Film Simulation Recipes for Double Exposure Photography

Double Exposure captured with the Mystery Chrome Recipe

In the Season 3 finale of SOOC Live, Fuji X-Photographer Nathalie Boucry and I discussed double exposure photography at length, and especially how to do it in-camera on Fujifilm models. If you are interested in the topic and didn’t catch that episode when it was live, you may want to take some time and watch it now. I’ve included it below. If you are short on time, skip ahead to the 35 minute mark, and begin around there.

I’m not going to rehash all that was said during the show (you’ve got to watch it)—this is a lengthy and complicated topic that can go many different directions. Really, books can be (and have been) written about it. Instead, I want to talk about Film Simulation Recipes for double exposures, and also provide a little more explanation for some things that maybe weren’t clear in the broadcast. I hope it all makes sense by the end.

The three Film Simulation Recipes that we discussed in the show and are challenging you to shoot with for the remainder of December plus most of January are Mystery Chrome, Dramatic Monochrome, and Faded Negative. Some notes about each:

  • Mystery Chrome is fully compatible with X-Trans III cameras, plus the X-T3 and X-T30. To use it on newer models, set Color Chrome FX Blue to Off, Clarity to 0, and choose a Grain size (Small or Large… I recommend Large). For those using newer cameras, we recommend using the Average setting for this Recipe, but don’t be afraid to try Additive.
  • Dramatic Monochrome is fully compatible with the Fujifilm X-T3 and X-T30. To use it on X-Trans III cameras, simply ignore Color Chrome Effect—the results will be nearly identical. To use it on newer cameras, set Color Chrome FX Blue to Off, Clarity to 0, and choose a Grain size (Small or Large… I recommend Large). For those using newer cameras, we recommend using the Additive setting for this Recipe, but don’t be afraid to try Average.
  • Faded Negative is fully compatible with X-Trans IV cameras, except for the X-T3 and X-T30. To use it on X-Trans V models, set Color Chrome FX Blue to Weak instead of Strong. This Recipe is not found in the Fuji X Weekly App because it requires further explanation on how to use it, and the App format is not conducive to that; however, in the broadcast Nathalie provides a great tip for how you can use the New Recipe (Blank Recipe Card) feature to add it to your App if you’d like. Be sure to read the article before attempting to use this Recipe.

The third Recipe—Faded Negative—requires a different technique than the first two. It’s definitely an outside-the-box approach to double exposure photography. There are other Recipes, which are also not in the App, that require double exposures, including Faded Color, Vintage Color Fade, Bleach Bypass, Faded Monochrome, Faded Monochrome for X-Trans II, and Split-Toned B&W. You can dive pretty far down this rabbit hole if you’d like. For further ideas, check out these articles: Making Color Pictures Using Acros, B&W Toning & Multiple Exposures, How To Add Texture To Your In-Camera JPEGs, The Treachery of Images, Creative Faded Exposures, Double Exposure Art — A Simple Method, and Easy Double Exposure Photography.

In-camera double exposure on a Fujifilm X100F

You can use any Film Simulation Recipe with double exposure photography, but in my experience the ones that work best are Recipes that are especially contrasty. For the purpose of the show, we’re using three specific ones; however, feel free to try any Recipe that interests you. The color pictures below were captured using the Ferrania Solaris FG 400 Recipe, and Kodak Tri-X 400 was used for the B&W. As for submitting images for the Viewers’ Images Slideshow, please only use the Mystery Chrome, Dramatic Monochrome, and Faded Negative Recipes.

One thing that perhaps should have been demonstrated in the show but wasn’t is what in-camera double exposures look like, taking a peek at each of the two exposures individually and then the combined image. Since the newer cameras can save a RAW file of each exposure (which can be processed into a JPEG in-camera), it’s possible to demonstrate this pretty easily.

Exposure 1
Exposure 2
Double Exposure using Average
Exposure 1
Exposure 2
Double Exposure using Average
Exposure 1
Exposure 2
Double Exposure using Additive

I would say that double exposure photography takes a lot of practice to feel comfortable with, but there is a ton of potential for creativity. It’s worth trying, and it’s worth going through a lot of failures in order to get good at it. There are also so many different approaches and methods that can yield very different results. You’ll discover some of these as you practice. So my encouragement for you is to try and try again. If the pictures aren’t very good at first, don’t give up! Keep at it, and pretty soon you’ll surprise yourself with what you create.

One last thing: below I’ve included the Viewers’ Images Slideshow for the Reala Ace episode. If you haven’t yet seen it, be sure to watch it now. I want to express a very big “Thank you!” to everyone who submitted their photographs for inclusion in it. I always enjoy seeing your wonderful pictures!

My Fujifilm Christmas Wish List

A Fujifilm X100V captured with a Fujifilm X-T5 + Fujinon 90mm + Reala Ace Recipe

Fujifilm has never asked me what I’d like for Christmas, nor do I expect them to ever ask that question. I do believe there is a chance that they read this website occasionally, so I thought I would take a moment to share with them—on the off-chance that they find this article—some gear that they could “give” to me that would really make my holiday special. To be clear, I’m not suggesting that Fujifilm should send me free products (although, if they ever did, I wouldn’t say no…); instead, this is simply a list of gear that I’d love to see Fujifilm release, which would be the perfect Christmas gift for me, and probably a lot of you, too.

I don’t want to take up too much of your time, so let’s dive right into my Fujifilm Christmas Wish List! The order is least-to-most desired, but really I’d be happy with any of them.

#10 — Fujinon 135mm f/2.8

The longest prime lens that Fujifilm offers—aside from the really huge and extremely expensive 200mm f/2—is the Fujinon 90mm f/2, which is one of my absolute favorite lenses. I feel like there’s a massive gap that should be filled to some extent, and a 135mm option seems quite logical—after all, it used to be a very common focal length.

This theoretical 135mm Fujinon lens, which would be 202mm full-frame-equivalent, shouldn’t be too large or expensive. For example, I have a vintage Vivitar 135mm f/2.8 lens that is surprisingly compact. So the design team goals should be to keep it a similar size and weight to the Fujinon 90mm f/2, and with an MSRP no more than $1,200 (under $1,000 would be even better). Of course some compromises might be necessary, and one that I’m ok with is the maximum aperture; I’d prefer f/2.8, but f/3.5 would be fine if something’s got to give (the price should be a little less if it is f/3.5). I think such a lens would be appreciated by those who find the 90mm not-quite-long-enough sometimes, which would likely be a fairly sizable group. I could see it being used by some sports, wildlife, portrait and landscape photographers. Yes, there are several zooms that cover the longer focal lengths, but some of us (myself included) much prefer primes over zooms.

#9 — Fujifilm GFX100R

I’m not in the GFX system, but if Fujifilm ever made a GFX100R, I’d buy it. I cannot afford GFX gear, but I’d still buy it. Why? XPan. Such a camera would be the closest one could get to an XPan III, the digital version of the XPan II. The GFX100R would produce 50mp 65:24 aspect ratio images. A GFX50R II would be alright, too, but a GFX100R would be even more spectacular.

Yes, I know the GFX100 and the GFX100S and the GFX100 II (and even the upcoming GFX100S II) are capable of 50mp XPan-crop pictures, but none of them will provide an XPan-like experience. The only camera that’s close is the GFX50R, but that model is five years old now and missing the latest film sims and JPEG settings and such. Ideally, whether it is a GFX50R II or GFX100R, the body should be X-Pro like in design. One other option that Fujifilm could consider is a GFXPan, where the sensor is shaped in the 65:24 aspect ratio instead of 4:3 (basically, the current 100mp sensor, but half as tall). That would be incredible!

#8 — Fujifilm X-Pro4

This one is near the bottom of the list because 1) I suspect that it’s already well in the works and 2) I don’t know how they’ll make it better than the X-Pro3, aside from some things that could just be a firmware update. So what do I think Fujifilm could do to make the X-Pro4 different-enough from the X-Pro3 to justify it? One idea is an APS-H sized sensor with maybe 50-ish megapixels. That would not only garnish a lot of attention, but it would (more importantly) allow for an XPan crop with over 20mp, and perhaps as much as 25mp. Whether they do this or use the 40mp APS-C sensor of the X-H2 and X-T5, they should still include the XPan aspect ratio as an in-camera option. Another idea is IBIS. A lot of people would welcome that, and it’s probably expected from a camera of this price point, but Fujifilm needs to be careful with how it affects the size, weight, and cost. Most likely, aside from a bump in pixel-count, the biggest change will be a different rear screen. I don’t have any idea how they’ll change it, but I’m certain that they will do so in some way. I think the OVF should be made to be more like the one in the X-Pro2.

#7 — Fujifilm X-Pro3 Acros Edition

While we wait for the X-Pro4, Fujifilm could release a monochrome-only version of the X-Pro3. This camera would make some big headlines, and get a ton of attention. While such a model would surely be niche, Pentax proved that it could still be successful, and I think there’s been enough interest in the Fujifilm world for such a camera that it will sell out, however many copies Fujifilm decides to make. I’d certainly buy one if Fujifilm ever decided to produce it. Heck, I’d buy one almost no matter what body they decided to do it with, but the X-Pro makes the most sense to me, followed closely by the X100.

#6 — Fujifilm X100Z Variants

We’ve known for awhile now that the next Fujifilm camera will be the X100V successor. I don’t know what they’ll name it, but my guess is X100Z. The X100V successor is not in this list because we already know that it’s coming, and it will probably be announced next month, or early-February at the latest. What I would like to put on this wish-list are variants of the camera. For example, Sigma made three versions of the DP Merrill models, and four of the DP Quattro. They were all basically the same, except for the lens permanently attached to the front. I could see Fujifilm doing something similar, with maybe a 30mm-ish “standard” lens, another with a 50mm-ish portrait lens, and maybe a wide-angle version with a 14mm or 16mm lens, to go along with the main 23mm option. Fujifilm could sell multiple versions of the X100Z (or whatever they name it), just with different focal-length lenses. Not only would people be able to buy their preferred focal length option, but you’ll have some people buy all of them.

