balance: Daylight, -3 Red & +5 Blue
ISO: Auto, up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: -1/3 to +1/3 (typically)

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs using this “AgfaChrome RS 100” film simulation recipe on my X100V and X-E4:

Bowl on a Shelf – Scottsdale, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Parking Garage – Park City, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Below Deck Parking – Park City, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Smile – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X100V
Little Dragon – Scottsdale, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Free People – Park City, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Towering Cloud – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Drive Slow, But Don’t Park – Park City, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Checkerboard – Scottsdale, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Patagonia – Park City, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Green Grapes – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Blackberries – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Pink Among Green – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Little Cherries – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Permission to Park – Park City, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
One Way – Park City, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Honey Bucket & Trailer – Park City, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
We Are Open – Park City, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Park City Downtown – Park City, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Buildings in Downtown Park City – Park City, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Church Cans – Park City, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Gas Sign – Park City, UT – Fujifilm X-E4

Find these film simulation recipes and many more on the Fuji X Weekly — Film Recipes App!

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Fujifilm X100V Film Simulation Recipe: Agfa Vista 100

Daisies at the Dock – Big Arm, MT – Fujifilm X100V – “Agfa Vista 100”

In the film era, Agfa was not as big as Fujifilm or especially Kodak, but they were popular nonetheless, particularly in Europe. Vista 100 was a general purpose color negative film made by Agfa between 2001 and 2005. It was preceded by Agfacolor HDC+ 100, which produced similar (but not identical) results. There were two films, AgfaPhoto Vista 100 and AgfaPhoto Vista Plus 100, that were manufactured for a time, neither of which are the same emulsion as Agfa Vista 100. Similar names, different films.

This Agfa Vista 100 film simulation recipe came about after someone asked for settings similar to an Agfa Vista 100 Lightroom preset. It was sample pictures from that preset that I most consulted for this recipe, but I did look at examples of the film that I found online. This recipe produces results similar to the film, but is closer to the preset than the film. This might be more similar to Agfa Vista 200, which had a bit more saturation, contrast and grain; really, it’s in the ballpark of both the ISO 100 and 200 versions of the film, as they’re both pretty close to each other.

Newstand – Polson, MT – Fujifilm X100V – “Agfa Vista 100”

Because this requires the Classic Negative film simulation, as well as Clarity (which will slow your camera down, unfortunately) and Color Chrome Effect Blue, this film simulation recipe is only compatible (as of this writing) with the Fujifilm X100V, X-T4 and X-Pro3. I think many of you are going to really appreciate this recipe and it will be an instant favorite for some of you.

Classic Negative
Dynamic Range: DR200
Highlight: +1
Shadow: -2
Color: +2
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpening: -0
Clarity: +3
Grain Effect: Strong, Small
Color Chrome Effect: Weak
Color Chrome Effect Blue: Weak
White Balance: 5600K, -4 Red & -5 Blue
ISO: Auto, up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: 0 to +2/3 (typically)

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs using this Agfa Vista 100 film simulation recipe on my Fujifilm X100V:

Lake McDonald Driftwood – Glacier NP, MT – Fujifilm X100V
Vuja de – Big Arm, MT – Fujifilm X100V
Boy, Fishing – Big Arm, MT – Fujifilm X100V
Shore of Wild Horse Island – Flathead Lake, MT – Fujifilm X100V
Evening at the Lake – Big Arm, MT – Fujifilm X100V
Three Sailboats – Big Arm, MT – Fujifilm X100V
Yellow Kayak – Big Arm, MT – Fujifilm X100V
Green Canoe – Big Arm, MT – Fujifilm X100V
Lunch Date – Polson, MT – Fujifilm X100V
Man in the Hat – Polson, MT – Fujifilm X100V
Brick & Metal – Polson, MT – Fujifilm X100V
Bank Building – Butte, MT – Fujifilm X100V
Cafe Open – Butte, MT – Fujifilm X100V
Drinking Fountain – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X100V
Circle Slide – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X100V
Yard Sale – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X100V
If a Tree Falls in the Forest – Glacier NP, MT – Fujifilm X100V
Cabin Flowers – Polebridge, MT – Fujifilm X100V

See also: Film Simulation Recipes

This post contains affiliate links, and if you make a purchase using my links I’ll be compensated a small amount for it.

Fujifilm X100V Black    Amazon   B&H
Fujifilm X100V Silver   Amazon   B&H

Help Fuji X Weekly

Nobody pays me to write the content found on fujixweekly.com. There's a real cost to operating and maintaining this site, not to mention all the time that I pour into it. If you appreciated this article, please consider making a one-time gift contribution. Thank you!

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Fujifilm X-T1 Agfa Optima (Provia) Film Simulation Recipe


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Reeds & Mountain – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T1 “Agfa Optima”

The film simulation recipe in this article is my Agfa Optima recipe, which is compatible with X-Trans III & IV cameras, converted for use on my Fujifilm X-T1. While the X-T1 is an X-Trans II camera, you can also use this recipe on X-Trans I and Bayer sensor cameras. Agfa Optima is a color negative film that was around from the mid-1990’s to the mid-2000’s.

Provia
Dynamic Range: DR100
Highlight: -1 (Medium-Low)
Shadow: +1 (Medium-High)
Color: -2 (Low)
Sharpness: 0 (Medium)
Noise Reduction: -2 (Low)
White Balance: Daylight, -3 Red & +1 Blue
ISO: Auto, up to ISO 3200

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs using this Agfa Optima recipe on my Fujifilm X-T1:

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Eggs in a Bowl – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Take a Picture Pronto – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Fruity Cereal – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Stealth Mode – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

 

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Suburban Alleyway – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Windows & Shadows – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Pine Tree & Sky – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Green & Fence – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Rural Metal Fence – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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Marshland Sky – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

See also: Film Simulation Recipes

Help Fuji X Weekly

Nobody pays me to write the content found on fujixweekly.com. There's a real cost to operating and maintaining this site, not to mention all the time that I pour into it. If you appreciated this article, please consider making a one-time gift contribution. Thank you!

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My Fujifilm X-T30 Acros Film Simulation Recipe (Agfa APX 400)


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Cloud Over The White Ridge – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Acros

I made a new Acros recipe! I’ve been playing around lately with the Acros settings on my Fujifilm X-T30, trying to create a certain look (which I’m still working on), and I stumbled upon some interesting settings. I tried them out for a few days and wanted to share my findings with you. I think some of you might like this one!

This recipe is not intended to mimic the look of any particular film, but it’s in the neighborhood of a couple different black-and-white stocks. The closest might be Agfa APX 400 (the newer version), but it’s not an exact match for that film. I don’t think it really matters if it’s an exact match or not, it has an analog black-and-white look that’s easy to appreciate!

