Understanding Color Chrome Effect & Color Chrome FX Blue (Videos)

In these two “SoundBites” (as we’re calling it) from Episode 06 of SOOC, Fujifilm X-Photographer Nathalie Boucry and I discuss Color Chrome Effect & Color Chrome FX Blue features on Fujifilm X-Trans IV cameras. These are short snippets from the show, and it gives you an idea of the type of content that’s found in a SOOC broadcast. If you missed Episode 06, I’ve included it below, so you can view it in its entirety if you’d like.

If you’ve never watched, SOOC is a monthly live video series that’s interactive. It’s a collaboration between Nathalie and I. We discuss film simulation recipes, camera settings, and answer your questions. Basically, we’re trying to help you master your Fujifilm camera, with a focus on simplifying your photographic workflow.

The film simulation recipe used in both videos is Kodachrome 64. If you don’t have the Fuji X Weekly App, be sure to download it for free today!

Fujifilm X100V New Feature: Color Chrome Effect Blue


The Fujifilm X100V, X-Pro3 and X-T4 have a new feature called Color Chrome Effect Blue. This is very similar to a different feature, which has a nearly identical name, that’s also found on X-Trans IV cameras, such as my X-T30, called Color Chrome Effect. What does Color Chrome Effect Blue do to photographs? How is it different than Color Chrome Effect? Those are questions that I hope to answer in this article.

The original Color Chrome Effect takes vibrant colors (mostly reds, but also yellows and greens to a lessor extent) and deepens their tones to retain color gradation. Fujifilm says that a short-lived color slide film called Fortia inspired this setting. Color Chrome Effect Blue is essentially the same, but for blue. It makes blues in the picture a deeper shade. It’s a lot like using a polarizing filter. You have three options: Off, Weak and Strong.

Let’s take a look at the pictures below:


Color Chrome Effect Blue Off


Color Chrome Effect Blue Weak


Color Chrome Effect Blue Strong


Color Chrome Effect Blue Strong & Color Chrome Effect Weak


Color Chrome Effect Blue Strong & Color Chrome Effect Strong

Color Chrome Effect Blue noticeably darkens the blue sky. There’s a difference between Off and Weak and Strong that’s not too hard to spot. I added Color Chrome Effect to the bottom two images, and it doesn’t affect the sky—it barely affects the warm building; it’s so subtle that it’s hard to tell the difference even upon close inspection. I believe that Color Chrome Effect Blue makes more of a difference in an image than Color Chrome Effect, but they manipulate different colors, so they have different purposes. Disappointingly, Color Chrome Effect Blue doesn’t seem to change black-and-white images much at all.

For color images where you want blues to be rendered deeper, such as blue sky, Color Chrome Effect Blue is great! It’s like using a polarizing filter. If you want reds to be rendered deeper, use the original Color Chrome Effect. I hope this helps explain what the new Color Chrome Effect Blue feature is, how it’s different than Color Chrome Effect, and when to use it.

See also:
B&W Toning

Fujifilm X-T30 – New Feature: Color Chrome Effect


Something that Fujifilm introduced on the X-T3 and included on the X-T30 (and is also found on the GFX line) is Color Chrome Effect. This is not a new film simulation, but an effect that can be added to any film simulation. What exactly is this new feature? How does it change your photos?

The inspiration for Color Chrome Effect came from one of Fujifilm’s films: Fortia 50. Fortia was a short-lived color reversal (slide) film that was basically Velvia on steroids. It had more saturation and more contrast than Velvia 50, which is saying a lot because Velvia is known for its saturation and contrast. What the engineers at Fujifilm did to create Fortia was deepen the color shades so as to retain tonality in highly saturated areas. That’s essentially what Color Chrome Effect does.

Take a look at these pictures to see how Color Chrome Effect changes the image:


Color Chrome Effect Off


Color Chrome Effect Weak


Color Chrome Effect Strong

I don’t think that Color Chrome Effect is actually adding saturation or contrast (if it is, it’s only a little), but by deepening the colors and retaining color gradation, it appears to be doing just that. It’s a neat trick, especially when you have bright colors in a scene. It’s definitely useful, and I find it pairs with the Velvia film simulation particularly well. I like to also use it with Acros+R when shooting landscapes with a blue sky.