#5 — Another Fujinon Pancake Lens

A big advantage to APS-C over full-frame is the size and weight of the gear, so it is shocking to me that Fujifilm has only two pancake lenses: the 27mm f/2.8 and 18mm f/2. The 18mm model is only kind-of a pancake, and is in desperate need of an update. Fujifilm should have a series of pancake offerings. Maybe a 16mm f/3.5, the 18mm f/2 (but updated, please!), a 23mm f/2.8, the 27mm f/2.8, and maybe a 40mm-ish f/2.8. It would make my day if Fujifilm were to announce even one more pancake lens, and it would make so much sense if they did.

#4 — Fujifilm X-E5

I had to include this—and put it fairly high on this list—because Fujifilm has indicated that the X-E line might be finished. It would be a huge shame if that’s true. I love the X-E line, and the X-E4 is one of my favorite models. This line is especially great for travel, and is the perfect body to pair pancake lenses with. I don’t need a new X-E camera, but I don’t want this line to end, so I would consider buying an X-E5 just to show support for its continuation in the lineup. Hopefully this will encourage Fujifilm to produce an X-E5, perhaps in time for Christmas 2024.

#3 — Fujifilm Minimalist Model

I would love a rangefinder-styled camera without all the bells and whistles. Just the basic controls that you need. It should have a shutter knob with an ISO ring, a C1-C7 knob, and exposure compensation knob on the top. It must have an M/C/S switch somewhere. Otherwise, it should be kept clean and simple. No rear screen, only a box-top screen like on the X-Pro3, but it should have a hybrid viewfinder. No video mode or even the Advanced Filters and such. It should be a “pure photography” concept that delivers the most film-like experience of all the models. I don’t think Fujifilm would ever consider such a camera, but they absolutely should have a “digital-film” model. This concept would seem to fit Fujifilm’s profile perfectly! Maybe call it simply the X1.

#2 — Fujifilm X200

A lot of people have basically demanded that Fujifilm should jump into the full-frame market, but they’re not going to, and in my opinion it is a smart move. They’d go from being a big fish in a decent sized pond to a small fish in a large and overcrowded pond. One big problem is that they’d have to develop a whole new line of lenses, which, if they weren’t successful, could bankrupt the division. One way that Fujifilm could dip their toes into the full-frame market in a way that’s pretty much guaranteed to be successful and won’t require the new-lens-lineup investment—in other words, somewhat small risk and big reward—is to make a full-frame version of the X100-series. Call it the X200. Perhaps differentiate it from the X100 by giving it a 30mm (going slightly more wide-angle) or 40mm (slightly more telephoto) lens, and increase the maximum aperture to f/1.8. If full-frame is simply out of the question, perhaps go the fuller-than-full-frame route, and make a GFX200, which would be a GFX version of the X100. Personally, I would have a hard time saying no to such a camera.

#1 — Fujifilm X80

The Fujifilm X70 was such a great little camera! It had a much-too-short production run thanks to Sony’s sudden discontinuation of the sensor inside that model, and it’s a real shame that Fujifilm never made a successor. Especially considering how well the Ricoh GR III is selling right now, it would make a lot of sense for Fujifilm to produce a successor to the X70. From what I can tell, the demand for such a camera has been increasing. So many people have told me that they’d buy one. I know that I would be first in line! Come on, Fujifilm! Make an X80 already! Consider it your Christmas gift to me and all of your customers who have been dreaming of it for years.

Let’s Talk About Double Exposure Photography!

Double Exposure Photograph

Tomorrow—Thursday, December 7th—is the season finale of SOOC Live. Not only that, but it’s also our holiday special. Oh, and we’re going to take a deep dive into double exposure photography. Join Nathalie Boucry and I tomorrow at 9:00 AM Pacific Time, 12:00 noon Eastern as we bring Season 3 to a close. This is an interactive program, so your participation makes it even better. I hope to see you tomorrow!

If you don’t already subscribe to the SOOC Live YouTube Channel, be sure to do so now—otherwise you might miss out on future broadcasts. To make it easy to find, I’ve included tomorrow’s show below:

Double exposure photography is simply two exposures on a single frame; however, getting good results can be quite tricky. There’s actually a whole lot to it, with a number of techniques and considerations to talk about. There’s also a ton of creative potential, and various ways to use double exposures that you might not have thought of. You can get amazing straight-out-of-camera results that perhaps seem impossible to achieve in-camera, but are indeed possible.

This article contains five of my double exposure photographs. Perhaps you are surprised by some of them, as they might not appear to be double exposures. You might also be surprised to learn that they’re all camera-made JPEGs. We’re going to talk about the specifics tomorrow, so be sure to tune-in if you want learn more about double exposure photography on your Fujifilm camera.

Double Exposure Photograph
Double Exposure Photograph
Double Exposure Photograph
Double Exposure Photograph

Fluorescent Night — Fujifilm X-T5 (X-Trans V) Film Simulation Recipe

Left the Lights On – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5 – Fluorescent Night Recipe

I wanted to create a Film Simulation Recipe for my Fujifilm X-T5 camera that would produce a certain look when shot under fluorescent lights at night. Now there are different varieties of fluorescent lightbulbs, and the kelvin temperature can vary quite significantly between them. It’s also not uncommon to find fluorescent lights mixed with other nearby light sources. In other words, results will very depending on the exact light situation. Sometimes this Recipe will produce warm results, and sometimes cool. While not modeled after any specific emulsion, this Recipe is similar to using a Tungsten-balanced film—perhaps something similar to Fujicolor NPL 160T or Kodak Portra 100T, although it’s not exactly like either of those. This Recipe gives you one more option for nighttime photography.

What I found myself enjoying more than I thought I would is using this Fluorescent Night Film Simulation Recipe during the day. It has an obvious cool cast with pronounced blues. Still, I was pleasantly surprised that this Recipe is halfway decent for daylight use. If you are looking for a retro film-like aesthetic that isn’t warm, Fluorescent Night might be a good option for your daylight photography.

A Visit with Santa – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5 – Fluorescent Night Recipe

This Fluorescent Night Film Simulation Recipe is compatible with all Fujifilm fifth-generation X-Trans cameras, which (as of this writing) are the X-H2s, X-H2, X-T5, and X-S20 (yes, the X-S20). You should also be able to use this on newer GFX models, but the results will likely be slightly different (try it anyway). For nighttime use, I most often selected -2/3 or -1/3 exposure compensation, and for daylight I most often used +1/3 or +2/3; however, “typical exposure compensation” is only meant as a starting point, and each exposure should be judged individually.

Film Simulation: Nostalgic Neg.
Dynamic Range: DR200
Grain Effect: Strong, Small
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
Color Chrome FX Blue: Weak
White Balance: Fluorescent 2, -8 Red & -1 Blue
Highlight: -1
Shadow: -1.5
Color: +4
Sharpness: -2

High ISO NR: -4
Clarity: -3
ISO: Auto, up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: -2/3 to +2/3 (typically)

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs captured using this Fluorescent Night Film Simulation Recipe on my Fujifilm X-T5:

Happy Girl – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Neighborhood Bougainvillea – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Bougainvillea Blue – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Bougainvillea Along Stucco Wall – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Sidewalk Potted Plant – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Potted Palm Tree – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Hairstyle Chair – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Christmas Tree & Letters to Santa – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Illuminated Door at Abandoned Building – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Broken Window – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Birria – Surprise, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Circle K Gas Station – Surprise, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Christmas Star – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5

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-T5 in black:  Amazon  B&H  Moment
Fujifilm X-T5 in silver:  Amazon  B&H  Moment

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Top 10 Fujicolor Film Simulation Recipes

Spooner Cove – Montaña de Oro SP, CA – Fujifilm X100V – Fujicolor 100 Gold

When I published my Top 25 Most Popular Film Simulation Recipes of 2023 (so far…), what was surprisingly absent were any that were modeled after or inspired by Fujifilm emulsions. The Top 25 were almost entirely Kodak-like Recipes. That shouldn’t be too surprising since Kodak was the most popular film manufacturer, so the desire for a Kodak rendering is to be expected. But, personally, I really appreciate many of the Fujicolor Recipes, and their complete exclusion from the Top 25 list was a bit unexpected.

Someone suggested that I should make a new list, this one showcasing the most popular Fujifilm-like Recipes. Just like the Top 25 list, this one is based on page-view website statistics. It’s a flawed method, but the best that I have available to me. I included the overall ranking, too, just so that you can see where they stand in the big picture.

The number one most popular Fujicolor Recipe is for X-Trans III cameras (plus the X-T3 and X-T30), as is number eight. The tenth spot is an X-Trans V Recipe. All the others are for X-Trans IV cameras. Eight of these use Classic Negative as the base, one uses PRO Neg. Std, and one uses Velvia. Some of these are personal favorite Recipes of mine, while some of my other personal favorite Recipes that are modeled after or inspired by Fujifilm emulsions didn’t make this list.

Without any further delay, here are the Top 10 Fujicolor Film Simulation Recipes:

#1 (#30 overall):

#2 (#41 overall):

#3 (#53 overall):

#4 (#54 overall):

#5 (#57 overall):

#6 (#60 overall):

#7 (#61 overall):

#8 (#70 overall):

#9 (#72 overall):

#10 (#76 overall):

Find these Film Simulation Recipes and many more on the Fuji X Weekly App!

Creative Collective 060: FXW Zine — Issue 25 — December 2023

The December issue of FXW Zine is out now! Creative Collective subscribers can download it today. Not a Creative Collective subscriber? Join to gain access to this issue plus all pervious issues of FXW Zine and the many bonus articles. 

Issue 25, which begins year-three of the publication—has four articles that feature three Film Simulation Recipes. There are 33 pictures (including the cover) over 24 pages. Enjoy!

Subscribe to get access

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Report: New Fujifilm Kit Zoom Coming Soon

I like prime lenses. I don’t use zooms very much. In the 25-ish years that I’ve been photographing, I could count the number of zoom lenses that I’ve ever owned on my two hands, with a few fingers to spare. Probably 98% of the photographs that I have ever captured were on primes. This is all to say that I wasn’t going to comment on the upcoming Fujinon zoom, but a number of you have asked me to give my opinion.