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Shopping Carts – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Acros

The idea behind this film simulation recipe is to have a lower-contrast option that doesn’t look flat. It seems to be especially well suited for high-contrast scenes, but there’s a certain beauty in low-contrast scenes where it produces almost a faded aesthetic. This Acros recipe is really great for certain situations, and it’s one of my favorite Acros recipes that I’ve created. If you don’t have an X-Trans IV camera, you can still use this recipe, except you can’t use Color Chrome Effect or Toning, so the results will be slightly different, but still very similar.

Acros (Acros+Y, Acros+R, Acros+G)
Dynamic Range: DR400
Highlight: -2
Shadow: +4
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpening: +4
Grain Effect: Weak
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
Toning: +1 (warm)
ISO: Auto up to ISO 12800
Exposure Compensation: +2/3 to +1-1/3 (typically)

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs using this recipe on the Fujifilm X-T30:

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Frozen Reservoir – Causey Reservoir, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Acros

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Mid Morning Mountain – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Acros

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Head In The Clouds – Ogden Canyon, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Acros

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Mountain Obscured – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Acros

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Reaching For Grass – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Acros

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Jo by a Window – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Acros

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Girl Sitting – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Acros

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Bread Cutting – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Acros

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The Course Toward – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Acros

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Asleep – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Acros

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Couch – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Acros

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Three Vases By A Window – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Acros

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White Flower Bouquet – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Acros

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Dead Rose Leaves – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Acros

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Hiding Hydrant – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – Acros

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Fujifilm Provia Film Simulation Settings – Or, My Agfa Optima 200 Recipe


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Colorful Chalk – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T20 “Agfa Optima”

With the start of the new year I decided that I wanted to rethink my Fujifilm film simulation settings and make new recipes with each option. I wanted to start with Provia, not only because it’s the “standard” option on Fujifilm X cameras, but also because I’ve been asked many times to create a film simulation recipe that uses Provia as the base. I do have a film simulation recipe that uses Provia, but it’s definitely not for everyone. This one could actually be someone’s standard recipe on their camera.

I’ve never been a fan of the Provia film simulation on Fujifilm X cameras, partly because the film simulation looks very little like the film that it derives its name from. Curiously, Provia film actually more closely resembles the Astia film simulation and Astia film more closely resembles the Provia film simulation (although neither are close to being an exact match). I don’t think Fujifilm ever considered making the Provia film simulation resemble the film that it was named after or really any film, they just wanted to use the trademark name for their standard setting. The Provia film simulation is designed to give generally pleasing results to the masses. Some people love it, but I personally find it to be the least interesting of the color options available.

While I never intended to mimic the look of any specific film with this recipe, I think that it fairly closely resembles Agfa Optima 200. If you are looking for an Agfa Optima recipe, look no further! Agfa made many different films over the years. They were never as big as Kodak or Fujifilm, but they weren’t that far behind, either. Agfa Optima 200 was a color negative film that was introduced in 1996, replacing AgfaColor XRS 200, and was discontinued in 2005. I never used this film myself, but I have seen it in person and on the internet plenty of times, so I have a good idea of what it looks like. Even though I didn’t intend to recreate the look of a film with this recipe, the fact that it happens to resembles one is a very happy accident. Sometimes it’s better to be lucky than good.

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Morning Egg Bowl – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T20 “Agfa Optima”

I’ve found that this particular film simulation recipe looks best when using an ISO between 1600 and 3200. That’s not to say that you shouldn’t use a lower or higher ISO, because I certainly do, but for some reason that ISO range seems to produce the most pleasing result. I have flirted with the idea setting the ISO range to be between 1600 and 3200, but I have yet to do that. This recipe says to set ISO to Auto up to ISO 6400, but please don’t feel like you have to set it to that just because that’s what settings I typed out. As always, choose what works best for you and your photography.

Provia
Dynamic Range: DR100
Highlight: -2
Shadow: +2
Color: -2
Noise Reduction: -3
Sharpening: 0
Grain Effect: Weak
White Balance: Auto, -1 Red & -1 Blue
ISO: Auto up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: +2/3 to +1 (typically)

Example photographs, all straight-out-of-camera JPEGs made using this Provia film simulation recipe:

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Coca-Cola Cans – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T20 “Agfa Optima”

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Bolsey 35 Model B – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T20 “Agfa Optima”

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Mercantile Coffee Cup – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T20 “Agfa Optima”

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Durable Nonstick Pot – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T20 “Agfa Optima”

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Oil Pastels – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T20 “Agfa Optima”

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Table Curve – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T20 “Agfa Optima”

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Window Grass – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T20 “Agfa Optima”

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Indoor Decor – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T20 “Agfa Optima”

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Blinded – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T20 “Agfa Optima”

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Shrub In The Snow – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T20 “Agfa Optima”

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Waiting For Warmer Weather – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T20 “Agfa Optima”

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For Everything There Is A Season – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T20 “Agfa Optima”

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Fading Light On The Ridge – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T20 “Agfa Optima”

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My Fujifilm X100F Agfa Scala Film Simulation Recipe


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Kitchen – Waco, TX – Fujifilm X100F “Agfa Scala”

I love the Acros film simulation that Fujifilm included in their X-Trans III cameras. It’s the closest thing to actual film that I have ever found in a digital camera. I made two different Acros recipes for my X100F: original recipe and Extra Crispy Push-Process. I love both; however, I find myself using Acros Push-Process more than my “standard” settings just because it’s more dramatic. I will sometimes adjust each recipe to taste, depending on the situation.

What’s interesting about black-and-white film photography is that all the different film options look fairly similar, yet people have their one or two film stocks that they absolutely love. The differences in contrast, dynamic range and grain aren’t typically wildly different. Black-and-white films are more alike than not alike, but there are indeed differences, sometimes very subtle, sometimes quite noticeable. What is more unique to each film is what can be done in the lab, as each film will respond to different development techniques differently. There’s a lot that can be done in the darkroom to set apart the films from each other. In fact, one film stock could have many different looks, depending on what exactly you do with it.

This film simulation recipe was made by just messing around with the settings. I found something that I liked so I shot with it for awhile. The more I used it the more I liked it. As I was shooting with it, I kept having this feeling that it resembled some film that I’d used before, but I couldn’t put my finger on exactly which one. After a few weeks I finally figured it out: these settings produce results similar to Agfa Scala.

