Fujifilm X-Trans IV Film Simulation Recipe: CineStill 50D

Wind from the West – Hammond, OR – Fujifilm X-E4 – “CineStill 50D”

CineStill 50D is Kodak Vision3 50D (a low-ISO daylight color negative motion picture film) with the remjet layer removed so that it can be developed via the C-41 process. I’ve been asked many times to recreate the look of this film for Fujifilm X cameras. I’ve attempted multiple times, but never succeeded—even this recipe I’m a little hesitant to share because it is “as close as I can get” but perhaps not as close as I’d like it to be. I think some of you will really appreciate it, and I hope everyone else can excuse that it isn’t perhaps the most accurate recipe I’ve ever made.

There were a few tricky parts creating this CineStill 50D recipe. First, I’ve never shot the film, and had to rely on examples from the internet. Second, there are at least three distinct aesthetics produced by this film, which I assume is from how it was shot, developed, and scanned. All films can vary in looks depending on a lengthy host of factors, and this one seems especially so. I picked one specific aesthetic that I came across as the basis of this recipe, and I think this recipe mimics that pretty well. Third, I came across an article stating that CineStill 50D scans must be treated as RAW images, as “they’re not finished straight out of the scanner.” That made me wonder how much editing had been done to the picture samples I found—how much of the look was from the film and how much was from the software. These were just some of the challenges.

Spring & Winter on Wasatch – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-E4 – “CineStill 50D”

Because the film is missing the remjet layer, it is particularly prone to halation, so I used a 10% CineBloom filter for a couple of these pictures (such as the one above) to mimic that. I don’t think it helped as much as I thought it might, so I discontinued that pretty quickly, but it certainly something you can try. I think this recipe looks best in direct sunlight. Under overcast, shade, indoor, or nighttime light it can produce interesting results, but is “most accurate” to the film when photographing in blue-sky daylight. Because it uses Clarity, this recipe is not compatible with the X-T3 and X-T30; however, if you use a diffusion filter—such as 10% CineBloom or 1/4 Black Pro Mist—in lieu of Clarity, that will give you similar (but not identical) results.

Dynamic Range: DR200
Highlight: -1
Shadow: 0
Color: -4
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpening: 0
Clarity: -4
Grain Effect: Weak, Small
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
Color Chrome Effect Blue: Off
White Balance: 6800K, -5 Red & -3 Blue
ISO: Auto, up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: +1/3 to +2/3 (typically)

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs using this “CineStill 50D” Film Simulation Recipe on my Fujifilm X-E4:

Seagulls Circling Haystack Rock – Cannon Beach, OR – Fujifilm X-E4
Small Church – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Cracker Barrel – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Bread Truck – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Red Flag Truck – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Tulip Sale – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Tree & Block Wall – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
House in the Trees – Hammond, OR – Fujifilm X-E4
Country Barn – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Shrub at Night – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Playing Games – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-E4

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