There are several reasons why I prefer primes over zooms. Prime lenses, since their focal length is fixed, are often engineered more precisely, have superior image quality, and better build quality. They often have larger maximum apertures, too. Primes can be smaller. And I appreciate the restraint of one focal length—I think limitations often improve art. The advantage of zooms is that you can cover a lot of focal lengths with just one lens. There’s no right or wrong approach. Use what works best for you and your photography, and don’t worry about what other people think of it.

The only zoom lens that I’ve ever used that I actually like is the Fujinon 18-55mm f/2.8-4. I say that while owning the Fujinon 100-400mm, which is the most expensive lens that I’ve ever purchased. The kit 18-55mm f/2.8-4 is actually pretty darn decent for a zoom, and it’s fairly lightweight and compact, too. I had this lens on my first Fujifilm camera—an X-E1—but because I don’t like zooms I sold it, something I later regretted. A year ago I purchased an X-T5 bundled with the 18-55mm lens. Even though I like this zoom, I still only use it occasionally.

Short Train – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5 & Fujinon 18-55mm f/2.8-4 – 1970’s Summer

Fujifilm will soon be discontinuing the 18-55mm f/2.8-4, and introducing a new zoom in its place: 16-50mm f/2.8-4.8 R LM WR. This is according to Fujirumors, which is where I get my information on yet-to-be-released upcoming Fujifilm gear. The new lens will be more wide and less telephoto, and will have a smaller maximum aperture at the long end. It also won’t have IOS. Apparently it will be able to fully resolve the 40mp resolution of the X-T5 and X-H2. It will have internal zooming, meaning that the lens won’t extend as you zoom. The advantages of internal zooming are better weather-sealing and potentially build-quality, no zoom-creep when pointed up or down, and potentially smoother zooming.

It would appear as though there’s a lot of give-and-take with this new kit zoom. Losing stabilization might be a big deal, but maybe not if you are pairing it with a camera with IBIS. Some will really appreciate 16mm over 18mm. Some will really dislike 50mm over 55mm, and f/4.8 over f/4 (I’m one of those people). Internal zooming will be a big deal for a few and irrelevant to most. As far as resolving the full 40mp resolution, if you print very large—say, 40″x60″—you’d have to stand a couple of inches further back for the print to look as crisp with a lens that doesn’t fully resolve the resolution vs one that does. For most people and purposes, the difference is negligible and unnoticeable. It doesn’t bother me in the slightest that the 18-55mm lens can’t fully resolve all of the resolution from my X-T5, because the pictures still look excellent and detail-rich—I can’t tell the difference.

I feel like this new lens is solving a problem that doesn’t really exist, but maybe I feel this way because I don’t use zooms very often. A whole lot of copies of the 18-55mm have been made, so if you would prefer that over the new one, you should have no problems finding one for many years to come. I assume that the new lens will be excellent, but it’s not for me personally. I have no desire to buy it; however, I’m sure many will love it.

Yellow Aspen Forest – Flagstaff, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5 & Fujinon 18-55 f/2.8-4 – Kodak Portra 160 v2

I’m very curious what the development of this lens means. Generally speaking, Fujifilm likes to introduce lenses that are intended to pair well with certain camera models. Since this lens doesn’t have IOS, it likely means it will be bundled with cameras that have IBIS. Since the lens will (apparently) resolve 40mp, Fujifilm believes some with 40mp cameras will buy it. But it’s a kit zoom, and the 50mm f/4.8 spec is unimpressive, so which camera does Fujifilm have in mind? Certainly it won’t come bundled with the X-Pro4. I could see Fujifilm offering it as an X-T5, X-H2, and X-S20 bundle—I wouldn’t be surprised if they do. But is there some upcoming model that makes a lot of sense for this new lens to be paired with? Something that’s not high-tier, that has IBIS, and a 40mp sensor? I really don’t think so. I don’t believe that we can read that much into it. My guess is that the presumed someday upcoming X-T30 II successor will come bundled with this lens, but that camera won’t be weather-sealed, have IBIS, or the 40mp sensor.

In my opinion, the upcoming Fujinon 16-50mm f/2.8-4.8 is just Fujifilm making a change to the mid-tier kit zoom lens option to reflect changing desires within the camera industry—today, generally speaking, 16mm is more preferable over 18mm than 55mm f/4 is over over 50mm f/4.8. In some aspects the new lens will be better than the “old” zoom, and in some aspects it will be worse. Some will like it, and some won’t. I would suggest to Fujifilm that they should continue to manufacture the 18-55mm simultaneously with the new 16-50mm, and not discontinue it; however, perhaps that would be too many similar options to offer.

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-T5 in black:  Amazon  B&H  Moment
Fujifilm X-T5 in silver:  Amazon  B&H  Moment
Fujifilm X-T5 + 18-55mm in black:  Amazon  B&H  Moment
Fujifilm X-T5 + 18-55mm in silver:  Amazon  B&H  Moment
Fujinon 18-55mm f/2.8-4:  Amazon  B&H  Moment

Report: We Now Know What 2 (of the 3) upcoming Fujifilm cameras will be

Fujifilm will announce three upcoming cameras in the first part of 2024. Fujirumors is reporting what the second upcoming Fujifilm camera will be. We already know what the first one will be, so now the first two are known. There will be a third camera announced, which we don’t know anything about, and we’ll get to that in a moment.

The first upcoming camera will be the X100V successor, which has been rumored for some time now. Not much is known about it, other than it will have a new lens. A lot of people think that Fujifilm will name it X100R (a.k.a. X100Roku), but I think they’ll steer clear of any association with the video streaming service, and name it X100Z instead.

The “new lens” part of the upcoming X100-series model is curious, because the X100V, which was the fifth iteration of the series, was the first with a new lens. So why will the X100Z (or whatever Fujifilm names it) have a new lens? The leading theories are:

  • The current lens cannot fully resolve 40mp, and the new camera will have the 40mp X-Trans V sensor, so a new lens is necessary to take full advantage of the high-resolution sensor. In my opinion, this makes the most sense, although (if it is the reason) I would be slightly surprised that the current lens cannot resolve 40mp.
  • Fujifilm will increase the maximum aperture to f/1.8 or f/1.7 to better compete against the Leica Q3.
  • The new camera will have IBIS, and a lens redesign is necessary to accommodate.
  • Fujifilm has improved the leaf shutter, which requires a redesign of the lens.
  • Fujifilm will eliminate the IR hotspot on the lens, and in turn will sell a full-spectrum version.

There could be some other reasons, but those are the ones I have heard. I highly doubt it will be the last one, although it would be cool if it was. Most likely it is to resolve more resolution, but nobody knows at this point, so it could be anything.

The second upcoming camera will be the GFX100S II. Wait, what? Seriously?!

So, yeah, the GFX lineup will have the 100 II and 100S II. I’m not sure what will be different about the two models, other than the 100S II will be less expensive than the 100 II, so perhaps a little less feature-rich and slightly smaller. Honestly, I couldn’t be less excited about this, but it’s probably because I’m not in the GFX system.

I’m not entirely shocked that the upcoming camera will be the GFX100S II, but it is still a head-scratcher. First, once released, it will mean that 8 out of the last 12 Fujifilm cameras will have been PASM models (2/3rds of them). The only four non-PASM cameras will have been the X-E4 (which has been discontinued and is selling for ridiculous prices), the X-T30 II (which was basically just a firmware update and has been discontinued, although you can still find it if you search hard enough for it), the X-T5, and the X100Z (or whatever Fujifilm calls it). It will also mean that 4 out of the last 11 Fujifilm releases will have been GFX models; however, the GFX50S II has already been discontinued, and presumably the GFX100S will be discontinued very soon. I do think that the GFX system needs a divergent option, as it would seem like the GFX100 II and GFX100S II will be pretty similar to each other. A GFX100R, which would be the successor to the long-discontinued GFX50R, seems like the most obvious choice, but I don’t think Fujifilm plans to release another GFX camera with traditional tactile controls.

My best guess is that the third camera will be the X-Pro4, and that it will be announced sometime in May. I have no inside information (I never do, I get it from Fujirumors like everyone else…), but based on past releases, this makes the most sense to me. I hope that I’m right, because there’s a lot of pent-up demand and eagerness for this camera. If it’s not an X-Pro4, a lot of people will be disappointed.

So where does that leave the X-T40 (or X-T30 III or X-T50 or whatever Fujifilm will name it)? It could and should still happen, but I think Fujifilm is trying to move out of that market segment. They’re focusing more on premium products, and less on lower-tier, as they believe the bottom of the market is continuously drying up. Either Fujifilm makes that series more premium (and in turn more expensive)—kind of like what they did with the X-S20—or they do a very modest update, and it might be the last model in the series. Or it could be that the X-T30 II was the last one. My hunch is that there will be at least one more, perhaps released sometime in the second half of 2024. It certainly could be the third camera and not the X-Pro4—I think a lot of people would be shocked (in a negative way) if that were the case.

Where does this leave the X-E5? I think this line is done. The X-E4 was the last. I truly hope I’m wrong about this, though, because I love the X-E cameras. If one does come, most likely it will be in 2025 and not 2024. Since there’s so much demand for the X-E4 and not much supply, it would make a lot of sense to expedite a successor, but I don’t think that Fujifilm is currently doing so.

What about the X80? The Fujifilm X70 was discontinued in December of 2016, and there has been demand for a successor ever since. I’ve noticed that the demand for an X80 has been building recently, growing larger and more vocal. Certainly the recent sales success of the Ricoh GR III should cause Fujifilm to consider it. I don’t, however, believe that Fujifilm has any current plans to release an X80. If they did, I’d be first in line to buy one!

More on using AI to make Film Simulation Recipes

Captured with the AI-made Urban Dreams Film Simulation Recipe on my Fujifilm X100V.

In early 2023, Artificial Intelligence burst onto the Film Simulation Recipe scene, and, at the request of photographers across the world, AI began creating all sorts of camera settings to emulate all sorts of different aesthetics for Fujifilm models. I was on the leading edge of this, and in March published Using AI to Create Film Simulation Recipes, which included the ChatGPT-created Urban Dreams Recipe.