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Taos Tourist – Taos, NM – Fujifilm X100F “Agfa Scala”

Agfa Scala was a black-and-white slide film. It was unusual in that it was a reversal film and not a negative film. Most black-and-white films are negatives, and most reversal films are color. If you shot a lot of slides, this was an intriguing choice. I used it a number of times. The last roll of Scala that I shot couldn’t be developed as it required a special process that had been discontinued (it’s my understanding that there is a lab in Denver that can now develop Scala). There were people who really loved Scala, and there were people who really did not, mostly because it wasn’t a negative film. Since it was a slide, there wasn’t a whole lot one could do to manipulate the look it produced.

It was quite by accident that I created an Agfa Scala film simulation for my Fujifilm X100F. I’m glad that I stumbled upon it, because it produces excellent results. Interestingly enough, it only looks subtly different than my original Acros recipe, and I think that real Acros and real Scala also produce similar results, and the small differences are, to an extent, accurately replicated in the two recipes. It was a happy accident, and sometimes it’s better to be lucky than good.

Acros (Acros+Y, Acros+R, Acros+G)
Dynamic Range: DR100
Highlight: +4
Shadow: 0
Noise Reduction: -3
Sharpening: 0
Grain Effect: Weak
ISO: Auto up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: -1/3 to +1/3 (typically)

Example photos, all straight-out-of-camera JPEGs captured using my Fujifilm X100F Agfa Scala Film Simulation recipe:

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Two Towers – Dallas, TX – Fujifilm X100F “Agfa Scala”

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Santuario de Guadalupe – Santa Fe, NM – Fujifilm X100F “Agfa Scala”

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Cafe Flowers – Pawhuska, OK – Fujifilm X100F “Agfa Scala”

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Monochrome Silos – Waco, TX – Fujifilm X100F “Agfa Scala”

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Storm Shelter – McKinney, TX – Fujifilm X100F “Agfa Scala”

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Truck Stop – Bowie, TX – Fujifilm X100F “Agfa Scala”

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Ex Lover – Amarillo, TX – Fujifilm X100F “Agfa Scala”

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Semi & Dinosaur – Santa Rosa, NM – Fujifilm X100F “Agfa Scala”

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Grain Hoppers – Westlake, TX – Fujifilm X100F “Agfa Scala”

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BNSF Alliance Yard – Haslet, TX – Fujifilm X100F “Agfa Scala”

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Kitchen Camera – Waco, TX – Fujifilm X100F “Agfa Scala”

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Apples To Apples – Haslet, TX – Fujifilm X100F “Agfa Scala”

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Forgotten Sandals – Princeton, TX – Fujifilm X100F “Agfa Scala”

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Flower In The Pond – Princeton, TX – Fujifilm X100F “Agfa Scala”

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Apple Tree Fence – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X100F “Agfa Scala”

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My Fujifilm X-Pro2 Vintage Agfacolor Film Simulation Recipe


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Always Moving Ahead – Rawlins, WY – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & Meike 35mm

I stumbled across a new film simulation recipe while travelling through Wyoming last month. I saw this peculiar classic car parked in front of a gas station with an old radio station in the background, and an analog-film-esque photograph seemed most appropriate for the scene. Normally I’d go with my Vintage Kodachrome recipe, but I decided to play around with the setting and came up with something new.

At first these settings, which I’m calling Vintage Agfacolor, reminded me of Autochrome, an early color film from France. But after using the recipe for a few images, I decided that it more resembles 1950’s Agfachrome. It’s not exactly Agfachrome, but it definitely produces a vintage Agfacolor look.

While never as popular as Kodak, Agfa produced many great films (and other photography products) for still pictures and cinematography back in the good ol’ days. I used a few of their products, including paper for my black-and-white pictures. I liked Agfa, and it’s too bad that they don’t make film anymore.

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Purple Weed Bloom – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & Fujinon 60mm

While the title says “X-Pro2,” this film simulation recipe can be used by all X-Trans III cameras. I have it saved on my X-Pro2, and I’ll likely plug it into my X100F at some point in the near future. All of my film simulations are interchangeable between the latest generation of Fujifilm cameras.

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

Example photos, all camera-made JPEGs using my Fujifilm X-Pro2 Vintage Agfacolor Film Simulation recipe:

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Johanna In A Swing – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & Fujinon 60mm

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Scout – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & 7artisans 25mm

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Handbag Abstract – South Weber, Utah – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & Fujinon 60mm

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Clouds Over Mountain Green – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & Fujinon 60mm

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Winnie The Pooh – Riverdale, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & Fujinon 60mm

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Red Handles – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & Fujinon 60mm

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Left Behind Lunch – SLC, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & Fujinon 16mm

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City Sun – SLC, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & Fujinon 16mm

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Airport Walkway – SLC, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & Fujinon 16mm

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Window Waiting – SLC, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro2 & Fujinon 16mm

See also: My Fujifilm X-Pro2 Dramatic Classic Chrome Film Simulation Recipe

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Which Film Simulation Recipes, When? — Part III (X-Trans III)

Urban Palm Leaves – Sun City West, AZ – Fujifilm X-H1 – “Everyday Astia”

Part 1 Part 2

When should you use which Film Simulation Recipes on your Fujifilm X-Trans III camera? With so many recipes to choose from, it can be difficult to know what recipe you should select in a given situation, and this article is intended to help you with that. If you haven’t read Part 1, it’s important to do so because it explains what exactly we’re doing—the backstory—which is important to understand. There’s a video to watch in that article, too. Take a moment right now to hop on over to Part 1 (click here) before continuing on with this post, if you haven’t viewed it already. Also, check out Part 2 (click here) if you missed that.

Like Part 2, I set out to recommend seven recipes, one for each C1-C7 Custom Preset, that don’t share the same white balance type, because X-Trans III cameras—X-Pro2, X100F, X-E3, X-T2, X-T20 & X-H1—cannot remember a White Balance Shift within the C1-C7 Custom Presets. If two recipes share the same white balance type but not the same shift, then when you switch presets you must remember to adjust the shift, too. That can be inconvenient and frustrating, so my best solution is to program recipes that use different white balance types and/or share the same white balance type and shift. The user experience is much improved, but you might not be able to program all of your favorite recipe at the same time, which is the one downside to doing this. It was a difficult task, but I think I came up with a good set for you.

If you have a Fujifilm X-T3 or X-T30, you can use these recipes, too, by simply setting Color Chrome Effect to Off. Also, if you have a newer X-Trans IV camera (or X-Trans V), you can use these recipes by additionally setting Color Chrome FX Blue to Off, Clarity to 0, and choosing a Grain size (either Small or Large). 