There are two Color Chrome Effect options: Weak and Strong. I like Strong more, but occasionally it is too strong, so I will go with Weak instead. I find that Weak looks nice with Classic Chrome, and so I have been using it with that film simulation. Each picture and shooting situation should be looked at individually to determine if Color Chrome Effect will benefit the photograph, and if Weak or Strong is the better choice.

While Color Chrome Effect is a slick feature, it’s not a game-changer. It’s not something that I imagine I will use with every image, but more when the situation calls for it. And perhaps the beauty of this effect is the subtle way it changes a picture. There’s not a dramatic difference between Off and Strong, let alone Off and Weak or Weak and Strong. I appreciate that. I’m still trying to decide how Color Chrome Effect might change any of my film simulation recipes. Once I figure that out I will let you know.

Below are some photographs I captured using Color Chrome Effect:


Snowfall In Downtown Park City – Park City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30


Red Mesa – Castle Valley, UT – Fujifilm X-T30


Red Hill – Castle Valley, UT – Fujifilm X-T30


Balance Rock Evening – Arches NP, UT – Fujifilm X-T30


North Window Arch – Arches NP, UT – Fujifilm X-T30


Rock Castles – Castle Valley, UT – Fujifilm X-T30


Monochrome Mesa – Castle Valley, UT – Fujifilm X-T30


Dead Desert Tree – Moab, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

See also:
Fujifilm X-T30 – New Feature: D-Range Priority
Fujifilm X-T30 – New Feature: Eterna
Fujifilm X-T30 – New Feature: B&W Toning

3 New Features On The Fujifilm X-T3 That I Find Fascinating

When Fujifilm announced the X-T3, the first camera to feature an X-Trans IV sensor, I only paid half attention to it because I’m not in the market for a new camera. I read a couple of articles about the differences in image quality between X-Trans III and IV sensors, and also the quickness of the X-T3, and left it at that. However, I failed to notice three new features that are quite fascinating. I stumbled across these new features pretty much by accident, and wondered why they haven’t received more press. Or maybe they did and I just ignored it. Whatever the case, I thought it would be worthwhile to share it with you.

The first new feature on the Fujifilm X-T3 that I find fascinating is the Color Chrome Effect. This is something that you can toggle on or off for any film simulation, and you can choose either weak or strong. What it does is increase the color saturation while also producing deeper colors so as to increase color gradation. They got the inspiration for this feature from the limited-run Fortia film, which was wildly saturated (more so than Velvia) yet maintained great color gradations. To be clear, Color Chrome is not a new film simulation, but something that can be added to any film simulation, which will give it a slightly different look, producing subtly different results. Fujifilm intended Color Chrome to be used in highly saturated scenes. It takes a lot of processing power, so it will slow down your camera a little and drain your battery faster, but I can definitely see the usefulness of it.

The next new feature on the Fujifilm X-T3 that I find fascinating is a monochrome adjustment that allows you to tone your black and white photographs, either warm or cool (+ or – 4). As long as the weakest adjustment is subtle, I would love to use this! I like to tone my monochrome photographs, something that I have done often over the last 20 years, including when I used to print my own pictures in a darkroom. You can infuse an emotional response into a photograph simply by how it’s toned. This is something that I have wished my X-Trans III cameras could do, so it’s great to see Fujifilm include it on the next generation.

The third new feature on the Fujifilm X-T3 that I find fascinating is D-Range Priority, which is a dynamic range setting that is in addition to the traditional Dynamic Range settings (DR100, DR200 and DR400). It flattens the image to retain highlight and shadow detail. It’s not something to be used all of the time, but in ultra high contrast situations it can be useful. I found someone who has had good success using D-Range Priority for sunset pictures. This actually isn’t a new feature, as the X-H1 also has it, but it’s not found on any camera that predates the X-H1.

I imagine that all three of these features will be included on all X-Trans IV cameras. Fujifilm could choose to include the last two in X-Trans III cameras through firmware updates, but they probably won’t. It sure would be nice if they did, though! Still, it’s good to see them on the new models. It definitely gives me camera envy, but it is reassuring to know that my current Fujifilm cameras are capable of capturing great images, and while I may want these new features, I certainly don’t need them.