I didn’t stop there. In April I published a YouTube video (which you’ll find below) entitled Kodachrome X Fujifilm Recipe made by ChatGPT vs Fuji X Weekly Kodachrome II. I don’t publish very many YouTube videos (only three in 2023); however, I felt this topic was important enough to dedicate a video to it. Shortly thereafter, also in April, I published a companion article called Can AI Make a Fujifilm Recipe?, which included the ChatGPT-created Kodak Ektachrome E100VS v1 Recipe (along with the non-AI v2).

I didn’t quit there—not even close! In June, on the SOOC Live broadcasts, Fujifilm X-Photography Nathalie Boucry and myself chatted twice (for about three hours in total) about ChatGPT Film Simulation Recipes. If you’re curious about this topic, that’s probably the most informative discussion you’ll find. I’ve included both of those videos below.

Also in June, as a companion piece for those two SOOC Live episodes, I published an article entitled Shooting with ChatGPT AI Fujifilm Film Simulation Recipes. That article included two more AI-made Recipes: Soft Blue Classic and Vivid Summer Glow. I’ve published a total of four ChatGPT Film Simulation Recipes on this website. I think two are pretty good, and two are very mediocre—only the two that are “good” are in the Fuji X Weekly App.

While I’ve published four AI-made Recipes, I’ve asked ChatGPT to create probably close to 50 (using multiple accounts). Most of them weren’t good, so they never saw the light of day. I’ve talked about all of this before, but just to quickly rehash, here are some of the big issues with using ChatGPT to create Film Simulation Recipes for Fujifilm cameras:

  • AI will always give you an answer, but whether that answer has any value is another question entirely.
  • AI can’t see, and doesn’t know how the various camera settings translate to real-world use. It can only attempt to match descriptions.
  • If you ask it to create the same Recipe—using the same exact wording—on multiple accounts, you will get multiple answers, often quite divergent from each other.
  • I’ve never experienced an instance where all of the required Recipe parameters were included in the first try. Each time, I’ve had to identify the missing camera settings, and ask AI to add those to the Recipe.
  • AI will sometimes include nonexistent or nonsensical settings.
  • ChatGPT is very predictable, and will not usually stray outside of certain box. Ask it to make enough of these, and the box is easily identifiable.
  • ChatGPT doesn’t cite its sources, even when asked. It definitely operates unethically, and probably (in my opinion) illegally—eventually courts will make various rulings as they hear different lawsuits.

So why bring this up again? First, I’ve had several people over the last month comment that ChatGPT is a wonderful resource for Fujifilm Film Simulation Recipes. I strongly disagree with that for the reasons mentioned above, and I thought it worthwhile to discuss those reasons again for those who might be unaware. Second, someone asked if Google’s Bard AI was any better than ChatGPT at creating Film Simulation Recipes. I wasn’t sure, so I spent some time over Thanksgiving putting it to the test. So let’s find out!

Captured with the AI-made Soft Blue Classic Film Simulation Recipe on my Fujifilm X100V.

The first question I asked Bard was, “Make me a Film Simulation Recipe for my Fujifilm X-T5 that mimics the aesthetic of Kodachrome 64 film.” Well, I could tell very quickly that this wasn’t going to work out well, as the first setting it gave was the Acros film simulation. It included the nonsensical setting of Color +2 (you cannot select Color when using Acros). The settings that Bard failed to provide were Dynamic Range, White Balance Shift, Color Chrome Effect (although it did give Color Chrome FX Blue), and Clarity. I assume that it would have also missed Grain size, but it said to set Grain to Off.

Obviously that “Kodachrome 64 Recipe” will not look anything like actual Kodachrome 64 slides, even if it did somehow make sense. I asked Bard to cite its sources, and to my surprise it did! It gave me (broken) links to my website, including these articles: Kodachrome 64, Kodachrome 25, and Monochrome Kodachrome. Apparently, Bard has been trained using Fuji X Weekly (or to search for it… Bard is a Google product after all), but it’s not very good at it. In my opinion, AI should provide a bibliography of its sources upfront without being asked. Even Wikipedia does that, and apparently it’s not a reliable enough source for serious work. Bard will cite its sources when asked, which is better than nothing, while ChatGPT won’t even do that. If Wikipedia can’t be taken seriously, than AI should be taken even less so. It’s super sketchy that AI doesn’t cite it’s sources, but at least Bard will do so when prompted to.

I asked Bard to tell me why it chose the settings that it did. This demonstrates very clearly that trying to match descriptions of camera settings with descriptions of the film is an unrealistic method for achieving accurate approximations of various looks. For example, “Acros is a black and white film simulation that provides a good starting point for replicating Kodachrome’s tonal range and contrast.” And, “Kodachrome had a tendency to lift shadows, creating a slightly brighter and more open appearance. Raising the shadow setting by 0.5 replicates this effect.” And, “Kodachrome had a subtle ability to retain detail in highlights, preventing them from becoming blown out. Lowering the highlight setting by -1 helps achieve this result.” If you know even a little about Kodachrome 64 film and Fujifilm camera settings, you should have no issues identifying the problems there.

Bard’s “Kermit the Frog juggling Elmo Recipe” is not a good choice for portraits.

I didn’t stop with that one Recipe. I asked Bard to make many more. After a number of tries, I began to ask it for ridiculous Recipes, just to see what it would do. Make me a Film Simulation Recipe that mimics Kermit the Frog juggling Elmo. Make me a Film Simulation Recipe that mimics the look of digesting rotten apples that are crawling with spiders. Make me a Film Simulation Recipe that mimics the aesthetic of comedian Brian Regan hitchhiking across the Delaware River during the Clone Wars. In each case—instead of responding with “you are nuts” or “that makes no sense”—it provided me with a Recipe. It always will. For the Brian Regan Recipe, it tells me, in order to capture the essence of his adventure, I should photograph him on a rural road next to a river bank with some fog. Sounds intriguing, but there’s a problem.

You see, Bard has a bigger tendency than even ChatGPT to include nonexistent settings. Some of these are Color Chrome FX Red (which, arguably, could be just Color Chrome Effect), Color Chrome FX Green, Grain Effect Medium, WB Shift +1, and Image Enhancement On. This is in addition to the missing settings that are required for a Recipe but weren’t included, and the occasional nonsensical ones (like Color +2 with Acros). Sometimes it’s hard to make sense of what Bard provides when asked to make a Recipe.

For those wondering about Color Chrome FX Green, Bard had this to say: Color Chrome FX Green increases saturation and vibrancy of green pixels and slightly lifts green shadows for a more balanced tonal range. Use sparingly, as a subtle application of Color Chrome FX Green can produce pleasing results. Excessive use may make the image appear unnatural. Of course, there is no such thing as Color Chrome FX Green, but even if there was, it wouldn’t work as described by Bard.

Captured with the AI-made Kodak Ektachrome E100VS v1 Film Simulation Recipe on my Fujifilm X-T5.

The conclusion of this whole article is that ChatGPT and Bard are not good resources for Film Simulation Recipes for Fujifilm cameras. They are both capable of making Recipes (they will always give you one if you ask), but whether or not those Recipes are worth using or resemble what they’re supposed to is another story entirely. A broken clock is correct twice each day, and sometimes you can get a good Recipe by chance when using AI, but most often that won’t be the case. However, because these chatbots tend to stay within a box and don’t often stray outside of it, the Recipes that they make are often not terrible, they’re usually okay-ish. But you have to put up with the missing, nonexistent, and nonsensical settings. And you have to be alright with the unethical nature of it. My personal advice, if you want a Recipe that is more likely to give you good results, is to look no further than my website.

Someone said that AI will usually do a better job than a complete novice, but never as good as an expert. I agree with that assessment. I think if you ask ChatGPT or Bard enough times for Film Simulation Recipes, you are bound to get some that are trash, a bunch that are so-so, and a couple that are actually good. You could probably have as much luck rolling dice or throwing darts to create Recipes. That’s just the way it is. However, the technology is advancing rather quickly, and it’s only a matter of time before AI will be able to analyze pictures, have a good understanding of Fujifilm camera settings, and be able to approximate an accurate replication of picture aesthetics with the available JPEG settings. We’re not there yet, though. There’s a significant gap. I don’t doubt that the technology will get there eventually, perhaps in another five or ten years.

That will put me out of business. I understand that day is eventually coming, and that’s ok. It is what it is, as they say. The sad thing is that AI is using my own words and work against me. The more I publish, the more resources OpenAI and Google have to train their AI. It’s a type of theft. I do think that the courts will eventually rule that much of what they’ve done doesn’t qualifying as “fair use” under the law, but the damage will already have been done, and folks like me wont be compensated a dime for it. That’s the way life goes sometimes. The big guy walks all over the little guy. But, when life throws you punches, bob and weave (I’ve heard that quote attributed to Joe Frazier, but I’m not certain), which simply means that I have to evolve. As Bob Dylan sang, the times, they are a changin’. They always have been, and always will be. That’s why I spent so much time this year exploring the topic of AI Film Simulation Recipes. I had to know where Fuji X Weekly stands in all of it. This website has evolved a whole bunch since its launch in 2017, and it will continue to do so in the coming months and years. I appreciate all of those who have come along for the ride, and I look forward to seeing where this Fuji X Weekly thing goes as the future unfolds. If anything, it will be an interesting adventure, perhaps like Brian Regan’s hitchhiking escapades along the foggy Delaware River during the Clone Wars.

Kodak Vision3 250D — Fujifilm X-E4 (X-Trans IV) Film Simulation Recipe

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

This is a long-overdue adaptation of the X-T3/X-T30 Kodak Vision3 250D Film Simulation Recipe for use on “newer” X-Trans IV cameras. Kodak Vision3 250D is one of my favorite Recipes, but it’s only compatible with the Fujifilm X-T3 and X-T30; however, I’ve been using it on my X100V and X-E4 occasionally for years. It’s not hard to adapt X-T3/X-T30 or X-Trans III Recipes for use on newer models by simply selecting a Grain size (Small or Large), setting Color Chrome FX Blue (and Color Chrome Effect for X-Trans III Recipes) to Off, and Clarity to 0. In the case of this Recipe, I prefer Clarity set to -2 and not 0, but it’s acceptable either way.