C1 — Improved Velvia — Golden Hour

Lava Pond – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-H1 – “Improved Velvia”

For sunrise or sunset photography, this “Improved Velvia” Film Simulation Recipe is one of your best bets! It’s great anytime of the day or night when you need vibrant colors, so it has a lot of versatility, but it is especially nice during “golden hour” when the sun is low to the horizon. This recipe uses the Auto white balance type; if I wasn’t concerned about white balance type, I’d probably still choose this recipe.

Alternatives for “golden hour” photography:

Velvia
Kodak Ektachrome 100SW
Kodak Portra 400
Kodak Ektar 100

C2 — Kodak Gold 200 — Midday

Pear Blossom Day – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – “Kodak Gold 200”

“Midday” is simply daylight conditions outside of when the sun is low to the horizon, and for this category I’m recommending Kodak Gold 200. Even though this is a recipe for the X-T3/X-T30, it is fully compatible with X-Trans III cameras. It’s great for sunny conditions—midday or otherwise—and is good for landscapes and portraits. If you have this programmed into your camera, you’re going to use it a lot, perhaps more than any of the others. It uses the Daylight white balance type; if I wasn’t concerned about white balance type, I’d still choose this one, although each in the alternatives list are excellent options, too.

Alternatives for “midday” photography:

Kodachrome II
Dramatic Classic Chrome
Everyday Astia

Kodak Ultramax

C3 — Ektachrome E100GX — Overcast

Pink Rose Blossom – Ogden, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – “Ektachrome E100GX”

If it’s a rainy, overcast day, the Ektachrome E100GX is an excellent Film Simulation Recipe to try. It’s also great for many daylight situations, so it offers good versatility. This recipe uses the Fluorescent 2 white balance type; if I wasn’t concerned about white balance type I would choose Fujicolor Superia 800 instead, but this is a close second-best, and I feel good about recommending it anyway.

Alternatives for “overcast” photography:

Fujicolor Superia 800
Fujicolor Pro 160NS

PRO Neg. Hi
Kodak GT 800-5

C4 — Color Negative — Indoor

Cameras and Coffee – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – “Color Negative”

For natural light indoor photography, I recommend the Color Negative Film Simulation Recipe, which is another one that’s intended for the X-T3/X-T30, but is fully compatible with X-Trans III cameras. It uses the Fluorescent 1 white balance type; if I wasn’t concerned about white balance type I would choose Agfa Optima 200 instead, but this is still a solid option.

Alternatives for “indoor” photography:

Agfa Optima 200
Fujicolor Pro 400H
“Eterna”
Eterna

C5 — Fujicolor NPL 160 Tungsten — Nighttime

Dusk Lamps – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-H1 – “Fujicolor NPL 160 Tungsten”

For nighttime or indoor artificial light situations, try the Fujicolor NPL 160 Tungsten Film Simulation Recipe. It does especially well for “blue hour” photography at dusk or dawn, when the sun is below the horizon. This recipe uses the Fluorescent 3 white balance type; if I wasn’t concerned about white balance type, I would choose CineStill 800T instead, but this is a good second-best.

Alternatives for “nighttime” photography:

CineStill 800T
Classic Chrome
Melancholy Blue
Cine Teal

C6 — Xpro — Alternative Process

Suburban Abstract – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-H1 – “Xpro”

There aren’t very many options for this category, but the Xpro recipe is an excellent recipe, producing a cross-process aesthetic. It uses the Kelvin white balance type; if I wasn’t concerned about white balance type, I would probably choose the Cross Process recipe instead, but this is quite similar, so you can’t go wrong either way.

Alternatives for “alternative process” photography:

Cross Process
Vintage Kodachrome
Vintage Kodacolor
Vintage Agfacolor

C7 — Analog Monochrome — B&W

Doll – Bountiful, UT – Fujifilm X-H1 – “Analog Monochrome”

Last but certainly not least is black-and-white, and for that I recommend the Analog Monochrome Film Simulation Recipe. This recipe is really good for most situations. It uses the Incandescent white balance type; if I wasn’t concerned about white balance type, I would be happy with this recipe or any in the alternatives list below, which are all good.

Alternatives for “B&W” photography:

Acros
Agfa Scala
Ilford HP5 Plus
Kodak Tri-X Push Process

Stay tuned, because Part IV is coming soon!

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Which Film Simulation Recipes, When? — Part 2 (X-T3 & X-T30)

Sunset Cyclists – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – “Velvia v2

Part 1 Part 3

When should you use which Film Simulation Recipes on your Fujifilm X-T3 or X-T30 camera? With so many recipes to choose from, it can be difficult to know what recipe you should select in a given situation, and this article is intended to help you with that. If you haven’t read Part 1, it’s important to do so because it explains what exactly we’re doing—the backstory—which is important to understand. There’s a video to watch in that article, too. Take a moment right now to hop on over to Part 1 (click here) before continuing on with this post, if you haven’t viewed it already.

What makes Part 2 more challenging than the first article is that the X-T3 and X-T30 cameras cannot remember a White Balance Shift within the C1-C7 Custom Presets. If two recipes share the same white balance type but not the same shift, then when you switch presets you must remember to adjust the shift, too. That can be inconvenient and frustrating, so my best solution is to program recipes that use different white balance types and/or share the same white balance type and shift. The user experience is much improved, but you might not be able to program all of your favorite recipe at the same time, which is the one downside to doing this. What I set out to do with this article is recommend seven recipes, one for each C1-C7 Custom Preset, that don’t share the same white balance type, or, if they do, share the same shift. It turned out to be a somewhat impossible task, but I think I came up with a good set for you.

Also, if you have a newer X-Trans IV camera (or X-Trans V), you can use these recipes, too, by simply setting Color Chrome FX Blue to Off, Clarity to 0, and choosing a Grain size (either Small or Large). While Part III will cover X-Trans III, some of these recipes are compatible with X-Trans III cameras; the key is to look for whether they call for Color Chrome Effect or not—if not, it’s compatible with X-Trans III. Also, X-Trans III recipes are fully compatible with the X-T3 and X-T30 (just set Color Chrome Effect to Off), but I avoided those recipes for this article because I wanted to save them for Part 3.

Let’s dive in!

C1 — Fujichrome Sensia 100 — Golden Hour

Sunrise Lamp – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30 – “Fujichrome Sensia 100”

Fujichrome Sensia 100 is one of my favorite recipes for sunrise and sunset colors. It does pretty well throughout the entirety of “golden hour” but when the sky is pink and purple and red it does especially well. This recipe is an excellent option for shade, and does pretty well in many situations, including natural light portraits, so it has some good versatility. It uses the Fluorescent 2 (sometimes called Neon 2) white balance type; if I wasn’t concerned about white balance type, I would strongly consider Kodak Portra 400 v2 instead of this one, but I do think Fujichrome Sensia 100 is a solid choice for “golden hour” photography.

Alternatives for “golden hour” photography:

Kodak Portra 400 v2
Velvia
Velvia v2

Kodacolor
Vintage Kodacolor

C2 — Kodak Vision3 250D — Midday

Working – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-E4 – “Kodak Vision3 250D

This was actually a really touch decision because there are so many great options for “midday”—which simply is daylight outside of “golden hour”—and I had to choose one, so I went with Kodak Vision3 250D. This is such a good (and underutilized) recipe, and does well in a number of situations, including “golden hour” and shade and portraits and (of course) midday. It uses the Fluorescent 1 (sometimes called Neon 1) white balance type; if I wasn’t concerned about white balance type, I could go with Kodachrome 64 or Kodak Portra 160 or Kodak Gold 200 or (of course) Kodak Vision3 250D and be very happy with any of them, they’re all good.

Alternatives for “midday” photography:

Kodachrome 64
Kodak Portra 160
Kodak Gold 200
Fujicolor 100 Industrial
Urban Vintage Chrome

C3 — Classic Slide — Overcast

Winter Reeds – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – “Classic Slide”

The Classic Slide recipe is one of my top choices for heavy overcast, rainy, dreary days. It’s also good for shade or midday or even “golden hour” photography—it’s another recipe with some good versatility. It uses the Daylight white balance type; if I wasn’t concerned about white balance type, I’d still choose this one, but Negative Print is a good runner up.

Alternatives for “overcast” photography:

Negative Print
Eterna

Eterna v3
Fujicolor Pro 160NS
Lomography Color 100

C4 — Cinematic Negative — Indoor

Scrabble – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30 – “Cinematic Negative

Cinematic Negative is a very versatile recipe, and I like it for all of the situations we’ve talked about above, but I also like it for indoor photography, both natural light and (to an extent) artificial light (although I would consider a “Nighttime” recipe below as a first choice for artificial light). It uses the Incandescent white balance type; if I wasn’t concerned about white balance type, Analog Color would be my top choice for indoor natural light photography, but Cinematic Negative is a close second, so I’d be happy to have it in C4, where it could also be used for a number of other situations.

Alternatives for “indoor” photography:

Analog Color
Color Negative
Fujicolor Pro 400H
Warm Contrast
Polaroid II

C5 — Jeff Davenport Night — Nighttime

Wet Glass Bokeh – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – “Jeff Davenport Night”

If it’s between dusk and dawn, especially if there are city lights, Jeff Davenport Night is the recipe to use. Period. It uses a Kelvin white balance type; if I wasn’t concerned about white balance type I’d still use this recipe, no questions asked.

Alternatives for “nighttime” photography:

Kodacolor VR
Porto 200
Fujicolor Pro 400H Overexposed
Eterna Low Contrast

Polaroid

C6 — Expired Eterna — Alternative Process

Bloom Purple – South Weber, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – “Expired Eterna”

The “Alternative Process” category is a fun one. These are recipes you probably wouldn’t use all of the time, only occasionally just for the joy of it. I chose “Expired Eterna” because of the white balance type—Auto—but if I wasn’t concerned about white balance type, I would choose Redscale, Cross Process Film, or Kodak Elite Chrome 200 Color Fade—any of them, they’re all fun. Vintage Color Fade also uses Auto white balance, but I didn’t choose it because it requires double-exposures, which can be tricky, but if you’re up for the challenge, go with that one instead.

Alternatives for “alternative process” photography:

Redscale
Cross Process Film
Kodak Elite Chrome 200 Color Fade
Vintage Color Fade
Cyanotype

C7 — Dramatic Monochrome — B&W

The Obscurity of Light – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – “Dramatic Monochrome”

Last but not least is B&W, and for that I chose Dramatic Monochrome, which is a good recipe that I really like. It uses Auto white balance without a shift; however, the other Auto white balance recipe (Expired Eterna above) does use a shift. How I would handle this is I wouldn’t worry about the shift for this recipe, just use the shift of Expired Eterna, because, while white balance shift does affect black-and-white pictures, it’s not as big of an impact as color images, and it won’t significantly change the aesthetic of Dramatic Monochrome—only subtly—and you’re not likely to notice, so I just wouldn’t worry about it. If I wasn’t concerned about white balance type, I would choose Kodak Tri-X 400 (read the article for that recipe to see how to make it compatible with the X-T3 and X-T30), because it is my favorite Film Simulation Recipe.

Alternatives for “B&W” photography:

Kodak Tri-X 400
Agfa APX 400

Monochrome Kodachrome
Ilford Delta Push-Process
Ilford HP5 Plus 400 Push-Process

Part III

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Creative Collective 031: Comparing 10 Recipes For Indoor Photography — Part 1

Sunlit Table Corner – Avondale, AZ – Fujifilm X100V – “Kodak Royal Gold 400”

You might have a favorite Film Simulation Recipe, but when the light changes you’re disappointed with the results. This is a pretty common problem, and not unique to Fujifilm or even a new issue to photography. This happens because many of my recipes are modeled after or are inspired by analog film, and this is a long-time film problem.

With a few rare exceptions, film is either daylight balanced (usually around 5500K) or tungsten balanced (typically 3200K)—one for use in daylight, and the other for use in artificial light. If you encountered light outside of the temperature that the film was intended to be shot in, you would either accept the results or use a color correction filter (described in this article) to fix the imbalance. Many Film Simulation Recipes have this same issue: they’re intended to be used in a specific light condition, and outside of that they might not produce the best results.

CocoLove – Jackson Hole, WY – Fujifilm X100V – “Serr’s 500T”

When shooting film, your best option is to use the correct film for the situation; with recipes, I think this is also the best solution. Sometimes this isn’t practical, and so you could use color correction filters (both with film and film simulations), although carrying around a bag full of filters isn’t an especially convenient option. With digital, you have an added solution: adjust the white balance, which is essentially the digital equivalent of using color correction filters. For the sake of this article, we’ll focus on the first option, which is selecting a Film Simulation Recipe that does well in the light situation that you find yourself shooting in.

With over 250 Film Simulation Recipes on this website (and the Fuji X Weekly App), it can be hard to know which ones perform best in which light. In this article (and hopefully additional articles in the future), we’re going to compare how 10 recipes perform in various light conditions. It should be enlightening, and hopefully you’ll have a better understanding of when to use which recipes.