Vision3 250D is a medium-speed daylight-balanced color motion picture film introduced by Kodak in 2009. It was a replacement for the similar (yet slightly inferior) Vision2 250D. Vison3 250D can be developed in ECN-2 chemistry or C-41. There is a lot of variation in how the film can look depending on a host of factors—especially how shot, developed, and scanned—but I’ve always been impressed with how closely this Recipe mimics some of the aesthetics produces by the emulsion.

Colorful Landscape Flowers – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4 – Kodak Vision3 250D Recipe

This Kodak Vision3 250D Film Simulation Recipe is compatible with the Fujifilm X-Pro3, X100V, X-T4, X-S10, X-E4, and X-T30 II cameras. For fifth-generation models, which are the X-H2s, X-H2, X-T5, and X-S20 (yes, the X-S20!), you can use this Recipe, but blue will render more deeply, so it will look slightly different.

Film Simulation: Eterna
Dynamic Range: DR100
Grain Effect: Strong, Small
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
Color Chrome FX Blue: Off
White Balance: Fluorescent 1, -3 Red & -1 Blue
Highlight: +3
Shadow: +4
Color: +3
Sharpness: -2

High ISO NR: -4
Clarity: -2
ISO: Auto, up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: +1/3 to +2/3 (typically)

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs captured using this Kodak Vision3 250D Film Simulation Recipe on my Fujifilm X-E4:

MartAnne’s – Flagstaff, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Dancing Joy – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
No Fun – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Urban Daisies – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Boat on Lake Hamilton – Hot Springs, AR – Fujifilm X-E4
Rainy Rose – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Willow – Bountiful, UT – Fujifilm X-E4
Afternoon Joy – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Desert Creek – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Arizona Date Palm – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Bougainvillea & Palm Trunk – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Potted Flower Blooms – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Park Gazebo – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4

Find this Film Simulation Recipe and over 300 more on the Fuji X Weekly App! Consider becoming a Patron subscriber to unlock the best App experience and to support Fuji X Weekly.

Xpro — Fujifilm X-Trans III + X-T3 & X-T30 Film Simulation Recipe

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

This Xpro Film Simulation Recipe came about after some experiments with white balance and shifts. It went through several iterations before I settled on these settings. The results remind me of cross-processed Fujichrome Sensia or perhaps Elite Chrome. Cross processing film (also called Xpro) is developing it in chemistry that it wasn’t intended to be developed in, most commonly color slide film (E6) in color negative film (C41) chemistry. Different films can give different results when cross processed. I have several other cross-process inspired Film Simulation Recipes (here, here, here, and here); this one is simply a little different aesthetic.

This was a Patron Early-Access Film Simulation Recipe in the Fuji X Weekly App, available to App Patrons for over a year. It’s been replaced by a different Early-Access Recipe, so now it’s available to everyone. It’s not one that you’ll want to use all of the time, but occasionally for a different look it is great. It’s more of a “fun” Recipe. If you are a Fuji X Weekly App Patron, be sure to look for the new Early-Access Recipe!

Storm – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-H1 – “Xpro”

This Xpro Film Simulation Recipe is fully compatible with X-Trans III cameras, which are the X-Pro2, X100F, X-E3, X-T2, X-T20, and X-H1, plus the X-T3 and X-T30. For newer cameras, you’ll have to decide on a Grain size (Small or Large), set Color Chrome FX Blue to Off, and Clarity to 0. This Recipe can also be used on the “older” GFX models (50R and 50S), but will render slightly differently.

Classic Chrome
Dynamic Range: DR400
Highlight: -1
Shadow: +3
Color: +4

Color Chrome Effect: N/A (X-Trans III) or Off (X-T3/X-T30)
Sharpness: -1
Noise Reduction: -4
Grain: Weak
White Balance: 3400K, -6 Red & -9 Blue
ISO: Auto, up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: +2/3 to +1 1/3 (typically)

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs captured using this Xpro Film Simulation Recipe on my Fujifilm X-H1 and X-T30:

Associated Fence – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Green – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Structured Abstract – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Roof & Fence Lines – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Tile Roof – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Cactus Hotels – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-H1
Barrel Cactus – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-H1
Secret Garden Gate – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-H1
Don’t, This Way – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-H1
Light Bulb – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-H1
Closed Window – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-H1
Pigeon Pipe – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-H1
Pergola in the Rain – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-H1
Arizona Architecture – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-H1
Hanging Blossoms – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-H1
Dark Flowers – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-H1
Light Pink with Green – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-H1

Find this Film Simulation Recipe and over 300 more on the Fuji X Weekly App! Consider becoming a Patron subscriber to unlock the best App experience and to support Fuji X Weekly.

Pro Neg — Fujifilm X-T3 & X-T30 (+ X-Trans III) FXW App Patron Early-Access Film Simulation Recipe

Small Clouds Above the Roof – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30 – Pro Neg Recipe

This Film Simulation Recipe is one that I’ve been working on and have had programmed into my Fujifilm X-T30 for some time now. It’s been through a lot of iterations, with small tweaks here and there over the last several months, before I landed on the final settings. The idea was to create a generic Kodak-ish color negative film aesthetic, perhaps something similar to ColorPlus 200 or Pro Image 100. While I did look at both of those emulsions a number of times during the development of this Recipe, I didn’t set out to strictly emulate either of them. I think there can be similarities at times to those two film stocks, but generally speaking this Recipe isn’t a replication of either. I hope that makes sense. I do think it does a good job at producing a generic color negative film aesthetic that is by-and-large Kodak-like, with occasional similarities to both ColorPlus 200 and Pro Image 100.

Pro Neg is a Fuji X Weekly App Patron Early-Access Recipe. The Fuji X Weekly App is free, yet becoming a Fuji X Weekly Patron unlocks the best App experience! One benefit of being a Patron is you get early access to some new Film Simulation Recipes. These Early-Access Recipes will eventually become available free to everyone in time, including this new one. Patrons help support Fuji X Weekly and, really, without them there would be no App. So I want to give a special “thank you” to all of the Patrons!

Beautiful Bougainvillea Blooms – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30 – Pro Neg Recipe

This Pro Neg Film Simulation Recipe is compatible with the Fujifilm X-T3 & X-T30, plus all X-Trans III cameras, which are the X-Pro2, X100F, X-E3, X-T2, X-T20, and X-H1. For newer cameras, you’ll have to decide on a Grain size (Small or Large), set Color Chrome FX Blue to Off, and Clarity to 0. This Recipe can also be used on the “older” GFX models (50R and 50S), but will render slightly differently.

Find the Pro Neg Recipe in the Fuji X Weekly App! If you are a Fuji X Weekly App Patron, it’s available to you right now.

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs captured using this Pro Neg Film Simulation Recipe on my Fujifilm X-T30:

Empty Schoolyard – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Backyard Wall View – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Hidden Triangle – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Gila River Hat – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Tree by Field 4 – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Bougainvillea Petals – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Little Cloud Between the Trees – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Twin Palms – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Palm Behind Bougainvillea Blossoms – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Suburban Colors – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Bougainvillea in the Sky – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Basketball Hoop at Dusk – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Hoop & Tree – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Court Cycle – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Dusk Saguaro – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
One Fallen, One Standing – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Window Reflection – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Yellow Trumpet – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Backyard Rose Blossom – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30
Backlit Bud – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T30

TTArtisan 35mm F/1.8 Autofocus for Fujifilm X-Mount

Back in early-August, Pergear reached out to me and asked if I’d be interested in testing out an upcoming lens. I said sure, agreeing to provide feedback and keep quiet about the lens until it was announced sometime in the future. Two weeks later a box arrived at my door containing a TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 Autofocus lens. I eagerly attached it to my Fujifilm X-T5 and put it to use!

Before I go any further, I want to state a few important notes. To start, this is the first time that I’ve ever been given a chance to try out and provide feedback for a piece of unreleased camera gear. Heck, I’ve barely been offered gear that’s already been available! This was such a big honor, and I appreciate the opportunity given to me by Pergear. I hope it’s not the last time, or that it’s limited to just one manufacturer (Fujifilm: hint, hint). Second, my copy of the TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF was a preproduction model. They told me that the production version would have a slight tweak to the mount (which, for my copy, is X-mount, if that wasn’t obvious), but the optics and functionality would be identical; however, I have some notes (and an apology) about this in just a moment. Third, I wasn’t given any technical information until after I’d finished writing this review, so I had to edit that information in as best as I could.

Fujifilm X-T5 + TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/9 + Kodak Portra 400 v2 Recipe

The TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF competes directly with the Fujinon XC 35mm f/2 lens, which is the budget version of the XF 35mm f/2. Those two Fujinon lenses are, as far as I understand, optically identical, but the cheaper XC version lacks an aperture ring and weather-sealing. Going head-to-head with such a high-image-quality-yet-still-very-affordable lens seems a bit risky. Clearly, if money is no concern, one will opt for the $400 XF version (which is both smaller and better-looking); however, those on a tight budget now have two lenses to consider: the $200 Fujinon XC 35mm f/2 or the $149 TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF. At $280, the Viltrox 33mm f/1.4 AF could also be mentioned. Plus there are a number of manual focus options, including the TTArtisan 35mm f/1.4, TTArtisan 35mm f/0.95, and Meike 35mm f/1.7, which I compared side-by-side in Sedona earlier this year.

From a pure technical image-quality perspective, the Fujinon options are significantly superior. The TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF lens has some corner softness when wide-open, as well as vignetting. Across the entire frame, the TTArtisan is noticeably less crisp at f/1.8 than the Fujinon is at f/2. Once you stop down, things quickly improve, and the TTArtisan is quite excellent (and comparable to the Fujinon) from around f/5 or so and beyond, with nothing negative to report. There are 10 elements in 8 groups, with 9 aperture blades. The minimum focus distance is about two feet, which is so-so. The lens seems to be well built, with more metal than plastic. The filter thread size is 52mm. Of course, photography is art, and character in real-world use can be much more important than test charts and spec sheets, so we’ll move right along.