Same picture, different recipes

Before we jump into it, I think it’s important to briefly discuss Kelvin. The measurement of the temperature (warm or cold) of light is called Kelvin, and the scale is pretty large, ranging from 0 to 20000—the lower the number, the warmer the light, and the higher the number, the cooler the light. The typical temperature of a candle flame is 1900K. Artificial light (incandescent lights, halogen bulbs, fluorescent tubes, etc.) is usually between 2800K and 4300K, depending on the specific bulbs being used. “Golden Hour” light (sunrise and sunset) is around 3500K. Morning and afternoon sunlight (outside of golden hour) is typically between 4500K and 5000K, while midday sunlight is typically 5600K. Overcast sky often ranges from 6000K to 9000K, and shade can be 8000K to 10000K. Your camera’s white balance is designed to “balance” these temperatures so that white is white—a warm light will need a cool white balance, and a cool light will need a warm white balance.

With that prerequisite understanding, let’s take a look at how 10 different Film Simulation Recipes handle various Kelvin temperature light conditions.

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Join Fuji X Weekly LIVE this Thursday!

The next SOOC episode will be live on Thursday, September 9th! Join Fujifilm X-Photographer Nathalie Boucry and myself as we finish our discussion of the Vintage Agfacolor Film Simulation Recipe and introduce the next recipe-of-the-month: Kodak Portra 400. Which Kodak Portra 400 recipe? These three: Here, Here, & Here. Yes, all three! The PreShow starts at 9:30 AM Pacific, 12:30 PM Eastern Time; if you can’t make the PreShow, be sure to tune in by 10:00 AM Pacific, 1:00 PM Eastern to catch the broadcast.

For those who don’t know, SOOC is a monthly live video series, with each episode focused on a different Film Simulation Recipe. It is a collaboration between Tame Your Fujifilm (Fujifilm X-Photographer Nathalie Boucry) and Fuji X Weekly (Ritchie Roesch). SOOC is a fun and educational experience where we not only talk about Fujifilm camera settings, but also answer your questions and give tips and tricks. Basically, we’re trying to help you master your Fujifilm camera, with a focus on simplifying your photographic workflow.

Nathalie has an excellent write-up for the Vintage Agfacolor recipe on her website, so be sure to check that out!

See you Thursday!

Fujifilm X-E4 (X-Trans IV) Film Simulation Recipe: GAF 500

Urban Rhino – Phoenix, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4 – “GAF 500”

Hold onto your hats, because, for this Film Simulation Recipe, we’re going to dive deep into the obscure and practically forgotten history of a unique film called GAF 500. We’re going to explore the intriguing history of GAF, discover what made this film unique, and discuss how this new GAF 500 Film Simulation Recipe came to be. You are in for a treat today!

GAF actually began in 1886 as the Standard Paint Company of New Jersey. After acquiring a holding company in 1928 that had (among other things) majority ownership of AGFA, the company changed its name to General Aniline & Film—GAF for short. Also in 1928, AGFA merged with Ansco, so in addition to acquiring AGFA, GAF also got ownership of Ansco, which was founded in 1842. Originally named E. Anthony & Co., after merging with Scovill Manufacturing in 1901 it was renamed Ansco (“An” from Anthony and “sco” from Scovill). Ansco was headquartered in New York, and was Kodak’s biggest competitor for many decades. The merger with AGFA was intended to bring Ansco’s photography products to a global market, which would allow them to better compete against Kodak.

Then World War II happened, and in 1941 the U.S. government seized and took ownership of GAF and Ansco (separating it from AGFA, which was a German-owned business), and officially merged Ansco into GAF. The U.S. government retained ownership of GAF until 1965, when it sold all of its shares.

Morning Sunlight on a Curtain – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4 – “GAF 500”

In 1967 GAF introduced a revolutionary new film: GAF 500. It was a high-ISO 35mm color transparency (slide) film—the highest ISO color film during its time; the second-highest color ISO film (another GAF emulsion) was rated at ISO 200, so it was more than twice as “fast” (as they called it back then) as the second fastest. 30 years prior to the introduction of GAF 500, the highest ISO color film was rated at ISO 8, so having an ISO 500 option was unthinkable back then, and a lot of people wondered why anyone would need such a high-ISO film. While it was mostly sold under the brand name GAF, it was sometimes sold as Anscochrome 500. Was GAF/Anscochrome 500 any good?

From all accounts, you either loved GAF 500 or hated it. The grain was extremely pronounced. Colors were “good” yet muted (a.k.a. “neutral” or “natural”) and generally considered to be not as “nice” as Kodak’s. It didn’t push-process nearly as well as, it wasn’t quite as sharp as, and it didn’t pair with color correction filters as well as Kodachrome or Ektachrome. It was inferior to all other color emulsions except for one fact: it was fast! You could use it when other films wouldn’t work due to low light. If it was dark and you wanted to shoot color, GAF 500 was your best bet.

GAF 500 had a warm color cast—some described it as orange, some said red-orange, and others stated that it was red—not as warm as some Kodak emulsions, but warm nonetheless. The shadows tended to lean blue. If you pushed the film, it had a purple cast across the frame. Some people liked how it looked when shooting under fluorescent lights or stage lights, and was a popular choice for concert photography.

Illuminated Cat & Sleeping Child – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4 – “GAF 500”

What people seemed to like most about GAF 500 is that it was gritty yet soft. It was grainy, like a high-ISO black-and-white film, and it was contrasty with a very narrow exposure latitude—it was easy to blow out the whites or block up the blacks; however, it also had low color saturation (or was “more neutral” as some put it) , and the gradations were gentle. It was like a biker ballerina, if you will. Some people loved the aesthetic of GAF 500, and would use it even in bright-light situations just for the look that it produced. Many photographers steered clear of it just because there were “better” options, such as push-processing lower ISO films.

There was a time in the 1970’s that GAF was everywhere. It was the official film of Disneyland, and, for a time, was the only brand of film that you could purchase inside the park. Sears sold GAF cameras and film. Henry Fonda was the spokesman. Despite that, GAF struggled to be profitable competing against Kodak, Fujifilm, and other brands.

GAF made a few minor “improvements” to their ISO 500 film over the years, and (from what I read) it seemed to get “better” towards the mid-1970’s. In 1977, due to sluggish sales, GAF decided to get out of the photography business altogether. GAF/Anscochrome 500 was discontinued, along with all of the other GAF films. The Ansco brand name was licensed out to other companies for years to come, although it was largely used for rebranded films and not original emulsions. GAF 500 was gone forever.

Garden Spiderweb – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4 – “GAF 500”

Perhaps thanks to Alien Skin Exposure software, there’s been a renewed interest in GAF 500. Alien Skin has a GAF 500 preset that is supposed to allow you to mimic the aesthetic of the film with your digital images. I’ve used it before, and that’s the closest I’ve come to shooting GAF 500. It’s been awhile since I’ve used Exposure software, so I don’t recall too much about the preset (other than it was grainy). So, for this Film Simulation Recipe, I spent significant time studying whatever I could find on the film. There’s a lot of written information out there, but photographs were hard to come by. Still, I found some, and did my best to emulate the look with my Fujifilm X-E4.

Recreating GAF 500 on my Fujifilm camera was tricky for several reasons. First, I wouldn’t have considered Eterna as the best base (just because it lacks the necessary contrast to emulate a contrasty slide film), but after trying Classic Chrome, PRO Neg. Low, and Eterna Bleach Bypass, I decided to give Eterna a go. Bingo! This one had the right tonality (those “gentle gradations”); however, I do wish that Shadow could be set to +5 to get deeper blacks, but that’s not an option. Another tricky aspect was achieving the warm, reddish/orangish color cast that could still produce a hint of blue in the shadows. Fujifilm cameras aren’t capable of split-toning, so I did my best to approximate this with the white balance; I do wish the shadows were just a little more blue, but it’s not possible without sacrificing the overall warmth. Another challenge was replicating the grain. Fujifilm’s option of Grain Strong Large wasn’t nearly as pronounced as it needed to be, so I set out to supplement it with digital noise using high-ISO. But how high? ISO 1600 wasn’t nearly enough. ISO 3200 wasn’t enough, either. ISO 6400… much closer, but not quite there, either. Should I dare try ISO 12800? Yes, that’s it! More importantly, it looks good, which I had my doubts about.

With slide film, depending on the emulsion, you had to nail the exposure exactly, as the dynamic range was extraordinarily narrow. You didn’t know what you had until you got the film back from the lab (or developed it yourself at home); some frames would be underexposed, some frames would be overexposed, and some frames (hopefully) would be correctly exposed—I found examples of all three when searching for GAF 500 photographs. You can achieve similar aesthetics with this recipe if you want, by either dropping the exposure a little or increasing it a little—the exact look of this recipe will vary some depending on the exposure. While I couldn’t replicate every potential GAF 500 aesthetic with this one recipe, and no recipe will ever be 100% spot-on accurate (because of the limited tools available on the camera, and because the results of one film can vary significantly depending an a whole host of factors), I do believe that this recipe is pretty close to replicating the look and feel of GAF 500 film—at least from the perspective of someone who was born after the film was discontinued, so I never had a chance to use it myself.

Offroad Tricycle – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4 – “GAF 500”

Because this “GAF 500” recipe uses Clarity and Color Chrome FX Blue, it is compatible with the Fujifilm X-Pro3, X100V, X-T4, X-S10, X-E4, and X-T30 II cameras, and is not compatible with the X-T3 or X-T30. Those with X-Trans V cameras can also use it, and it should render identically, although I have no first-hand experience to verify that. Those with newer GFX cameras can use it, too, although it will render differently. Because of the ultra high-ISO that’s required, I recommend using your electronic shutter and a small aperture (like f/8, f/11, or even f/16) when shooting in bright light outdoors.

Eterna
Dynamic Range: DR100
Highlight: +2
Shadow: +4
Color: 0
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpness: -3
Clarity: -2
Grain Effect: Strong, Large
Color Chrome Effect: Off
Color Chrome Effect Blue: Strong
White Balance: 2900K, +9 Red & -9 Blue
ISO: 12800
Exposure Compensation: -2/3 to +2/3 (typically)

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs captured using this “GAF 500” Film Simulation Recipe on my Fujifilm X-E4:

Eat – Phoenix, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Bird Scooters – Phoenix, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Orange Lighter & Abandoned Home – Phoenix, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
FAO JUG – Phoenix, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Why Love? – Phoenix, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Twin Dumpsters – Phoenix, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Garfield – Phoenix, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Overhead Crane – Phoenix, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Oversized Load – Phoenix, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
And So It Begins – Phoenix, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Air Garage & Graffiti – Phoenix, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Can in the Sage – Phoenix, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Suburban Barrel Cacti – Phoenix, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Double Peace – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Table Roses – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Sunlit Curtain – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Yellow Trumpets & Sunstar – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Bougainvillea Branch in the Blue – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Orange Trumpet Flower Blossoms – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Two Yellow Trumpets – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Joy – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4

Grain examples:

Big crop to show the “grain” in the image.
Big crop to show the “grain” in the image.
Big crop to show the “grain” in the image.

Find this Film Simulation Recipe and nearly 250 more on the Fuji X Weekly — Film Recipes App!

Help Fuji X Weekly

Nobody pays me to write the content found on fujixweekly.com. There’s a real cost to operating and maintaining this site, not to mention all the time that I pour into it. If you appreciated this article, please consider making a one-time gift contribution. Thank you!

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3 B&W Nikon Z Film Simulation Recipes + 1 Bonus Color Recipe

When the Nikon Zfc was announced in 2021, I preordered it, and waited a long time for it to come. When it finally arrived, I pulled the Zfc out of the box and began to use it, and I was quickly disappointed. I said that it was most similar to the Fujifilm X-T200, yet significantly bigger, heavier, and more expensive. Still, I put the camera through its paces, and even created 11 Nikon Z Film Simulation Recipes using the Zfc. Then the camera went back into its box, and I strongly considered selling it.

After months and months of none-use, and after moving to a different state, I decided to give the Zfc one more try, but with a significant modification: I ditched the lousy Nikkor 28mm lens in favor of the TTArtisan 35mm f/1.4. Why? Because the TTArtisan lens has an aperture ring, and the Nikkor doesn’t. The TTArtisan lens is better optically than the Nikkor, too—I’m much happier with this setup. I then made three more Nikon Z recipes!

Right now I’m working on my full-review of the TTArtisan 35mm f/1.4 lens (coming very soon!), and that means using it. In the process, I made four more recipes—I guess I couldn’t help myself! Three of these are black-and-white and one is color. If you add these four to the 14 others, I now have 18 Film Simulation Recipes for Nikon Z cameras!

Obviously, I made these JPEG recipes on the Zfc, so it will render differently on the full-frame models, but I’m not sure exactly how differently, as I’ve never used a full-frame Z camera. The reports have been positive, though, so I assume that they work well, including on the more expensive bodies—I just have no first-hand experience myself.

For those who might not know what “Film Simulation Recipes” are, they’re JPEG camera settings that allow you to achieve various looks (mostly analog-inspired) straight-out-of-camera, no editing needed. It can save you a lot of time by simplifying your workflow, and it can make the process of creating photographs more enjoyable.