Thankfully, the TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF has excellent character, especially when a bright light source is just outside of the frame. I cannot tell you strongly enough how much I love how this lens flares! However, this is where I need to apologize. You see, I told Pergear that I really love the flare produced by this lens—especially the multiple rainbow flare—and showed them some examples of it, but their response was not what I expected: they didn’t think that most of their customers would appreciate it, so steps would be taken to reduce it. I reached out to them a few weeks later to inquire what was changed to reduce the flare, and they simply replied that TTArtisan reduced the flare, but did not change any of the optics or coatings. So I don’t know what’s different between my preproduction version and the final version that’s now for sale, but apparently there is a difference, and my copy is more prone to the absolutely wonderful flare, and yours less so to some extent, if at all. I pleaded with them not to make this change, but to no avail. I hope that whatever they did change has a minimal impact on flaring, but I have no idea. The lens comes with a square lens hood (mine did not), and maybe that was their solution; I’d definitely try the lens without the hood and see what you get.

The TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF doesn’t have an aperture ring. This might or might not be a big deal to you, but it is to me. In my opinion, all lenses for Fujifilm X cameras should have an aperture ring, because it’s such an integral part of the experience for the majority of Fujifilm models. However, I do understand that not everyone feels the same as I do, and that many third-party lenses are available for other systems where aperture rings are less common or essential. I told Pergear that if this lens was offered with an aperture ring, I’d definitely buy it. I hope that TTArtisan makes an aperture ring version at some point in the future. I don’t know how much that would cost, but I think $250 would be a fair price for such a lens. The minimum aperture is f/1.8 and the maximum is f/16, with 1/3 intermediate stops in-between the full stops (except for in-between f/11 and f/16, where it has only a single 1/3-stop before jumping 2/3-stop to f/16); however, you must use the command dial to adjust the aperture, which isn’t my preference. That makes the use of this lens more frustrating (and, in turn, less fun) than it should be.

Fujifilm X-T5 + TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/2.5 + Reala Ace Recipe

There’s one issue that I want to mention cautiously, and that you must take with a big grain of salt. While the autofocus was quiet, I experienced a lot of focus-hunting and misses with the TTArtisan lens, much more than any other glass I own. My guess is that this is due to it being a preproduction model (an early one at that), and I assume that the firmware on the production version has rectified this problem; however, I cannot verify one way or the other. It’s important for me to point this out just in case it is an issue, but I hope it’s not. Most likely it’s no issue. It’s common for preproduction versions of gear to have problems that are partially or fully resolved by the time they’re released. It’s probably only a problem on my copy, which was an early model, and those being sold today have fast and accurate autofocusing, but I cannot state that with certainty. A side note is that the firmware for this lens is updated via a USB connection in the rear lens cap, but apparently requires a Windows operating system.

Is the TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 lens worth buying? Despite no aperture ring and the autofocus woes of my preproduction copy, this has been my most-used lens since it arrived at my doorstep. I have used it on both my Fujifilm X-E4 and X-T5, but mostly on the X-T5. I love the character that this lens gives to my pictures. I have shared some of these images on Fuji X Weekly and on my Instagram page, and I’ve had a lot of people inquire about the lens I used (much more than usual), and I had to respond with “I can’t tell you yet” (because I agreed not to talk about it). The way this lens renders seems to pair especially well with Fujifilm’s excellent JPEG output and my Film Simulation Recipes. It’s highly desirable. In my opinion, this lens is well worth the small price-tag. With that said, I would much prefer an aperture ring, and I want the lens flare that my copy produces, which might be different than the one they’re currently selling. I hope that TTArtisan will someday offer such a version.

Fujifilm X-T5 + TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/5 + Reala Ace Recipe

Pergear asked that I not show some of the pictures in this article that have the rainbow lens flare, which might not be so pronounced (if produced at all) on the final version. Some of my absolute favorite photographs captured with the TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF lens have this flare. I have so many examples of it, I could have shown it in every picture. Instead, I only included a handful of those images, with the hopes that TTArtisan will realize that this unique characteristic is desirable. If you agree, please leave a comment below saying so.

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

TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF:  Amazon
Fujifilm X-T5 in black:  Amazon  B&H  Moment
Fujifilm X-T5 in silver:  Amazon  B&H  Moment

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs captured using my preproduction version of the TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF lens on my Fujifilm X-T5:

Fujifilm X-T5 & TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @f/11 + Vibrant Velvia Recipe
Fujifilm X-T5 & TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/13 + The Rockwell Recipe
Fujifilm X-T5 & TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/9 + The Rockwell Recipe
Fujifilm X-T5 & TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/8 + The Rockwell Recipe
Fujifilm X-T5 & TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/8 + Summer of 1960 Recipe
Fujifilm X-T5 & TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/5 + Kodak Gold 200 Recipe
Fujifilm X-T5 & TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/11 + Reala Ace Recipe
Fujifilm X-T5 & TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/7.1 + Fujicolor Reala 100 Recipe
Fujifilm X-T5 & TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/5.6 + Fujicolor Reala 100 Recipe
Fujifilm X-T5 & TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/1.8 + Fujicolor NPS 160 Pulled Recipe
Fujifilm X-T5 & TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/5 + Reala Ace Recipe
Fujifilm X-T5 & TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/5 + Kodak Gold 200 Recipe
Fujifilm X-T5 & TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/5 + Fujicolor Reala 100 Recipe
Fujifilm X-T5 & TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/5 + Reala Ace Recipe
Fujifilm X-T5 & TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/5 + Reala Ace Recipe
Fujifilm X-T5 & TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/1.8 + Reala Ace Recipe
Fujifilm X-T5 & TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/5 + Fujicolor Super HG v2 Recipe
Fujifilm X-T5 & TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/4 + Kodak Gold 200 Recipe
Fujifilm X-T5 & TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/2.8 + Reala Ace Recipe
Fujifilm X-T5 & TTArtisan 35mm f/1.8 AF @ f/4.5 + Emulsion ’86 Recipe

See also: TTArtisan 27mm f/2.8 Review

Find these Film Simulation Recipes and nearly 300 more on the Fuji X Weekly App! Consider becoming a Patron subscriber to unlock the best App experience and to support Fuji X Weekly.

Report: 3 Fujifilm Cameras coming Early 2024

Will a new X-Pro model be announced soon?

According to Fujirumors, Fujifilm will announce at least three new cameras in the “first months of” 2024. Let’s take a look at what that might mean.

First, thanks to Fujirumors, we already know what one of the cameras will be: the X100V successor. We’ve known this for awhile, but we don’t know anything about it other than it will have a new lens. We don’t even know what it will be named. But it will be the first of the upcoming three models, most likely announced at the end of January or the beginning of February.

Second, the rest is a mystery. We don’t know anything. And I certainly don’t have any inside information. Zero. I learn the same way that you do. I can only speculate. But looking at trends (both past and current) it’s not too difficult to make some reasonable guesses. Whether these guesses turn out to be correct is something that only time will tell. I’m wrong about these things often enough that whatever I speculate should be taken with a large grain of salt. This is just for fun.

I think it’s a very safe guess that one of the two remaining models will be the much-anticipated and much-hoped-for X-Pro4. When the X-H2s and the X-S20 were announced, it was at the end of May (of 2022 and 2023, respectively). Don’t be surprised if the X-Pro4 is announced next year in the second half of May. I know the phrase “first months of” makes it seem like it will be sooner than May, but I think it simply means first half of the year. While this is all speculation, I think it’s a fairly safe guess, as far as guesses go.

XPan aspect ratio crop — Fujifilm X-T5 — CineStill 400D v1 Recipe

I don’t know what will be different on the X-Pro4 and what will be the same as the X-Pro3, but I do expect there will be one or two surprises. Fujifilm will do something that is both compelling and perhaps even controversial. I hope that it has the 40mp X-Trans V sensor, plus the XPan aspect ratio as an in-camera option. If Fujifilm were to really think outside the box, they’d throw a 50mp APS-H 4:3 aspect ratio sensor inside of it, which would allow for 25mp XPan pictures. I think most Fujinon lenses would cover APS-H, and Fujifilm could do an auto-crop to 40mp 3:2 for those lenses that can’t. I highly doubt they’ll do this, but it would certainly make headlines if they did.

A lot of people are speculating that the third camera will be an X-E5, but I don’t think it will be. Shockingly, the X-E4 was inexplicably discontinued when there was a lot of demand for it, and as a result the used market for that model has gone crazy. It would make a lot of sense for Fujifilm to rush a successor out ASAP, so as to capitalize on the demand. Still, Fujifilm has suggested that the X-E line might done, plus X-E successors typically doesn’t come out until the end of a sensor generation, which means that an X-E5 won’t likely happen until 2025 (if ever). So I would be pretty surprised if this is the third camera.

The most logical option in my opinion is the X-T30 II successor. This line has been a good seller for Fujifilm, and I think they desperately need a budget-friendly model in the lineup. If you look hard enough it is still possible to buy a brand-new X-T30 II, but it’s sold out at a lot of places, and has been for awhile. My guess is that the successor will be largely identical to the X-T30 II, with the same X-Trans IV sensor but with the X-Trans V processor (like the X-S20). It will have some autofocus and video spec improvements, but will be mostly the same exact camera as the X-T30 II. I bet they call it the X-T30 III, and not X-T40 or X-T50. I suspect it will be announced in late-March or early-April, and it doesn’t even get an X-Summit… or if it does, it’s not the headline product.

Since we don’t know for certain what the second and third upcoming cameras will be, what do you hope Fujifilm will announce next year? Really, at this point it could be anything. Let me know in the comments!

Creative Collective 059: Accidental Pictures

I didn’t mean to take this picture on my Fujifilm X70. I kind of like the abstractness of it.

Have you ever accidentally taken a picture? You had a camera in your hand, and it was powered on, but you didn’t mean to activate the shutter and capture an image. I’ve done this more times than I’d like to admit. Most often these accidental pictures are just deleted, but occasionally I will keep them because they’re interesting in some way, or at least more interesting than they should be. Let’s take a look!

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R.I.P. John Sevigny

Closed Umbrella – Phoenix, AZ – Fujifilm X100V – Kodak T-Max P3200 Recipe

I just learned today that photographer John Sevigny passed away on November 9th, after suffering a massive stroke. He was 54 years old.