These will be the last Nikon Z recipes that I create, as I decided not to keep the Zfc. If you are interested in buying it (bundled with the 28mm pancake and TTArtisan 25mm lenses), let me know. It’s gently used, and has spent more time in its box than out of it. Just send me a message if you are interested. Why am I selling the Zfc? Partly because I have never been fully satisfied with it, and partly because I’ve yet to figure out where it makes sense in my photographic process—it seems out of place in my bag. If sometime in the future Nikon makes a better effort on a similar camera, I’ll certainly consider buying it; however, the Zfc was just not the one for me.

Dramatic Monochromatic

Nikon Zfc — Dramatic Monochromatic

Similarities to using a red filter with B&W film.

Picture Control: Monochrome
Quick Sharp: 0.00
Sharpening: +3.00
Mid-Range Sharpening: +2.00
Clarity: +1.00
Contrast: +1.00

Brightness: +1.00
Filter Effects: Red

Toning: B&W
Active D-Lighting: High
High ISO NR: Low
White Balance: Cloudy
WB Adjust: B6.0 G6.0
ISO: up to 6400

Nikon Zfc — Dramatic Monochromatic
Nikon Zfc — Dramatic Monochromatic
Nikon Zfc — Dramatic Monochromatic
Nikon Zfc — Dramatic Monochromatic

B&W Push-Processed

Nikon Zfc — B&W Push-Process

Resembles the contrast of B&W film that has been push-processed.

Picture Control: Graphite
Effect Level: 100
Quick Sharp: 0.00
Sharpening: +2.00
Mid-Range Sharpening: +2.00
Clarity: -2.00
Contrast: +2.00
Filter Effects: Yellow

Toning: B&W
Active D-Lighting: Extra High
High ISO NR: Low
White Balance: Direct Sunlight
WB Adjust: A0.0 G0.0
ISO: up to 6400

Nikon Zfc — B&W Push-Process
Nikon Zfc — B&W Push-Process
Nikon Zfc — B&W Push-Process
Nikon Zfc — B&W Push-Process

B&W Film

Nikon Zfc — B&W Film

Reminiscent of black-and-white negative film.

Picture Control: Carbon
Effect Level: 100
Quick Sharp: 0.00
Sharpening: +1.00
Mid-Range Sharpening: +1.00
Clarity: -2.00
Contrast: +1.00
Filter Effects: Orange

Toning: B&W
Active D-Lighting: Extra High
High ISO NR: Low
White Balance: Natural Light Auto
WB Adjust: A0.0 G0.0
ISO: up to 6400

Nikon Zfc — B&W Film
Nikon Zfc — B&W Film
Nikon Zfc — B&W Film
Nikon Zfc — B&W Film

Vintage Agfacolor Fade

Nikon Zfc — Vintage Agfacolor Fade

Reminds me of Agfacolor slides from the 1930’s

Picture Control: Graphite
Effect Level: 50
Quick Sharp: 0.00
Sharpening: 0.00
Mid-Range Sharpening: +1.00
Clarity: -2.00
Contrast: +1.00
Filter Effects: Red

Toning: Blue Green 0.00
Active D-Lighting: High
High ISO NR: Low
White Balance: Incandescent
WB Adjust: A6.0 M1.0
ISO: up to 3200

Nikon Zfc — Vintage Agfacolor Fade
Nikon Zfc — Vintage Agfacolor Fade
Nikon Zfc — Vintage Agfacolor Fade
Nikon Zfc — Vintage Agfacolor Fade

This post contains affiliate links, and if you make a purchase using my links I’ll be compensated a small amount for it.

Nikon Zfc — Amazon — B&H
TTArtisans 35mm f/1.4 — Amazon — B&H

Help Fuji X Weekly

Nobody pays me to write the content found on fujixweekly.com. There’s a real cost to operating and maintaining this site, not to mention all the time that I pour into it. If you appreciated this article, please consider making a one-time gift contribution. Thank you!

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SOOC Viewer’s Images Video!

This video is the viewer submitted photographs from SOOC Season 02 Episode 06. Yes, your wonderful pictures! The recipe-of-the-month was Fujicolor Pro 400H. I hope that you enjoyed shooting with it! Thank you to everyone who shared their images, to everyone who participated, and to everyone who tuned in!

For those who don’t know, SOOC is a monthly live video series, with each episode focused on a different Film Simulation Recipe. It is a collaboration between Tame Your Fujifilm (Fujifilm X-Photographer Nathalie Boucry) and Fuji X Weekly (Ritchie Roesch). SOOC is a fun and educational experience where we not only talk about Fujifilm camera settings, but also answer your questions and give tips and tricks. Basically, we’re trying to help you master your Fujifilm camera, with a focus on simplifying your photographic workflow.

If you missed Episode 06 when it was live, you can watch it now (below):

The current recipe-of-the-month is Vintage Agfacolor. My recommendation with this recipe is to go dark by decreasing the exposure a little. Embrace the deep shadows! Vintage Agfacolor is compatible with X-Trans III cameras. If you have an X-T3 or X-T30, simply set Color Chrome Effect to Off. If you are using an X-Pro3 or newer camera, you’ll have to additionally set Color Chrome FX Blue to Off, Clarity to 0, and choose either Grain size Small or Large (your choice). Remember to upload your images (click here) captured with the Vintage Agfacolor recipe by September 6th to be shown in the next broadcast, which will be on September 8th (mark your calendars now).

This is a complete aside, but my daughter, Joy, is really into animation. She’s still learning. She hopes to be an animator someday. She animated a little clip for Fuji X Weekly (below). She also made a short animation using the FlipaClip App as part of a remix challenge (FlipaRemix), which I’ve also included below. If you’re familiar with Studio Ghibli’s Howl’s Moving Castle, it should be instantly recognizable (yes, that’s Billy Crystal’s voice…).

SOOC is LIVE on Thursday!

The next SOOC episode will be live on Thursday, August 11! Join Fujifilm X-Photographer Nathalie Boucry and myself as we finish our discussion of the Fujicolor Pro 400H Film Simulation Recipe and introduce the next recipe-of-the-month: Vintage Agfacolor. The PreShow starts at 9:30 AM Pacific, 12:30 PM Eastern Time; if you can’t make the PreShow, be sure to tune in by 10:00 AM Pacific, 1:00 PM Eastern to catch the broadcast.

For those who don’t know, SOOC is a monthly live video series, with each episode focused on a different Film Simulation Recipe. It is a collaboration between Tame Your Fujifilm (Fujifilm X-Photographer Nathalie Boucry) and Fuji X Weekly (Ritchie Roesch). SOOC is a fun and educational experience where we not only talk about Fujifilm camera settings, but also answer your questions and give tips and tricks. Basically, we’re trying to help you master your Fujifilm camera, with a focus on simplifying your photographic workflow.

If you missed the last episode when it was live, you can watch it below:

See you on Thursday!