I first spoke with John on Valentines Day of 2022. “I hope that you won’t take this as a bitchy letter,” he wrote to me on Instagram. “I want to thank you for the hard work you’ve done. I’m a Fuji X Weekly App Patron and I hope that it helps you continue what you’re doing. But I want to be specific about things that might be improved.” The message went on and on and on. It was the longest DM I’d ever received on social media, and that record holds to this day. He gave me a ton of helpful insights and observations that could only come from someone with a huge amount of experience with analog photography and cameras in general. John offered it matter-of-factly, but also kindly. “I hope my criticisms and observations are constructive,” he concluded, “but most of all I hope you will continue doing what you do.”

“I’ve been teaching photography forever,” John later told me, “and I’ve never seen an app as absolutely didactic and liberating as yours. Everyone uses your Recipes.” John Sevigny was a photography instructor, having taught for five years at la Universidad Centroamericana Jose Simeon Cañas in El Salvador, and guest lectured at many universities, including several in the United States. He was also a working photographer, and at times was employed by newspapers and magazines, and even worked for the Associated Press. There have been over 50 solo exhibitions of his photographs.

John Sevigny had published several books. El Muerto Pare el Santo in 2010; later Hymnal, Fire from Heaven, and Callejon de Milagros. Just a few months ago, he published League of the Dead, with Anders Lindborg as the editor. Anders, you may recall, has created or co-created a number of Film Simulation Recipes published on Fuji X Weekly. His Kodak Tri-X 400 Recipe is one of the most popular—and definitely the most popular B&W—and it was through this Recipe that John and Anders connected and became friends. Working together, the two of them created the Kodak T-Max P3200 Recipe, as well as another that has not yet been published.

John liked using Film Simulation Recipes on his Fujifilm cameras. He told me a year ago that Kodak Royal Gold 400 was one of his favorites for color, but he also used a modification of my original Classic Chrome Recipe a lot, the CineStill 800T Recipe occasionally, plus sometimes a modification of the Eterna Recipe. I’m sure he used others, too. For B&W, aside from the Tri-X and T-Max Recipes already mentioned, he apparently liked the Moody Monochrome Recipe.

The last thing that John Sevigny ever told me was, “I hope you had a great time!” That was in response to my Central Coast of California trip with Ken Rockwell back in June. I wish now that I had reached out to him sometime after that. It’s a real shame that I let so much time pass, and now it’s too late. Interestingly, back in March of 2022, one month after the initial message from John, he asked me, “What’s the hardest part of running Fuji X Weekly?” That turned into a back-and-forth conversation about time management and social media, specifically that social media can take up too much of your time if you let it. I think he really liked social media, especially the connections that one can make. It’s through social media that John and I connected; however, the sometimes overwhelming busyness of it prevented me from reaching out more than I should have.

John Sevigny was a great photographer, and I’m really sad that he has passed away. Prayers for his family, who I’m sure are still deeply grieving this loss.

I hope that you’ll take a look at John’s work. I don’t know how long his website or social media accounts will remain available, so don’t procrastinate. His books are sold out as far as I can find, but if you do find one, maybe think about picking it up.

Rest in peace, John Sevigny.

Why Film Simulation Recipes are BETTER than default Film Simulations

Autumn in a Mountain Meadow – Flagstaff, AZ – Fujifilm X100VFujicolor Superia 100

I get asked sometimes a very fair question: why use Film Simulation Recipes when Fujifilm’s factory-default film simulations are just so darn good?

Fujifilm has, in my opinion, the best JPEG output of any brand. Their film simulations are significantly influenced by Fujifilm’s vast experience with analog film, and it should not surprise anyone that they look good without any modifications. However, Fujifilm does provide a number of tools to customize and fine-tune the straight-out-of-camera results, which I believe makes them even better.

For those who don’t know, Film Simulation Recipes are settings for Fujifilm cameras that produce certain aesthetics, often modeled after classic film emulsions. I have published over 300 of them, which you can find on this website and the Fuji X Weekly App. Recipes are intended to be shot as JPEGs (or RAW+JPEG, if you prefer), and produce out-of-camera pictures that don’t require any editing, or perhaps minimal post-processing if you like. They appear as though they were edited, or even film-like. This saves a lot of time, hassle, and possibly money. It opens up photography to those who don’t know how to RAW edit, or don’t have the desire to learn, or maybe don’t even have access to editing software. This also makes photography more enjoyable to folks (like me) who have RAW-edited for years but don’t care much for it, and would rather be doing other things (like capturing more pictures!).

Golden Light in Abandoned House – North Salt Lake, UT – Fujifilm X100V – Fujicolor Reala 100

Many photographers who own a Fujifilm camera never dive into the menu to adjust the JPEG parameters. They keep it on Provia/STD and at factory defaults, which is 0, Off, or Auto. Or maybe they try the other film simulations, but they still keep everything else set to the default settings. It’s completely understandable. The results are already good, and, besides, the options can seem overwhelming and confusing. Film Simulation Recipes, which takes the guesswork out of the various options, improve upon the standard film sims, but also provide some variety. If you only ever use the default options, you are limited to (for example) a maximum of 10 looks for color photography (11 if you have the latest GFX model with Reala Ace), but there are over 300 Film Simulation Recipes, so (depending on your camera model) you could have hundreds to choose from. You can find the Recipes that produce aesthetics that best match your style and taste.

This is in no way intended to put down factory-default film simulations, or those who use them. My intention is to simply compare a default film sim photograph with a Film Simulation Recipe. Maybe you like the non-Recipe picture better, and that’s ok if you do. There are so many other Recipes to choose from, and I bet at least one would produce a look that you like more than the default film sim—for example, there are 80 Recipes in the Fuji X Weekly App that use Classic Chrome, so if you don’t like the Recipe I chose for this article, there are 79 others that could possibly be a better match for you.

Some Film Simulation Recipes are drastically divergent from the default film simulations, and some are only subtly altered. Many are intended for certain light situations (sunny daylight or artificial light, for example), while Auto White Balance is the factory standard. There’s no one single “right” Recipe or even a perfect film simulation. What matters is finding what works best for you and your photography. That could be a collection of Film Simulation Recipes, it could be a default film sim, or it might be shooting RAW and editing with the software of your choice, or any combination thereof or something different entirely. There’s no right or wrong way. For me, it’s shooting straight-out-of-camera JPEGs using Film Simulation Recipes.

Below are examples of factory-default film simulations compared to Film Simulation Recipes.


Default Provia/Std


Default Velvia


Default Astia

Classic Chrome

Default Classic Chrome

PRO Neg. Hi

Default PRO Neg. Hi

PRO Neg. Std

Default PRO Neg. Std

Classic Negative

Default Classic Negative

Nostalgic Neg.

Default Nostalgic Neg.


Default Eterna

Eterna Bleach Bypass

Default Eterna Bleach Bypass

Find these Film Simulation Recipes and about 300 more on the Fuji X Weekly App! Consider becoming a Patron subscriber to unlock the best App experience and to support Fuji X Weekly.

D-Range Priority: What it is + How, When & Why to use it

Yellow Aspen Forest – Flagstaff, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5 – Kodak Portra 160 v2 – DR-P Auto

Fujifilm introduced a feature called D-Range Priority (abbreviated DR-P) on the Fujifilm X-T3 in late-2018. Except that’s not entirely true, as the history of DR-P goes back much further than that. You see, Fujifilm EXR cameras, which were before X-Trans and utilized pixel-binning, also had something called D-Range Priority. Oh, and on their Frontier scanners, Fujifilm had something nearly identical to DR-P called Hypertone. The origins of DR-P seem to be found somewhere in the 1990’s.

My first camera that had D-Range Priority—a Fujifilm X-T30—arrived at my doorstep in early-2019, but I haven’t utilized the feature all that much, only sparingly. I get questions about it fairly regularly, particularly after I publish a Film Simulation Recipe that uses it, so I thought I’d take a moment and explain what DR-P is, plus how, when, and why to use it.

Let’s go back to Fujifilm’s Frontier scanners, which were common in photo labs in the 1990’s and 2000’s. Fujifilm modeled their film simulations—at least in part—after scans of films with corrections applied. Those scans were likely from Frontier scanners, and one of the corrections that Fujifilm recommended was Hypertone set to Auto. One limitation of digital camera sensors compared to color negative film is dynamic range. Negative film often has a larger dynamic range than digital cameras (especially in the early days of digital). Film tends to be more forgiving to overexposure (highlights), where digital tends to be more forgiving to underexposure (shadows). Hypertone was a software trick to maximize dynamic range so that it would digitally render more similarly to printed film on Fujicolor paper. D-Range Priority is a trick to achieve a dynamic range more similar to Frontier film scans that had Hypertone enabled.

Arizona Barn – Sedona, Arizona – Fujifilm X-T5 – Vibrant Arizona – DR-P Strong

Which answers the question of why to use it. D-Range Priority maximizes dynamic range, so as to keep highlights and shadows in check, but especially highlights. It’s more difficult to blow out highlights when you use DR-P. If you want to have the greatest dynamic range so as to avoid clipped highlights and blocked-up shadows, this is your best tool.

A few notes. First, like the regular Dynamic Range options (you know, DR100, DR200, DR400, and DR-Auto), D-Range Priority is ISO dependent. In this regard, DR-P Weak is like using DR200, and DR-P Strong is like using DR400. D-Range Priority is used in lieu of the Dynamic Range settings, so you cannot choose (for example) both DR200 and DR-P Weak simultaneously, only one or the other. Also, D-Range Priority disables the Tone Curve, so you cannot select a Highlight and Shadow setting. When enabled, DR-P is the Tone Curve. Interestingly, DR400 with both Highlight and Shadow set to -2 produces similar results to DR-P Weak. DR-P Auto chooses DR-P Weak almost always, and only selects DR-P Strong when there is a very bright light source, like shooting directly at the sun. D-Range Priority Strong produces a very low-contrast image, while DR-P Weak is a little less flat, but is still low-contrast.

To choose D-Range Priority, within the IQ section of the camera’s main Menu find D-Range Priority and select Auto, Strong, or Weak. Normally, D-Range Priority is set to Off. You only enable it when you want to use it. You can also choose D-Range Priority within Edit/Save Custom Presets, and have it enabled on any of your C1-C7 (or C1-C4, depending on your model) options.

Dry Fountain Evening – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4 – Expired Kodak Vision2 250D – DR-P Auto

There aren’t very many Recipes that utilize D-Range Priority, but there are some, included a couple that are popular right now. Vibrant Arizona uses DR-P Strong, as does Pulled Fujicolor Superia. Kodak Portra 160 v2 uses DR-P Auto, as do Expired Kodak Vision2 250D, Portra-Style, and Scanned Superia. There aren’t any that expressly use DR-P Weak, although you could enable DR-P Weak for the following Recipes and it will still render similarly: Fujicolor NPS 160 Pulled, Reala Ace, Bright Summer, Bright Kodak, and Indoor Angouleme.

To answer the when to use D-Range Priority question, it’s important to remember what DR-P does: produce a low-contrast picture that maximizes dynamic range to protect shadows and especially highlights. If you want punchy pictures, DR-P is not what you want to use (although in high contrast situations, you might still get dramatic results). If you want light pictures that might more closely resemble film scans (particularly from Frontier scanners), then DR-P is an option that you’ll want to consider.

While D-Range Priority is a fairly recent addition to X-Trans cameras—first introduced on X-Trans IV models—it turns out to have a much longer history. For years I assumed that D-Range Priority was for emergency use in extreme situations only, so I pretty much ignored it. I have since warmed up to DR-P, and I use it much more often than I used to. I still feel it’s probably not an option to utilize all of the time, but in the right situations or for a certain look, it works really well.

Kodak Portra 160 v2 — Fujifilm X-T5 (X-Trans V) Film Simulation Recipe

Yellow Aspen Forest – Flagstaff, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5 – Kodak Portra 160 v2 Recipe

At the very moment that I was finishing up my Kodak Portra 160 Film Simulation Recipe for X-Trans IV cameras, Thomas Schwab, who has created or co-created a number of Recipes on this website, sent me a modification that he made of the “old” Kodak Portra 160 Recipe (for X-Trans III plus the X-T3 & X-T30 cameras) to make it compatible with X-Trans V models. Clear as mud? Let me retry. This new Kodak Portra 160 v2 Recipe was modified by Thomas from the Kodak Portra 160 Recipe published in 2020 so as to be compatible with X-Trans V cameras. Plus he gave it a tune-up. Excitedly, I programmed this new version into my Fujifilm X-T5; however, I had several other projects going on, so it took a little time to get this one out. Thomas Schwab did a great job of updating the old version, and the results speak for themselves. I want to give Thomas a special “thank you” for his work and willingness to share!

Kodak introduced the Portra line in 1998, with two ISO 160 versions, two ISO 400 versions, and an ISO 800 emulsion (plus a short-lived ISO 100 Tungsten film, for those keeping score). Portra saw a couple of updates by Kodak, and in late-2010 the two ISO 160 versions were merged into one, as well as the two ISO 400 versions. Originally, Kodak Portra 160 came in “NC” (neutral color) and “VC” (vivid color) versions; Portra 160 NC was more popular for portraits and Portra 160 VC was more popular for landscapes. When Kodak merged the two, it fell kind of in-between the two emulsions—more vibrant than NC but less than VC. This Film Simulation Recipe is more similar to the merged Portra 160 that Kodak introduced in 2010. The film has become iconic, with its warm yet natural colors. As the name implies, it was meant for portrait photography, but is popular for many genres.

Shell Gas Station – Phoenix, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5 – Kodak Portra 160 v2 Recipe

This Kodak Portra 160 v2 Film Simulation Recipe is compatible with fifth-generation X-Trans cameras, which (as of this writing) are the X-H2, X-H2s, X-T5, and X-S20 (yes, the X-S20). With one modification—setting Color Chrome FX Blue to Strong instead of Weak—this Recipe is also compatible with most fourth-generation X-Trans cameras: X-Pro3, X100V, X-T4, X-S10, X-E4 & X-T30 II. This can also be used on newer GFX models, but it will render slightly different (try it anyway).

Film Simulation: Classic Chrome
Grain Effect: Weak, Small
Color Chrome Effect: Weak
Color Chrome FX Blue: Weak
White Balance: Daylight, +4 Red & -5 Blue
Dynamic Range: D-Range Priority (DR-P) Auto
Color: 0
Sharpness: -1

High ISO NR: -4
Clarity: -2
ISO: Auto, up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: +1/3 to +1 (typically)

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs using this Kodak Portra 160 v2 Film Simulation Recipe on my Fujifilm X-T5:

Smokey Sunset – Flagstaff, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Mountainous Contemplations – Flagstaff, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Siblings – Flagstaff, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Backlit Boy in Autumn – Flagstaff, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Jonathan Using RitchieCam – Flagstaff, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Golden Hour, Golden Trees – Flagstaff, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Deer in the Meadow – Flagstaff, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Yellow Aspen Tree Tops – Flagstaff, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Yellow Aspens behind Green Pine – Flagstaff, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Leaves & Needles – Flagstaff, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Autumn Joy – Flagstaff, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Bougainvillea Pink – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Endless Blue & Palms – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Dusk in the Suburbs – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Frisbee Golf – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Yard Palm – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Palm Behind Bougainvillea – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5
Two-Trunked Saguaro – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X-T5

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Top 25 Most Popular Film Simulation Recipes of 2023 (so far…)

No Cigarettes – Avila Beach, CA – Fujifilm X-E4 – Kodachrome 64 Recipe

I get asked fairly regularly which Film Simulation Recipes are the most popular. For me, this is a fascinating topic, but it’s definitely hard to know definitively. While I get a glimpse on social media, my best gauge is the Fuji X Weekly website statistics; specifically, which Recipe articles are viewed the most. I don’t collect any data on the Fuji X Weekly App, so that’s no help—although, if I did, it would likely offer the most accurate picture; however, it would still be impossible to know which Recipes people programmed into their Fujifilm cameras, or how often they use each. Perhaps a survey would be particularly useful, yet even it has its limitations. While certainly a flawed method, page-view website statics offer the best glimpse at which Film Simulation Recipes are the most popular, so that’s what I’m using for this article. These are simply the Top 25 most-viewed Recipes on the Fuji X Weekly website.

There’s a lot that can be gleaned from this exercise, but also a grain of salt must be consumed, too. For example, Vibrant Arizona actually has four Recipes in that article (two versions of two), so it would certainly rank lower if it only had one; also, it was published near the end of April, so it has a time disadvantage, as do all of the other Recipes published after January 1st. But, setting those limitations aside, there are still some fascinating trends to be explored. Some of these rankings are quite surprising to me, and others are not surprising at all.

Classic Chrome is the king of film simulations. The five most popular Fuji X Weekly Recipes all use Classic Chrome, as do 21 of the Top 25. Second place, which is Classic Negative with two, is a very distant second. Acros and PRO Neg. Std have one each. The other film simulations don’t even chart on this list. For those who use Film Simulation Recipes, Classic Chrome is clearly the film sim of choice for most.

Not surprisingly, Recipes with Kodak brand names are the most popular. 13 have Kodak in the name, eight have Portra in the name, and five have Kodachrome in the name. Kodak was the most popular film brand, so it should be expected that Film Simulation Recipes that mimic those emulsions would also be popular. What is surprising to me is that none with Fujifilm, Fujicolor, Superia, Provia, Velvia, etc., in the Recipe name made this list, as some of those are my personal favorites.

Two Caballeros – Culleoka, TX – Fujifilm X-E4 – Kodachrome 64 Recipe

10 of these Recipes use a Kelvin White Balance, eight use Auto White Balance, six use Daylight, and one uses a Custom White Balance measurement. Almost all of them are warm, at least a little. Only one B&W Recipe made this list, which isn’t a shock to me because the color Recipes are typically far more popular than monochrome. Only one Recipe specifically intended for night photography made this list, and I’m actually a little surprised by which one and how high it ranks. 10 Recipes use DR200, nine use DR400, five use DR-Auto, and one uses D-Range Priority Strong.

Most people who use Recipes do so on X-Trans IV cameras, specifically the X-Pro3, X100V, X-T4, X-S10, X-E4, and X-T30 II models. Of the Top 25 Recipes, 16 of them are for those specific X-Trans IV cameras, including each of the Top 3. Six are for X-Trans III cameras plus the X-T3 and X-T30, two are for X-Trans V, and one is for X-Trans II (the very last one). But it’s a little more convoluted than that, because some Recipes (Vibrant Arizona and Kodak Tri-X 400 for sure, and probably others) are being used on X-Trans V cameras. Some of the X-Trans III plus X-T3 and X-T30 Recipes are likely being used on X-Trans IV and X-Trans V models to some extent. The majority of X-Trans V Recipes are at a disadvantage because they were published after January 1st, and there are only four fifth-generation X-Trans models anyway. I think the biggest takeaway is that the majority of people who shoot with Film Simulation Recipes in 2023 are doing so on X-Trans III and newer cameras, and X-Trans IV is the largest group within that. Recipes are not as popular on EXR, X-Trans I, X-Trans II, Bayer, and GFX models, although there are certainly many who do use them.

There are some rankings that surprise me. Vibrant Arizona is the only one published in 2023 to make the Top 25, although the fact that there are actually four Recipes in that article certainly affect its page-views. The X-Trans III version of Kodak Portra 400 requires a hard-to-get-right custom White Balance measurement, so it’s always surprising to me that so many use it. Kodak Portra 400 Warm and Bright Summer are especially warm, and their use case is more narrow than the others. If you had asked me what the second-most popular Recipe that uses the Classic Negative film sim, I would not have guessed Kodak Max 800, yet here it is! The X-Trans III version of Kodachrome II was ranked #7 last year, the X-Trans IV version of Kodachome II was ranked #8, Nostalgic Negative was #9, and Kodak Ektar 100 was #10, so those have fallen significantly, now ranked #12, #19, #24, & #16, respectively. I’m a little surprised that Classic Kodak Chrome is the most popular X-Trans II Recipe.

Anyway, I’ve held you up long enough. Let’s get to the list!

Top 25 Most Popular Film Simulation Recipes of 2023 (…so far)


























Find these Film Simulation Recipes and many more on the Fuji X Weekly App!